What is faith?

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DoubleU
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What is faith?

Post by DoubleU » Fri Nov 15, 2013 10:23 pm

That is, can two people do the same thing, one with faith and one without, and get different results?

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Tobias_Marco
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Re: What is faith?

Post by Tobias_Marco » Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:58 pm

<An interesting question.>
<Some people say that faith is the evidence of things unseen.>
<I have also been told that once upon a time a missionary was translating the Holy Bible into the local language and ran into problems, they had no word for 'faith' he ended up using a word that meant "To put your whole weight on".>
<When I walk across the floor or I sit in a chair I have faith that I can put my whole weight on it and the floor or chair will not break.>
<If you walk down the street you have faith that the sidewalk or the street isn't going to fall away under your feet.>
<If I visit a friends house that I have never been to before I have never seen their chairs before, yet I have faith that these aren't trick chairs designed to fall apart on me, I have faith that they will hold me up.>

<However you want to know if two people can do the same thing and get different results.>
<There are two people; Chris is a Christian, and Charles is not, Charles believes in the Big Bang theory (he also loves the TV show, and never misses it!) and he believes that we all evolved from single celled organisms.>
<As a result of their different belief systems, Chris believes that each of us has an immortal soul that will survive after we are dead, Charles on the other hand does not, he believes that everything in the universe is only the result of elector-chemical and physical reactions that are part of a chain reaction set in motion by the big bang.>
<Charles believes that Chris is wrong, very, very wrong, however Chris can't help it because he is that way due to all the reactions that has lead the universe to this point. Someday when he dies Charles is sure that his family will bury him or have his body cremated, and that will be the end of him.>

<Now that we have our players, lets see what happens.>
<Both Charles and Chris walk into the same room and on a table are two balls, each man picks up a ball and holds it 1.5 meters above the floor, and 1.5 meters from the ceiling. When each man lets go what happens? Do both balls fall towards the floor? Does one of them fly towards the ceiling and if so, which one?>
<The answer is clear, both balls fall. Both men believed that this is what would happen and they both see what they expected to.>
<For the most part anything we put these two men through will be the same, however what if both men prayed?>
<Chris believes that there is some kind of god that can hear his prayers and reply to them. Charles does not, Charles believes that he is merely saying useless, yet good sounding words, into an empty room and nobody can hear him or do anything about his situation based on what he prays.>

<Yet there have been studies that show that people heal better and faster if they are prayed for.>

<Then there is the question of the after-life.>
<IF a god of some kind exists, lets say that he/she/it/they can not be so easily fooled.>
<Chris has a friend, John. Both men go to church, they pray before every meal, they help out with church activities and they are both well respected in their communities. However Chris is a Christian, and John is only faking it. John has heard of Pascal's wager and is only going to church to try and fool whatever god might be out there.>

<All three men die some day, as we all someday must.>
<If no god exists then the same thing happens to each, Charles was right and there is no soul, they are just worm food.>
<However if there is a god then each of these three men face some form of judgement.>
<What kind of judgment depends on how the god judges, and that can depend on you views of such things. Some people say that so long as you are not a rapist or a murderer, so long as you have not done anything that would get the cops wanting to throw you in jail, then you are a good person and should go to Heaven.>
<However the god of Christianity is a little different then that.>
<God tells each of these three men that when they sinned they committed treason against the God King of the universe. That only the true Christian has asked for forgiveness and has turned back to this true king.>
<The others are still traitors.>
"Because you have not wanted me to be a part of your life I have given you what you have asked for." God says, "I could have tried to force myself onto each of you, but I knew that you would not love me, and you would have hated me even more then you do now. Therefore because you want nothing to do with me I will send each of you to the one place I am not."

<God then sends them to a country far away.>
<Think of Heaven and Hell like two countries, one is rich in resources, (All good things come from GOD) the other country has nothing (if all good things come from GOD, and these people want nothing to do with GOD and whatever gifts he has then they would have nothing, or at very least, nothing good).>
<This country is full of people who believe that they can make it on their own without God, and they don't want any kind of aid from him or his people.>
<They have very little, and what they do have they fight over.>
<Growing up in a family with 5 children I know that sometimes when you fight over things they can get destroyed, meaning that you would have even less.>
True education, true science, true religion is the search for truth.
Matthew 28:16-20, John 3:14-20

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Re: What is faith?

Post by DoubleU » Fri Nov 22, 2013 8:30 pm

I suppose my question involves how "faith without works is dead", but are works necessarily different without faith? That is, can you think something's a load of hooey but guess, "Well, maybe, what if," sorta thing.

Some things, I'm pretty sure, fit this description: my breaking a board in taekwondo class (I only had to follow the teacher's instructions) and the Israelites getting cured of snakebite (they just had to look at the brass serpent). In both cases, if you don't have faith that it will work out, but you at least try it, following the instructions exactly, you get the same results, right?

Of course, the above definition of the word (I almost said "your definition", but realized others might wanna join in) seems to imply that the original question might well have been nonsense, and that a person who did something must have had faith, and a person who did nothing must not have had faith, as it's more than just academic belief. Thus, if I have faith that someone will catch me if I jump from a burning building, I should jump, right? That's my understanding.

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Tobias_Marco
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Re: What is faith?

Post by Tobias_Marco » Mon Nov 25, 2013 7:56 pm

<It is always at least a little tricky when you talk about faith.>
<If I tell you something good will happen if you take a given action and something bad will happen if you don't then if you take the action I request depends on if you have faith in me or not.>
<Taking the burning building example, I tell you that if you stay in this building you will die, so you should jump. Someone else tells you that if you jump you'll die, he says you should run down the stairs.>
<Who do you have faith in?>
True education, true science, true religion is the search for truth.
Matthew 28:16-20, John 3:14-20

DoubleU
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Re: What is faith?

Post by DoubleU » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:13 pm

You got that right.

Anyway, thanks, unless you have more to say. I really liked that definition, it allowed me to see things from another pt. of view.

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Tobias_Marco
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Re: What is faith?

Post by Tobias_Marco » Mon Nov 25, 2013 8:27 pm

<That's what I try to do.>
<If there is ever anything anyone here wants to know then feel free to ask and I will try my best.>
True education, true science, true religion is the search for truth.
Matthew 28:16-20, John 3:14-20