The Raving Theist

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God Squad Review CLX (Revelation)

February 20, 2006 | 7 Comments

Does God talk to anyone anymore? A Squad reader is suspicious of preachers who claim that they are “led by God.” The Squad cautions that most people who deliver divine messages are cranks — and if you’re going to rely on cranks, it’s much more scientifical to rely on unattributed triple hearsay from dead ones whose former existence can’t be even confirmed:

Our general view is that it’s OK when people talk to God, but a little spooky when God talks to people. Talking to God is called prayer. Hearing from God is called revelation. There are two kinds of revelation.

There is historical revelation that’s recorded in the sacred texts of the world’s great wisdom traditions. There’s also personal revelation, which is a direct, personal and private communication between God and a person. Historical revelation has the advantage of being old and tested and recognized as leading to the truth of things. Personal revelation is much more problematic. The Bible makes it clear most personal revelations occur in dreams and visions, and their content is not always clear. Personal revelations can’t be tested against truth. The person proclaiming a personal revelation could be a nut case, deluded, or covering his naked ambition with God’s authority. The Bible warns against false prophets precisely for this reason.

Certainly no nakedly ambitious deluded nut case would ever let his hysterical followers publish a book of his mad ravings and apocalyptic predictions. Crackpots hate attention. If they liked it, not only would there be millions of blogs, but there would be scores of competing, sacred texts proclaiming conflicting facts and prophecies — some possibly even containing internal inconsistencies. Instead, we have one peer-reviewed, double-blind study we call the Bible (or Q’uran or Book of Mormon). It’s fully testable against truth or, as Steven Colbert might say, against truthiness.


7 Responses to “God Squad Review CLX (Revelation)”

  1. Dada Saves
    February 20th, 2006 @ 12:00 pm

    I thought the other God Squad letter was more interesting. The rabbi and the monsignor declare that it’s “courageous” and “spiritually important” when interfaith marriages (oh, just for example, let’s say a Jew and a Catholic) declare ONE of those religions “primary” for any brats they hope to indoctrinate into their hooey.

    Why can’t these two clowns be courageous and tell us which hocus-pocus of theirs is “primary,” instead of shoveling milquetoast, hybridized yip-yap at their confused readership every week?

  2. Peter Sattler
    February 20th, 2006 @ 12:36 pm

    “Squad, meet Mr. Kierkegaard. Mr. Kierkegaard, allow me to introduce the Squad. Søren, I believe these two need to speak to you about the irreducibly irrational nature of faith and revelation. And Squad, please listen carefully, even if he is from Denmark.”

  3. Sir Robin Goodfellow
    February 20th, 2006 @ 1:20 pm

    Nowadays, somebody who claims to speak with God usually doesn’t tell anyone about it, at least until the criminal charges are filed. And He’s usually telling them to kill someone.

  4. choobus
    February 20th, 2006 @ 3:28 pm

    godidiots are total assclowns.

    This has been a public service announcement.

  5. sternwallow
    February 20th, 2006 @ 6:20 pm

    Shouldn’t that be “truthfullyness”?

  6. Tomek
    February 21st, 2006 @ 9:02 am

    I would be interested in what goes through the mind of a person who writes such a response. The whole problem of why is an old book which has no reliable info on the prophets of back then could be the “truth” while people nowadays are crazy would just hit me right in the face. With my little dablling in creationism though, I know what happens. Such dilemmas are interesting but they are disregarded and ingored. Labelled irrelevant or insignificant automatically before reason has any say in it.


  7. Reverend
    February 24th, 2006 @ 1:23 am

    My congregation recently brought to my attention a web site they use to inspire their loved ones, Many have said it was a great resource for them.

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