snopes.com  

Go Back   snopes.com > SLC Central > Soapbox Derby

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 31 January 2019, 08:15 AM
Psihala's Avatar
Psihala Psihala is offline
 
Join Date: 28 February 2001
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 8,258
Roll eyes Sarah Sanders: "God wanted Trump to become president"

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said in an interview Wednesday with the Christian Broadcasting Network she believes God wanted Donald Trump to become president.

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/sarah-s...ome-president/
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 31 January 2019, 11:42 AM
ASL's Avatar
ASL ASL is offline
 
Join Date: 04 July 2003
Location: Norfolk, VA
Posts: 5,978
Ponder

I don’t see what’s eye-roll worthy. Don’t most brands of Christianity operate under the assumption that all that which happens happens according to god’s plan? Trump becoming President definitely happened, unsettling as that may be to you and me.
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 31 January 2019, 12:07 PM
dfresh dfresh is offline
 
Join Date: 11 November 2005
Location: Oxford, PA
Posts: 4,441
Default

It has always confused me, ASL. Some talk about predestination, where what happens is because God made it so with his master plan, and then they go on about free will, where things happen since we CHOSE for them to be that way...but it is all part of God's master plan. So God made us choose to do things to work in his plan...

Anyway, yeah, nothing too unusual about a devoted Christian saying that Trump being elected to do many great Christian things (hate your neighbor, lie, steal, commit adultery) is part of God's plan.
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 31 January 2019, 02:35 PM
thorny locust's Avatar
thorny locust thorny locust is offline
 
Join Date: 27 April 2007
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 9,894
Default

I note that people who say that sort of thing also tend to say that God sent catastrophic storms, etc.

So they might want to bear in mind that, even if the God they believe in exists and that God wanted Trump to become President, it might be in the same sense in which God sends tsunamis and hurricanes: hey! you guys deserve a disaster!

-- I also find it odd to believe simultaneously that God wanted the storms and particular presidents, but that God doesn't want, for instance, gay people to be gay. However I have noticed some time ago that neither the universe, or humans in particular, seem to conform to my particular sort of logic.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 31 January 2019, 03:04 PM
Keeper of the Mad Bunnies's Avatar
Keeper of the Mad Bunnies Keeper of the Mad Bunnies is offline
 
Join Date: 07 January 2003
Location: Detroit, MI
Posts: 1,266
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
I note that people who say that sort of thing also tend to say that God sent catastrophic storms, etc.

So they might want to bear in mind that, even if the God they believe in exists and that God wanted Trump to become President, it might be in the same sense in which God sends tsunamis and hurricanes: hey! you guys deserve a disaster!

-- I also find it odd to believe simultaneously that God wanted the storms and particular presidents, but that God doesn't want, for instance, gay people to be gay. However I have noticed some time ago that neither the universe, or humans in particular, seem to conform to my particular sort of logic.
To quote Martin Gore (Depeche Mode):

Quote:
I don't want to start any blasphemous rumours / but I think that God's got a sick sense of humour / and when I die, I expect to find him laughing.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 31 January 2019, 03:21 PM
musicgeek's Avatar
musicgeek musicgeek is offline
 
Join Date: 01 August 2005
Location: Fairfield, CT
Posts: 5,773
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASL View Post
I don’t see what’s eye-roll worthy. Don’t most brands of Christianity operate under the assumption that all that which happens happens according to god’s plan?
I don't think that most mainline denomination Christians actually believe this, but now you have me wondering what the official doctrine of my church is, beliefs/actions of individual members, pastors, congregations, etc. aside.


ETA: This is from Wikipedia:
Quote:
Divine providence[edit]
According to Lutherans, God preserves his creation, cooperates with everything that happens, and guides the universe.[140] While God cooperates with both good and evil deeds, with evil deeds he does so only inasmuch as they are deeds, but not with the evil in them. God concurs with an act's effect, but he does not cooperate in the corruption of an act or the evil of its effect.[141] Lutherans believe everything exists for the sake of the Christian Church, and that God guides everything for its welfare and growth.[142]
The sources cited are from Concordia Publishing House, which is affiliated with the Missouri Synod, generally speaking a more conservative body than the ELCA, and I couldn't find a definitive ELCA doctrinal statement on the subject with just a quick search. Interesting. (And like most things about organized religion, any attempt to make logically coherent sense of it requires some pretty strange twisting.)

Last edited by musicgeek; 31 January 2019 at 03:33 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 31 January 2019, 03:47 PM
ASL's Avatar
ASL ASL is offline
 
Join Date: 04 July 2003
Location: Norfolk, VA
Posts: 5,978
Ponder

Quote:
Originally Posted by musicgeek View Post
(And like most things about organized religion, any attempt to make logically coherent sense of it requires some pretty strange twisting.)
Which defies logic. Well, not so much logic as any sort of empiricism--which is the best path to "truth" (to the extent there is such a thing and it is knowable) we have available. And I suppose it doesn't so much defy it as sidestep it, as if you can sidestep it and still claim to know the "truth" of a thing.

Which is to say I think there's as much evidence for god being involved in Trump's rise to power as there is for god being involved in anything.

So... *shrug*
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 31 January 2019, 04:08 PM
dfresh dfresh is offline
 
Join Date: 11 November 2005
Location: Oxford, PA
Posts: 4,441
Devil

Yes, God wanted those people driving next to me to run the red light this morning and get tickets. It was divine will!
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 31 January 2019, 04:38 PM
thorny locust's Avatar
thorny locust thorny locust is offline
 
Join Date: 27 April 2007
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 9,894
Default

Quote:
God concurs with an act's effect, but he does not cooperate in the corruption of an act or the evil of its effect.
musicgeek, what does that mean to you? Because I can't make any sense out of it; but I may well be missing something.

If an act's effect is evil, how can God concur with the effect but not with the evilness which is an essential part of it?
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 31 January 2019, 05:05 PM
erwins's Avatar
erwins erwins is offline
 
Join Date: 04 April 2006
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 12,366
Default

Ah, the logical problem of evil. It is not possible for all of the following to be true:
(1) God is omnipotent.
(2) God is omniscient.
(3) God is omnibenevolent (perfectly good).
(4) Evil/suffering exists.

Because (4) is demonstrably true, it must be one of the first 3 that is not true.

https://www.iep.utm.edu/evil-log/

This link has a good, understandable, introduction, but I think its discussion of the responses is weak. If you want a good discussion of the counter arguments, try eleswhere.
Reply With Quote
  #11  
Old 31 January 2019, 05:11 PM
ASL's Avatar
ASL ASL is offline
 
Join Date: 04 July 2003
Location: Norfolk, VA
Posts: 5,978
Default

(4) may be demonstrably true, but it's only relevant if you take for granted that either (a) evil exists or (b) human suffering matters.

Because it's easy enough to reject the notion of evil (it's even easier if you reject the supernatural), and religion is pretty good at making the case that your suffering here and now doesn't matter at all. It's the next life that matters, this is just a place to wipe your filthy ape feet and atone for sins someone who isn't you is supposed to have committed thousands of years ago (and only thousands, because the concept of original sin kind of demands a literal Adam and Eve story or else it falls apart).
Reply With Quote
  #12  
Old 31 January 2019, 05:17 PM
thorny locust's Avatar
thorny locust thorny locust is offline
 
Join Date: 27 April 2007
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 9,894
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by erwins View Post
Ah, the logical problem of evil. It is not possible for all of the following to be true:
(1) God is omnipotent.
(2) God is omniscient.
(3) God is omnibenevolent (perfectly good).
(4) Evil/suffering exists.

Because (4) is demonstrably true, it must be one of the first 3 that is not true.
erwins, I know and agree with that (except to point out that it could also be more than one of the first three that's not true); but obviously people who do believe in such a God don't. I'm trying to understand the inside of other people's heads.
Reply With Quote
  #13  
Old 31 January 2019, 05:27 PM
musicgeek's Avatar
musicgeek musicgeek is offline
 
Join Date: 01 August 2005
Location: Fairfield, CT
Posts: 5,773
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
musicgeek, what does that mean to you? Because I can't make any sense out of it; but I may well be missing something.

If an act's effect is evil, how can God concur with the effect but not with the evilness which is an essential part of it?
I got nothin'.

I think that, as erwins points out, people tie themselves in knots trying to account for bad things happening if they believe in an all-powerful, all-knowing, and all-good God. However, we humans have an incredible capacity for compartmentalization and selective ignorance, so rather than find ourselves paralyzed by paradox, we figure "eh, what are you going to do?" and get on with our lives. I think Zach Weinersmith summed it up pretty well:
Reply With Quote
  #14  
Old 31 January 2019, 05:49 PM
thorny locust's Avatar
thorny locust thorny locust is offline
 
Join Date: 27 April 2007
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 9,894
Default

Too late to edit:

From the article linked, which I haven't yet read all of:

Quote:
Many atheologians believe that God could have created a world that was populated with free creatures and yet did not contain any evil or suffering.
That's not actually the position I'm claiming; because I don't think evil and suffering are the same thing. To take the example given in the article, giving a child an inoculation isn't evil, even though it causes suffering. Ditto, say, setting a child's (or a dog's, etc.) broken bone; even if anaesthesia isn't available. I think it's arguable that even, say, the reproductive habits of wasps aren't evil -- maybe in order to have wasps they have to reproduce like that, and maybe in order to have a functioning ecology it's necessary to have a functional equivalent of wasps.

I would say that it's causing unnecessary suffering for the fun of it that's evil -- and that it's only evil when done by somebody who knows what they're doing. I don't think a cat tormenting a mouse is evil, because I doubt that the cat understands that it's tormenting the mouse. I do think a human tormenting a cat, or another creature, because they think it's fun, is evil.

And there are people who think it's fun to torture other creatures. But this is obviously not an essential part of being human -- because there are an awful lot of people who don't think it's fun. So why would a benevolent, omnipotent, omniscient god make people who do think it's fun? It's the same sort of problem, to me (though very much from a different direction as to results), as saying that a benevolent, omnipotent, omniscient god doesn't want anybody to be gay -- but makes some people gay anyway. (I'm aware that one defense for that one is to claim that being gay's a choice -- that nobody actually is made that way. Lots of evidence against that, of course; but I think that may be why the claim gets made.)
Reply With Quote
  #15  
Old 31 January 2019, 05:57 PM
crocoduck_hunter's Avatar
crocoduck_hunter crocoduck_hunter is offline
 
Join Date: 27 May 2009
Location: Roseburg, OR
Posts: 13,144
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASL View Post
I donít see whatís eye-roll worthy. Donít most brands of Christianity operate under the assumption that all that which happens happens according to godís plan? Trump becoming President definitely happened, unsettling as that may be to you and me.
Everything but birth control, gay marriage, and sometimes vaccines.
Reply With Quote
  #16  
Old 31 January 2019, 07:58 PM
GenYus234's Avatar
GenYus234 GenYus234 is offline
 
Join Date: 02 August 2005
Location: Mesa, AZ
Posts: 26,690
Default

One of the claims I've seen is that birth control, gay feelings, etc are a test from God to see if we can be "good".

ETA:
Quote:
Originally Posted by ASL View Post
(4) may be demonstrably true, but it's only relevant if you take for granted that ... human suffering matters.
What would the purpose of omnibenevolence be if human suffering doesn't matter?
Reply With Quote
  #17  
Old 31 January 2019, 10:55 PM
ASL's Avatar
ASL ASL is offline
 
Join Date: 04 July 2003
Location: Norfolk, VA
Posts: 5,978
Icon215

Quote:
Originally Posted by GenYus234 View Post
What would the purpose of omnibenevolence be if human suffering doesn't matter?
*shrug*

Whatever god wants it to be.

Or maybe it also gets taken out of the equation, and the believer only has to reconcile omniscience with omnipotence.

Or maybe it’s anout the nature of the after life.

The point is, it’s a hypothetical way for believers to do mental gymnastics that side-step the problem of evil by appealing to an altered understanding of the nature of god. The whole "god is mysterious in his ways" perhaps, but then again it may just be "god doesn’t care about you one way or the other, and why should he?"

One thing that I "like" about the Puritans, which I believe I’ve mentioned in other threads, is that they don’t seem to have any pretense of obedience to a loving god. Theirs is an angry god (and they’re not alone in that belief, they’re just the most prominent I can think of in our own history) and they don’t kid themselves into thinking that god should want to end your suffering.

Who said god should be anything but all powerful? Some yuppie who lacked faith, probably. Trying to justify to some cry-babies who were also lacking why they should be obedient to god's commandments, as if god is somehow incapable of looking after His own vision or exacting His perfect justice on those who will not obey.

My point is, the problem of evil is only a problem if you think god loves you and wants to have a relationship with you while at the same time adhering to certain core Christian beliefs like hell, damnation, original sin, etc.

ETA: See also Mother Teresa's take on suffering, which was roundly criticized by those who were actually paying attention.

Last edited by ASL; 31 January 2019 at 11:06 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #18  
Old 31 January 2019, 11:49 PM
erwins's Avatar
erwins erwins is offline
 
Join Date: 04 April 2006
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 12,366
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ASL View Post
(4) may be demonstrably true, but it's only relevant if you take for granted that either (a) evil exists or (b) human suffering matters.

Because it's easy enough to reject the notion of evil (it's even easier if you reject the supernatural), and religion is pretty good at making the case that your suffering here and now doesn't matter at all. It's the next life that matters, this is just a place to wipe your filthy ape feet and atone for sins someone who isn't you is supposed to have committed thousands of years ago (and only thousands, because the concept of original sin kind of demands a literal Adam and Eve story or else it falls apart).
Yeah, it's interesting how different religions deal with it. Supposedly (I have not verified) Christian Scientists (the religion) posits that there is no evil or suffering. It's illusory. Which seems to me to open up existential/epistemological cans of worms, in terms of how we can know whether anything is real, or if it matters or can have meaning to say that someone's experience of suffering is "illusory."

Quote:
Originally Posted by thorny locust View Post
erwins, I know and agree with that (except to point out that it could also be more than one of the first three that's not true); but obviously people who do believe in such a God don't. I'm trying to understand the inside of other people's heads.
Oh, I wasn't offering it as an answer to your question, more of a recognition -- ooh, that question!

As to the necessary suffering take, it does seem to require reducing the scope of omnipotence if God can't make vaccinations not hurt, to follow that example, or the scope of perfectly good, if God can but chooses not to.

Mackie, who wrote a well known essay on this problem (Evil and Omnipotence), added a proposition stating that one who is perfectly good seeks to decrease evil. (Something to that effect).

Musicgeek, that's an awesome cartoon. Seems accurate to me on the how much most people care question.

Last edited by erwins; 31 January 2019 at 11:56 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #19  
Old 01 February 2019, 01:07 AM
musicgeek's Avatar
musicgeek musicgeek is offline
 
Join Date: 01 August 2005
Location: Fairfield, CT
Posts: 5,773
Default

My friends (who are pastors, have their doctorates in theology, and have taught at Yale Divinity School) thought it was a pretty good summation of the concepts (and "pretty impressive for a webcomic").
Reply With Quote
  #20  
Old 01 February 2019, 04:15 AM
ASL's Avatar
ASL ASL is offline
 
Join Date: 04 July 2003
Location: Norfolk, VA
Posts: 5,978
Ponder

Is the last panel supposed to imply that skepticism is somehow deficient because it might make some people feel bad, realizing there is no evidence for god and that they should decline to accept any god proposition until such time as there is?
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
US intelligence community operating under presumption Russia has "ears" on the Trump TallGeekyGirl Soapbox Derby 8 13 February 2017 06:39 PM
Trump Ally Alex Jones: "I Was Told By People Around" Clinton That "She's Demon-Posses TallGeekyGirl Soapbox Derby 31 14 October 2016 05:14 PM
Sarah Palin in "Goody Two Shoes" music video snopes Politics 6 03 March 2014 02:51 PM
"Password" unseated by "123456" on SplashData's annual "Worst Passwords" list snopes Techno-Babble 32 04 February 2014 12:42 AM
Unnamed president: "Tolerance today, tyranny tomorrow!" Mr. Billion Questionable Quotes 15 07 March 2013 04:39 PM


All times are GMT. The time now is 08:01 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.