Revelation Doesn’t Prove God

Sathya Sai Baba was a Hindi holy man who claimed to be God (claimed we’re each god, actually, but he had the power to perform miracles since he’d accepted the fact, whereas others were bound by their lack of faith). He died a few short years ago, though since resurrection is listed amongst his powers, presumably we may yet get a chance to meet him.

He performed a number of miracles—such as producing ash from his empty hands, pouring seemingly unlimited amounts of ash from a vase, being able to read minds, cure terminal illnesses (cancer was his specialty), see into the future and the past… He even once, when speaking with a man, was able to sense that the man’s wife had just caught on fire; Baba instantly transported 400 miles, put the flames out, and then returned to finish his conversation. He also was known to raise the dead.

This is all documented.

But that you can talk to all of the people involved, that you can see the evidence for yourself, has not roused a single Christian (that I’m aware of) to convert, or even to investigate. They’re so convinced that he’s a fraud that no evidence would convince them otherwise. But when Mother Teresa performs a miracle, from beyond the grave no less, then–even with the miracle scientifically explained and a confessed hoax–they refuse to acknowledge even the most basic questions as to it’s authenticity.

They want to believe one, and not the other. The quanta of proof is irrelevant in either case. They have chosen the belief first, and then accumulated evidence to support it, discarding that which does not.

Now I’m open to miracles, but I expect well rationed and reasoned proof (and they must indeed be miracles, not simply long shot coincidences). Thanks to the “miracle” of modern technology, Sai Baba’s handiwork is easily available on YouTube. I must admit one or two of them are a touch impressive, but the vast majority are so laughably fake that it’s surprising to find that these videos are posted–not by skeptics–but by his supporters. What troubles me is that of all his, I’ve yet to see him do anything that can’t be reproduced by Penn Jillette, David Copperfield, or Marjoe Gortner (a spectacularly successful Evangelical preacher/faith healer, and self professed fraud).

Every miracle attributed to Mother Teresa is just as easily explained (also admitted fraud); that they could qualify her for canonization is an embarrassingly low bar for what constitutes a “miracle”, and strongly suggests that the church doesn’t expect any better evidence to come along. It undermines the credibility of the entire notion of sainthood, if this is what it takes to make a saint.

With genuine sincerity I apologize to my Mormon brothers and sisters, but the best example of what I consider to be open fraud is Joseph Smith. The story of the founding of Mormonism is so patently counterfeit that I sometimes think Mormons are a comedy troupe that have simply let the joke run too long. What’s more, nearly every other Christian (Catholic, Protestant, Baptist and so on) agrees with that assessment. And yet these same Christians are unable to take that critical eye and apply it inward, incapable of seeing that–in the face of a vast universe (multiverse, actually), we are so infinitesimally small and insignificant that to suggest there is a being that created it all with us in mind, that he cares who we sleep with and why, and picks sides at football games, is not one ounce more credible than the notion that we are aliens waiting to get our own planet(1)Yes, this is the Mormon belief. They tried to rebut the perception in the essay Becoming Like God, but they actually dodged the issue. If they opened with this planet business, I suspect fewer people would answer the door. But take their beliefs, and their incredulity is immediately suspended–and beliefs, even those which are demonstrably false, are swallowed hook line and sinker.

The bible is a political document. Stories written decades after the fact, passed down one very long game of telephone with translations, mistranslated and transcription errors, fiddled with by kings and scribes, with self-contradictory claims, based on retelling of stories and miracles cobbled together from other gods, then edited, re-edited, pieces made bigger and smaller by kings, while new lines were dropped in and pulled out, translation and transcription errors finding their way in. And while no one has been able to find a consensus on what it all means, it’s none the less conclusive evidence of God, or at least good enough to murder or condemn each-other over.

When the Jew tells explains why he doesn’t believe in Christian revelation, he’ll understand why I don’t believe in his. When the Christian refutes Mormon revelations, he’ll understand my objection to the New Testament. When the Mormon refutes Sathya Sai, he will have provided me every argument I need against Mormonism.

Unless you receive the revelation yourself, all revelations are hearsay. If it’s hearsay, there is no difference between so-called “revealed” religions, and any other faith.

 

Footnotes   [ + ]

1. Yes, this is the Mormon belief. They tried to rebut the perception in the essay Becoming Like God, but they actually dodged the issue. If they opened with this planet business, I suspect fewer people would answer the door

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Ian MacnaughtThe Atheist CodexWarren KincaidChris GroverGeoffrey O'Donnell Recent comment authors
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Warren Kincaid
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The bible is not all conclusive in its revelations. It doesn’t reveal to man ALL of “what is”. However it is sufficient. But what it does reveal can be called “True truth” if understood correctly. Because God created “all that is” in His own way (humans, human nature, natural nature, the universe and time) we can look at those things and honestly weigh them against what is revealed in “the book”. If God exists then all things must agree if the bible is true. We also must be honest about what language and principles are found in the bible as well, in order to give it fair justice. In short… we must learn its language in order to hear what it is saying. That’s no different than anything else if we want to learn. And I find this refusal to learn to be the greatest road-block to modern man.

Warren Kincaid
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You get to decide. It’s your reality that you get to live with. And understanding it is not that complicated if you give it a fair shake and honest investigation. It helps if you give it the benefit of the doubt while you learn it. Just like learning math or science or music or any discipline. It’s all up to you. “Religions” are only going to muddy the water.

Ian Macnaught
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Sathya Sai Baba died and was buried, after falsely predicting his death age. Jesus died exactly when he said he would and then rose from the tomb and appeared to over 500 people in Israel. He is the central figure of World civilization, in the year 2017 AD. More people believe in Him that all the other prophets, whose graves you can go and visit.

Ian Macnaught
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The Humanist Codex Sure. First the Jews believed, then the Greeks followed by the Romans, but you know better.

Chris Grover
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I know of her. But when u take the red pill u realize anything uve heard is complete bull. I know Jesus exist. I know this world is His. I know we’ve been lied to by our governments and anybody in a position of power. I hope u find Him. I hope everybody does. Because if u don’t, He can’t confess u to the Father. And if that happens, well, satan is very real.

Geoffrey O'Donnell
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Starring Viggo Mortensen in the title role!

Barry Nielsen
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Sai Baba was a con .he was caught on film using common Illusionist methods.

Colin Kellett
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I am Catholic only in the basic sense but I still believe in “god” – It is all religion I have increasing problems with. I do believe in some sort of “higher order” I just cannot conceive of a loving god picking who will get cancer. Who will be rich, who will die etc. At the very basic emotional level the belief (hope) in something better is what often gets us through otherwise extreme hard times, depression etc. If there was no hope for anything more and this is all we get then there is no good reason not to take everything we can get for ourselves now.

Bob Claxton
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The single fact that makes Christianity different from every other religion, dogma or belief system is that Christ, the focal point died for whosoever will……. That really is it, nothing more, nothing added. Take it or leave it but that’s it.

Lorne Johnson
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WE all have God,s DNA in us all along with a wee bit of alien DNA in the mix…that is why God said YOU WHERE MADE IN OUR IMAGE ….NOT MY IMAGE……..

Chris Grover
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If it isn’t in the name of Jesus Christ it’s demonic. That’s why God sent His only son. For us. Such an incredible gift out of love. Hinuism and buddism are all to do the the all seeing eye. Satanic worship. Lucifer was the angel of light. Do your homework

Chris Grover
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Ask Jesus yourself. He is of spirit. He’ll answer u in prayer. Huble yourself and ask Him. Satan will answer too, but don’t ask Him anything. He lies steals and kills. Trust in Jesus. All He does is love us with no condemnation. He saved me. I assure u I didn’t read one word of the bible before a few months ago. Demons are very real. So much evidence

Chris Grover
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He answers in dreams. And He’ll show u through signs. There’s no such thing as coincidence. Just know He’s real. He’s left His mark all over this planet

Chris Grover
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Who is mother teresa? I don’t trust anything or anybody from the roman catholic doctrine. Especially the pope. The higher they are, the more evil

Chris Grover
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Why do atheists always try to disprove Christianity and not the qu aran. U can easily disprove the qu aran. U can’t in a million years disprove the bible. All it teaches is the Lords righteousness and His love for His children. His never ending mercy because He doesn’t want satan to feed on our souls. You’re complete morons if u think Jesus isn’t real and u will pay for leading people wrong. Yet He has so much mercy He’ll still forgive u if u confess Him with your mouth and believe in your heart He is our God and died for our sins. There’s so much evidence it’s ridiculous.

J Derek Thomas
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It’s all bullshit.

Chris Grover
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No it isn’t. There’s one God. He’s holy. Ask Him youself. From your heart. He’ll answer. Everything else is of satan. Demonic. Do some actual homework on this. U’ll find the truth.

Gregg Montoya
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The reason you notice atheists refuting christianity more than islam is purely a matter of geography. Currently in Canada for for example, christianity is the dominant religion making up 67% of the population. As for disproving a religion, If you give me a simple method to disprove the quran, I will absolutely use the exact same method to disprove the bible, I am even willing to let you choose the method. At it’s core religion is about faith, which is not in any way provable…not coincidentally this is the reason it is called faith and not knowledge.

Gregg Montoya
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As for the rest of your diatribe, there is no evidence at all, but I’d be willing to examine any that you think you have. I would also mention Matt 12:32, when you say Jesus will forgive and have mercy. I’ll leave that for you to read on your own.

Henry Schmidt
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Good thing i don’t have religion,i have faith

Henry Schmidt
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Faith is in the promises that my lord and savior Jesus Christ has made

Steven Childs
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In Hinduism and Buddhism. God has no form at all. Gos is the source of forms. The forms are not really real it is as is told us in Quantum Physics. duh!

Steven Childs
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Atheists are not excluded from Hinduism or Buddhism. Unexplained phenomena is not from God perhaps. Perhaps Alien beings can make things happen here on earth.

Alex St Clair
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Some friends of mine travelled a great distance to visit Sai Baba on a special invitation for a private audience. They were so excited and in tears for most of the experience, to be in the presence of ‘God’ himself. Or so they believed at the time. Sai Baba, they knew, was also famous for his so-called ‘miracles; where he allegedly produced a sacred ash or dust and often a gift. Sure enough he produced this magic dust and a gift for all four of them seemingly out of thin air. When they returned to Australia, two of them had tests carried out on the ash and the gift which happened to be jewelled rings. The ash proved to be cedar ash. Nothing more. And the rings were ot valuable at all, but trinkets you could buy in any market place made of cheap allow and glass.. He was a fraud. Oddly for God, the money believers heaped upon him, went directly into buying weapons for terrorists in Sth East Asia.

Robert Gaito
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I went to one of his lectures in Manhattan years ago…I was thrown out for doing the same “ash trick” in the back for those around me….Lol.

Pat Mc Ginley
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How do ‘believers’ reconcile the Bible account of human origins with the fact that most people have some Neanderthal DNA because some humans migrating from Africa – the birthplace of human evolution – mated with Neanderthals? Further proof is the fact that Africans whose ancestors never left Africa have no Neanderthal DNA. More solid evidence for evolution, etc. More solid evidence the Bible is a work-of-fiction which belongs alongside Gulliver’s Travels etc on bookshelves. It was a reasonable account of human origins way back then. But, totally unreasonable in 2017.

Jesse Cole Gashler
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I don’t believe I’ve ever seen a passage in the Bible that says evolution didn’t happen. In fact, I’ve never met an educated Christian who blatantly says it didn’t happen.

Imagine trying to explain the Internet to a person from 2000 years ago. You couldn’t. Not without simplifying it in such a way that they can grasp the basic concept.

This is the basis of the biblical stories. They probably weren’t written to be interpreted literally. They were written in a way that the people of the time could grasp the concept.

If you consider yourself educated, then you must acknowledge the fact that humanity knows very very little when compared to the grand scheme of things. Never be so certain of yourself that you forget that you know nothing.

Pat Mc Ginley
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Jesse Cole Gashler Another pathetic attempt to rewrite history, using extremely twisted logic, to suit the Bible narrative. But let’s examine a few points you raised. You haven’t seen a passage in the Bible which says evolution didn’t happen? That’s because the men who wrote the Bible didn’t know about evolution just like they didn’t know about dinosaurs. (Which is why there’re no dinosaurs in the Bible either). They believed God created Adam out of clay and Eve from one of his ribs? Adam and Eve disobeyed and thus original sin was born. You must admit this is a key element in the Bible and if it’s not to be taken literally, Jesse, then there’s no original sin. No need for Jesus to die because of original sin. No need for The New Testament . That’s the problem when science proves the Bible fiction and creationists try to use the Bible to prove the Bible is fact. It inevitably just gets more and more absurd, Jesse. You suggest the Bible stories were written so that people could understand them. But, if the Bible really was “the inspired word of God”, God wouldn’t have got the history of the Earth wrong, would he?

Henry Schmidt
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Hshahaha like all those fossils showing the transition from an ape or Neanderthal or whatever you think to a human.

Christopher Best
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Henry Schmidt. Strawman fallacy.

Pat
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Yes, Steve, they’ve been resolved by science i.e. anything based on the Bible, which is based on a 6,000 year-old Earth and creationism, is totally at odds with the overwhelming scientific evidence for evolution, which includes DNA, embryology, fossil. Therefore, totally false. Where’s your evidence to prove the science is wrong? –

Klaus Knauer
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All religions is weak minded nonsense

Gregg
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I have no idea what you mean by “faced these issues” but the questions posited in this article are far from resolved. The point is very simple but seems impossible for people to understand, anyone who refutes another religion must accept that their own is subject to the same critical methods. The revelation of John is as provably correct as the revelations of Muhammad (which became the Quran) or the revelations of Joseph Smith (which became the book of Mormon). The fact that these three are not in agreement tells us at least two are incorrect, but proving which is impossible.

Steve Ray Webb
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Honestly, do you think Christians haven’t faced these issues? This website is very amateurish. You should do some reading rather than posting things that have been resolved long ago.

William Dutcher III
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in the last sentence, you have the word: “relieved”. i think that it should have been “revealed”. ?

Mumsy Queen
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Doomed!!