Strike Two

His “retraction” notwithstanding, Pharyngurl still can’t read:

I had no idea that Vox was an adherent of the Arian heresy, but OK. It makes, of course, a huge difference in the moral status of the butchery of toddlers if it is done at God’s command (thumbs up!) vs. Jesus’s orders (no, no, no…although it does rather put a sinister twist on his command to “suffer the little children to come to me,” doesn’t it?). And getting an order to murder small children from God would never be a delusional or self-motivated act.

All clear on that, everyone? You have to get a note from God (not Jesus, that wimp) first, and then you can go on your killing spree.

The first point, as it’s clear that Pharyngurl understands and is now attempting to sweep beneath the rug, is that a response to a direct and unquestionable order is not the same as “killing in the name of”. But the good professor would rather demonstrate that he’s heard of the Arian heresy than admit to either misunderstanding or misrepresenting what I wrote yesterday.

Second, I am somewhat sympathetic to the Arian heresy. It’s clear there is at least some distinction between Jesus Christ and God, or else Jesus would not have lamented his abandonment on the Cross. The specific nature of that distinction is of no concern to me, however, as I am essentially agnostic on the question, let alone the specific nature, of the Trinity.

Unlike most atheists, I know full well just what I do not and cannot know. This is why, despite my Christianity, I tend to get along very well with agnostics and very poorly with atheists.

The silliness of Pharyngurl’s posting is highlighted by what Brent Rasmussen adroitly noted was a thought experiment, not a public confession of dark desires. Despite the histrionics of his fellow atheists and not being what you’d call one of my more enthusiastic fans, he correctly writes:

“But that’s not what this is about, really. I don’t believe for a second that Day wants to go out and murder two year olds. Like I said, this is a thought experiment, a way to examine belief, faith, and the claims made by Day and other Christians as to the existence or non-existence of a creator. It’s also a way to look at the nature of morality.”

I am myself skeptical that I could manage to obey God in this manner. I should like to think that I would, but given my track record of failure in significantly less challenging matters, the odds are certainly slim.

Pharyngurl’s commenters are arguably even more cognitively challenged than their blog host. Consider the following:

This guy’s attempt at logic is laughable… “direct and 100% confirmable” is pure poppycock.

That was the question as posed.

He’s claiming that the creator of the universe has the right to order the annihiliation of any portion of that universe. Spread the news! Microsoft can order the deletion of all copies of Windows off of your computers!

Yes. Read your EULA.

Vox isn’t saying anything new. And he obviously hasn’t put the thought into it that Kierkegaard did. Of course, Kierkegaard was a bit of a nut, but Vox certainly has him beat there, since he appears to be both mindless AND crazy. Very, very disturbing.

Vox never claimed it to be. In fact, he has specifically claimed precisely the opposite. And they call me mindless and crazy….

I don’t know what’s more disturbing about that place – the posts or the moronic following he has

I’d go with the latter, but only because of Jamie.

Vox Day is an immense moron. Does anyone even listen to him?

See above.

If there was a god and he told me to kill my worst enemy (whoever that is) I’d take great pleasure in telling god where to stick his commandment.

I very much doubt it.

I’d be willing to bet that Vox Day knows less about the Bible than many of us.

I very much doubt it.

I’m an atheist and I’ve got a degree in classical history. I guarantee your ass I know more about Biblical history than 99% of the Christians in this country.

Ooh, a history degree! And yet, I very much doubt it.

By the way, Mr. “Day” should know that calling ones self Vox Dei (homophonically or otherwise) is at best a flamboyant display of hubris; at worst, blasphemous and mortally risky.

How can one offend a nonexistent being? Anyhow, she’s managed to miss the point despite it being pointed out right on this page.

I’m not going to do the research, but are we to assume that Vox Day is no longer blaming terrorists for 9/11, but is now blaming their god for asking them to do it? Surely they must have had the proper proofs that it was their god, since they were willing to die.

No. The terrorists never claimed that their god asked them or told them to do it. Killing in the name of X is not the same as following X’s orders. This is not difficult. This is appallingly bad logic, given that there is no shortage of examples of people who were willing to die for reasons wholly unrelated to divine beliefs, let alone orders.