As an atheist, I was once asked “What would have to occur before you would become a believer? Aside from God descending in a cloud to talk to you personally.”
I’ve been told that God prefers that you choose to believe on faith rather than evidence. And if he did decide to present himself, you’d be forced to believe. But then you wouldn’t have faith and “desire to follow him out of love”.
Whatever. Even if God did present himself to me, I’d still have the free will to determine whether he was worthy of worship.
As is stands now, there would be a lot of questions to be answered before I entertained the possibility, such as:
Why is your word so ambiguous and contradictory? Why can’t humanity grasp that one message? Why are there competing and mutually exclusive religions, all of whom can back up their beliefs with your word?
Why do the innocent suffer? I cannot buy that the many crimes and wars are simply matters of the perpetrator’s “free will”, since the victims have little “free will”. And what about natural disasters like earthquakes, volcanoes, and floods that cause even more suffering?
If you are inactive in the world and decide not to prevent these evils, then why? Should I even bother to ask help for good things, since you don’t intervene? Or is helping me understand a verse more worthy than stopping a massacre?
Why can’t logic prove you exist? Why must I surrender logic for faith? You should know that wanting people to believe without evidence is an extremely unreliable way to gain followers. Do you really need to send people to hell eternally for that?
If you are Yahweh, who created the entire universe, why is was a small prehistoric tribe in the Middle East your “chosen people”? If you are the eternal creator of all life, why did you spend so much time over a speck called Israel, even helping them massacre other humans (that you created)?
Why couldn’t you convince the “chosen people” of their messiah? How did the Jews become un-chosen since they neglect to follow Jesus’ lead into heaven (the only way, remember)? Did you know your intended audience wouldn’t accept the message and you had to go with the gentiles as a back-up plan?
Do those who don’t (or are unable to) believe in you really go to hell? Do those who don’t believe in Jesus go to hell? Do those who haven’t heard Jesus’ message go to hell? Do those who’ve heard and believe Jesus’ message, but belong in the incorrect faith go to hell?
Why do sinners go to hell? If we’re born with a sinful nature and are imperfect, what else could you possibly expect? If that’s why you gave us grace, why did Jesus have such an incomplete sacrifice, where there are such stringent conditions (see above) for said grace.
Why did Vinateri have to make that kick?