Thanks for the complimentary remarks. Since I wrote my blurb this morning, the whole Abraham/Isaac story has been swirling in my mind. But I think the point still remains: one cannot negotiate with a god whose word is to be followed unquestioningly and whose instructions are backed up by the threat of force (e.g., "hell"). If there is a "relationship" between the believer and the Christian god, it is strictly unilateral and non-negotiable. In any "relationship" with the Christian god, it is either god's way, or no way. There is no room for the believer to have a mind or life of his own under such conditions, regardless of what apologists might say in order to mollify or soften the biblical doctrines' appearances. Besides, the Bible's own examples are clear enough and hold priority over an apologist's attempts to spin them into something more palpable.
There was a thread earlier in which some believers apparently believe that logic somehow proves the existence of a god. But if logic and reason have no place in the believer's relationship between himself and his god, as surely as the Bible's examples model (not only in the case of Abraham and Isaac, but also in the case of a hesitant Jesus praying to have his cup removed from him - cf. Matt. 26:39-42), I think such arguments miss the grand point: in a universe dominated by an unyielding, omnipotent and vengeful being, all logic is out the window. Even the universe must bend its ways to satisfy this being, which is clearly never satisfied by anything anyway. An angry god which does not change will always be angry. An insatiable god which does not change cannot be satisfied. The stakes will always be raised higher and higher the more one involves himself in the devotional scheme. So why try? The very idea that one can prove the existence of a god by means of an "argument from logic" is absurd as there simply is no place for logic in such a universe.
Steel had asked the Theism vs Atheism web << When we label an individual unreasonable, we in no way compliment them, Does this change with a god. No.>>
I think he's right: this is the same with any being which presumably has the capacity to be reasonable, but chooses not to deal with others in a reasonable manner, as the Bible's own examples of the Christian god make very clear. There is no way to have a proper, moral relationship with a thug or a despot or a tyrant of any kind, whether that thug or despot or tyrant is a natural being (of this earth, truly existing) or a supernatural being (of the believer's imagination). The Christian god, if such a being exists, is in desperate need of therapy, but its spokesmen will not admit to this truth.
I think the pretense endorsed by believers who imply that theirs is a relationship of equals between themselves and their god when they characterize their faith as a "personal relationship," have either deceived themselves, or have been deceived by others. But one thing is clear: when they repeat this characterization to non-believers in the attempt to entice them, they intend to deceive them as well. It is simply not possible to have a relationship with such a being, certainly no amicable relationship which presupposes genuinely equal footing between parties and room for reasonable negotiation (as one should demand), and I don't know why anyone would want it (unless he prefers unequal relationships to begin with). But to desire such a "relationship" may very well, in my assessment, indicate a seriously confused mind and a desperately malnourished sense of self.
Of all the Bible heroes, I cannot think of one which is worthy of my admiration or affection. Why treat such examples as admirable when there are so many better examples among rational individuals in reality to marvel at? (I have in mind people like Thomas Edison, the Wright Brothers and the great wealth-creators whose life efforts have benefited everyone in the world since them beyond calculation. There's no room for a self-sacrificing Jesus on my wall when there are truly and uncommonly great individuals in the world to admire.)