I'm interested in finding out which scriptures, if any, have been quoted by any Bible teacher, believer or group of believers (regardless of whether or not they subscribe to the reading of scripture of any particular denomination) which they have used to evaluate the degree of truth of anything related to the following claim:

the claim: since it seems anyone is free to create an account on this site (regardless of their religious beliefs or lack of them) and so potentially reach a position to be voting on questions and answers and The Bible teaches that most people go to hell and hence are wrong in their judgments, the voting system is inherently flawed as a means of discerning the quality of questions and answers on this site. As such, the numbers associated with the quality of any given question or answer are liable to be totally false.

If so, which passage (passages) is it (are they) and what did the said teacher/believer/group of believers say in this regard?

Did they say anything related to the subject of how to ensure accuracy of judgment in such matters and if so what?

In retrospect, I feel this question would be better posted on https://christianity.stackexchange.com/ itself, but since I've been told that deleting questions can lead to a question ban and cross-posting is against guidelines, I don't yet know if it will be possible to post it there instead.

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    This is a secular website about Christianity, not a Christian website. Mar 29, 2014 at 7:40
  • I understand that and I realise that the last line of my question didn't quite fit in with what I have been lead to believe is on-topic. I have been reflecting on how to rephrase it since I posted it and how now amended it as such. I now believe it is a question about nothing other than precisely what the Bible says, which I have been lead to believe is on-topic for Christianity.se, although maybe not for meta. Maybe it would be better to move it to Christianity.se. I don't know if this is possible without deleting it, which I understand has a negative effect on one's status. Do you know? Mar 29, 2014 at 8:42
  • Don't worry about status; make it up with questions and answers. The issue with "what the Bible says" is because different people interpret the Bible differently(; hence the over 16,000 different sects of Protestantism). When I read scripture I interpret that it is wrong to judge someone for what I perceive as them committing moral sin. Other people interpret the Scripture to mean that it is wrong to judge someone for things other than moral sin. The purpose of this site isn't about how I or someone else interprets Scripture. Mar 29, 2014 at 8:46
  • Perhaps you could ask "What does XYZ denomination of Protestantism believe about judging someone for things other than moral sin, i.e., the up/down vote judgement system", as this wouldn't be a Truth question but specific to a denomination. Mar 29, 2014 at 8:48
  • I'm not asking for an interpretation of what The Bible says. I'm just asking what it says: there need be no interpretation of what it says, unless you get down to translation issues, which are worthy of consideration indeed, and I'd be happy to hear any translation, but my preference is NKJV or KJV. I also find study of the Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek useful, but not essential to me at this stage. Mar 29, 2014 at 8:51
  • You cannot ask for what the Bible says without asking for an interpretation of what the Bible says. These are identical statements. Take Matthew 26:26-28: "Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, "Take, eat; this is my body." And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, "Drink of it, all of you; for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins." Mar 29, 2014 at 8:59
  • Protestants say "no, this is not the actual Body and Blood of Christ; it is just a symbol, nothing more. Catholics/Orthodox say "yes, it is the actual Body and Blood of Christ; it is not a symbol but extremely important". The same can be stated with Baptism. On the otherhand, the Bible states clearly that man should address no one as "father", for the only father is God; yet Orthodox/Catholics address their priest as Father. These groups say this verse was being used in jest and not meant to be applied to the spiritual fathers of the Church. Protestants say that these groups violate the Bible. Mar 29, 2014 at 9:02
  • I understand different people read The Bible differently, but your quote of The Bible before you got into that did provide 'what the Bible says without ... an interpretation of what the Bible says'. That said, I'm very happy to hear different readings of any relevant passages, but first and foremost, I'm interested in finding what may be any relevant passages (and just to mention, a passage has come to mind which indeed appears to cover this subject, which I may share later). Mar 29, 2014 at 9:18
  • On the subject of deletion, I understand that deleting too many questions can lead to a question ban. I wouldn't want to move closer to that. Mar 29, 2014 at 9:18
  • Ok. I think I understand you (please correct me if I am completely wrong), and I think I can rephrase your question as to fit the parameters of this secular site. Perhaps, "Which Bible verse could be used to justify, by any denomination, the notion that an up/down vote on this stackexchange is a sin, even if this judgement does not have to do with judging a person for moral sin?" (or something to that effect). Mar 29, 2014 at 9:21
  • By stating the question this way, you are not proposing what CSE calls a "Truth question", but a secular question, which can be answered objectively. Mar 29, 2014 at 9:22
  • On the subject of deletion, I personally have deleted many questions from many stack exchanges and have not noticed any repercussions from it; but I may well be wrong. Mar 29, 2014 at 9:23
  • let us continue this discussion in chat Mar 29, 2014 at 9:25

3 Answers 3


The point of this site is specifically not to determine truth, but rather to determine if an answer to a question is helpful. An upvote or a downvote doesn't mean that you believe something is true or not, but rather that it answers the question well. Questions on the site shouldn't be about truth, but rather about the religion and doctrine of various denominations and sects of the Christian faith.

Those types of questions are answerable irregardless of Truth.

For example, I think that the Catholic church's view on Mary as some special kind of saint is patently false, however if someone asked "What is the basis of the status Mary is given in the Catholic church?" and someone wrote a great answer explaining it, I would vote it up because it is a good answer to the question.

I may (and do) disagree that they are correct, however they aren't answering "does Mary have a special place?" (a Truth question) but rather, why does the Catholic church feel that way. The accuracy of Catholic beliefs are irrelevant in the context of the question being asked.

That said, this is still a hard thing for some people to deal with, and if you feel it is hard for you to deal with, then this might not be the best community for you. There are a ton of religiously oriented sites out there that seek to answer and discuss Truth issues. This site exists specifically to address non-Truth issues which don't get nearly as much coverage without extensive debate about Truth making it much harder to find answers to questions that aren't about Truth.

  • This is irrelevant, but do you deny that Mary is not a "special kind" of Saint, outright not a Saint, or do you deny that Saints exist in general? Mar 29, 2014 at 8:21
  • Actually, I would argue that any answer to any question has a degree of truth ranging from none (utterly false) to entirely true, with a range of values in between for answers that are partially correct and partially incorrect to various degrees. Mar 29, 2014 at 8:47
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    @GeorgeTomlinson I agree with you. Something that people in stackoverflow and stackexchange don't like to admit is that the majority of the questions are opinion-based. They also like to pretend that democratically elected answers equate to correctness, and if this is anything other than an egregious abuse of logic. Of course these are fallacies. Regardless, this system has a tendency of producing valuable questions and answers, so we try to be objective as possible, even if this is inherently subjective. Mar 29, 2014 at 8:54
  • lol. I'm not convinced it's possible for anyone to be at all objective. I suspect we are subjects rather than objects. Whilst I believe in speaking courteously, I don't think it's good to try to stifle one's emotions when answering questions, but since the site only allows questions about what a denomination says or possibly what The Bible says (not quite sure if those ones are allowed at present), the only emotion that really comes up is the joy of giving the requested information, or attempting to do so. There may be others. Mar 29, 2014 at 9:03
  • In any case I don't think feelings need to be ignored: they are actually very useful in assessing what's going on. I do believe we ought to be patient and well-tempered, of course. Mar 29, 2014 at 9:13
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    @MatthewMoisen - the example of Mary's sainthood was just an example of how something can have a Truth answer but also have a question unrelated to Truth. I believe she is no more or less a saint than any believer with no special authority, however I can still upvote a Catholic answering a question that asks about why Catholics hold a particular view if it gives an explanation of the reasons behind the Catholic viewpoint. My disagreement with the validity of the argument does detract from the explanation answering the question, which was not "Is this True?" but rather "why do ____ think this Mar 29, 2014 at 16:00
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    @MatthemMoisen - Voting on SE is more concerned with how helpful an answer is than how correct. Voting isn't a way to arrive at most correct, it is a way to come to best explanation. Even when you mouse over the upvote icon, it doesn't say "this answer is correct" it says "this answer is useful". SE makes no claim on the factualness of answers. True, answers that come to the top are typically fairly correct, but not always. I don't think there are many that participate regularly with SE that don't understand that. Mar 29, 2014 at 16:03
  • @GeorgeTomlinson - I could agree that answers have a range of truth on this site or even in life in general when dealing with complex topics. People don't have perfect understandings of complex things and thus do make errors. That said, the voting system has nothing to do with correctness, but rather helpfulness. A post can be helpful by explaining an incorrect viewpoint because it still brings further clarity of the viewpoint. Mar 29, 2014 at 16:07
  • @GeorgeTomlinson - I disagree pretty strongly about objectivity being impossible. Perhaps not complete objectivity, however, it is possible to reflect on what are pre-conceived notions are and set them aside and consider something from the perspective of the assumptions of others. I would grant that this is not a particularly simple thing to do, however it is possible if you understand yourself and others well enough. Mar 29, 2014 at 16:10
  • @GeorgeTomlinson - I'm not sure what you mean about stifling your emotions when answering questions. I don't stifle mine and will answer with feeling and reasoning. That said, some questions are inherently un-emotional for me. I have no feeling about the presentation of an argument that Mary has some special place amongst saints when what is being asked is "what is the Catholic argument for this?" I have no stake in an explanation of why Catholics feel the way they do. That might be very different if someone asked "Is Mary a special kind of saint?" but that's why that would be subjective. Mar 29, 2014 at 16:12
  • Strange then that it's deemed impossible to discuss what The Bible says objectively, but not what denominations say The Bible says. The word 'objective' is actually the word 'true' in disguise. Mar 31, 2014 at 4:36
  • People have said 'Oh no, you can't be objective about what The Bible says': i.e. you'll be subjective i.e. you'll get it wrong, but in the case of what denominations say, without giving any justification, these people seem to think it's a given that objectivity is suddenly possible i.e. it's possible for what people say denominations say to be true (but then they claim it's not a truth question). It's preposterous, ridiculous and laughable, at best. Mar 31, 2014 at 4:44
  • @GeorgeTomlinson - denominations go in to specific detail about what the viewpoint of the denomination is about specific issues that the Bible doesn't clearly address. It is subjective to say if the Bible says Mary is a special kind of Saint since the Bible doesn't clearly answer that. The Roman Catholic church DOES clearly answer that, so it isn't subjective. I'm not seeing the difficulty here. Mar 31, 2014 at 4:52
  • Whilst there are things in the Bible which are difficult to understand and get misunderstood, it is not impossible to be objective about what it says. It certainly doesn't say explicitly that Mary is a special kind of saint i.e. there's no verse which says the words 'Mary is a special kind of saint.' There: I made an objective statement about what The Bible says: no difficulty there whatsoever, was there? On the other hand, I dare say people have made false claims about and misunderstood Catholic doctrine. Either way, let's call a spade a spade: any claim is either true of false. Mar 31, 2014 at 4:59
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    @GeorgeTomlinson - I would hazard that there are more than a few RCC members that would beg to differ and would say that there are passages that infer it. An even better example would be if the wine and bread of communion are literally Christ's blood and body. Christ says they are his blood and body, but was it metaphorical? That's entirely subjective. That isn't to say there isn't a correct answer, but we can't prove which it is. Mar 31, 2014 at 5:01

Of course the votes here are subjective, influence by sin, and sometimes flawed. What would you expect?

That doesn't mean that they can't be useful. Just as democratic elections are never perfect but can still be good and valid ways to choose leaders.

  • All authority is appointed by God, democratically elected or otherwise. I'm not 100% certain I know whether or not this means democracy is better than the alternatives. What purpose can a flawed voting system be used for and how? Mar 31, 2014 at 5:58
  • The voting system encourages participation and uses our collective judgement to list good answers before bad answers. That's literally all it does.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Mar 31, 2014 at 6:26
  • How can a flawed voting system do that? Mar 31, 2014 at 13:53

There is a scripture which seems applicable:

6 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? 2 Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters? 3 Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life? 4 If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge? 5 I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you, not even one, who will be able to judge between his brethren? 6 But brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers! 7 Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated? 8 No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren! 9 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?

(1 cor 6.1-7)

A believer in the Bible who subscribes to no denomination uses this to claim that any judgment system which involves unbelievers judging is an utter failure.

  • @ Matthew Molsen As yet I've received no response from support about whether this question can be moved to Christianity.se without deleting it. I still feel it would be more on-topic on that site than this one. I don't intend to delete the question from this site at present, as I said, as I've been told it is detrimental to one's question-posting ability. From my point of view you are welcome to post the question in your proposed form on Christianity.se if you wish, although it may be flagged as a possible duplicate or cross posting. All the best and thanks for your input. Mar 30, 2014 at 10:34
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    You've taken that passage completely out of context. It's talking about suing other believers, not voting on questions and answers on the internet.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Mar 31, 2014 at 6:27
  • Note that the question is about scriptures applicable to the subject of the assessment of the soundness of the voting system or any related subject. The passage I have quoted clearly gives instruction on how to judge matters relating to sins or alleged sins serious enough for people to go to court over. Since the instruction is sound for such matters, why would it not also be sound for the less or equally as serious matter of rating the quality of an internet question or answer on a website about Christianity? Mar 31, 2014 at 13:47
  • Because that's not how exegesis works. Stack exchange is more like the council of Jerusalem in Acts 15: a question was presented, and various answers were suggested until the collective wisdom of the group came to a consensus. Now there weren't any non-Christians there, but we're not pretending this website is a church council either.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Mar 31, 2014 at 21:30
  • You seem like you're just trying to cause trouble. If you don't like how it works you don't have to use it.
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Mar 31, 2014 at 21:31
  • I know criticism can be painful to receive, but remember you subscribe to a website where criticism is allowed, if not encouraged (via the voting system). If you object to my criticism you ought to object to that too. You reap what you sow. Just because someone makes some useful observations and isn't too scared to point them out, it doesn't mean they're just trying to cause trouble. Could it be that you are upset at the effective criticism you and this website have received? This isn't a personal attack on you: just valid criticism of flawed comments and actions. Apr 1, 2014 at 4:34
  • My war isn't against flesh and blood anyway, but the spirits who oppose God's Word. You needn't be upset by people's criticism if you are following that: you will have peace and joy as you will be abiding in Yeshua. Clearly I've used the opportunity to ask a question in a way which gives me the opportunity to preach The Bible. I don't apologise for that, even if it is against the site's guidelines. I don't think it's a coincidence that a website run by people who don't necessarily believe The Bible attempts to prohibit the preaching of The Bible, whatever the reasons given for that. Apr 1, 2014 at 4:42
  • Since the devil knows the end will come when the good news has been preached to every nation for a witness, that's why he's always trying to stop it from being preached. That's the real reason for the attempted prohibition. Again, that's not an attack on any individual or group of people, but wrestling against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Anyone on God's side rejoices when the good news is preached, regardless of the motives of the preacher. Apr 1, 2014 at 4:45
  • That said, I don't mean to offend you. I do have a heart. Apr 1, 2014 at 4:53
  • I'm not offended, I genuinely don't understand what problem you have with this site or why you think Christians would agree with you!
    – curiousdannii Mod
    Apr 1, 2014 at 5:19
  • Well, this has now reached the limit for comments before breaking the 'please avoid extended discussions in chat' guideline, so I suppose I should make this the last comment. I don't know if I have a problem with this site, but I have noticed that the voting system appears to be flawed, as I've said. I wouldn't necessarily expect everyone who calls themselves a Christian to read the Bible in the same way (we know they haven't done as yet, although they are to strive to do so) but this is the way The Bible reads to me, based on the passage I've quoted. I wish you well. God bless you. Apr 1, 2014 at 8:15
  • I don't know if we both need to be present to continue this discussion in chat, but either way, I'm happy to talk more with you there, God and you willing Apr 1, 2014 at 8:17

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