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Everything posted by TexasFreethinker

  1. That's the answer of a religious terrorist. ISIS uses that same rationale today. I sincerely hope that you never think your invisible god is commanding you to kill people because you apparently don't have the human moral brakes to override that impulse.
  2. I think the bible is a mirror on what some humans thought in the past. It shows how some people tried to explain things they didn't understand, how some people tried to control others, and in some places it shows the best of human aspirations and dreams. As others have said, I think it is, in general, a horrible basis as a guide or instruction manual for living your life, but that doesn't mean that some parts aren't poetic or even inspirational. Even christians don't try to follow many of Jesus' sayings. They just aren't practical, even if they sound "good". Why would I turn the other cheek when someone is beating me? Lots of battered wives have suffered unnecessarily by trying to follow that misguided advice or the prohibition against divorce.
  3. That's what the Southern Baptists (my denomination) taught - any child, before they reached the "age of accountability" would go to heaven when they died. I've heard that consistently from other fundamentalists I've discussed abortion with, but I'm sure there are some who believe otherwise - god seems to have a hard time making his plans and will known in a clear way that everyone can understand. Since Catholics get to make stuff up as they go along, my understanding is that for a long time they taught that the souls of aborted fetuses went to purgatory, but have recently said basically "Who knows? For all we know they probably go straight to heaven."
  4. I think there is a difference. With Humanism, you don't have a supernatural override, but you can with religion. A good Humanist could say it's not good for me to fly a jet full of people into a skyscraper. A good religious person might think the same thing, but then say, but I think god is telling me to - he wants me to sacrifice my life for him and get rid of people who don't believe the right things about him or who have offended him. Think about the story of Abraham - a great man as far as the bible is concerned - who knew better than to kill his son, but who decided to kill him anyway since he thought his god was telling him to. Same thing can happen with topics other than murder. A good Humanist might say, I'm not a homosexual, but I think homosexuals should have equal rights and leave it at that. A good religious person might generally believe in equal rights, but then their bible tells them that god doesn't like homosexuality and even has ordered that homosexuals be killed. A few might advocate killing homosexuals based on that, but a large number of them have voted (at least in America) against equal rights based on religious beliefs. Religious voters have also opposed mixed marriages, equal rights for women, and have supported slavery all based on their religious beliefs. I fully agree that bad people can be religious or non-religious. It's the supernatural override aspect of it that concerns me and that only exists if you think that you are in contact with a god one-to-one or via his book and that god can tell you to do things - especially when those things like religious discrimination or religious terrorism are described in the book that is supposed to be a god's instructions.
  5. I don't believe in the christian god (or any others) and I'm not sure the christian god can exist, what with the problem of evil, but if he does exist, what would need to happen for you to believe? Some things that would go a long way toward convincing me... 1. Proof that prayer to the christian god works miracles. A room of 12 Amputees (god likes the number 12) with 144 prayer warriors asking for their limbs to be restored immediately, witnessed by a large number of non-believer doctors and scientists who could fully examine the patients before and after the prayer session. As soon as the prayers are completed (let's give them 12 minutes), the limbs are immediately restored. That would be convincing, especially if it could be repeated over and over. 2. Proof that the bible is the word of god. Any book that claims to be the word or instructions of god would suddenly contain the same text and any non-god-given instructions would disappear and not be able to be reprinted in the book. If the Book of Mormon and Koran are lies, the ink would flow off those pages leaving them blank and could never be reprinted. Contradictions in the bible would disappear leaving only the clear words of god. 3. Bible god would appear to all of us on a daily basis. At 10pm (local time) god would appear in the sky hundreds of feet tall so that all could see him at once (being god he could work out the northern/southern hemisphere logistics). He would tell us what needs to happen and take questions which he would answer. Everyone would hear him in their own language, and he could be recorded and you could ask others what they heard and it would agree with what you heard. If you asked him to he would come down from the sky afterwards and visit you in your house for further discussions. He would never give different answers to different people for the same questions. 4. Added bonus: all religious leaders who have sexually abused children would immediately turn bright green and their dicks (assuming they are men) would fall off. Anyone who protected them from prosecution and enabled their sex crimes would immediately be covered in large purple polka-dots. If, as some christians claim, their god really exists and loves me and wants nothing more than for me to believe in him he needs to stop acting exactly like a non-existent god would and offer some valid proof. Has any other ex-christian thought about what it would take for them to believe again?
  6. It's true that most of us on this site don't believe in bible god (or any gods for that matter). The reason we are here discussing these topics is that there are many people, such as yourself, who do believe. Many believers aren't aware of how immoral the bible is, or the problems and contradictions in the bible. Why is it important for us to point these out? We are hoping that good people will realize that what they've been taught or assumed isn't always accurate and will begin to think for themselves. Several of us ex-christians became ex-christians because we did start studying the bible without blinders on. Why do I care whether people believe in the god of the bible? One reason is that bible believers often try to push their beliefs onto others as voters and elected officials or even as terrorists. Good people have done bad and evil things because they think their bible or god wants them to and I would like to see that come to an end.
  7. Can there be a "good" answer for genocides commanded by god and Jesus (The Father and I are One)? If you think so, then you may be falling for the anything-god-does-is-good ploy. If that's the answer you get from your teachers, or the god-works-in-mysterious-ways answer, then it's really not worth discussing since those arguments claim that your god is above morality. The god of the bible is big on killing children and I think one of the worst stories is when Pharaoh has decided to let the Hebrew slaves leave Egypt, but bible god hardens Pharaoh's heart and makes him decree that the Hebrews can't leave. This is a big setup so bible god can show his awesome power and send an angel of death to kill all the firstborn children of the Egyptians. That's just pure evil. You asked for verses where bible god (and by extension Jesus) orders genocide so here are a few... Deuteronomy 2:32-34 Deuteronomy 3:3-6 Deuteronomy 13:12-15 Deuteronomy 20:16-17 Numbers 21:2-3 I Samuel 15:2-3, 7-8 Numbers 31:7-40 (not quite full genocide - god told them they could keep virgins as sex slaves) Joshua 6:21 Joshua 10:28-40 seven genocides in these verses Jeremiah 50:21 There are so many cases that it becomes mind-numbing and you have to remember that if all these stories are true they are accounts where not only were adults wiped out, but innocent, terrified children were as well. These were children who, as you pointed out, the bible says god knitted in their mother's womb. If you believe that god is all-knowing, then he knew when he knitted these children that he would soon be ordering "his people" to kill them. It's sickening.
  8. If you're not looking for a religious definition, then I would agree with this definition from Google: "simple elegance or refinement of movement"
  9. Welcome to the site Miriam!
  10. The Amalekites fought the Israelis when they were leaving Egypt and looking for a place to settle. They were protecting their own land from a band of millions (if you believe the bible) of immigrants looking for a place to take over. The Israeli god waited 400 years to make the Amalekites pay for this "sin" of self defense by commanding his people to kill all the Amalekites including their infants.
  11. Miriam, the idea is not so much that you should kill "someone" specifically to get them into heaven. But rather, should a believer mind his/her own business and don't have an abortion if they don't want one, but let everyone else make their own decisions since in the long run that could end up sending more souls to heaven (if that's something that you believe in and is important to you.) As for the last verse you quoted, the bible is full of stories where evil was done (multiple genocides commanded by god/Jesus for example) so that the bible's version of good could come of it. You'll get no argument from me that that bible is full of contradictions. I am glad that you are pro-contraceptive and am astounded that many people who want the government to enforce full term pregnancies are not. Believe it or not, just because I'm pro-choice doesn't mean that I think abortions are a panacea or don't understand that abortions can be traumatic to the woman. My personal opinion is that we should do all we can to prevent unwanted pregnancies. However, in the end, I think it is up to each woman to make the choice about terminating a pregnancy.
  12. An evangelical friend of mine posted on social media during the last election that voting for a pro-choice candidate meant the christian god would hold you accountable for the "murders" of fetuses due to that vote. That's some twisted logic, to say the least - what about any sins committed by the pro-life candidate if they are elected via your vote, etc? But, it made me start thinking that the christian "pro-life" (I prefer to call them pro-government-forced full term pregnancies) folks are thinking short term here. If you believe that fetuses have souls and If you believe that all aborted fetuses are going to heaven (most fundamentalists believe this from what I can tell and the Catholic church has recently issued statements affirming this over fetus purgatory) and If you believe that many, if not most, born humans are going to hell (Narrow is the gate...) then, the smartest behavior- the behavior that leads to the most souls in heaven - would be to vote for pro-choice candidates and to stop trying to prevent women from making choices about their own bodies and having abortions when they decide it's the best alternative. And, following the twisted logic of my evangelical friend, if you vote for pro-life candidates, or do other things to prevent abortions, you will be held responsible by the christian god for every soul who would have been aborted and gone to heaven, but instead, was born and then died "without Jesus" and went to hell. Just to be clear, I don't believe fetuses or post-fetuses like me have souls, I don't believe in the christian god (or any other gods) and I believe women should have control over their own bodies.
  13. I usually say Happy Holidays if I don't know someone's religion. If they greet me first I usually reply with the same greeting, including Merry Christmas. As others have said, the only time I get upset is when I say Happy Holidays and get a angry Merry Christmas in return.
  14. Excellent signature images Tom - makes the point perfectly
  15. Much happier since I realized that I wasn't so innately evil that I deserved to burn in hell for eternity and that I didn't have to try to pacify a god who created me and then threatened me with eternal punishment if I failed at that. It's amazing what a burden is lifted when you aren't concerned if the bad things that happen to you and your loved ones are caused by sinning or not praying enough or in the right way. As several folks have already said, there are happy people and unhappy people in every group and no one is happy all the time, but I am living proof that you don't need religion to live a happy life, and a non-religious life is one without a lot of the guilt and conflict that go with many religions.
  16. You're probably right - it also helps that it's a little less obviously sexual in the KJV which we used exclusively since it was the version used by the apostles
  17. Mine is fairly simple - I'm from Texas and when I chose my nickname about 15 years ago I considered Freethinker to be the most appropriate label for my position on religion. My avatar combines my interests in religion and human sexuality
  18. I haven't tried reading the entire thing from cover to cover, but our Southern Baptist preacher did a (very long) series of sermons where he read it to us verse by verse. What amazes me is that I don't remember him reading or discussing what is now one of my favorite bible verses - Ezekiel 23:20. "There she lusted after her lovers, whose genitals were like those of donkeys and whose emission was like that of horses." How could I have missed that? Probably was still dozing after all the begats.
  19. Welcome to the site from another Texan - hope you find it as helpful and thought-provoking as I have
  20. I finished watching the series a couple of weeks ago. I found the first two or three episodes a little boring, but thought it got better, and scarier, as it went along. Overall I think it is worth watching.
  21. Just finished this book by David Madison, who is a bible scholar and an ex-pastor. One of the best I've seen at describing why christianity fails from historical, moral and philosophical perspectives. He has a good sense of humor and I found the book to be very readable. The topics he brings up can't be swatted away by christian apologists (not that they haven't tried). If you are looking for a source to help crystallize your thoughts on the key problems with christianity I recommend this book. Here's a quote from one reviewer... "Dr. David Madison pulls no punches in this wide-ranging critique that explains why Christianity fails to satisfy human reason, evidence, or even basic human social needs. From the problem of evil to the claim that the Bible is the word of God, Dr. Madison exposes the problems of Christian belief as few others can. As a former believer, he understands why Christians believe what they do. As a formally trained biblical scholar, he can detect all the ways that bad biblical scholarship is being used to prop up Christian belief. Given its highly accessible language, Ten Tough Problems in Christian Thought and Belief is ideal for those who wish to start exploring why Jesus is not the answer, and why Christianity has never given good answers to life's most important questions." --Hector Avalos, author of The Bad Jesus: The Ethics of New Testament Ethics and The End of Biblical Studies.
  22. Dan Barker has done a great job of cataloging and commenting on the hundreds of bible verses that show the christian god to be evil and mean-spirited. If you've ever wanted a handy reference book to use when rebutting a "god is love" christian, this is the one! Dan also brought into focus something I hadn't really understood before. If you believe the New Testament states that Jesus and God are one and have been from the beginning, then sweet Jesus is as much to blame for the ordering of genocide and sexual slavery in the Old Testament as his white-haired father.
  23. Thank you freshstart! I wish I could draw and make anti-Jack Chick tracts
  24. I've been working on a set of pamphlets to share when christians come a'knocking to share the "good news" with me and my family. I think the bible is a vile book and these pamphlets give me an easy way to explain why. I'm curious what others think. The first one is about the god-ordered genocide and sexual slavery in the bible. Genocide and Sex Slavery.pdf
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