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My Journey Away From Christianity


riverbank
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hello,

 

I have been reading some of the stories on this site for the past two days and I feel that this site is going to be helpful for me. It's great to see people who are in the same boat as me of leaving x-ianity.

 

Anyway, here is my story,

 

I was brought up to go to church. I didn't really show any great interest in Christianity, until when I was 16, after I had been through a hard time in life. I became a Christian and this helped me a lot. I went through a stage where I had dreams of being a preacher/evangelist in the future and winning many souls for Christ. I believed of course that people who did not believe in Jesus were going to a never ending fire of hell. I also wondered how people could live without Jesus, since I depended on my Christian faith a lot to keep me stable.

 

I joined a good church in 1994, pastored by people who were my youth leaders in my previous church, and I stayed at that church through thick and thin, even after several other people left, so I was seen as a loyal and faithful member of that church and was very highly regarded. I played the saxophone in the music band. Also, I belonged to a prayer group which is separate from the church, and that group gave me the opportunity to preach from God's Word .. I really enjoyed preaching, and thought that one of my future "things" in life would be to preach. I read the Bible every day, believing it to be God's Word and without error, and sure the Bible (especially the Psalms) did help me. But up to this point I never really considered or worried about the atrocities in the Old Testament.

 

I went through one breakdown in 2001, believing that I was doomed to hell, but managed to come through that and from 2002 up to end of 2005 was a fairly good Christian most of the time.

 

The breakdown which culminated in me abandoning the Christian faith happened this year. To cut the story short, by the end of January I was in a mental hospital, convinced that God had left me and that I was going to an eternal roasting in hell. I knew I was in trouble .. my heart had hardened towards God and I was convinced I had committed an unpardonable sin (The concept of the unpardonable sin had bothered me on and off). Friends came and supported me whilst I was in hospital (for about a month). I think I was trying desperately to "find a way back to God" because I would find it difficult to live without him, but I knew all along really that I was kinda drifting away from the Christian faith.

 

There was a short sequence of events which were pretty bizarre which I can't really go into in great detail, but I started having thoughts about the second coming which disturbed me, and I think I started hearing "inner voices(for want of a better description)" that the Bible was not true, and that "God" was a liar and specific words of prophecy i remembered from the past came into my head to prove "God" was a liar. The day that happened, I abandoned the Christian faith for the first time. I tried to come back to Christianity once, but about four weeks later, I let go of the Christian faith again. Since then, I had occasional wants to come back to x-ianity, but they only lasted an evening, and now I have completely abandoned and renounced the christian god and the christian faith.

 

One of the foundations for my faith was that the bible was completely true. Nowadays I'm kind of embarrassed that I ever believed that. One contradiction in the bible is enough to say that the bible is not the inerrant word of God, and there is more than one contradiction in the Bible. Since I have abandoned the faith, I have realised that some of the stories in the old testament are hideous and that the god of the OT is downright evil. Also the doctrine of hell is another major thing; it is a hideous doctrine and any god that can send even one person to an eternal burning is not worthy of my worship. Also the story of Judas Iscariot, who the bible said must fall "in order for the Scripture to be fulfilled" is another story that bugs me, as well as the story of Ananias and Sapphira. Not to mention the many stories in the old testament.

 

Also, another thing that was a major issue for me was what Jesus and Paul said about divorce and remarriage in the Bible. It basically implies that in the event of a divorce, one cannot get remarried unless the divorce was caused by adultery. So to me this means that someone whose husband or wife walked out on them cannot get remarried again in the eyes of God. This means that someone who divorced due to an unhappy marriage cannot get remarried again. This is bloody ridiculous. I'm not married myself but I really had a problem with that.

 

I have, however, had a hard time since my faith blew apart. I did depend on it a lot, and have found it hard to see a way of hope without God in my life. I have been off work for 5 months. I have mental issues which Christianity helped to cover up. However, forums like this are a help to me, and one thing this forum is doing is starting to alieviate my fear of hell. I still have had the thoughts of "what if i am going to hell?" etc... I'm hoping to somehow sort myself out .. it's a hard journey, but my decision to leave christianity is final, even tho some of my Christian friends say stuff like .. "God will call you back" "It's just a phase you're going through" etc...

 

Anyways, that's enough rambling from me. I hope to hear from some of you.

 

best regards

Andy :lmao:

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Hi, Andy!

 

Welcome aboard. I hope you'll find a lot of information and ideas here to help you on your journey.

 

I'm sorry you're going through some hardship and troubling thoughts. However, I think one thing you don't have to worry about is hell.

 

Just think about it logically: If you wanted to invent a new religion and amass a lot of followers, wouldn't it make sense to tell them that they must take what you say on faith without questioning it or researching it for themselves or else face dreadful consequences? That's just what the early church fathers did; hell is just a fiction invented to keep people dumb and in line.

 

And, from the way you write, you sound much too smart to fall for that again!

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Welcome to the board Andy/Aqueduct. Hope you'll enjoy it here.

 

I never were too scared of having done the unpardonable sin like you, but I've met a couple on the site that have. And it seems very hard to get away from, but you'll do it.

 

:wave:

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I have, however, had a hard time since my faith blew apart. I did depend on it a lot, and have found it hard to see a way of hope without God in my life. I have been off work for 5 months. I have mental issues which Christianity helped to cover up.

 

best regards

Andy :lmao:

 

Your story made me wonder how many people in church have mental problems. I think I was one of them. I never ended up in the hospital, but I know I had problems.

 

Yeah, leaving is really hard. It's like learning to walk without crutches, isn't it? I am finding it really difficult too, but slowly, I am learning to be myself and to do whatever the heck I please.

 

I was wondering if you could elaborate on how christianity helped you "cover up" your mental issues. I think I will find your response really helpful.

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Andy,

 

Aren't unpardonable sins fun?! I know too well the pain and suffering of believing that you have done something unforgivable. Your story is a lot like my own. Thank you for sharing!

 

JP

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Lorena,

 

I guess what I meant was that I struggle with various different thoughts which in turn make me feel hopeless.

 

Whilst I had Christianity, I had some hope and was able to keep my thoughts reasonably well in check most of the time thanks to what Christians would call the Holy Spirit living inside of you. I don't know how best to explain if that doesn't make any sense :unsure:

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Lorena,

 

I guess what I meant was that I struggle with various different thoughts which in turn make me feel hopeless.

 

Whilst I had Christianity, I had some hope and was able to keep my thoughts reasonably well in check most of the time thanks to what Christians would call the Holy Spirit living inside of you. I don't know how best to explain if that doesn't make any sense :unsure:

 

I see. Yes, I understand. Actually, I miss exactly the same thing. What is helping a lot is new-age spirituality. Wayne Dyer is really god at non-religious spirituality. I have pretty much borrowed all of his tapes and CD's from the library and listened to them. I figure that as long as I don't have to pay for it, I can give anything a try. I say that because many new-age gurus charge hundreds of dollars for attending their conferences, which isn't needed if you have a good public library in your city that has the materials.

 

Anyway, I hope you find something that works for you. Meditation is working really well for me right now.

 

Take care

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Hi Andy

 

I believe that there is a massive link between religion and mental health. To start with I believe it highly likely that many of the so called prophets experienced what we might now diagnose as a psychotic experience or delusion. Then it is likely that the teachings of the 'religions of the book' create feelings of guilt and fear that can lead to mental disturbance. Those with mental health problems often seek comfort within religious communities----- and so it goes on. Real inner peace was the consequence of my loss of belief. When that last flicker of religiousity left my mind an unshakeable inner calm arrived and I do not intend to let it go away. I wish you well and hope you find something of value on this site.

 

 

Regards

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alot of people feel hopeless after rejecting xianity. I did for quite a while until i changed my attitude about life. I started thinking "i deserve to be happy and i deserve good things" this has helped my life tremendously. it only works if you really believ it though. At first i just let my self be depressed for a while.......and it felt bad, but in a good way-and soon i got sick of being depressed and decided to change.

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