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The Bible


crazy-tiger
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Over and over again... forum after forum... Christian after Christian...

 

I keep running into Christians who's knowledge of the Bible is minimal... to say the least. Christians who, for some reason, claim that they've read it all the way through and found nothing wrong with it. :scratch:

 

I had yet another run-in with one of them recently... one who made the mistake of claiming that Man created evil. Now, aside from the fact that it's usually Satan who they blame, it's proof that they missed a very important part of the Bible... the verse where God mentions how he creates evil...

He argued that God doesn't create evil at all, and for proof he offered the 10 Plagues... after all, God only inflicted them because Pharoah kept saying no... right? If Pharoah had only let them go, none of it would have happened, so Pharoah was the evil one and God was just teaching him/the Egyptians a lesson... right?

 

Wrong... since God hardened Pharoah's heart so that he would say no... he told Moses he would do that, he said how he'd do it 10 times just before hitting Egypt with a plague each time, the Bible says God did it every single time Pharoah said no... Hell, Pharoah was going to say yes after each plague, but God wouldn't let him!

 

That's when he pulled out the most idiotic claim I've heard... he claimed that his Bible says nothing of the kind, that his Bible says nothing about God telling Moses about the plagues, that his Bible says nothing about God hardening Pharoah's heart, that his Bible says Pharoah was about to execute all the Jews rather than let them go... which was why God had to kill all the first-born Egyptian males... :twitch:

 

 

Needless to say, it was a bit weird hearing that... it was even weirder to show him the verses IN HIS OWN BIBLE that say what he denied it says.

 

His response to that bombshell? His Pastor had told him what he'd claimed the Bible said... and that he'd never looked for himself.

 

 

 

So, to all you Christians out there who like to claim you've read your Bible... reading it doesn't mean sitting there in church while someone else tells you what it says. Reading it means you sit your arse down, open the damned thing, start at page one and READ THE FLIPPING THING!

 

---------------------------------------------------------

 

This rant is brought to you courtesy of someone who is still in shock at such a stupid claim... :ugh:

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LOL....if only more people spent the time to actually know what they were talking about. Ah, one can dream.

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Too bad your post is getting such a luke warm response. This is such a peretinant issue.

 

The underlying reasons why xtians don't read their bible points to serious issues in their thinking.

 

There are two basic flavours of xtian, fundamentalist and liberal.

 

I find it utterly stunning that Fundies <<who claim that god wrote them a love letter in the bible>> are so disinterested in reading his book.

 

If god is almighty and can bless me and will reward me in heaven... **AND** I really believe it then it only makes sense to research god as much as I can and find out how I should live and how to maximize my time here on earth.

 

There are tons of stories of people who read their bible voraciously as I did when I got saved but after a while it becomes a bore. How can that be???!!! Incredible!

 

My answer to that has to do with how one approaches the bible. The fundamental problem is that xtians talk as nauseum about "spiritual things" and yet the bible is a text and reading it does not in itself raise the spirit. It is not like a book on making money that you can combine with your experience and increase your profits by applying some of the principals.

 

A more effective tool is to go to church and hang out with people from your church who want to behave the same way that you want to behave. It kind of reduces the temptations and by corporately /tacitly agreeing on a code of behaviour, you can all pretend that god is making you a better person.

 

If you take the bible on as an intellectual pursuit, then you have to have an objective. Athiests are exceedingly more motivated to read the bible because it can become a hunt for contradictions or learning more about the flaws and gaps of xtianity. The bible really does not do that. The more I read it as a xtian, the more difficult I found it was to align god's plan for my life with the instructions in the bible. It did not make things clear because there were so many things that had to be taken on as points of faith.

 

As for liberal xtians, they accept many of the fundamentalists positions (Jesus is god, good/evil) but their general ignorance, and disinterest in the bible prevents them from making a critical analysis of the book... something that woould be "nice to do if I had the time". Most of them want to suck back their poison every Sunday in one hour doses. If they get spiritual during the week, they will read "Our Daily Bread" or watch Charles Stanley which are soft sell, high psychology, fundamentalist "God loves you" pablum that avoids the difficulties of the theology.

 

To the liberals, the bible is too difficult for "untrained" people like me to understand. They don't realize that it is not their lack of ability to understand but rather the general incoherency of the piece of shit.

 

I was highly impressed at our most honorable webmaster's observation in the tail end of his eximony. He hit is on the nail - xtians don't like reading their bibles (or praying - same basic issue).

 

I'm suprised more people here don't have more to say about this. It is an issue that strikes at the very core of xtianity.

 

How can you love god and not want to pray to him and read about him allot? Does not compute!

 

Mongo

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I find it utterly stunning that Fundies <<who claim that god wrote them a love letter in the bible>> are so disinterested in reading his book.

 

Well, well. I could imagine another scenario with the same mindboggling result that involves actually reading da babble...

 

...namely that the morontheist first received a good brainwashing about what verses to ignore and what verses to pre-accept as eternal truth. :Hmm:

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I often find that I know the Bible better than many christians do.

 

My lapsed but fundie ex (still believed all the crap but wasn't going to church anymore) point blank refused to believe that Revelations says that after the 1000 years the devil will be let out for a little while before he finally gets destroyed so that he can have one final stab at trying to tempt people away from God. She said to me that I was being ridiculous but in fact it is the bible that is being ridiculous - because it is there in black and white!

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CT, thanks for sharing that hilarious story. It's pathetic at the same time. It shows so clearly how the fundy brain works. Seems great at memorization. I am impressed with that guy's ability to memorize his pastor's instructions so minutely. Now if only he would actually memorize the biblical text itself and ponder on it day and night as the bible says we should, he might at least get some thoughts of his own.

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If all Christians read the Bible from cover to cover, most of them would not be Christians anymore. Sadly, most never take the time to do it. I read the whole thing through at 13; I was amazed at the amount of atrocities in it.

 

It was no coincidence that the early church leaders didn't want to translate the Bible into the common languages of their time. They knew they'd lose control if they did, and that's what's happening.

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It's a great rant, CT.

 

Reading the bible is the one thing that suggested to me, long ago, that herein is a collection of fables, myths, and fictions. I argued with my fundie-baptist grandmother over these things when I was a teenager. And she eventually acknowledged that there were a lot of contradictions, even in the "holy" KJV. But all I could get in the end was that despite the flaws, it was a description of how god revealed himself to man. It didn't work for me, I came to think of the bible as a collection of fables, myths, and ancient "wisdom" literature that still had some value, but should never be assumed as "holy", "sacred" or anything. Some good stuff there, but no evidence of a "realtime" god.

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Amethyst, I also did my stint at reading the Bible systematically when I was 13. Due to low vision and a number of other problems I was unable to read it cover to cover but I sure got into some really messy stuff. I asked my mom about some of the lighter atrocities and she had such glib explanations that I learned to explain away all of it. When I was much older she did mention in a discussion about the bible that she had serious problems with all the wars and killing in the OT. By that time I was conditioned to accept all of it as God's incomprehensible will. Her faith in Jesus was so vital to her functioning in daily life that there was no way she would have ever questioned the validity of the religion.

 

Thus, it is very possible to read the entire Bible and not budge from religion. What caused my deconversion had much more to to with what was not written than with what was written. On this forum we hear the oft-repeated hypothesis that if people would actually read the Bible they would deconvert. This hypothesis does not necessarily hold.

 

People like CT talked with will not deconvert at any price.

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I'm ashamed to say, but I actually read the bible from cover to cover without anything triggering in my mind that something was wrong.

 

Of course there were other factors:

 

1) I was only around 13 or so.

 

2) I was reading it to get an award in Royal Rangers (the AOG version of Boy Scouts).

 

3) Therefore, I really glossed over most of it, particularly the OT.

 

4) I was always being bombarded with hard hitting indoctrination from family and other authority figures.

 

and

 

5) I was still VERY gullible and trusting of parents/teachers/pastors, etc.

 

Later, of course, upon better examination, the atrocities, the contradictions, etc. became apparent.

 

So yes, it is possible to read the whole bible and not leave the faith, but if this guy actually did read the whole thing, he only absorbed what he read very selectively.

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Amethyst, I also did my stint at reading the Bible systematically when I was 13. Due to low vision and a number of other problems I was unable to read it cover to cover but I sure got into some really messy stuff. I asked my mom about some of the lighter atrocities and she had such glib explanations that I learned to explain away all of it. When I was much older she did mention in a discussion about the bible that she had serious problems with all the wars and killing in the OT. By that time I was conditioned to accept all of it as God's incomprehensible will. Her faith in Jesus was so vital to her functioning in daily life that there was no way she would have ever questioned the validity of the religion.

 

Thus, it is very possible to read the entire Bible and not budge from religion. What caused my deconversion had much more to to with what was not written than with what was written. On this forum we hear the oft-repeated hypothesis that if people would actually read the Bible they would deconvert. This hypothesis does not necessarily hold.

 

People like CT talked with will not deconvert at any price.

 

Sure, people will use mental gymnastics. I did for a while, but it wasn't til after I had gone to college and realized it was all a myth that I really thought about it. I think it's a combination of multiple factors.

 

1. Reading the entire Bible

2. Having a reason to doubt and think about it more

3. Examining your beliefs closely

4. Some sort of disconnect between your core personality and the beliefs you feel you are required to hold as a Christian

 

Without a reason to question and examine religion, people aren't going to, they'll just do mental gymnastics. A lot of us are here because we had some sort of event in our lives that made us think. The only thing is, once you realize that Santa Claus is a myth, it's pretty much impossible to go back to believing in it. Religion is similar, but it's harder for many to leave permanently because it's so institutionalized and accepted.

 

For me, the disconnect was honesty. The core of my personality is honesty, and it was driving me up the wall that religion was forcing me to be dishonest with not only myself, but everyone around me.

 

The other disconnect was the hell doctrine. I can't worship a being who I see as a tyrant and a bully. Even if you look at it from the liberal perspective that hell is death, hell doctrine is basically a hate crime and would be if anyone on earth did what the Christian god supposedly does.

 

If someone on earth killed an Atheist just for being Atheist, or a Buddhist for being Buddhist, or a Jew for being a Jew, that would be labeled a hate crime. If instead of killing that person, they sent the victim to someone else to be tortured continuously, it would still be a hate crime. If a god does it as opposed to a human, it's still a hate crime, and there's no justification for that.

 

According to hell doctrine, people are either murdered or sent to a torturer for all of eternity (depending on if you are liberal or fundy) for their beliefs, for being different/imperfect, and for lack of belief. To me that is very wrong. Doesn't matter if you can supposedly get out of it by kissing the aforementioned tyrant's rear end for the rest of your life. I can't follow a belief system like that.

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I once talked with a fundy friend at my first college about the hardening of the pharoh's heart and she said it was more a metophor for the pharoh's own stubornness despite god telling him to stop.

But that sounds like by saying "it's a metaphor" we have forced the issue. The KJV clearly says it was "god" that hardened pharoah's heart (pharoah had no choice in the matter), not "Pharoah was stubborn". By so interpreting, we displace the responsibility of the event from god to pharoah, thus relieving the bible god of the responsibility for manifesting these horrific events upon the innocent people of Egypt.

 

The buck stops with god. God did a setup on the Egyptians. That's the tale.

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I've even been told that some of the Israelites would have tipped off some of the 'nice' Egyptians (by a Pentecostal Preacher) Talk about making up pretty stories to make god seem less of a twat... I was 41 when he said that to me... sufficed to say, I wasn't overly polite back...

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Read that book of Bullshit? Why suggest people wreck their minds. I was a Roman Catholic and that Church discourages its faithfull from reading most of the OT. It is obvious why.

 

The bible is based on the false premise that there was/is a "god". It is only a bad plagiarism of Egyptian and Sumerian Myths. The 10 plagues were mentioned in some posts here. Well the Exodus never happened. Same with the "Great Flood". Anyone with a brain and some logic can see that it never happened.

 

The "Holey Babble" is the worst book of fiction ever written.

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There is a pretty interesting theory that the Biblical Exodus occurred during the reign of Ahkenaten, the Pharaoh who 'never was'. He introduced monotheism to Egypt, and was thus removed form all the histories. Potentially, his reign over lapped the explosion of Santorini (and the destruction of the Minoans). Living in Lower Egypt (the delta end) would be hell on earth.

 

"Act of God" by Graham Phillps

 

highly speculative, but entirely possible...

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Read that book of Bullshit? Why suggest people wreck their minds. I was a Roman Catholic and that Church discourages its faithfull from reading most of the OT. It is obvious why.

 

The bible is based on the false premise that there was/is a "god". It is only a bad plagiarism of Egyptian and Sumerian Myths. The 10 plagues were mentioned in some posts here. Well the Exodus never happened. Same with the "Great Flood". Anyone with a brain and some logic can see that it never happened.

 

The "Holey Babble" is the worst book of fiction ever written.

 

Did you really read this thread before posting? No one here is talking about the biblical plagues or the great flood as being real events. THey are being talked about as biblical events. As in...events that happened in the bible. Not in reality.

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Did you really read this thread before posting? No one here is talking about the biblical plagues or the great flood as being real events. THey are being talked about as biblical events. As in...events that happened in the bible. Not in reality.

 

Therein lies the problem. Too many brainwashed Christians believe the bible events really happened. Just look at the figures: 50%+ of Americans believe the World is only 10,000 years old.

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Read that book of Bullshit? Why suggest people wreck their minds. I was a Roman Catholic and that Church discourages its faithfull from reading most of the OT. It is obvious why.

 

The bible is based on the false premise that there was/is a "god". It is only a bad plagiarism of Egyptian and Sumerian Myths. The 10 plagues were mentioned in some posts here. Well the Exodus never happened. Same with the "Great Flood". Anyone with a brain and some logic can see that it never happened.

 

The "Holey Babble" is the worst book of fiction ever written.

 

Did you really read this thread before posting? No one here is talking about the biblical plagues or the great flood as being real events. THey are being talked about as biblical events. As in...events that happened in the bible. Not in reality.

Actually, WR, that's the very heart of it. Fundies really do believe that these events were as real as the bombing of Pearl Harbor. I sure did, once upon a time. And BTW, I still think you've got the best avatar in this site. That boxing kitty just knocks me out...

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Read that book of Bullshit? Why suggest people wreck their minds. I was a Roman Catholic and that Church discourages its faithfull from reading most of the OT. It is obvious why.

 

The bible is based on the false premise that there was/is a "god". It is only a bad plagiarism of Egyptian and Sumerian Myths. The 10 plagues were mentioned in some posts here. Well the Exodus never happened. Same with the "Great Flood". Anyone with a brain and some logic can see that it never happened.

 

The "Holey Babble" is the worst book of fiction ever written.

 

Did you really read this thread before posting? No one here is talking about the biblical plagues or the great flood as being real events. THey are being talked about as biblical events. As in...events that happened in the bible. Not in reality.

Actually, WR, that's the very heart of it. Fundies really do believe that these events were as real as the bombing of Pearl Harbor. I sure did, once upon a time. And BTW, I still think you've got the best avatar in this site. That boxing kitty just knocks me out...

some of the stuff is out and out tripe, some is mythologised history, that can be traced.

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Actually, WR, that's the very heart of it. Fundies really do believe that these events were as real as the bombing of Pearl Harbor. I sure did, once upon a time. And BTW, I still think you've got the best avatar in this site. That boxing kitty just knocks me out...

 

Aw....thanks.

 

And yeah that is disheartening. It's like believing in your heart that there really is a Harry Potter. Worse....it's like believing in your heart that there really is a Harry Potter....based on reading Harry Potter fanfiction and never actually reading the books themselves! Or relying on Cliff Notes! (Have they done Cliff Notes for the series?)

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I was pretty young when I read the whole bible cover to cover. There were some things that made me question but I supressed those questions, thinking it was the devil leading me away. My understanding couldnt have possibly been correct on things. Still the early seeds of doubt were planted, though they were buried for many years. Fast forward over a decade and I really started my studying of the bible with an adult mind and understandingand that's when my faith really started to come undone. Now I know what is in the bible more than just about any Xtian I run into. I may not be able to remember verse and chapter but I know the gist of the texts and can use the internet to find the verses I need.

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My lapsed but fundie ex (still believed all the crap but wasn't going to church anymore) point blank refused to believe that Revelations says that after the 1000 years the devil will be let out for a little while before he finally gets destroyed so that he can have one final stab at trying to tempt people away from God. She said to me that I was being ridiculous

 

Exactly what I meant in my previous posting with "thorough brainwashing". They get brainwashed convinced that "this is what it says, period!" and so can dismiss everything that contradicts their delusion knowledge immediately.

 

Of course, in a way every christian who ever read the whole thing is automatically guilty of this dismissal-out-of-hand. Only that some christians (like the one I was in my last few years in the cult) at least decide to "know exactly" that the peaceful verses are true and everything that even hints at inhumanity and brutality is of course wrong.

 

It's just as intellectually dishonest, but at least it doesn't lead to believers becoming sociopaths. :Hmm:

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Thus, it is very possible to read the entire Bible and not budge from religion. What caused my deconversion had much more to to with what was not written than with what was written. On this forum we hear the oft-repeated hypothesis that if people would actually read the Bible they would deconvert. This hypothesis does not necessarily hold.

 

Like I said - it must be read with an open mind. An already-brainwashed one won't find anything wrong with it. :banghead:

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