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Teddy Bear God


J.P.
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During my current faith crisis/deconversion process, when talking to Christians about the problem of eternal punishment in hell and how God condones genocide in the OT, and how that doesn't seem to square off with a loving God, one thing I've heard is that they couldn't believe in a God who was a "Teddy Bear". They say they believe in a God of justice, that will punish people for their sins, and that to just see God as a lovey-dovey entity that never wants to punish people for their wrongs is a flawed view of God.

 

Why is it though, that anything short of eternal torment seems to be soft and lovey-dovey? They set up this false dichotomy: either God punished people forever in hell, or God doesn't punish anyone and there's no justice. Couldn't God punish people in proportion to their sins instead of torturing them forever? Wouldn't that be much more fair?

 

This dichotomy they set up seems to make people turn away from this so-called "Teddy Bear" God to a version of God that is a moral monster. When I insist that I don't want to believe in a God that would torment someone for eternity, why do they assume I want to believe in this so-called "Teddy Bear" God, or that that is the only option? Is my choice really either Teddy Bear God or Chuckie? I'd be much happier with a deity with a fair sense of justice (though would still have a problem with the deity for many other philosophical reasons). To be honest though, I've floating far away from any kind of belief in a supernatural deity due to the whole problem of evil thing, but it just stretches my imagination that they can't imagine anything in between. Either God torments people forever, or he's soft. Sadist or softie. Really?

 

 

J.P.

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Why is it though, that anything short of eternal torment seems to be soft and lovey-dovey? They set up this false dichotomy: either God punished people forever in hell, or God doesn't punish anyone and there's no justice. Couldn't God punish people in proportion to their sins instead of torturing them forever? Wouldn't that be much more fair?

Seems you're in luck. Jews essentially believe this. Off to the synagogue (unless you're Hitler or one of those pesky Babylonians then you should probably stay away).

 

mwc

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Hi JP

 

Welcome to the light, been away awhile but thought I would share some stuff with you.

 

Folk need to feel they are special and the church falsely gives them this placebo. If your parents never made you feel special, know that you probaby are to some friends and colleagues.

 

As for the loving god, the premise of capture is to lure you into their clutches with the god of love meme. Once they have you, you are then taught that you are worthless and deserve hell and thankfully you are saved by jeebus et al. I know what you are going through in that how can a loving god ..... fill in the blank. This is your human logic kicking in. I am guessing you are still young, mid 20's maybe?

 

The xians take this feeling of being special and ignore the rest of the global population and those heathen that have already died. This is the living in a bubble effect and only by mixing it with folk deluded by the same lies are they able to sustain their beliefs and faith. The idea of anyone making it to paradise w/o sacrificing their lives here on earth is of course unthinkable. This develops into a cultish outlook and a false sense of euphoria of being chosen or elect. No one like hitler should get into the good graces of god even if he did a sinner's prayer right before doing himself in. The wicked must be punished and suffer. Because secular laws prevent folk from exacting biblical punishments, the idea of a post life trial and conviction followed by endless punishment appeals to their sick moral senses.

 

Hell is the cornerstone upon which the xian doctrine is based on, fear of it keeps folk in bondage and most have never even researched the origins of the hell teaching and doctrine. Whether you are catholic or evangelical, you have to work your way into heaven as just one slip and it is off to the ovens with you if you fail to regularly ask for forgiveness or regular confessions and hail Mary's.

 

And this burden is supposed to be light?

 

In the end there is a no win and most folk just hope they can keep the faith until they die. You seem smart do hence the doubts and questions. We've all been there and done that and all of us have similar extimony stories to tell. A simple dose of logic and rationalization leads one to question the whole god concept and in the end, you probably will go the way most of us here did, to unbelief.

 

Christians will encourage you to keep the faith and simply believe, I will say, keep digging and asking questions, the truth is out there and none of the truths you learned in church are real. It is all man-made bud.

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I was faced with people who believed their god was a parent. But do parents punish their children for eternity? What does that teach? It certainly doesn't correct those who are being punished. They're too busy frying forever.

Most parents punish in order to correct behavior and/or false beliefs that accompany those behaviors. If the punishment doesn't stop, then the child can't go on to act in the corrected manner. Eternal punishment doesn't allow for growth.

But this is not what the christians around me believed. This parent would punish for eternity to "teach." Teach who, what? It was insane. And I was accused of "making my own god" when I said I rejected their view. Apparently, if you're not scared shitless, you're not a good christian.

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The only way anyone learns from the punishment of others is by witnessing it. Hell makes no sense as a punishment, because those punished learn nothing from it and no one else witnesses it.

 

Whenever I see something that does not make sense, it makes me think humans, not gods, are behind it.

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