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Sons Baptism. Am I Allowed To Disregard My Promise?


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So, I've been struggling with the promise I made in church when my son was baptised. This morning I went to my churches web site and found the entire service documented. This gave me the opportunity to see exactly what was promised.

 

I would link to it but then

1. I can be identified. I first need to come out to my extended family before coming out publicly.

2. It's not in English so only maybe one or two other people in this forum would be able to read it.

 

I'm not worried about most of what was preached as I wasn't required to actually give any kind of an indication that I agreed with it. Even as a fundie I remember thinking that parts of this service was kind of weird, maybe retarded even, but that's not important for this question.

 

The part that concerns me is where I was required to give an indication that I promise or agree. There were 7 babies being baptised so all that was required from the parents was to say yes four times.

 

Herewith the questions:

 

1. Do you accept god's promise: the promise that god called your child at baptism in the name, made him/her his child, and promises to be a god to your child?

 

2. Do you promise to teach your child of Jesus Christ, our lord, and promise to teach your child to live under Jesus' rule?

 

3. Do you bind your family to the Bible, the story of God coming to humanity and the world and share that story with your family?

 

The fourth one's translation is difficult. I actually struggle to read it in my own language. The section between the second and third comma might not be translated right but it's the closest I could get it and Google translate was useless.

 

4. Do you bind your family to the church, the community in which the Holy Spirit leads us to a life of faith, a life under Jesus' rule, a life in service of God's kingdom?

 

My feeling on this now

 

1. I can't agree to this anymore on the grounds that it's all made up nonsense.

 

2. Yeah, I could agree to that. Even as an Atheist I can teach him how to do it. I can teach him anything about Christianity, but are they sure they want that. I will be teaching the bible as it's written and won't be skipping over the sections where you're allowed to beat your slave to death, stone people for working on a Sunday or where you're allowed to rape women.

 

3 & 4. I'm not binding anything anymore. I mean, what do these two questions even mean?

 

Now. My questions to you fine people:

 

1. I basically made a verbal agreement right? I personally feel that a verbal agreement isn't worth the paper it's written on, but how binding is it really? Could a fundie that know I'm an atheist try to hold me to this agreement and what is a good response? I want them to still like me afterwards but never broach the topic with me again.

 

2. Seeing that as this whole thing is made up and I now realise I was indoctrinated from a small age: Am I allowed to disregard my promise on those ground?

 

 

 

 

 

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After the "promise" it will be expected they attend sunday school and catechism classes. You have to get them young as by 8-10, if they have been taught critical thinking, the church stands no chance. 3&4 they are appealing to your indoctrination and really the orthodox Afrikaans churches are nowhere as bad as the evangelical types.

Kids are used as leverage as a gift from gawd and they use this tradition in the hope some shit they fling up to the wall will stick. My kids attended Sunday school at the NGK for awhile till we got involved with the real woos. Oddly enough, my late wife hated the evangelicals but stood by me as a good wife "should" When we left that madness, there was zero pressure from her for us to go back to her church. She had regained the agnostic husband she married.

 

Seeing we all got wasted after the "doop" that was the real tradition of a family get together. Hell I even have a pic of me giving my son champaign.

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If your previous life was as a neo-nazi and you promised to raise your children as anti-Semites would it bother you to break that promise?

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You have no legal obligation to this church. You can break all 4 promises with no legal recourse. That being said all 4 are promises to fictional entities they would have to prove they were real to have any legal standing on the matter lolz

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Every single last one of these promises is built on an assumption that you have found to be untrue: namely, that God exists, and whatever kind of Christianity you believed in was the truth. No matter how important keeping a promise is, if what they held you to was a lie in the first place, you're not obligated to follow it. It would be like promising to buy a car, and they give you a bicycle. No matter what you promised, you don't have to buy the bicycle.

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You don't HAVE to do anything. There's no big angry sky daddy waiting to punish you if you don't live up to some poorly defined set of rules.

 

But even if this promise IS important to you for the sake of honesty, integrity, or some such shit- IMO that promise is null and void seeings how it was based on false information. I mean, if you enter into a contract, and it turns out that the other end of the contract was completely and utterly misrepresented - that's what we call fraud, and it nullifies said contract.

 

Now the fundies are gonna blame YOU no matter what you do (short of doing exactly what THEY tell you to do), so their opinion is irrelevant. Nothing short of lock-step obedience will please them. But I don't see how breaking this agreement is dishonest in any way.

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Allowed by whom?

 

Methinks "promises" to nonexistent beings and organizations based on falsehoods don't count.

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So, I've been struggling with the promise I made in church when my son was baptised. This morning I went to my churches web site and found the entire service documented. This gave me the opportunity to see exactly what was promised.

 

I would link to it but then

1. I can be identified. I first need to come out to my extended family before coming out publicly.

2. It's not in English so only maybe one or two other people in this forum would be able to read it.

 

I'm not worried about most of what was preached as I wasn't required to actually give any kind of an indication that I agreed with it. Even as a fundie I remember thinking that parts of this service was kind of weird, maybe retarded even, but that's not important for this question.

 

The part that concerns me is where I was required to give an indication that I promise or agree. There were 7 babies being baptised so all that was required from the parents was to say yes four times.

 

Herewith the questions:

 

1. Do you accept god's promise: the promise that god called your child at baptism in the name, made him/her his child, and promises to be a god to your child?

 

2. Do you promise to teach your child of Jesus Christ, our lord, and promise to teach your child to live under Jesus' rule?

 

3. Do you bind your family to the Bible, the story of God coming to humanity and the world and share that story with your family?

 

The fourth one's translation is difficult. I actually struggle to read it in my own language. The section between the second and third comma might not be translated right but it's the closest I could get it and Google translate was useless.

 

4. Do you bind your family to the church, the community in which the Holy Spirit leads us to a life of faith, a life under Jesus' rule, a life in service of God's kingdom?

 

My feeling on this now

 

1. I can't agree to this anymore on the grounds that it's all made up nonsense.

 

2. Yeah, I could agree to that. Even as an Atheist I can teach him how to do it. I can teach him anything about Christianity, but are they sure they want that. I will be teaching the bible as it's written and won't be skipping over the sections where you're allowed to beat your slave to death, stone people for working on a Sunday or where you're allowed to rape women.

 

3 & 4. I'm not binding anything anymore. I mean, what do these two questions even mean?

 

Now. My questions to you fine people:

 

1. I basically made a verbal agreement right? I personally feel that a verbal agreement isn't worth the paper it's written on, but how binding is it really? Could a fundie that know I'm an atheist try to hold me to this agreement and what is a good response? I want them to still like me afterwards but never broach the topic with me again.

 

2. Seeing that as this whole thing is made up and I now realise I was indoctrinated from a small age: Am I allowed to disregard my promise on those ground?

 

You are in charge of your life. Not a church. Do you agree to continue to be bound to a "kind of weird, maybe retarded" agreement? New information and understanding about religion in your life has made this agreement null and void. Who was the agreement between? You and God? Then let God sue you for breach of contract. He will have to file the papers himself and plead his case in court. Since he is non-existent this will be impossible.

 

To be nice to any fundys you could say something like, "I discovered that the other party in this contract was just my imagination which makes the contract null and void. I cannot enter into a contact with myself." Being a Christian is self-reinforced multiple personality disorder.

 

If these church tards get all high and mighty tell them that you are going to sue them for fraud. They promised that God would do this that and the other thing and you have yet to see him materialize or come thru with anything though you still put money in the collection plate at one time. That is fraud. Here in my state we call a type of theft Obtaining Money Under False Pretenses. Isn't that what a church does? :-)

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If these church tards get all high and mighty tell them that you are going to sue them for fraud. They promised that God would do this that and the other thing and you have yet to see him materialize or come thru with anything though you still put money in the collection plate at one time. That is fraud. Here in my state we call a type of theft Obtaining Money Under False Pretenses. Isn't that what a church does? :-)

 

 

Actually, did they promise anything in return? I suppose it's implied in the idea that god makes your life better and all that nonsense, like with #1 and god being your kid's god. But even in the bible itself, whenever god demanded promises from his people, it was in the form of a contract. It was always "if the people obey, then good stuff happens". What kind of horrible contract is it where you're supposed to promise to do all that stuff, and there's zero promises from the other party about their side of the deal? Or rather, #1 should not have been an affirmation on your part; it should have been god's end of the bargain. If god falls through on his side of the deal by not existing, then he can't be your child's god and can't take care of them or do anything else to uphold his end of the deal. Breach of contract on god's part nullifies the entire deal.

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You don't believe it anymore. Your first obligation is to your kids, not to an organization to which you no longer belong mentally or emotionally. Since you don't think that teaching them Xianity is in their best interest, don't do it.

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     Who the fuck cares that you said "yes" four whole times to anything?  Last time I read the bible none of those questions were in there and had nothing to do with baptisms.  I don't recall John the Baptist asking old "jesus" these things.  It's just bullshit.  Treat it like that.

 

          mwc

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If these church tards get all high and mighty tell them that you are going to sue them for fraud. They promised that God would do this that and the other thing and you have yet to see him materialize or come thru with anything though you still put money in the collection plate at one time. That is fraud. Here in my state we call a type of theft Obtaining Money Under False Pretenses. Isn't that what a church does? :-)

 

 

Actually, did they promise anything in return? I suppose it's implied in the idea that god makes your life better and all that nonsense, like with #1 and god being your kid's god. But even in the bible itself, whenever god demanded promises from his people, it was in the form of a contract. It was always "if the people obey, then good stuff happens". What kind of horrible contract is it where you're supposed to promise to do all that stuff, and there's zero promises from the other party about their side of the deal? Or rather, #1 should not have been an affirmation on your part; it should have been god's end of the bargain. If god falls through on his side of the deal by not existing, then he can't be your child's god and can't take care of them or do anything else to uphold his end of the deal. Breach of contract on god's part nullifies the entire deal.

 

 

Well, the language of the contract is too vague. With #1 I could say God hasnt done shit so the contract is void. I might back this up with scripture that states that whatever I pray for in Jesus name I will receive, yet goods have not been delivered forthwith. :-)  For #2 I could say yes I did teach my child about Jesus for a while but the contract did not specify how long I should do this so hey, I've done my part. The same for #2 applies to number 3. As far as #4 goes, since the Kingdom of God is inside of me (per the bible) then yes I am living my life in service to the Kingdom of God (which is myself). :-) Did Jesus not say we are gods? haha.

 

Of course we all know that BS like this is not enforceable in a court. Just like we can't enforce defrauding laws against churches. 

 

Still, if you start getting calls from Bill Collector's for Jesus, don't answer, leave the state and wait 7 years for the statute of limitations to run out.. lol.

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You don't believe it anymore. Your first obligation is to your kids, not to an organization to which you no longer belong mentally or emotionally. Since you don't think that teaching them Xianity is in their best interest, don't do it.

 

I agree with the above from Lilith666.

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Now. My questions to you fine people:

 

1. I basically made a verbal agreement right? I personally feel that a verbal agreement isn't worth the paper it's written on, but how binding is it really? Could a fundie that know I'm an atheist try to hold me to this agreement and what is a good response? I want them to still like me afterwards but never broach the topic with me again.

 

2. Seeing that as this whole thing is made up and I now realise I was indoctrinated from a small age: Am I allowed to disregard my promise on those ground?

 

Faceahem, perhaps I understand your feeling of obligation to stick to promises made in church. I come from a very strict non-English-speaking community that baptizes adults. It's called "believers baptism," and supposedly it's voluntary as opposed to infant baptism like you describe. However, the social pressure for teenagers to get baptized at a certain age is overwhelming.

 

Re promises. As adults, or older teens (age 16-19 or 20) baptismal candidates would kneel on the floor to receive their sprinkling of the baptismal water. With his hands placed flat on the person's head, the bishop would say, "In the name of the father, the son, and the holy ghost I baptize you with water." On the word "water" he formed his hands into a cup and the deacon would pour in a tiny amount of water onto the person's head. Afterward, the bishop would offer his hand to the newly baptized person and say, "In the name of this congregation I offer you my hand and raise you to a new beginning...."

 

My mother used to make a big deal of those words. She would say, the bishop says "This congregation. Some people justify themselves that it's just a congregation and they think they can join another church without breaking their promise but that is not so!"

 

Thus, I knew that promises made "on bended knee" "before God and man" at baptism were considered sacred and not to be broken. Yet what about those promises that weren't kept? To get baptized I had to promise belief in God and in the plan of salvation. I did not understand it and felt very uncomfortable saying yes to those questions. Yet there was no way around it if I wanted to pass into adulthood and adult roles in the community. The bishop, the preachers, my mother, and other adults were all saying that we would not understand everything now at the time of our baptism, but as we got older we would understand. I latched onto that promise as a lifeline. I was seventeen.

 

At age forty, I realized I was now "older" like the adults had promised and I should now understand, if their promise was worth anything. Yet I had no more understanding than I had at seventeen. Somehow, I felt released from any promise I had made "before God and man on bended knee." First I left the German-speaking church for a more mainline English-speaking church, but eventually I deconverted altogether.

 

I did feel afraid of hell for a long time because I might have missed something important. But after seven to ten years that fear went away.

 

After everything I've seen in my years on these forums I think your questions and confusion are normal. I agree with the others that you can hardly be held accountable for non-legal promises made regarding something that did not deliver. Obviously, if the god you believed in and trusted had come through for you, you would not be asking these questions. But I know it must be scary because you want to do right by your child.

 

You also said you want to remain friends with your former church members. Some of us find that to be really tricky, a serious challenge, because their friendships are based entirely on mutual beliefs in Jesus. We can't control this. Most of us find we have to be true to our own selves and our personal convictions. Then, if that results in loss of friendships we conclude that they weren't true friends in the first place. People who demand you to live a lie and teach your son things that violate your conscience are not true friends despite their best intentions. There's billions of people in this world. I think I can find friends outside those who feel a need to control how I think, believe, and live.

 

Sorry this is a rambling post. If there's anything of value in it, take what's helpful and leave the rest. All the best to you and your family.

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If you do not believe in God, Jesus or the Holy Spirit, the entire "agreement" is meaningless.

 

I had a similar experience when I left a Buddhist sect.  I had promised in a ceremony to safeguard the scroll to which we chanted, but after about 10 years in the group My faith (such as it was) just sputtered and died.  When I left My ex in 2000 I simply didn't bother to take the scroll, which I had stashed in a suitcase full of tarot cards, yarrow stalks and other woo-woo stuff I had accumulated over the years. The oath essentially terminated along with My belief, although I occasionally wonder what Whatsisname did with the scroll.

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Ok. So my integrity is not at risk in this case if I don't keep my word and I get what everyone is saying. I really do. And I agree. It's all bullshit. I can say that on this forum here. No problem. In real life though things are not so simple. This bullshit affects my entire life.

 

To put it into perspective: The day I told my wife about my non belief I had to promise to lie to my two year old son about it should he ever ask me. Every time I think about doing that I get a sick feeling in my stomach. I don't intend on keeping my promise and will cross that bridge when I get to it. If I was better prepared before telling my wife then I wouldn't have made stupid promises.

 

I need to have anwers ready for these fundies. Telling them that I'm not keeping my word because god didn't keep his is going to make me look like the bad guy. In their minds god is trying and I'm just not listening.

 

To be nice to any fundys you could say something like, "I discovered that the other party in this contract was just my imagination which makes the contract null and void. I cannot enter into a contact with myself." Being a Christian is self-reinforced multiple personality disorder.

 

That is what I want to say, but I wan't to say it in a way that is not going to offend the fundie. Me telling him that god is in his imagination IS going to offend him/her. I want that person to walk away thinking that they don't understand my choice, but that they still respect me as a person.

 

After the "promise" it will be expected they attend sunday school and catechism classes. You have to get them young as by 8-10, if they have been taught critical thinking, the church stands no chance. 3&4 they are appealing to your indoctrination and really the orthodox Afrikaans churches are nowhere as bad as the evangelical types.

 

That's the problem with my NGK and their baptism as a baby. By the time you can speak the decision has already been made. You have been promised to god. Lucky you.

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One of the hardest things I have ever learned how to do in the last 3 years is to follow what my own 'gut' tells me. I am more confident now with following what my 'gut' tells me. Also, giving up the bullshit of  'people pleasing'..that must be highly considered. Once you get these couple of things down pat...you're on your way to living your life the way YOU want.

 

Good luck and best wishes!

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