Noahccount

I can't take no more!!

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Hey all. I was a Christian for a bit over 50 years. I'm 63 now, so I'm counting only part of my childhood. I finally deconstructed about 5 years ago. Before that I was a bad Christian; I asked questions. A Christian is supposed to be all about faith, prayer and the Holy Spirit, not questions and most especially not questions about Jesus, God and the mighty Paul.

I saw early on that there were differences between what Jesus taught and what Paul taught. Why such differences? 'Those aren't differences, you're too young to understand'. OK, so years later I still see those differences and then some more. 'Those aren't differences, you need to pray to understand'. OK, more years and more prayers and I was starting to do the unthinkable, I was studying the 'old testament' to see if there were answers there. I found even more questions. 'Those aren't differences, you need to trust God and not question Him'. Hmm, 'new testament' has people just accepting what 'God' tells them while several times in the 'old testament' people question God and most of them are highly regarded by God. Why, one even wrestled with God and became a great patriarch.

My questions, trimmed down somewhat were;
Jesus said not one jot or title will pass from the Instructions until all shall pass. Paul said it was all done away with and nailed to a cross.

God's prophets said the Law, Teachings, were perfect and unchanging. Paul said they weren't perfect and had to be changed.

The apostles and Jesus clearly stated that there could only ever be 12 apostles. One was appointed to replace Judas. Paul became the 13th and no one else in the NT other than Paul claims he is an apostle.

Blood is needed for a proper sacrifice according to the NT. According to the OT full physical, mental and spiritual repentance is all that's required, blood is mentioned, but several times its made clear that blood alone won't cut it.

Why do we have a three god-head god, like the Romans with their Holy Triad of pagan gods?

As I studied for answers I kept getting more questions and every time I asked someone, I got Christian answers ... Christian answers that weren't satisfying. The big one was Deuteronomy 30. Is the word too hard to understand? Is the word too hard to obey? I had to really think about that. I knew that I knew the answers, I just couldn't accept them without dealing with the 'new testament' differences and you can't deal with that without incurring the wrath of God and worse, the wrath of Christians. Wait, what did I say? Who's wrath is worse?

In comes YouTube and other internet sources. I started a different venue of study. Lots of hogwash. Lots of 'my way or the highway'. Lots of just loony BS. Finally, after a lot of halfhearted listening I started to hear some stuff from a few Rabbis that were talking about the 'new testament'. Rabbis talking about the 'new testament'? What would a Jew have to do with that? I heard the questions I had been asking for decades. I heard answers that I knew I had come up with, but was too afraid to acknowledge. I have to deny the apostle Paul. That's heresy! I have to deny Jesus. That's worse than death, that's eternal torture. No, first step is to deny the fear that Christianity drills into each of its victims. I finally realized that Christianity is a cult. When I tossed that fear, denying Paul, then denying Jesus was actually a great release. I owe a great deal to Rabbis Michael Skobac, Tovia Singer, Stuart Federow and Chaim Coffman. I also found some great former Christians along the way such as Jono Vandor of SpiritualBabies, Jason (?) of Truth2U and William Hall of Tenak Talk.

Along the way, I studied the Babylonian Talmud, after all, Paul supposedly studied at the feet of Gamaliel, a student of the great Hillel. I saw clearly that if Paul had studied at the feet of Gamaliel, he obviously studied only the dirt under Gamaliel's toe nails. There's no way Paul learned any Talmud. I studied other material from the Oral Tradition and found it to be notions, fables and mumblings of idiots mixed with some really good information from serious and thoughtful godly men. Mainstream Judaism, Orthodox and Conservative, rely very heavily on the Oral Traditions. I can't. So, I'm for sure not a Christian and I can't-won't convert to Judaism. That puts me somewhere in the middle. I'm either a Noahide or a Samaritan, but maybe a Karaite. I guess that makes me a Noahccount.

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Hello, and welcome! I have a suggestion. How about you go one step further and read some more authors and their take on the bible? And how do you feel about what you call the supreme lurker, are you open to considering their existence? There's also plenty of food for thought right here on this site, lots of it in the Lions Den. Stick around, you're clearly a thinker.

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Welcome, o person of the most excellent name.

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3 hours ago, Noahccount said:

The apostles and Jesus clearly stated that there could only ever be 12 apostles. One was appointed to replace Judas. Paul became the 13th and no one else in the NT other than Paul claims he is an apostle.

Welcome, @Noahccount ! OMG, can I just say the point you mentioned above is a HUGE pet peeve of mine? Of course apologetics have ready made garbage answers for this issue, but it's clear to anyone who reads the bible and haven't been brainwashed that the whole *12* apostle thing is a big point. If it wasn't supposed to be exactly 12 why did they bother to replace Judas, and what the hell does that make Paul? The thirteenth apostle? The fourteenth? Not to mention the fact that he never actually met Jesus, except perhaps a vision or a projection of him - and somehow he is considered a more important and listened-to apostle than the 12 that actually walked and lived with him? He's as much as an apostle as Charles' Manson was a Beatles band member!

 

Anyways, sorry for the ramble. I agree with the points you raised and cudos for coming here! I hope we can help!

 

 

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Welcome, Noah! So glad you found us! Thanks so much for sharing some of your thoughts. These are the thoughts that brought most of us here also so you are not alone. Looking forward to hearing more from you!

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I have to second the excellent screen name, well played. 

 

And Welcome!!!

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One of the things about religious systems is that they tend to insulate themselves against any verification or falsification, while at the same time claiming that their truths are verifiable. But when you try to see whether the truths are verifiable, one of the things you  run up against are multiple senses of words, employed as needed by the religionist.

 

So individuals are called apostles except when in some other verse they're not called apostles.

God is totally one and single except when God is not called totally one and single.

The Law is totally unchanging except insofar as it is changing.

The Law is easy to understand and obey except in that it is not easy to understand and obey.

No one can die for the sins of another (Ezekiel) except when "no one" is not no one.

 

Etc.

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Welcome to the forums, @Noahccount.

 

You've done your homework I see.

If you have not availed yourself of them yet you might be interested in the authors Carrier, Dawkins,  Hitchens, Fitzgerald. 

 

Hope to see/hear more of you here. 

    - MOHO (Mind Of His Own)

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Hello all. Thanks for the welcome. 

Like I said, I've had major problems with Paul all my life, maybe that prepared me for the final deconstruction. My wife was raised Seventh Day Adventist and was in and out of numerous churches all her life. I think the SDAs with their Sabbath observance and dietary restrictions set her up too. When I first 'came out' a few years ago, she was ... shall we say, concerned? Believe me, that's putting it mildly!! Our son was an evangelist. His hero was Paul. With my problems over Paul, I guess you can figure in a chuck of reverse psychology in his choice of hero. But when I officially 'came out' and rejected the NT, my wife and son were head to head with the questions I laid out, and there were many-several more than what I've listed. They got stumped and had to really think. My wife with her SDA background was the first to fall back on her heels and agree with me. Our son took a bit longer, but when pressed for truthful answers, he had to admit the truth.

Today, a good 5 years later, my wife, son, three grandsons and ... get this (!) one grandson is married to a PK, a Baptist preacher's daughter have awakened! My wife and I are very good friends with her parents, we went to their church for many years! We're keeping this hush-hush from her parents, because she too has re-studied and attacked my questions and discovered she had to answer them contrary to the NT! If her parents caught wind of this, there's that wrath of Christians thing again!! And if it came from her parents, there'd be holy hell to pay!!

The one thing we miss, sorta, is the community. We just can't join church activities any more, and the very few we did join into at first ended up leaving us either laughing up our sleeves or feeling very uncomfortable. On the other hand, we don't have to deal with the trauma-drama of Christians any more. Its absolutely amazing how nice and quiet things are now. Oh, we still get oodles of requests for prayer and such, but the "Thank U Jayzus" stuff has kind of disappeared. 

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4 hours ago, ficino said:

One of the things about religious systems is that they tend to insulate themselves against any verification or falsification, while at the same time claiming that their truths are verifiable. But when you try to see whether the truths are verifiable, one of the things you  run up against are multiple senses of words, employed as needed by the religionist.

 

So individuals are called apostles except when in some other verse they're not called apostles.

God is totally one and single except when God is not called totally one and single.

The Law is totally unchanging except insofar as it is changing.

The Law is easy to understand and obey except in that it is not easy to understand and obey.

No one can die for the sins of another (Ezekiel) except when "no one" is not no one.

 

Yeasss! Those 'Christian' answers! I got my fill of the vague answers or the rephrasing of questions so they could be easier answered, or those flat-out "Hey! Look! A distraction!!" non-answers that shoot off into some weird other direction altogether!

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15 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

I have to second the excellent screen name, well played. 

 

And Welcome!!!

I like the PDF in your signature! "I think, therefore I am, I think ... maybe!"

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17 hours ago, DestinyTurtle said:

Welcome, @Noahccount ! OMG, can I just say the point you mentioned above is a HUGE pet peeve of mine? Of course apologetics have ready made garbage answers for this issue, but it's clear to anyone who reads the bible and haven't been brainwashed that the whole *12* apostle thing is a big point. If it wasn't supposed to be exactly 12 why did they bother to replace Judas, and what the hell does that make Paul? The thirteenth apostle? The fourteenth? Not to mention the fact that he never actually met Jesus, except perhaps a vision or a projection of him - and somehow he is considered a more important and listened-to apostle than the 12 that actually walked and lived with him? He's as much as an apostle as Charles' Manson was a Beatles band member!

 

Thank you! Usually when I bring that little bombshell out I get a whole slew of 'Christian answers', until I bring out Big Bertha. In Revelations 21, that's John supposedly quoting Jesus remember(?), we find Jesus stating that there will be 12 foundations of the New Jerusalem, one for each of the TWELVE apostles. Just where the hell does Paul fit into that equation? This is one of two questions that finally blew my son's defenses out of the water (see my second post). The second question, and this one happens to be the 'H' bomb, being, Paul claims that the Messiah will come to remove sin (Romans 11:26) "as it is written" ... uhm, the way its written is Isaiah 59:20, the redeemer will come to those who turn away from transgression, not one word about removing sin. Paul reversed the entire meaning of Isaiah and used that to create a new god and a new religion, why, and how did humanity fall for this worldwide hoax?

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18 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

Hello, and welcome! I have a suggestion. How about you go one step further and read some more authors and their take on the bible? And how do you feel about what you call the supreme lurker, are you open to considering their existence? There's also plenty of food for thought right here on this site, lots of it in the Lions Den. Stick around, you're clearly a thinker.

I've read a few authors, I know there are brazillions more. As for the supreme lurker, either there is one, or the universe is eternal and under constant recreation. If that's the case, then following the rule of random chance, we've all been here before, doing the same things before, and we'll be here again. Along the way, we've done almost exactly the same things before and we'll do similar things again. 'Course, that could explain deja vu, the premise of parallel universes etc. etc.

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You really hit the nail on the head when you said you realized Christianity was a cult. I started to have those exact same thoughts prior to deconverting after studying a lot on Jehovas Witnesses. I realized that we do a lot of the same tactics they do. I just started to feel the control. I think the best moment of clarity are when you are away from the church and allow yourself to overcome the guilt of doubt. To explore the possibilities you have been thinking about, like the doubts about Paul. I am so happy for you that you made it out. Welcome to the true resistance. 

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Welcome, glad you found this site. I'm sure you will find it informative and helpful. 

 

I had lots of questions too when I was a believer. In my search for answers I discovered the Historical Critical  scholarship. Most Christians have never heard of it. Once I began reading religious historians like Dr. Bart Ehrman. Robert M Price, Karen Armstrong, David Fitzgerald, and many more like them I found the answers I was searching for. 

 

These historians have a number of YouTube Videos that are free as well as kindle books. There is, of course, no historical Jesus. The evidence suggest both Jesus and Paul were literary characters rather than real people. The evidence also suggest Simon Magus wrote the Epistles using the Name Paul of Tarsus. 

 

Christianity is obviously a Gnostic religion and the evidence points to Simon Magus & Marcion as its creators. Marcion's Churches were the most popular version of Christianity in the early part of the 2nd century. The OT stories were mostly taken from other cultures. Yahweh, of course, was a myrhical Canannite war God, as was his mythical brother Baal.

 

The Israelites were originally Canannites and that is why they worshipped Canannite Gods. And, of course, they were never slaves in Egypt.  Moses & Exodus are myths. In other words the Bible isn't literally or historically true. 

 

Learning all all of that, and more, made my exit from Christianity relatively easy.

 

 

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