This book is also available here.
Creationism is the belief that a god or gods created the physical universe we're surrounded by. Although many do have the brightest of intentions, some tend to get a little shy about the labels used to describe them; in particular, the connotations surrounding these labels. And one thing that's common among many Christian denominations is how little they understand of the Bible.
Do Jehovah’s Witnesses Believe in Creationism? is an article on the group's website, jw.org, and it starts with:
No. Jehovah’s Witnesses do believe that God created everything. But we do not agree with creationism.
If you believe that God created everything, that would make you a creationist, pure and simple. JWs know what the word means, but they don't want to be associated with it.
There are generally two types of creationists: new-earth creationists, who believe that the universe (including earth) is only a few thousand years old as described in the Bible, and then there are old-earth creationists, who believe that the universe is as old as science claims it is. Old-earth creationism didn't show up before science did; it's merely a cop-out position designed to reconcile faith and science.
Now, JWs are old-earth creationists, and they have quite an interesting (and incorrect) way of justifying this position.
Why not? Because a number of creationist ideas actually conflict with the Bible. Consider the following two examples:
1. Length of the six days of creation. Some creationists assert that the six days of creation were literal 24-hour days. But the word “day” in the Bible can refer to a considerable length of time.—Genesis 2:4; Psalm 90:4.
2. Age of the earth. Some creationists teach that the earth is just a few thousand years old. However, according to the Bible, the earth and the universe existed before the six days of creation. (Genesis 1:1) For that reason, Jehovah’s Witnesses have no objection to credible scientific research that indicates the earth may be billions of years old.
Although Jehovah’s Witnesses believe in creation, we are not antiscience. We believe that true science and the Bible are compatible.
And that's the article. So, let us take a look at the claims made. First, they claim that the six days of creation described in the book of Genesis were actually not days, they were longer, indeterminate periods of time.
The Hebrew word used for the days of creation is yohm. As in English, this word often refers to a single 24-hour day, but it can also mean other, longer periods of time. For example, the phrase "back in my day" does not refer to a 24-hour day, but rather, to the period in which a person was young or in their prime, which encompasses at least several years.
But if you're going to argue that, in the context of Genesis, yohm refers to periods of millions or billions of years, then you clearly haven't been paying attention. So, get out your Bible and read the first chapter of Genesis.
Firstly, you will notice that Genesis explicitly describes what it means by "day."
In Genesis 1:4-5, we read, "And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day."
Here we see day and night being described as periods of light and darkness. Furthermore, the first day of creation is described as consisting of evening and morning, which is significant. If you were talking about a period longer than one single 24-hour day, you would not use words like "morning" and "evening" to describe it because periods longer than one day do not have mornings and evenings. So, unless Genesis is using an extremely tortured and misleading analogy, you must accept that it is referring to six literal days of creation.
Further evidence can be found in the fact that plants are created on the third day (verses 11-13), while the sun, moon and stars were not created until the next day (verses 14-19). If the "days" of Genesis were long periods of time, how could those plants God created in the third day have survived into the fourth?
Lastly, Adam is described as living for 930 years, yet he was created on the sixth day of creation (and on the seventh, God admired his work). If the days of creation are long periods of time, why was Adam only 930 years old when he died? Surely he must have been millions of years old by then.
The second point in the article is that the universe (including the earth) was created before the six days of creation. So, JWs reason, it is possible that many years passed before the six days began, even though the Bible does not say anything about a time gap between the beginning of creation and the beginning of the six days. You don't get to insert time gaps into the Bible just because it suits you. If it's not mentioned, your only option as a faithful person is to assume it didn't happen. To do otherwise is to put words in God's mouth, a crime God has punished people for, supposedly.
But the real problem with this particular version of old-earth creationism is its absurdity. JWs would have you believe that God created the heavens and the earth, then waited for a very long time before starting his work, and they also want you to believe that God chose to give form to the world, not instantly, as he could have done, but rather, over periods of millions of years.
If you were God, wouldn't you be insulted by this drivel? That's the worst part - they make god out to be incredibly incompetent; so incompetent, in fact, that he misleads people who read his very own holy texts by describing the not-day periods of creation as days!
One thing you might have noticed while you were reading Genesis 1 is that the light of day existed before the sun. Of course, in the modern scientific world, we know that it is the sun rising which causes dawn, and the subsequent period of daylight is caused by the sun being up in the sky.
JWs have a ludicrous explanation for this Biblical anti-science nonsense as well. In an article titled When Did God Begin to Create the Universe?, they claim:
The sun, moon, and stars already existed as part of “the heavens” created in “the beginning.” (Genesis 1:1) However, their light evidently did not reach the earth’s surface because of a dense atmosphere. (Genesis 1:2) So although diffused light became visible on the first day, the light’s source was not yet recognizable. On the fourth day, the atmosphere apparently cleared up.
So we went from "evidently" to "apparently." Very reassuring.
Firstly, Genesis 1:2 describes watery depths, not a thick or dense atmosphere. Secondly, this "dense atmosphere" was cleared up when God parted the waters (on the second day of creation, to be precise), yet the sun doesn't appear in the sky until the fourth day, so it apparently took millions of years for God to clear up the atmosphere. Thirdly, according to Genesis, God created the sun on the fourth day; it does not say that the sun became visible on the fourth day. So the Bible lies, does it?
Lastly, the Genesis account does not, as JWs claim, assume the perspective of a hypothetical observer on earth; an observer on earth wouldn't have seen God's spirit moving over the waters because God's spirit is invisible. The Genesis account is obviously told from an omniscient perspective, not that of a human observer.
Therefore, if you accept the Bible, you must accept a) that the earth was created in 6 literal, 24-hour days, and b) that the light of day existed before the sun - neither of which makes any sense. The Bible is for the scientifically ignorant, not the educated. It was written by and for ignorant people.
If you want to do old-earth creationism properly, you have to be a little more creative than this.
So, searching for proof of Christianity can take you to many places. The book I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist by Frank Turek and Norman Geisler is an excellent example of where proofs of God go wrong and the tendency of Christian apologists to insert their own unproved doctrines into their supposedly iron-clad proofs of God. But in this article, we'll be examining a section of the book that talks about infinity and why the nature of infinity apparently means that there must have been a beginning to the universe.
In chapter 3, the book says:
Finally, there’s a philosophical line of evidence for the beginning of the universe. This line of evidence is so rationally inescapable that some consider it the strongest argument of all. It’s called the Kalam (from the Arabic word for “eternal”) Cosmological Argument, and it goes like this:
1. An infinite number of days has no end.
2. But today is the end day of history (history being a collection of all days).
3. Therefore, there were not an infinite number of days before today (i.e., time had a beginning).
To grasp this argument, see the timeline below, marked in segments of days (fig. 3.1). The further left you go, the further back in history you go. Now, assume for a moment that this line extends to the left indefinitely, so that you can’t see if or where it begins. But as you look to the right you can see the end of the line because the last segment of the line represents today. Tomorrow isn’t here yet, but when it gets here we’ll add one more segment (i.e., a day) to the right end of the line.
Now, here’s how this proves that time had a beginning: since the line certainly ends on the right, the timeline cannot be infinite because something that is infinite has no end. Moreover, you can’t add anything to something that is infinite, but tomorrow we will add another day to our timeline. So our timeline is undeniably finite.
So, let's imagine for a moment that time (or anything, really) extends infinitely into the past. Why is this possible? The argument claims that an infinite sequence of days has no end. In theory, this is correct, although the logic does miss out a caveat we're about to explain.
Premise 2 of the argument is where it falls apart, and therefore, the conclusion falls apart too. It says that today is the final element in the sequence of all days, and therefore, the sequence of all days cannot be infinite - this is false.
To see why, let's consider an infinite sequence. Infinity is not a number, and it cannot be treated like one, which is the category error being committed here. An infinite sequence doesn't have an end, but what it does have is a beginning; that is, there is no largest positive integer (whole number), but there is a smallest - 1. So, to consider today the final element in an infinite sequence violates the entire premise of the exercise, since that sequence would still have a beginning - the whole point of an infinity of days in the past is that it has no beginning.
To label an infinity of days in the past properly, we need only do this: today is day zero; it is not yet complete. Yesterday is 1 day in the past, hence is day 1; the day before that is 2 days in the past, hence is day 2 and so on. This is the only way to assign a number to each day in the past without violating infinity. Doing it the other way around only works for finite sequences because it assumes a beginning, which an infinity of days in the past does not have.
It is claimed that adding one to an infinite sequence is impossible. This, too, is incorrect. To demonstrate why, let's consider Hilbert's Hotel.
Imagine a hotel with an infinite number of rooms, and a guest is staying in each of the rooms. There isn't a single room that isn't filled. By finite logic, the hotel is fully booked and cannot accommodate any more guests. But finite logic doesn't apply here. Suppose that a new guest arrives - how can we accommodate them? Simple. We can move the guest in room 1 into room 2, the guest in room 2 into room 3, and so on. Because we have an infinite number of rooms, there won't be a single guest without a room. Of course, you might argue that there is now one guest without a room, but that's wrong. Even though we added a new guest, the number of guests has not changed - it's still infinity. And the number of rooms above the number 1 is also infinity. Hence the new guest can be assigned to room 1.
Exactly as in the infinite hotel, when a new day passes, the day that used to be 1 day in the past is now 2 days in the past, the 2nd day in the past is now 3 days in the past, and so on - and spot number 1 is now free and can be assumed by the day that has just passed. Just like the hotel's guests, the number of days has not changed, and so we can still assign each one to a positive integer.
Infinity is always complete, no matter how much you add or take from it. As we said, infinity isn't a number and you don't treat it in the same way.
Let’s consider this argument from a different angle. If there were an infinite number of days before today, then today would never have arrived. But here we are! So there must have been only a finite number of days before today. In other words, even though we may not be able to see, as we look to the left, where the line begins, we know it had to begin at some point because only a finite amount of time could be passed for today to arrive. You can’t traverse an infinite number of days. Thus time must have had a beginning.
This is the crux of the matter. Yes, if you were to start at zero or any other finite number and attempt to count up to infinity, you would never get there. But, as we have already said, an infinity of days in the past has no beginning. There is no zero to count from. There is no day separated from this one by an infinite sequence of days - in other words, you can't point to any day and call it the infiniteth day in the past.
The important point to grasp is that, if there is an infinite number of days in the past, then there have always been an infinite number of days in the past. It may be counter-intuitive, but this is the decisively non-numerical nature of infinity. You can't treat an infinite sequence as you would a finite one. Again, if there was a beginning, a first day, then yes, it would be impossible, but this is the opposite of the scenario we're considering here.
If there is an infinity of days in the past, does this mean all those days have passed already? Yes, it does. But no matter which day you point to, you will always choose a point that is a finite number of days from today. Infinity is made up of finite quantities. Therefore, we can logically conclude that today did arrive.
Think of it this way. Christians imagine that they will live forever after the resurrection. Just as the last day of that eternity will never arrive because it doesn't exist, so the first day of that eternity in the past was never lived because, again, it doesn't exist.
Some may say that infinite numbers can exist, so why can’t infinite days? Because there’s a difference between an abstract infinite series and a concrete one. The one is purely theoretical, the other is actual. Mathematically, we can conceive of an infinite number of days, but actually we could never count or live an infinite number of days. You can conceive of an infinite number of mathematical points between two bookends on a shelf, but you could not fit an infinite number of books between them. That’s the difference between an abstract and a concrete. Numbers are abstract. Days are concrete. (By the way, this amplifies our answer above as to why there could not have been an infinite number of bangs in the cosmological history of the universe. An infinite number of actual events is impossible.)
It is claimed that you could never fit an infinite number of books on an infinitely long bookshelf - wrong again. You could do so given an infinite amount of time. Suppose that, during an infinite past, you placed one book on the bookshelf per day - by today, the bookshelf would be full (that is, there would be an infinite number of books on it).
This nonsense about abstract and concrete infinities has no bearing on the issue. Yes, there is a philosophical distinction to be made between a concrete thing and an abstract thing, but this matter does not determine whether or not there can be an infinite sequence of events in the past.
All of this may seem contradictory of common sense, but mathematically and philosophically, there isn't anything we've said that's wrong. It's all correct. Unfortunately for creationists, they will not be proving that an infinite sequence of events in the past is impossible.
Answers in Genesis (answersingenesis.org) is a Christian apologetics site dedicated to the kind of backwards denial of science that has made Christianity notoriously ignorant. Unlike JWs, which we talked about in another article, AiG promotes new-earth creationism.
An article on there says:
Prior to the 1700s, few believed in an old earth. The approximate 6,000-year age for the earth was challenged only rather recently, beginning in the late 18th century. These opponents of the biblical chronology essentially left God out of the picture.
Yes, we agree. We said this in our JW article.
However, the idea of millions of years really took hold in geology when men like Abraham Werner, James Hutton, William Smith, Georges Cuvier, and Charles Lyell used their interpretations of geology as the standard, rather than the Bible.
Can you blame them? The Bible isn't nearly as reliable as geology. For one thing, geology has actually taught us something!
This viewpoint is called naturalistic uniformitarianism, and it excludes any major catastrophes such as Noah’s flood.
Then we'd better strike it from the record, because nothing that opposes the Bible can be correct! - despite the fact that the Bible itself was actually wrong about some things, e.g. stating that the light of day existed before the sun did, or claiming that the earth is a circle.
Though some, such as Cuvier and Smith, believed in multiple catastrophes separated by long periods of time, the uniformitarian concept became the ruling dogma in geology.
One thing that Christians do which is actually quite incriminating is to refer to the facts of science as "dogmas" or "doctrines." What they're really saying here is that dogmas and doctrines cannot be trusted to tell the truth, which essentially destroys Christianity as it's known today. They do it, of course, to attempt to discredit science, when in fact, they're only discrediting themselves.
Science works by way of paradigms, which can be similar to dogmas, except that they are based on actual attempts to learn something rather than vain assumptions made by egotistical "prophets" and religious leaders, and they can change rather than being set in stone like the childish "commandments" of God.
Most Christians fail to realize that a global flood could rip up many of the previous rock layers and redeposit them elsewhere, destroying the previous fragile contents. This would destroy any evidence of alleged millions of years anyway.
So what you're saying is that God, while there were much simpler and less convoluted options he might have chosen, decided to pick the one method of destroying evil that would deceive future scientists. It's all rather convenient, isn't it? Almost as if God doesn't exist...
Sadly, by about 1840, even most of the Church had accepted the dogmatic claims of the secular geologists and rejected the global flood and the biblical age of the earth.
Maybe that was because they were intelligent and their skulls weren't completely filled with bone marrow. No sensible person would reject evidence in favour of an ancient book of doctrines and dogmas.
Christians who have felt compelled to accept the millions of years as fact and try to fit them into the Bible need to become aware of this evidence. It confirms that the Bible’s history is giving us the true age of the creation.
Today, secular geologists will allow some catastrophic events into their thinking as an explanation for what they see in the rocks. But uniformitarian thinking is still widespread, and secular geologists will seemingly never entertain the idea of the global, catastrophic flood of Noah’s day.
Whether there was a flood or there wasn't (which, by the way, was borrowed from other ancient Mesopotamian sources such as the Epic of Gilgamesh), that would do nothing to prove God.
One flaw in the article we've seen here is that it's incredibly boring, so let's go to another article titled, How Do We Know There Is a God?
Hey, maybe we'll find proof at last! We've been searching for long enough!
The Bible describes God as eternal (Psalm 90:2; 1 Timothy 1:17), all-powerful (Jeremiah 32:17; Colossians 1:17), infinite in understanding (Psalm 147:5; Isaiah 40:28), perfectly holy like no other (Exodus 15:11; 1 Samuel 2:2), the only God (Psalm 86:8–10), incapable of lying (Titus 1:2), Creator of the whole universe (Genesis 1:1; John 1:3), and Savior (Titus 2:13)—just to name a few attributes. How do we know such a God exists?
Short answer: you don't. It's all about faith.
The skeptic’s condemning cry often comes as, “Prove to me there is a God.” Usually the agnostic or atheist expects physical or scientific evidence for the existence of God, but when the Bible believer cannot point to a living being and say, “There is God,” the skeptic thinks he has won.
Well, we do not demand any evidence of a particular nature. We demand proof. We've already outlined on this website what it would take to prove God, and pose that outline as an open challenge to anyone who thinks they can prove him.
What people often do not realize is that even if God appeared on the earth (which He has, in the person of Jesus Christ), we did not exist in eternity past and do not know the future, so we cannot prove by any human standard that He is eternal.
We don't accept any cop-out answers like this. The Bible says that he is eternal, so if you can prove that he exists and that he inspired every single word of the Bible, then that would be good enough (it still wouldn't be proof) - we say this because we know that no one will ever accomplish the task we have set.
Our understanding is limited, so we cannot prove that God knows all. And our limited perspective renders us incapable of proving God’s standard of morality as absolute and true. Not only that, but by our own fallible standards, our “telescopes are short-sighted,” and we cannot determine if He is the only God that exists inside (or outside) the universe.
You'll have to do better than this if you want to convince anyone.
So any answer to the question, “How do we know there is a God?” that does not start with God’s own statements regarding Himself is self-refuting, inconsistent, and limited by human frailty because a finite, limited man can never ultimately prove the existence of an eternal, all-powerful, all-knowing God. Only an eternal, all-powerful, all-knowing being could prove the existence of the God described in the Bible.
Nonsense. This is a typical cop-out. They will hype themselves up, but when the moment comes to prove everything they've been telling you, they will either try to deliver but fail miserably or give some ludicrous excuse.
A critic will readily cry foul and declare, “But you are saying that only God can prove God!” It is true that only God can tell us He has always existed in the past and that He knows everything. Even if we could physically see God (Exodus 24:11), at some point we have to believe He is exactly who He claims to be in His Word, including His unlimited power and infinite knowledge.
Wrong. You don't have to believe anything. You are in control of your beliefs. Stop giving excuses.
But this does not mean our faith is blind and cannot be confirmed in some way.
If the only reason why you believe something is that someone said it, then that IS blind faith and you need to stop being cowards and simply admit it. We - and many others - would have much more respect for evangelicals and apologists if they just told the truth about their faith rather than dressing it up in pseudoscience and pseudophilosophy.
It also does not mean that faith in the Bible contradicts operational science.
The Bible itself contradicts "operational science."
God has given us confirming evidences so that our faith is not a blind faith but a rational faith.
If it's rational, you don't need faith. The bottom line is, if there is a god, you can't assume for a second that you know what he's like just because you read a book that claims to be written by him.
When we start from the Bible, we can see evidences that powerfully confirm what God has already said. We don’t believe God exists and is true only because He says so.
Have you ever heard of The Matrix? It's a 1999 film in which machines directed by AI farm humans for electricity and, in order to keep them pacified, also simulate a world in which they do not rule - it's a false reality created to pacify the masses of humans. The Matrix feels and acts exactly like reality (except in those cases where someone powerful like Neo is interfering).
In other words, all the signs and evidence might point to God, but that doesn't mean there's a God. There's a difference between evidence and proof. Children's books attempt to illustrate the concept that appearances can be deceptive, since it's an easy mistake for a child to make - to believe that everything is as it appears, that everything must be that way if it looks that way. In philosophy, we make an important distinction between phenomena (things as they appear) and noumena (things as they are in themselves). There have been many criminal cases in which people who were outed as serial killers, rapists and such were claimed by the people who knew them to have been completely ordinary-seeming people i.e., no one would have guessed that they would be violent, psychopathic criminals.
All of this is completely disregarded by Christians, who assume that, because something looks a certain way, it must absolutely be that way. The same mistake is sometimes made by scientists.
Unfortunately, skeptics seldom take time to confirm the detailed fulfilled prophecies of the Bible.
And what evidence do we have that they were fulfilled? Often, this evidence comes from the Bible itself.
We're just waiting for the day when all Christian sects unite under one banner to destroy science, which has caused them so many problems since it began. Of course, they never actually will because the Bible is such a broad, and in places, ambiguous text that they would never get along for five minutes. The average Christian sect has more in common with science than it does with another Christian sect.
Given our inability to prove the eternal God by our own human standard, ignoring these is a serious error indeed.
If you can't prove God, then you don't "know" that there is a God, do you? Such a waste of kilobytes.
For example, God Himself identifies accurate foretelling of the future to be what separates Him from all false ideas of God (Isaiah 41:21–23, 44:6–8, 45:1–6, and 46:8–11).
Yes, but when God himself sets the standard, it becomes quite a moot point, doesn't it? Not that God himself actually said that; it was written by one of his "prophets" - all of whom are invariably conmen seeking followers.
Also, Acts 1:3 says the post-Resurrection appearances of Jesus—to as many as 500 people at a time—are “many infallible proofs” that Jesus was exactly who He claimed to be: the Son of God.
We were under the impression that Jesus was largely furtive after his resurrection - such that Mary Magdalene, who was well-acquainted with him, mistook him for the gardener upon seeing him after his resurrection (so says John), and Luke states that he met two disciples on the way to Emmaus, and their "eyes were holden that they should not know him." (whatever that means!)
Matthew, Mark, John, Paul, and Peter all wrote that they saw Jesus risen from the dead.
They would, wouldn't they? It was a validation of what they believed in, and, more suspiciously, an implicit validation of their own teachings.
None of these people have confirmed identities. Christians assume that the Gospel of John was written by John, the Gospel of Luke by Luke and so on, when in fact, the situation is much more complicated than that, and none of the Gospel writers have been verified to exist.
Many people believe the written testimony concerning the events surrounding the American Revolutionary War without a single photo or video, yet they fail to believe the written testimony of the 40 authors whose works we collectively call “the Bible.”
Because the American Revolutionary War is an altogether more believable event.
Scripture makes it clear that God’s eternal power and divine nature are clearly seen in the creation of the world around us (Romans 1:20; Psalm 19:1; 97:6; Job 12:7–10).
Let's make one thing clear. General Revelation is not proof of God.
God is saying that the design and complexity of nature makes it obvious that He exists.
No he's not. That's a modern assumption you've drawn from his word.
But hard hearts often refuse to accept any evidence that the Bible is true, for it makes them accountable to a Creator God.
Need we mention that, in the book of Exodus, God admits that it was he who was hardening Pharaoh's heart deliberately so that he would not let the Jews go. Yes, he seems like the very reasonable God you Christians depict him as.
While we may not be able to scientifically prove the eternal, almighty God exists, we can see how the Bible is consistent with operational science.
What good does that do?
Skeptic: "So why do you believe in God?"
Christian: "Because the Bible is consistent with operational science."
Skeptic: *frowns and walks away slowly*
He missed the sign saying, "WARNING: this boulangerie contains worrying amounts of Christian nonsense."
With the account of the Flood, we would expect to find billions of dead things buried in rock layers laid down by water all over the earth, which is exactly what we do find!
And yet, funnily enough, it's also exactly what we would find given a very long period of time.
We also see the universe is logical and orderly, and our Creator, as described in the Bible, is the God of order and logic. Ultimately, love, reason, knowledge, logic, and morality are all impossible to explain in a purely materialistic universe that exists by chance.
We agree (with the second sentence), but the universe does not consist of love and morality. It doesn't contain those at all. It's an objective world and cannot contain subjective things. A creation reflects its creator, and if you're going to argue that the universe is based on things such as love and morality, just don't embarrass yourselves.
Over and over again the statements in the Bible can be confirmed as true (especially prophecies that only God could have known) and consistent with science, showing it can be trusted on all accounts, including the existence of God. Biblical faith in God is rational, not blind.
If you're asking for trust when it comes to matters of ultimate truth, you're an idiot. Is God an idiot? He sounds like one.
The trustworthiness or otherwise of the Bible has absolutely nothing to do with truth. You might have faith in someone, but that doesn't mean you believe everything they say. Why should it be any different with God?
Therefore none of us have any excuses for rejecting the knowledge of God.
On an unrelated note, who feels like jumping into an active volcano today?
But if that is not enough, we know from Scripture that everyone, including atheists, ultimately knows there is a God (Romans 1:19; 2:14–15), so we are literally “without excuse” (Romans 1:20).
This did make us laugh.
Try telling that to the people of North Sentinel Island in the Bay of Bengal.
We make the opposite assertion: all Christians ultimately know that their religion is nonsense. That's why they are so vehement that he does exist - they can't bring themselves to accept that which is buried deeply within them. They can offer you no proof of his existence, yet they put such effort into convincing you that he does. Apologists ultimately don't reflect the spirit of the Christian religion, which is to have faith and believe, whether you have good reason to or not, otherwise you will be punished.
But the statement, “Prove to me there is a God,” continues to be the rallying cry no matter what argument or confirming evidences of God’s Word are given.
It's a rather reasonable request, don't you think? Regardless of how many "confirming evidences" you have, you won't convince any intelligent, critical person until you prove it.
However, God did show up on the earth at one time in the person of Jesus Christ, but the skeptics crucified Him (1 Corinthians 2:8).
The ancient Romans had many gods of their own; they were anything but skeptical. And, as we all know, they would later accept Christianity as their official religion.
He rose from the dead, but they tried to cover it up (Matthew 28:12–15).
The Bible verses cited were written by someone who was on Jesus' side. To anyone with half a brain, it stands to reason that they were the deceptive ones, not the Romans.
He performed amazing miracles, but unbelievers tried to destroy the evidence (John 12:10–11). The same continues today (Ecclesiastes 1:9–11).
Again, a convenient excuse. You know, it's a rather frightening notion that some evangelicals act as jurors, if this is the nonsense they believe in their own lives. No doubt they would take everything on trust!
In the end, as the atheist or agnostic rejects the truth in unrighteousness as though he has deaf ears, he will deny the clear evidence for God and eventually invent “rescuing devices” (Romans 1:18–21)—like the idea that aliens planted our DNA on earth.
If anyone's famous for using rescue devices, it's Christians. When the issue of dead babies came up, theologians suddenly introduced the concept of the "age of accountability."
For those who don't know, Christianity, via the doctrine of original sin, claims that no human alive today is free of sin because we all inherit a sinful nature from Adam and Eve (and hence we all have a need to accept Jesus). But when some began to ask what happened to babies who died without ever having the opportunity to accept Jesus as their Saviour, and hence gain exemption from the obligatory punishment of hell, theologians invented the "age of accountability," which was the minimum age at which a person could be considered responsible for their own sins. Needless to say, this concept is found nowhere in the Bible and was only invented as a "rescue device" because even they knew that to send a baby to hell because it died while being a baby is absurd and cruel. But again, the age of accountability is found nowhere in the Bible.
Sounds like they should have just said, "I don't know," rather than putting words in God's mouth, but the point of the Christian religion is that it must always sound authoritative. That's partly where its power comes from - its appearance of authority and intelligence.
No matter what argument or proof for God is given, this is how the atheist will continue to deny the truth.
Has it ever occurred to you that there are atheists waiting to believe in Christianity? All they want is proof, and Christians have never delivered. We ourselves have searched for a long time for any proof of Christianity (we are historical enemies of Christianity, but we maintain that if it was proved to us, we would convert to it immediately), to no avail.
Unless he repents of his unbelief and sin, the atheist will refuse (2 Peter 3:5) to accept the eternal God’s eyewitness testimony concerning Himself and His creative work in the Word of God.
If there's one thing you can be sure Christians are clueless about, it's sin.
Are you still waiting for someone to prove to you there is a God? We encourage you to go back and read the verses in this article, in which God has already revealed Himself to you in writing before you were born, and also consider the many confirming evidences.
You haven't presented a single argument we haven't already heard.
Through the truth of God’s Word, only Jesus Christ can save the blinded and unrepentant skeptic who refuses to accept the Bible, which holds him accountable to God as a sinner in need of salvation.
Jesus was a fraud and a liar, and he is also now dead. No amount of praying or preaching is going to change that.
We praise and thank God for His free gift of salvation through His Son and urge unbelievers to submit to their Creator and Savior.
Well, we may urge some people to stop being idiots - it's probably not going to happen, is it?
Unlike Christians, we encourage you to prove us wrong. There's nothing better than learning new things. If you can shut us up by proving Christianity, then go ahead. We are extremely hostile to the message of Christianity - that of submitting to an alien God who makes demands of us from his sanctimonious podium - but we cannot deny proof. If you can prove Christianity, go ahead.
Today, we shall be getting drunk in the name of showing Christianity up as utter nonsense. We will show that even drunk people can refute this ridiculous religion.
So, in this article we will be challenging Christianity. Such an easy task surely requires a handicap, in order to make it more difficult, and what better way to impair one's cognitive processes?
AiG's "Apologetics Introduction" says:
In a culture where God’s Word is constantly under attack from those both inside and outside of the church, we must always be ready to give a defense for the hope that is in us.
In a religion that's supposedly self-evident, one would think that apologetics would be a redundant occupation. Obviously, Christianity isn't as self-evident as its proponents claim.
Meanwhile, political debate rages over more important issues like ... you know ... how to save lives and stuff. God, those politicians - they don't understand the importance of God's word, do they? They all support sinful policies that are drawing us away from God (which is one huge conspiracy, by the way)!
God’s Word is constantly under attack in our culture, and the assaults come from all directions.
No, the assaults come primarily from one direction - that of atheism. Isn't it astonishing that, in the progressive West, Christians still somehow make themselves seem persecuted? They're not being thrown in jail or rounded up and killed, yet they seem to think this is as bad as being criticised!
We would expect nothing less from those who deny the existence of God—the Author of Scripture—but these are not the only people involved in the onslaught.
Would someone get these people a dictionary of analogies? They seem to be scraping the very bottom of the barrel of the most unimaginative, tawdry, overused, trite, uninspiring analogies you can imagine.
Numerous Bible college and seminary professors, pastors, and other church leaders seem all too willing to undermine, perhaps unwittingly, the authority of Scripture, especially when it comes to the first eleven chapters of Genesis.
Those goddamn "numerous Bible college and seminary professors, pastors, and other church leaders" - they probably haven't even read the Bible! Well if they're so uninformed and so wrong, they're not going to listen to your apologetics, are they? No, apologetics is aimed at a particular section of the population; agnostics who might be convinced by its arguments - and at other Christians because for some reason, these people can't stand anyone believing differently from them. If you give it time, any content will find its intended audience. Scam emails don't exist for the smart people in the room; they're aimed at the gullible.
Far too many Christians lack the necessary discipline and discernment and do not take advantage of the tools required to defend the faith against “the fiery darts of the wicked one” (Ephesians 6:16).
But they're so sexy, don't you think? (The darts, not the Christians.) Not like God, that stuffy old granddad.
It's our opinion that far too many Christians don't use their critical faculties and instead swallow anything that's told to them, provided that it comes with the "authority of Scripture," hook, line and sinker, without doing any further research or investigation, all because their parents believed it and they were indoctrinated as a child, which is really quite despicable, given that parents are in a position of extreme trust when it comes to children. But, like Santa Claus, everyone eventually disbelieves.
With each passing day, the church becomes less and less effective in reaching the lost. There are several reasons for this serious problem, but a major cause is that many Christians cannot defend their beliefs.
So what you're saying is that the Church isn't shoving its beliefs down everyone's throats? This ad-laden world is just the world Christians have been waiting for. What is apologetics if not an advertising branch for a religion? Christianity has always been a commercial religion - except, it's not your money they're after, it's your entire life, mind and soul.
Consequently, Christianity is often viewed as a “blind faith” and its followers as uninformed and gullible people.
AiG is one of the more knowledgeable apologetics sites we've encountered, but even that website offers only excuses and scriptural citations the moment you ask for proof of God's existence! Can you not prove your own religion? Then maybe you should stop playing fucking Socrates and just admit that you have blind faith!
You know, it'll lift all that weight off your shoulders. Just confess. Just give the truth unto the world, you'll feel a lot better for it. Dispense with all the lies and pretention - it will do you a world of good. There should be Christian confession booths set up everywhere, except that you don't use them to confess sins; you use them to confess doubt and blind faith. Don't you think it's healthy to admit every once in a while that you don't have the answer to everything? It would certainly help you in the way of humility.
But Christianity is not a “blind faith.”
Isn't it? Where's your proof of God? Oh, what's that - you don't have one? Well then, you've found the domain of blind faith!!!!
Our faith is based on the Creator and His revealed, inerrant, and infallible Word.
And your faith in that word is based upon ... fucking nothing!
Hebrews 11:1 explains the biblical view of faith as “the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Wait a minute! How can the definition of faith include the word “evidence”? The answer is that Christianity is rooted in history—real people and events of the past. While evidence does not prove the Bible to be true, we can show that the evidence supports Scripture.
If you look at other translations, it actually says, "the conviction of things not seen."
It doesn't matter if the evidence supports scripture! How the world looks or appears is not evidence for or against anything - didn't anyone tell you that appearances can be deceptive?
The evidence is perfectly consistent with the Bible when it is properly interpreted by one whose starting point is based on the God’s Word rather than man’s opinion.
a) We could make the evidence consistent with two or three gods, and therefore, the evidence being consistent with the Bible, which claims there is only one god, means nothing, and b) that's your problem - if you start out believing in God's word, your search for the truth is biased from the start!
If your starting point is based on God's word, you're not likely to reach any other conclusion, are you? That's the problem! It may seem like a novel concept, but "man's opinion" (and woman's opinion, and the opinion of everyone in between) is the only thing we have! Get with the program! Stop living in the dark ages! Unless your mind is piloted by God, your human opinion is all you have, which includes your assumption that the Bible is inerrant and true. You may convince yourself that your faith is based on God, but it's always based on your own opinion. Or is the Holy Spirit so deep inside you that he controls your brain?
In 1 Peter 3:15, the reasoned defense is directly connected to the hope that we have as Christians. That hope is found in Christ alone and described to us in the Bible.
You have no concept of religion. YOU are the damned! - damned to ignorance.
If we are not intentionally connecting our defense and reasoning to the authority of the Bible so that we may affirm our hope in Christ, we are not doing biblical apologetics.
That's every egotist's dream - that you connect your every thought to them. Who, other than a narcissist, would want that?
To make sure that we are connecting our intellectual arguments to Christ takes a special effort, and it is essential to keep our efforts grounded in Him.
"Intellectual?" There's nothing intellectual about Christianity - it's all absurd hogwash and pernicious codswallop. Any intellect you find in Christianity has been added afterwards. Did Jesus give philosophical lectures? Did he teach people about DNA? Did he benefit the world by transforming humanity into an intellectual species? No; what he did was spend a few months healing a few people in the ancient Middle East and then died on a cross because it was supposedly foretold that he would do so. It's hardly what you would expect of the coming of the god of truth, is it?
If we excise the center of this verse by simply saying “always be ready to give a defense,” we run the risk of focusing in vain on academic arguments rather than Christ.
Speaking of vanity, did you know that God not only wants worship, he wants it 24/7? The book of Revelation desscribes saints who praise God day and night! Any non-narcissistic god would reject such a scheme, but Yahweh embraces it with open arms.
Another important component to consider in this verse is the manner in which we should approach apologetics—with meekness and fear.
- they said in a way that was neither meek nor fearful.
Too often, Christian apologists come across as boisterous, uncharitable, and prideful in their presentations.
Yes - and you're among them.
It's very easy for you to judge other Christians, but that brings you too close to dangerous pride! You don't want to disappoint the old Hebrew god of storms and chaos now, do you?
We should not be afraid to proclaim the truth with boldness, but we do it under control and with an attitude of a messenger delivering truth from the King.
It's your loss. You're just spineless people, but you could be so much more. It's a tragedy that you choose to be so submissive to easily corruptible authorities (i.e., "prophets").
Secondly, we perform this function with reverential fear knowing that it is only by the grace of God that we have been granted the status of ambassador for the King, and that without the Holy Spirit’s convicting work, our efforts cannot succeed in bringing anyone to salvation.
So, what you're saying is that you are utterly useless to God, and that, when someone is converted, it's not because of your preaching, it's actually because of the Holy Spirit. How highly your god thinks of you! One would almost mistake you for mere instruments and not assume you were actual, living beings!
We must also be careful not to misrepresent God by misapplying the truth He has revealed to us.
Why does God need representatives?
As a result of these instructions and godly examples, several of our experts have teamed up to produce a series of books designed with the specific goal of providing believers with the answers to many of the current arguments being used against the Christian faith.
One can only assume, based on the material on the AiG website, that these are experts in moonshine and superstition.
Our popular New Answers Book series covers many of the most-asked questions about creation, evolution, and the Bible.
And don't forget, we have a store in case you're feeling generous! Who says you can't be on God's imaginary payroll and sell things at the same time? Nevermind what Jesus said about not worrying over money!
This new series on apologetics will address dozens of the contemporary attacks on the Word of God that come from critics, skeptics, false religions, and even from within the church.
We can hardly wait.
The following is from the next article in the series:
Several years ago, while I was pastoring a church and teaching apologetics at a Christian high school in Wisconsin, I learned an invaluable lesson during a conversation with two Jehovah’s Witnesses at my door. Since I had studied their teachings, I felt well prepared to refute their claims.
Oh, it's a crossover! Who knew that the AiG Extended Universe could feature JWs?! How excited are you? This is like Batman Versus Superman, only with more nail-biting action!
They wanted to start by talking about how much we have in common, but I got right to the point: I believe that Jesus Christ is the eternal Son of God, the second person of the Trinity, and His sacrificial death on the Cross was sufficient to pay for all of my sins. They, in contrast, believe Jesus is a created being whose death on a stake was not sufficient to pay for our sins.
Yes, they believe that Jesus was Michael the Archangel because both figures are described as leaders of armies! Get your head round that!
I refuted their attempts to show that Jesus isn’t God by showing them passages where Jesus explicitly claims to be God (for example, John 8:58; 10:30). I remained gentle and respectful because I sincerely wanted them to know the Savior.
John 8:58 says, "Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.”"
This verse means nothing. You wouldn't think that godly and truthful Jesus would speak in such ridiculous riddles, would you? If he wanted to say he was God, there's a very simple sentence he could have used: "I am God." He never said this.
If we look at this verse in context, we can see what Jesus is getting at.
8:54 Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God:
8:55 Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying.
8:56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad.
8:57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham?
8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
"I am" is a reference to the Hebrew "ehyeh asher ehyeh," which means "I am that I am." It's the phrase God said to Moses when Moses asked him what his name was. All Jesus is saying here is that he knows what God knows - specifically, that Abraham "rejoiced." He's saying that God existed before Abraham did, and he knows everything about Abraham.
John 10:30 says, "I and the Father are one." This may seem to support the Trinity, but when you actually examine the context for the verse, it is a much more credible interpretation that Jesus is referring to how he is in unity with his father, God.
10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.
10:29 My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand.
10:30 I and my Father are one.
10:31 Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him.
10:32 Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shewed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me?
Jesus is clearly describing himself as a conduit for God's "works." He is distinguishing himself from his father, which means that he cannot be indistinguishable from God.
Jesus made a distinction between himself and God, which means any good Christian should too. He says, "I and my Father are one" to compare his role as a shepherd to God's. In other words, both he and God act as mankind's shepherds - they act together, with one purpose. He wasn't saying that he and God are the same person.
When your enemies are telling you how your own beliefs work, you know you've made several catastrophic mistakes! Why are Christians so hung up on this ridiculous, simplistic literalism?
Following this encounter, I was fired up because I had won a resounding victory and successfully defended the Christian faith. But did I really win?
Not long afterward, it struck me that those Jehovah’s Witnesses were sincere, devout, hard-working people made in God’s image—and on their way to a Christless eternity. These poor souls had been deceived by the “god of this age” (2 Corinthians 4:4).
We're familiar with the teachings of JWs, and we're certain that they would say exactly the same things about you. If you understood what it means to be a JW, you would never have assumed that you had achieved anything with them.
They were trying to please God through their works; yet they missed the gospel. I shudder to think about their impending punishment, not just for believing a false gospel but for misleading others.
And yet they would say the same things about you, not having meant to do anything wrong, but just having happened to be sucked into the wrong group, many of them having happened to be born into the religion. And you say your God is the God of justice? We haven't made note of this before, but most JWs are victims. They are not innately stupid or stubborn people (despite the various mocking insults we frequently direct at Christians) - they are victims of a pernicious ideology who mean well. And God wants to punish them because they happened to be born into the wrong sect (which frequently misinterprets the Bible and even has its own translation of the Bible)?
If you aren't a JW, you'll likely be shocked by JW propaganda videos - you'll think to yourself, "how can these people not realise that they're being manipulated?" But some cults are just so powerfully affecting. But in the mainstream Christian view, these people are to be punished for not adhering to the correct version of Christianity! Who needs atheists when Christians are so often at each other's necks, passive aggressively chewing away at each other, telling each other they're damned?
An ache for lost souls bound for destruction should drive our apologetics. We can shoot down arguments and offer reasons for our beliefs, but if we don’t lead them to the soul-saving gospel of Jesus Christ, we have not successfully defended the faith.
You appear to be confused - you're talking about recruitment, not defence.
Salvation does not depend on our arguments, but the Holy Spirit can use our heart-felt words to bring a person to faith in Christ (1 Corinthians 3:6). We must be gentle as we humbly and lovingly correct their errors (1 Corinthians 13:1–3), all the while praying that God may grant them repentance (2 Timothy 2:24–26).
Even if everyone attempts to do good, the world will not necessarily become a good place. That's what Christianity ought to have taught us all. It's the prime example of misdirected and manipulated altruism. Christianity has created a world of fear, not a world of bold, autonomous people who are in charge of their own lives. Through false morality, it has corrupted people en masse.
Christianity says that anything God views as good is automatically good and anything God views as evil is automatically evil. This kind of morality pays no attention to the actual impact that any given action has on others, which is what ethics concerns itself with. It's a vain and profane morality intent upon glorifying Yahweh, the narcissistic, jealous god of storms.
Those who have read the book of Genesis may have realised that the book contains two creation stories, not just one. In Genesis 1, creation seems to be finished, but in Genesis 2, creation is reiterated, with differing details. Genesis 1 is what describes the famous six creative days, but Genesis 2 goes on to reiterate (in order): 1) the creation of man, 2) the creation of the garden in Eden, and 3) the creation of plants.
Despite the fact that two of these things were already created in Genesis 1 (in a different order), they are created in Genesis 2. So, Genesis 1 describes the six days of creation (with the creation of man occurring on the sixth day and plants on the third), while Genesis 2 describes the creation of the garden of Eden and Adam and Eve, and it describes these after it describes the creation of plants.
How are these stories to be reconciled? AiG, as always, has the answer! A concerned wife wrote in with her husband's concerns about the discrepancies between Genesis 1 and 2, and this is what the apologists had to say:
This is a common argument used against the traditional understanding of Genesis (i.e., God created everything in six normal-length days approximately 6,000 years ago). This argument attempts to show that inconsistencies exist between the first two chapters in the Bible. Critics and skeptics use it in their efforts to show the Bible cannot be trusted. Some Christians who believe in billions of years use it in trying to show that these chapters should not be understood in their plain sense. However, the argument is based on a misunderstanding of Genesis 2.
Obviously. Let's see what this misunderstanding entails - and we have a feeling we know what the argument is already.
Genesis 1:1–2:3 provides us with a chronological account of what God did on each of the days during Creation Week. Genesis 2:4–25 zooms in on Day Six and shows some of the events of that day. Let’s take a look at what happened on Day Six, according to Genesis 2, and we’ll see there is no discrepancy here.
Adam is created (Genesis 2:7)
Garden of Eden created (Genesis 2:8–9)
Description of river system in Eden (Genesis 2:10–14)
Adam put in Garden and given instructions (Genesis 2:15–17)
Adam names some of the kinds of animals (Genesis 2:18–20)
God creates Eve (Genesis 2:21–22)
Description of Adam, Eve, and marriage (Genesis 2:23–25)
The particular issue that people have with Genesis 2 is that the order of the creation of man, animals, and trees seems to be contrary to the order stated in Genesis 1.
Genesis 2:7 describes the creation of man.
And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. (Genesis 2:7)
Following the creation of man, Genesis 2:9 mentions that God created trees, including the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
And out of the ground the Lord God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. (Genesis 2:9)
Then Genesis 2:19 mentions the creation of certain land animals.
Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the air, and brought them to Adam to see what he would call them. (Genesis 2:19)
At first glance this seems to be a contradiction because Genesis 1 has the animals and trees created prior to the creation of man; however, both issues can be resolved by an understanding of the original language and the translation process. The Hebrew word for formed in both passages is yatsar. The New King James Version (quoted above) translates the verb in its perfect form.
However, this Hebrew word may also be translated in its pluperfect form. In this case, it would read that God “had formed” these creatures, as some other translations have it (e.g. ESV, NIV, etc.) For example, Genesis 2:19 in the NIV states:
Now the Lord God had formed out of the ground all the beasts of the field and all the birds of the air. He brought them to the man to see what he would name them.
This rendering eliminates any problem with the chronology because it refers to what God had already done earlier in Creation Week. This would mean that the plants (Genesis 2:9) and the animals (Genesis 2:19) had already been formed by God earlier in Creation Week. William Tyndale was the first to translate an English Bible directly from the original languages, and He also translated the verb in its pluperfect form.
Got the reverential capitalisation (where the pronoun "he" as it refers to God is capitalised) a bit confused. This last sentence seems to imply that William Tyndale is God! We're not ones to obsess over mistakes, but there is an irony to this particular mistake.
Well, this is the whole problem with translation. Of course, this is a problem God himself created by confusing the languages of the people of Babel so that they could not complete their tower, even though there were much simpler solutions to the problem (God hardened the heart of Pharaoh in Exodus; if he can influence people's minds like that, why didn't he simply de-motivate the people from constructing their tower?). Given that languages are extremely messy, and not every expression of every language is directly translatable into every other and words can carry subtle meanings that might be missed (which is part of the reason why Google Translate is such a travesty when used to translate samples of text larger than a few words), why would God choose this method of stopping the construction of the tower of Babel? He obviously knew what problems this would create in the translation of his holy text. In essence, unless you understand the original languages the Bible was written in, you're not reading the inerrant word of God, but some errant spin-off.
It's obvious to anyone who's paying attention that the tower of Babel story was created to explain why there are different languages on earth, rather than to refer to any actual, historical event - because no rational god would choose such a convoluted solution when other, easier, simpler solutions existed!
If a word is the same in its past and pluperfect (the past of the past) tenses in one language, you can't translate it into English, a language that uses different forms for these tenses, unless you know all about the context and the writer's intentions. And the result of this confusion has supposedly been that many have misinterpreted God's supposedly inerrant word! If God's word is inerrant in its original form, it certainly isn't in its translated form, especially given that it's always translated by fallible humans. In many cases, in order to provide an accurate translation of a phrase or sentence, you must include sidenotes which inform the reader how to interpret the text (for example, in French, the phrase "bien fait," literally translated, means "well done," but it doesn't mean the same thing as it does most of the time in English - a more accurate translation would be, "it serves you right." Translations aren't black-and-white, and sometimes, a phrase that takes up a single sentence in one language requires an entire paragraph in another, so, really, why bother translating the Bible at all given that it leads to so many misinterpretations?).
So, God can't really complain if people misinterpret his text, can he? He's the one who created the problem in the first place, and he did so wilfully.
"He has claimed to be a believer for 10 years, but now believes that man has mucked up the Word of God and that the Bible is not completely accurate and has flaws. Could you help me?"
This seems to stem from a misunderstanding of the doctrine of biblical inerrancy, which is clearly spelled out in our statement of faith.
... which states that the Bible is inerrant in its original form, yet the AiG website provides translations (i.e., errant forms) of the Bible for English readers, which defeats the whole purpose of the doctrine, don't you think? Shouldn't all Christians know Biblical Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek? And if they don't (which is true for the vast majority of them), what does that mean for their faith and adherence to God's word? Won't they be sent to hell for the same reason that JWs supposedly will - simply because they failed to interpret the Bible in the correct way?
It is important to notice that inerrancy only applies to the original autographs (manuscripts). It does not extend to every copy and translation. As a result of this misunderstanding, people have sometimes come across an error in one of the translations and mistakenly assumed that the Bible must contain errors. In truth, the error was made by either a translation committee or a scribe responsible for copying the manuscript.
Which, again, is a problem GOD HIMSELF created!!
To automatically assume that this is a contradiction portrays the author of Genesis in a pretty dim light.
You portray God in a pretty dim light, so we're not feeling too sorry about that. Besides, the Bible is commonly thought by scholars to be a collation of texts from several different sources, meaning that Genesis didn't have a single author, as you simplistically assume.
Was he so inept that he couldn’t keep from contradicting himself in the first two chapters or were these chapters written with two different focuses?
Was God so inept that he couldn't think of a different solution to the problem of the tower of Babel except confusing the languages of the people working on it? He couldn't just, you know, drive them insane or create a massive gust of wind to destroy the tower or something? And while he was flooding the earth, he couldn't have just protected Noah and his family and all the animals from the waters or brought them all up into heaven with him? He couldn't have just made all the evil people on earth drop dead? You're not telling us that God doesn't have the ability to do any of those things. When he wanted to destroy the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, he made fire and brimstone fall from the sky, but he couldn't just have sent his angel of death to kill every evil person within the two cities, or better yet, just made them all drop dead in an instant?
Rather than immediately assuming that the writer could not get his facts straight in the first two chapters, one should dig a little deeper (as you have done by asking us) to see if there is a better explanation.
Which is exactly what you seem unable to do in the case of God as we have described above.
While man and the devil often do attempt to muck up God’s Word, we can have confidence that God’s Word is true and accurate from the very beginning.
But not in any version except the original, apparently!
You blame the Devil for trying to "muck up" God's word, but you're doing a pretty good job of that yourselves. The verses cited to support the Trinity were, after all, quite weak and there is absolutely no context to indicate that they support the Trinity. Good job, guys!
So, what have we all learned today? We've learned that God is a moron, AiG is completely idiotic, and Christianity is so easy to refute that any drunkard can do it given the rather masochistic desire to do so.
If you're a Christian and you've made it this far, we're impressed. Christians usually ignore anything that rejects their beliefs so that they may maintain a steadfast faith and avoid temptation from sin. Perhaps you are doubting your faith, or perhaps you did not believe a word we said. Either way, we wish you a good life (and ironically, we have just proven ourselves to be better Christians than certain fanatical, evangelical Christian sects, and also God himself, who sees fit to condemn anyone who disagrees with him to eternal punishment like the angry individual he's shown himself to be in his own word).
But unlike God, we won't condemn you for being who you are, no matter who you are. God is judgemental because he has no understanding of humanity. We do not deny it; we affirm it in all its aspects. That's what differentiates us from the condemners of sin (most of whom have never deliberately sinned to any meaningful extent in their lives).
In this section, we're going to read all the verses in the Bible that are feminist or respectful to women! So enjoy:
And that's it! Hope you enjoyed.
If you're a Christian, salvation for you is a simple matter. You have to trust Jesus, accept him as your saviour, and repent of your sins.
But what does this mean? Let's hear it from a Christian writer.
The Bible records a powerful statement Jesus made to His doubtful disciple, Thomas, after His resurrection: “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed” (John 20:29).
I believe this principle is true to anyone: We are blessed as we live by faith in God. Among the many blessings, peace (John 16:33) and satisfaction (Proverbs 19:23) are promised to those who trust in Him.
What makes God or Jesus worthy of your trust specifically? What have they said to you? Do you know them?
Look at it from a common sense perspective. If someone tells you about something unbelievable that supposedly happened, and promises that you'll feel good if you believe it, do you always believe? The line must be drawn somewhere, but why must it be drawn where Christians draw it? In other words, why is the story of Jesus accepted while other unbelievable stories aren't?
If someone says you're blessed for believing something you haven't seen, you can be certain they're trying to manipulate you. After all, if God wanted critical, freethinking people for followers, he wouldn't demand your belief in an event you haven't witnessed. So why does God want the faithful? Why must faith, of all concepts, be the one that redeems humanity?
Christians say, "Jesus died for your sins," but why was a sacrifice required? Some claim that God was compelled by justice to punish someone for humanity's sins, and Jesus selflessly took the punishment instead, but this is nonsense. It's nonsense because 1) Jesus didn't go to hell for all eternity - he died for three days and then was resurrected, so his supposed punishment isn't even equal to that of one human, let alone billions of humans, and 2) punishing an innocent person for the crimes of others, even if he's willing, isn't justice - it's a SUBVERSION of justice. Imagine that courts allowed the friends and family members of guilty people to serve prison sentences and even die instead! You wouldn't point at the TV and say, "What a selfless sacrifice! I hope that criminal repents!" You would be protesting in the street.
So the question remains: why did Jesus have to sacrifice himself? It seems like a rather convoluted plan, don't you think? Surely the Creator of the universe could contrive a simpler solution.
Humanly, believing something we do not see is a risky, unnatural job that takes us out of our comfort zones, but, here, Jesus teaches us a spiritual truth that brings us to a supernatural way of living.
Sure, but that doesn't make it any less silly or, as it's put here, "risky." Every inch you give to Jesus also gives the same length to every other prophet in history. You can justify any prophet by saying this! We could tell you anything in the name of "teaching you a spiritual truth," and indeed, so could anyone else.
Trusting in Jesus is not blind faith. Paul says, “Faith comes by hearing the word of God” (Romans 10:17). Jesus Christ is the eternal Word of God (John 1:1) — we trust in Him as we hear the gospel of Christ, which is the power of God to save everyone who believes (Romans 1:16). On this solid rock, we stand and shall not be moved (Psalm 62:6-7).
"It's not blind faith" - it's quickly becoming a mantra, isn't it? Are you convinced yet?
None of this makes any sense. Faith comes by hearing Jesus, who is the word of God, and we're supposed to trust in Jesus. What? Sometimes, Christianity is truly baffling. Really, how can it be anything else? It's the most bizarre religion on the planet.
The foundation of our faith in Jesus is built upon the gospel’s proclamation on the deity of Christ as well as His death, burial, and resurrection (Romans 10:9). Jesus Christ is the only way, the truth, and the life through whom humans can come to God and have a personal relationship with Him (John 14:6).
So, essentially, the foundation of your faith in Jesus is that the Gospels say he's God? Rock solid. How can anyone possibly argue against that? Take that, atheists! Where do we sign up?
So, what does it mean to trust in Jesus? There are at least three aspects we can learn from the Bible.
1. Commit Our Ways to Him (His will)
Trusting in Jesus means surrendering our lives to Him. It means to trust in Him wholeheartedly even when we cannot understand and always rely upon His guidance (Proverbs 3:5-6).
Essentially, do what this guy you have never seen or met says because these books say he's God. Give your life over to this stranger and just convince yourself that you "know" him.
It's astounding how little Christians understand about Jesus, and yet how certain they are that they know what kind of man he was. If you're paying attention when you read the Bible, you know Jesus was an extremely sly character indeed. He rarely gave straight answers to anyone and frequently spoke in parables - he can't have had much confidence in the intellect of his followers if he spoke in such simplistic ways. Anything about Jesus' family is brushed aside, to the point where we know next to nothing about it. The Gospels only make up a fraction of Jesus' actual life - we are told nothing about him as a young person, nothing about his relationships with those around him. Why?
These are questions that, traditionally, no one's allowed to ask. If you're a Christian, you're never supposed to question your religion, and if you're not, you're just being offensive to people of different backgrounds and beliefs to you. Why all the lack of discussion? Silence is something you ought to find concerning, not comforting. When a text is designated as holy, you can be absolutely sure that there are people who don't want you to question it. Why not? What are they hiding? What are the motivations of such people? - it's clearly not to make people smarter; smart people encourage discussion.
Just as Jesus prays not for His will, but God’s will to be done (Luke 22:42), we are also to have this same attitude of letting sovereign God take control of our lives.
Don't you know, God gave you free will? Why did he give it to you if he didn't want you to use it? Why give you powers of discernment and judgement, only to tell you that they're treacherous and you shouldn't trust them?
As we trust in Jesus, we become a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17) with a new desire to live in submission to God, no longer to gratify our fleshly desires, but to satisfy God’s will [which only Christ can accomplish through His work of redemption (Galatians 2:20)].
The moment someone asks you to live in submission to them - that's when you can be sure they don't have your best interests in mind. In Christianity, you're either being selfish yourself or you're feeding God's selfishness (he demands that all people live for him and glorify his name at all times - why would any god want or require any such thing? Surely any God who isn't narcissistic would have said, "I don't want anyone to worship or glorify me; I just want humanity to learn and grow and become wise and happy like me. I'm not going to lay down the law and punish anyone who disagrees with me because wisdom isn't born in a repressive environment - you don't become wise by being told what's good and what's bad; you become wise by experiencing and learning things for yourself, and yes, by making mistakes along the way - so I'm going to leave humanity to its own devices because that's the only way they can learn." Clearly, the Christian God, who describes himself as jealous, doesn't want any equals, despite the fact that even the highest and most powerful of people would feel extremely lonely without equals).
Here's an exercise for you: if you were God, what would you do? Use all of your wisdom and life experience to contrive the best scenario for humanity. And then compare notes with the Bible.
2. Find Rest in Him (His love)
Jesus declares, “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water” (John 7:38). It is the work of regeneration by the Holy Spirit in us, producing the fruit of righteousness and transforming us into Christlikeness (Titus 3:5-7). Therefore, we can welcome the Lord’s invitation to find rest in Him, casting our burdens and cares on Him (Matthew 11:28).
Do you know who else wanted everyone else to be like him? It's truly astonishing how similar God's regime is to other oppressive regimes throughout human history. Why must everyone be like Jesus? A world of Jesuses wouldn't get anywhere; they'd spend all day and night preaching to one another.
How comforting, to put your burdens on someone else's shoulder. Funnily enough, that's exactly what children do. Every burden is their parents'.
But then, God is described as the Father. Which leads to an interesting question: is people's perception of God influenced by their relationship with their actual father?
The Spirit also helps in our inability to see Jesus with our physical eyes and enables us to walk by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7) and to live with an eternal perspective (2 Corinthians 4:17-18). Our restless pursuits of worldly things are over and now focused on God’s kingdom and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33).
Imagine that faith had become popular through another religion rather than Christianity. Such a religion would use exactly the same arguments, yet, according to Christians, it would be wrong and its believers would be going to hell. Just how reliable is faith, considering that it can be used to champion any ideology you could think of?
Having Christ as our Good Shepherd is sufficient, we lack nothing good (Psalm 23). Trusting in Jesus means putting Him first at the center of life, which brings about a peaceful rest in our minds and souls.
But does it make you a better individual? No. If we should all be striving to become better people, surely we ought to be in control of such a transformation. You can't just say, "I believe in Jesus" and automatically be changed into a kind-hearted, wise person.
3. Take Delight in Him (His promise)
Through the work of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, all who believe become the children of God. Trusting in Jesus means having a personal and profound relationship with the heavenly Father.
You can't be told what to feel. How you feel is a personal matter, but here you're being told that if you don't take delight in Jesus, you're not doing it right. It is at this point that Christianity begins to seem more like a cult than a religion. In fact, we could call Christianity the Cult of Dead Men, and we wouldn't be saying anything incorrect.
Having been set free from the bondage of sin and the punishment of death, we can truly take delight in the Lord and enjoy our relationship with Him (Psalm 37:4). We can also be sure of God’s eternal love: nothing can separate us from His love in Christ our Savior (Romans 8:38-39).
That sounds wonderful. Just one question: is it true? Well, Christianity has no answer for you there. You just have to believe, despite any personal reservations you might have, and if you don't, you'll be punished day and night for eternity.
Christianity is wishful thinking. Heaven is the perfect happy ending protracted over an eternity. Is there any wonder it has gathered so many followers?
Faith in Jesus means eternal life (John 3:16) and secure salvation (Acts 16:31). Paul reminds us to put our hope in Christ not only for this life (such as for healing, wisdom, peace, joy, and earthly blessings), but also for the afterlife because of His resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:19-20). This is a wonderful promise which gives hope to the dying world.
We're not seeing much wisdom here.
Now, even though we have not seen nor touched Jesus, we have this promise in our hearts. The reliability of a promise is not determined by what is being promised, but rather by who has promised it.
Ideally, you don't rely on a promise made by someone whom, we repeat, YOU HAVE NEVER MET in your life, especially when it carries the penalty of giving yourself over to said person and allowing them to control every aspect of your life.
Suppose you receive a promise of blessing from the government, would you believe in the blessing or in the government? Of course, in the government who has authority to fulfill the promise.
Yet if that government asked, as Jesus does, that we believe it is the child of God and demanded that we give our lives over to it under threat of being sent to an eternal torture house if we unrepentantly disobeyed it, the "promise" would suddenly seem quite inconsequential to the matter.
This is the good news: Jesus Christ, the King of kings and the Lord of lords, has given us the promise of salvation. How can we not rejoice and take delight in Him?
Around these parts, we teach something similar.
This is the Good News: God is dead!
No wonder Peter says that we can be filled with unspeakable and glorious joy as we are receiving the end result of our faith, the salvation of our souls (1 Peter 1:8-9).
Yeah, no wonder.
Why Does This Matter?
Trusting in Jesus and entrusting our lives to Him is the best decision we can make in life. Salvation is not of human efforts, but of the Trinity.
By God’s grace, we are saved through faith in Christ’s work of redemption and the Spirit’s work of regeneration. Praise be to God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.
What are we saved from? - God's own condemnation of us! You don't get to condemn people and then offer a way out, and then proclaim yourself generous and gracious!
What a thing Christianity is. People who have never met Jesus pretend to know who he was simply because he was written about in a few books. You'd think that Jesus would have written his own teachings down, would you not? Instead, four people write about him, often contradicting each other in the process, and we're supposed to believe the words of these writers, who have clearly taken liberties with reality and added their own themes and motifs to Jesus' story after the fact.
So, instead of writing his teachings down, Jesus decided to impart an oral tradition - which seems like precisely the move you would make if you didn't want your exact teachings written down. Why? Why are the prophets so secretive? God didn't write the Bible directly - instead, he used numerous prophets to do so. Why? Surely, God can write, for instance, a perfect rendering of the Bible in all languages, thus avoiding the problem of errant translations and thus SAVING SOULS?!
Why does God never appear to lots of people in the Bible? Why is his work always carried out so secretly? Why was Moses required to climb to the top of Mount Sinai to receive the word of God - why didn't God reveal his word to all of the Jews that Moses was travelling with? Why did Jesus only make a few select appearances after his resurrection, to few people?
If you consider the prophets in the context of common sense, they seem more and more to be very sly, evasive people. They proclaim the word of God, who cannot for all the world proclaim it himself for some reason and everyone's supposed to believe it. Why are only a select few able to actually talk to God?
If you think about it, it's almost as if these "prophets" merely claimed to have had interactions with God.
Why does God use angels ("messengers") to communicate? Surely he can speak for himself? Why does he hide from his own Chosen People, even in the "age of miracles?" Is he frightened of them? Why did he send prophets to say, "God is unhappy with you?" Why didn't he say it himself?
The absurdity of the Bible is sans frontières - without bounds. Of all the things in which to have faith, the Bible is the most ridiculous and outlandish. Of all the people in whom to have trust, Jesus is one of the most obscure. It's a tragedy that so many people have been robbed of their autonomy by dead men.
Despite often being depicted as the quintessential moral religion, Christianity has nothing to do with morality. Why not? We'll demonstrate by considering a few points. These Christian concepts demonstrate how amoral Christianity is.
The Christian doctrine of original sin says that because of Adam and Eve's disobedience of God in eating the fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, all of humanity now exists in a state of sin, which means that, essentially, it's impossible for us not to sin. After all, if it was possible, we could claim that we are exempt from needing Jesus' redemption because we have never sinned. As it is, Christians claim that Jesus was the only sinless human (he was freed from original sin magically by God - if God can stop someone from being born into sin, why doesn't he do so for everyone?).
Now, what the inherent sinfulness of humanity means is that we are all in need of Jesus' sacrifice. It's impossible for you to live a sinless life, and therefore, you need Jesus. Why does this show that Christianity is amoral? Because, if you can't not sin, then is it really your fault for sinning? Christians claim you have free will, but obviously you don't have free will to the extent that you can avoid sinning.
In this twisted view of the world, in which everyone must apologise for their own human nature, there can be no morality. You wouldn't punish an eagle for flying - it's built for flying and its instincts tell it to fly. So, if you can't not be a sinner, whose fault is that, ultimately? Adam and Eve's.
How is God supposed to morally judge the souls of humanity when they are morally contaminated? How does it make sense to send someone to hell for eternity on the basis of a single lifetime of sin they literally couldn't avoid? Christianity has nothing to do with morality.
A Christian sect doesn't have to teach original sin specifically for this to be true; all it has to do is claim that no human apart from Jesus can escape sin. If it's possible, then God may be justified in punishing humanity, but then, that means that there may be people out there who don't need Jesus.
I Am the Way
Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me." (John 14:6) In other words, unless you believe in Jesus, you will not be saved. Why is this? Because Jesus was sent by God so that God could forgive humanity of its sins. He died for us (for three days, not for eternity) and lifted the weight off our shoulders.
So, imagine two different scenarios.
The first we want you to consider is that of a Christian who sins every other week, and has to ask for God's forgiveness every time. He does not employ the "proper" self-restraint that is expected of Christians and he fails to keep in line with some of Jesus' teachings. He attends parties, where he spends his spouse's money on drinks. He prays every night and morning for God to forgive his imperfections. He does not commit major sins such as adultery, but he comes about as close as he could. He's far from being the worst Christian, but he certainly isn't a particularly zealous believer. This man will go to heaven when he dies because he believes in Jesus and repents.
The second is that of a person who is extremely faithful in God, being a Jew. He keeps all of God's commandments and always tries to behave in the most altruistic way he can. Those who know him say that there's no kinder person alive. He would never be reluctant to help people in need. He regularly donates to charities and worthy causes, even though he has little money himself. He takes time to help people out even when he's late for work. In other words, he does everything to love others even when doing so proves detrimental to him. This man will go to hell when he dies because he does not believe in Jesus.
Can you see the problem? The "good" person goes to hell, whereas the "bad" person who stumbles every other day will be rewarded and will go to heaven, simply because one believes in Jesus and the other doesn't.
No Christian can deny this fact. It's right there in the Bible. Jesus himself said it: if you don't believe in him, you won't be saved. Salvation in Christianity, therefore, has much more to do with what your beliefs are than how good or bad a person you are. You can be the most altruistic person in the world who makes immense sacrifices to give others a better chance at life, and you'll still go to hell for your sins if you don't believe in Jesus. Yes, this God, who supposedly loves you, will send you to hell, not because you didn't do the right things in life, not because you didn't have every good intention under the sun, not because you caused harm to the world or those around you - but because you didn't happen to have the right beliefs.
If God wanted to preserve justice and save the good people, he wouldn't have sent Jesus at all. What he would have done is said, "I don't want to punish those who redeem themselves, those who commit more acts of good than they do acts of sin. Therefore, I'll exercise my infinite mercy and infinite forgiveness to let those people into my house after they die - and because they did more good than evil, the principle of justice, as it pertains to an overall judgement on a person's life or character, is satisfied."
But no. There's no such reasonable behaviour for God. Instead, he sent Jesus to die for humanity's sins and the result is that anyone who doesn't believe in Jesus will be punished no matter how good or evil they are, no matter how much they deserve it or otherwise. That's why Christianity is an amoral religion.
Jesus Died for Your Sins
If we consider justice a moral issue, then we have yet more evidence against Christianity. Jesus was sent to earth to redeem humanity. But why couldn't god simply forgive everyone? Some Christians answer this by claiming that God is ultimate justice - as much as he wants to forgive us all, he is compelled to put everyone where they should justly belong, hence he only saves those who believe in Jesus. But there's nothing in this scheme that actually caters to justice.
Justice demands that those who commit crimes or evil acts are punished for them. Yet if Jesus, a supposedly sinless man, died for your sins and you get off scott-free, that means that justice is being subverted, not fulfilled. To say that God sent Jesus to die as an act of justice flies in the face of what justice actually is. It's remarkable that, as they ascribe concepts to God, hardcore Christians often forget what they mean. No credible court would allow innocent volunteers to be sent to jail for the crimes of others - no justice would be done. Killers could simply persuade their friends or family members to go to jail or even death row for them. And if you saw such a thing happening, you wouldn't be marvelling at the selflessness of the innocent volunteer; you would be outraged that a criminal wouldn't be serving their sentence.
It's baffling that people think Jesus' sacrifice was just. In fact, it was the complete opposite of justice. Christianity is the religion of injustice and amorality, which Christians celebrate all over the world. Usually, when criticising Christianity, people don't raise points like these. They criticise Christianity on their terms rather than its own.
Using nothing but Christianity itself, you can disprove Christianity. The vast majority of believers misunderstand their own religion. They have no idea what its doctrines imply. They simply accept what they're told about Jesus and God without doing any further research. Their faith blinds them to the truth about these figures. In order to prove them wrong, you don't have to deal with all the arguments their apologists put out - you simply have to show how absurd Christianity is in itself.
Adam and Eve contaminated humanity - thereby nullifying God's moral judgements upon us.
Jesus said he is the only way to be saved - thereby explicitly refuting the idea that salvation has anything to do with morality.
Jesus died for the sins of others - thereby perpetrating what may be considered the biggest injustice of them all.
All of this is not, of course, to mention God's escapades in the Old Testament, such as the time he rained down fire and brimstone on Sodom and Gomorrah. So much for giving people a chance to repent! If Jesus' sacrifice was so fair and glorious, where was it for those people? Shouldn't Jesus have died the moment Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden? The idea that God punishes living people for their sins is distinctly non-Christian, which does put paid to all those extremist Christians who claim that natural disasters are God's wrath descending on everyone, but it also shows that Christianity is incompatible with the Old Testament - one of the texts on which it is based and which it considers to be part of the inerrant word of God.
So, in the past, God punished living people, but then decided that no, he's going to punish people after they die and after he has judged them instead. Then he sent Jesus with a message of love and tolerance that was totally opposed to his attitude in the Old Testament. He pulled a complete one-eighty.
We've talked about the discrepancies between the Old and New testaments before in this section, but it cannot be overstated how different and incompatible the two texts are.
Christianity is built on a foundation of non-Christianity - the worst possible foundations. That's why it doesn't stand up to scrutiny.
GotQuestions is a Christian site dedicated to answering questions about God, the Bible, Jesus, and a host of other related topics. Their site navigation has a "Random" link that takes users to a random question and its rather lengthy answer. So, this evening, we are going to be responding to random questions from that site.
The first question we have is, "How can I receive divine guidance?" which says:
The desire for direction and divine guidance is universal. In every culture, the wise and learned are revered and their answers sought by those struggling with decisions.
No, people seek wisdom, they don't seek divine guidance.
Unfortunately, this wisdom is often the manmade variety and can lead to catastrophe, since every human being is fallible and our wisdom often questionable (1 Corinthians 1:20).
So what if every human is fallible? Why does that make their wisdom so questionable? You don't have to be perfect to be wise, and you don't have to be God to know what's best.
The Bible verse you have to shove down your throat, 1 Corinthians 1:20, says: "Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?"
No, not really. If anything, he just makes himself look more and more stupid with each passing year. God is that asshole at the back of the class who won't shut up about how smart he is, claiming he makes everyone look stupid. In reality, he doesn't pay any attention and has no idea how to factorise polynomials, which has been the class topic for the past two weeks. In short, he's all talk and no actual substance.
What "wisdom" has the Bible demonstrated to you? "God's great?" Well, he would say that, wouldn't he? The only "wisdom" God can give us is that we should be listening to him instead of ourselves, which is a sentiment so far from what actual wisdom is, you could be forgiven for thinking it was originally written by a one-year-old. It's anti-wisdom.
When man seeks supernatural wisdom, he often turns to the spirit world by consulting mediums, witches, or other avenues forbidden by God (Leviticus 19:31; 20:6; Deuteronomy 18:14).
The only reason they are forbidden is that they are avenues of exploring one's own spirituality, and not God's. If you're not absolutely fixated on God at all times, you're not good enough for him. You have to rely on him, to the point where you don't have a mind of your own. Why is God so afraid to let people explore? What actual harm can mediums and witches do? Fake mediums can take your money and witches cast spells, but why does any of that matter? God protects his faithful, doesn't he? Besides, it's not like most witches would bother trying to bring misfortune to others, anyway.
Why is God so scared of rival spiritualities? Why does he forbid his followers from dabbling in them? Because he craves your worship. He's a narcissist who loves himself so much, he believes that he should be the sole subject of your entire life.
Christianity has such a twisted and extreme idea of God that it's very difficult to caricature or satirise him - because he's just so extremist and absurd. Christianity is an insult to the idea of God.
However, Isaiah 8:19 says, “When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living?”
Well let's see, that's a tough one. Hmmmm...
Maybe it's because God doesn't actually fucking talk to anyone except a small group of elitist "prophets!" God's invisible! You can't just ring him on extension 6 and make an inquiry of him!
So how do we receive answers from God? If our hearts are set to truly seek His wisdom, how do we find it? Jeremiah 29:13 says, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” So God promises that those who seek His counsel with all their hearts will find it. However, there are several factors that must be in place before we can claim this promise:
Sorry, what's your Bible citation for that?
1. We must do it God’s way. The Lord God Almighty is not a slot machine or a genie who grants wishes. But often that is the subconscious attitude of those who claim to want His guidance.
It's certainly an attitude that prayer encourages. After all, what's the point in praying if God doesn't answer? And if he does answer, then he's almost certainly a slot machine or a magical genie.
The "Lord God Almighty" ... someone tell us this. If God is so great, why does he need titles like that? It's almost as if he's simply trying to convince people that he's almighty when he's really not. Ever seen the Wizard of Oz? The "wonderful Wizard of Oz" turns out not to be so wonderful after all when the curtain no longer shields him from scrutiny. Just as with the "wizard," so with "God Almighty," or "the Lord." These are simulacra. They are based upon nothing. It's because they are used that people believe God is the Lord or Almighty. They are signs pointing to a non-existent being, yet believers are always the first to mistake signs for reality. They're so sure of what they believe in, despite the fact that many of the greatest thinkers in history have seemingly found every reason to doubt what others claim to "know." They have no humility when it comes to knowledge of the nature of the supernatural. They would rather affirm one ideal to the end than simply say, "I don't know what happens when I die." One is almost tempted to give them a blanket to cuddle.
Many live life as their own bosses, but, when faced with tragedy or heartache, become temporarily interested in God.
In other words, Christianity only becomes appealing to people who are going through very difficult times. Rather exploitative, don't you think?
If we want direction from God, we must come to Him the only way He provides for such relationship—through His Son.
Imagine you've got a new job, and whilst there you meet a man. Every time you try to talk to him, he ignores you, but one day, when you foolishly make another attempt at conversation, he gives you a piece of paper that says, "You can't have a relationship with me directly, you have to speak to my son." You promptly adopt a puzzled look and move several paces back from him.
Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).
Don't you think it's astonishing that people think of Jesus as humble? He was clearly the most big-headed, arrogant prick you never hope to meet.
2. We must know what God’s Word says. There is much guidance already given to us, and we need only to read it in the Bible. We do not need to seek direction about whether or not to sin. If God has already stated something in His Word, He will not contradict it. He will not instruct us to murder someone, steal, or commit adultery. Prohibitions against such things are already clearly stated in His Word, and He expects us to follow them (Mark 10:19; Luke 18:20). For example, many unmarried couples try to insist that “God understands” the fact that they are sleeping together before marriage. Some even claim that they “prayed about it and feel it’s OK.” This thinking is in clear defiance of God’s stated commands against sexual immorality (Hebrews 13:4). To justify sin by saying that God has made an exception to His own commands is to reveal one does not really want the guidance of God.
When asked, "Is it lawful for a man to put away his wife for every cause?" Jesus said, "Whosoever shall put away his wife, except it be for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and whoso marrieth her which is put away doth commit adultery." (in Matthew 19)
Well, you heard it from one third of the Godhead, folks - you're not allowed to divorce your spouse for anything other than adultery. Getting physically abused by your husband? Well, tough, he hasn't cheated on you, so if you divorce him, you're going to hell for committing a grave sin. Is your husband never at home? No divorce for you unless he's cheated on you! Does your husband tell you that his sexuality isn't what you thought it was and he actually has no sexual interest in you? How dare you get a divorce, you filthy sinner! Beg God for forgiveness!
Ah yes, what wisdom the Bible holds! Apparently, it's better for an individual to stay in an abusive relationship - a physically abusive relationship - than to divorce an abusive partner! Would you have come up with such a wise and profound insight? I doubt it. So why aren't you clinging onto the Bible's every word?
You know, Jesus supposedly never married, so why people listen to him on matters of marriage is baffling. Yes, this man who has never been in a relationship before is quite the source of all wise relationship advice! Don't go appealing to God, because he's never married either. He has no female counterpart or consort. No wonder the Bible's full of ridiculous ideas about sex and marriage.
3. We must be in continual fellowship with the Holy Spirit. God speaks not only through His Word but through the confirmations of His Spirit within us.
Really? Has the Holy Spirit ever said anything to you? No, we didn't think so.
4. We must ask for divine guidance. James 4:2 says, “You do not have because you do not ask.”
Well, there's no wonder why people didn't ask - they were all terrified of asking the wrong things and getting smote by God. Just read God's rant to Job, who, we might add, was a FAITHFUL servant who never sinned against God! You'll get a taste of how God tends to get furious over the most minor of incidents.
When our hearts are in right relationship to God, then James 1:5 assures us that we can ask for wisdom and believe that we have received it. We can ask that He guide us into all truth (John 16:13; Psalm 25:5).
Stop with the platitudes.
What is "all truth?" If you don't know, then does that mean your relationship with God isn't good enough? Should you start bathing in bleach to wash all those sins away? Or maybe injecting it, like Trump "sarcastically" invited all Americans to do. His slogan should be "Make America Clean Again" - but then again, he'd have to leave the country for good.
5. We must be willing to obey when He gives us guidance. Often, when people say they want to know God’s will, what they really mean is this: “I want to know God’s will—and then I’ll decide whether or not I’m going to do it.”
Exactly. Because they are adults, not toddlers. They can make their own decisions, they don't need God's smarmy, self-indulgent voice echoing in their heads.
The Lord is a communicating God
Yes, he communicates a lot - he just doesn't use any words or really anything substantial at all, so you have to rely on your feelings to indicate he's guiding you, which, if you think about it, is just as blasphemous as choosing whether or not to obey God's word in the first place - why are you relying on your feelings for anything? They are, after all, treacherous ("The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" - Jeremiah 17:9). Why do you even have feelings? You might as well dispense with them since they're not needed for faith in God and they can actually lead you astray. Why aren't you already a robot? God speaks, and you listen. God speaks, you listen. God speaks, you listen. How well you've been programmed! Would you like a bucket of bolts for breakfast? How about some filler metal sauce?
The Lord is a communicating God, and He delights in giving divine guidance to those who seek Him (Proverbs 20:24). He wants to direct the heart surrendered to Him.
It really does make you question why you're alive at all, if your only purpose is to do exactly what God tells you to. Then again, that's probably a defect created by your treacherous, evil feelings. Why don't we all become Cybermen already?
When someone tells you that you can't trust yourself, they are lying in order to manipulate you. That's obvious to any wise person.
Our next article is "What does it mean that women will be "saved" through childbearing (1 Timothy 2:15)?"
Now, for some delightful and, of course, highly wise context, 1 Timothy 2:12-15 says: "But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression. Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety."
So, essentially, women are somehow bigger sinners than men are, and so they must fulfil their purpose bearing children. How misogynistic and presumptuous.
This verse has been misinterpreted to mean that any woman who bears a child is automatically saved by virtue of the childbearing.
Well, we wouldn't want to go overboard with the whole saving people from hell thing, would we?
First Timothy 2:15 is the conclusion of Paul’s teaching concerning the roles of men and women in the church which he began in verse 11. It is a notoriously difficult verse with a myriad of potential interpretations. “But women will be saved through childbearing—if they continue in faith, love and holiness with propriety.” As always, the immediate context should serve in determining the precise meaning of a text. The preceding verse speaks of Eve’s deception at the Fall and the subsequent consequences.
Yes it does. And just for even more context as if it were needed: "Whereunto I am ordained a preacher, and an apostle, (I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not;) a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and verity. I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting. In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection." (1 Timothy 2:7-11)
Look how respectful and progressive - and yes, wise - it is! Women are to be silent and not speak, not even on issues that only women would know anything about! Why should a woman direct her own life, independent from some man?
A second option would be that women are spiritually saved through childbearing. This obviously cannot be the case, for it would contradict the consistent message of salvation by grace through faith in Christ (Ephesians 2:8–9). A third possibility is that the word “childbearing” (teknogonias) refers to the birth of Christ, potentially a link to Genesis 3:15 and the promise of a Seed to come through the woman. This is unlikely, considering Paul nowhere else refers to the birth of Christ in this manner. A reference to the incarnation seems dubious, considering the context and the subject at hand.
The most likely interpretation that takes into account the immediate context is that, rather than abandoning their intended roles by demanding teaching and authoritative positions in the church, women will find true fulfillment through childbearing.
How arrogant. Judging by what we've read in 1 Timothy, this can't have been written by a woman, so here is a man or a group of men who claim to know that childbearing is the only thing that can truly fulfill a woman. Do they know anything about women? See, this is why it's important for women to be teachers, too - because when men talk about women, they tend to shove their feet in their mouths and say things that either a) don't make sense, or b) are blatantly untrue.
It's also worth noting that the GotQuestions article describes 1 Timothy 2:15 as a "difficult" verse. Hardly what you would expect of the God of truth; exactly what you would expect of a fallible, human writer.
Paul is saying God calls women to be faithful, helpful wives, raising children to love and worship God and managing the household wisely (1 Timothy 5:14; Titus 2:3–5). While this view is not without its difficulties, it appears to harmonize best with the context and with the remainder of Scripture.
Judging by Paul's very toxic and unhealthy attitude towards women, you probably shouldn't be listening to anything he said. If he didn't claim godly authority, would he or his writings be known nowadays?
This is the greatest of absurdities: that ancient men should impose on people of the present their own sexual and emotional problems.
Many Christians imagine that Jesus created Christianity (a number of churches, including the Catholic Church, also claim to be the original church Jesus supposedly established); in reality, it was Paul who gave birth to that religion, and it has inherited all of his ugly traits.
The next question is: "Can a Christian woman consider getting breast implants?"
Undoubtedly, there is some very poignant Bible wisdom on this immensely difficult matter - nevermind that breast implants didn't actually exist in Biblical times. You can find a Bible verse about literally anything, even if it doesn't mention the topic in question. Typically, these are broad, vague statements that could mean anything. Why doesn't God introduce a new Bible to deal with all of the specific issues that Christians disagree on today?
Breast augmentation is performed by a licensed cosmetic surgeon who inserts implants filled with saline solution, silicone gel, or other substances under the natural breast. Implants come in different sizes to increase a patient’s bust size according to her wishes.
Thanks for the definition of what a breast implant is; only a few obscure people have actually seen one with their own eyes!
Every year, thousands of women go under the knife to increase their bust sizes. If a Christian woman has the support of family and friends and has the financial means for surgery, should she consider getting breast implants? The answer is in her answer to another question: Why?
The “why” behind any decision reveals a lot about our hearts. No woman seeks breast augmentation surgery because of the health benefits it affords. Neither are breast implants necessary for mothers who wish to breastfeed infants. The only reason a woman would place herself at physical risk and spend thousands of dollars on breast implants is that she believes the surgery will make her more attractive or will improve her self-esteem.
And everyone knows of course that you shouldn't be relying on anything but God for your self-esteem. But you don't have to be so narrow-minded.
Such a belief is grounded in a certain perception of what the “ideal woman” looks like.
No it's not. It's grounded in an idea of what a "better-looking woman" looks like.
Some men pressure their wives or girlfriends to have breast implants, but not for the woman’s benefit. When a man pressures a woman to undergo breast augmentation, he is saying that her natural body is not stimulating enough for him and she must alter herself surgically before he will be pleased.
Something tells us that Paul would have had no problem with that. As long as she's "being silent" and "learning in subjection," he would probably have been quite happy to enhance his own sexual pleasure.
Men and women have different reasons for supporting breast implant surgery, so we will deal with each of those motivations separately:
Men: In our sex-saturated culture, it is sadly true than men may find a small-busted woman less appealing than the surgically enhanced actresses and other women he has seen. A husband may believe that, if his wife could make herself look more like those women, he could live out his fantasies. He may even think that, if his wife’s body fulfills his fantasies, he won’t be tempted to look at other women.
Well if he thinks that, he's obviously wrong.
Yes, any man who pressures his wife to get breast implants is behaving very improperly (although, as Jesus said, she can't divorce him on those grounds because it's not an affair). But what's with all this "you're just being selfish and materialistic if you care about your appearance" mindset? Sure, if you're materialistic, you're going to care a lot about how you look, but it doesn't work the other way around. Christians seem to think that if you don't do something for God, you're being vain and you only care about yourself. It's just yet another propaganda line intended to make people devote their entire lives to God and allow the Bible to micromanage people.
However, the problem is not his wife’s body. The problem is in his mind (see Matthew 5:28).
A man who pressures his wife into having elective surgery for his sake is not loving her as Christ loves the church (Ephesians 5:25–27). He is not urging her to take care of herself; he is creating insecurity in her for the sake of his own lusts. He is handing her a measuring rod by which she may now judge herself.
A godly husband would not demand that his wife get breast implants to spice up their sex life. Rather, he can and should train himself to make his wife’s body his standard of beauty. If he has polluted his mind with pornographic images, he needs to repent, invite accountability, and recognize his sexual brokenness.
Here's something these people obviously don't understand: everyone has their own sexual tastes, and yes, some men like bigger breasts, but that doesn't give you the right to tell them they're sexually broken. Is that an excuse to pressure anyone into getting breast implants? Absolutely not, but ultimately, people like what they like. You may not find that a convenient fact, but it's a fact. You can't "train" yourself to be attracted to something else! If you could do that, would there be any gay people? Arguably, homosexuality wouldn't have become widely accepted and gays wouldn't exist. If you could be attracted to anyone and everyone, don't you think you'd take that opportunity?
Here's another important fact: beauty isn't a quantity. It's not made up of numbers (even though some people treat it that way), it's made up of qualities. There might be two very conventionally beautiful people, but you like one and don't like the other. That's just how it is. There's no magical training course that can change who and what you're attracted to.
Can we also stop with the childish "pornography corrupts people's minds!" line? It's an incredibly tired platitude from puritanical Christians and no one buys it. Sure, if you're a moron or a psychotic individual, you might expect everyone to be like they are in porn, but if you're a grounded, lucid person, you know that porn isn't real. It's acting, and just as with any acting role, the stars are always glammed up beforehand. It's not like porn can change what you're attracted to, either.
This is not to say, of course, that a person's sexual preferences are static and rigid, but you can't change them deliberately, you can't train yourself to be attracted to different things, and your preferences can't be changed by watching a bit of porn. Stop being so infantile.
He has allowed lust to take root in his heart, creating expectations that cannot be satisfied by normal, healthy sexual relations. No real woman can compete with the fantasies created by pornography.
Again, only if he's a stupid man.
A husband’s first step away from the idea of his wife getting breast implants is to ask the Lord to purify his thought life and redirect his attention toward his wife as she is.
Really? "Purify his thought life?" What planet are you living on?
Women: Women often feel the pressure to be sexually appealing, starting as early as elementary school. Childhood is being exploited as young girls are dressed provocatively, aided by clothing companies that produce sexy clothes in tiny sizes. When unthinking parents buy their 6-year-olds t-shirts that say “Hottie” or underwear that says “Kiss Me,” something is badly broken in our world. The message planted in little minds is that being sexy is a girl’s most valuable asset. It is no wonder that, when those little girls grow up, they measure their worth by their bust size.
Ignoring the fact that this is obviously a sweeping generalisation that doesn't apply to all children, what, exactly, is wrong here? No, the message isn't that "being sexy is a girl's most valuable asset" - that's nonsense. And as for "sexy clothes" being produced in "tiny sizes," people have clothing preferences, you know. Oh, but you can wear whatever you want, until you wear something provocative - then, people like these dullards automatically conclude that you're wearing it to be sexy! You don't have a preference for that piece of clothing, you're just trying to make others lust over you! We're sick of that attitude being aimed at people. Grow up. Not everyone thinks of everything sexually, like you.
So imagine this: you see a woman at a fun dance night and she's wearing a provocative dress - which assumption do you jump to - that she's just wearing it because she's a slut who's after sexual attention, or because she wants to wear it and feels good in it? The answer says a lot about your attitude towards women.
Some people claim that feminism isn't needed, but THIS is why it is needed. If a man wears a tight-fitting t-shirt, people don't generally assume he's a slut who sleeps with lots of people - but as soon as a woman does it, she must be showing off, she must be after something! A lot of people's attitude towards women has to change before feminism becomes redundant.
When a Christian woman considers breast augmentation surgery, she should first ask herself, “Why?” Why does she believe she will be happier with larger breasts? Who in her life is sending her that message?
This is getting worse by the second.
That's right, if a woman wants to make an un-Christian decision, then it must be because someone in her life is manipulating her!
If it is her husband, she should point him to what the Bible says about beauty. If it is the men she has dated, she needs to look for higher quality men.
Agreed on that second one.
If it is her own relationship with culture, she needs to reorient herself as to her allegiance. Whom is she trying to please?
Really, what does it matter? If she's doing it for other people then she's stupid. If she's doing it for herself then she's doing nothing wrong. What's the matter here?
Another “why” behind the desire for breast implants is one that a woman may not realize or wish to admit. Sexual attractiveness is powerful. Teenage girls discover this power early, and, for some, it can be intoxicating.
Have you met a teenage girl? It's not intoxicating, it's giving them highs. Obviously, we're generalising massively again. Some teenage girls - shock horror - don't care about sex at all.
They learn to play the game, using their physical beauty to manipulate others and build their own egos.
Well, God - he's a different situation entirely. His ego could blot out the sun even if it was five times further away than the moon.
When they sense their power slipping, some believe they must regain it, leading them to get a “boob job.” Christian girls need to recognize this trap set by the enemy and turn their attention away from attracting guys to pleasing Christ.
Right, because that isn't just as stupid!
Instead of settling for the thrill of sexual attention, a wise woman will develop her mind, her talents, her character, and her leadership potential. She understands that those elements are where the real power is found.
Paul disagrees with you.
A Christian woman considering breast implants also needs to consider when she began to believe she needed bigger breasts. The “when” may hold the key to a deeper wound.
These people have a very unhealthy attitude. Stop assuming all women who do anything about their appearance are "wounded." Clearly, it's you who's wounded.
What message did she come to believe at that time? Whom is she allowing to define her worth?
What difference does that make? If she follows the Bible, she's just letting God define her worth rather than humans (and he makes it to be pretty low, by the way, because he's a male god who doesn't know anything about women and who thinks their only purpose is to bear and nurture children). It's hardly a progressive leap forwards, is it?
Does she really want to be with a man who is only attracted to her because of her breast size? For some women, aging is the catalyst for body enhancements. Aging has been declared the enemy in modern society, and many women fear it.
Now you really are talking out of your arse. Do you see beauty advertisements and immediately assume that all women are using these products because they're terrified of not being beautiful? Some women are, to be sure, but many aren't.
After all, if a woman’s primary worth is found in her physical appearance, then aging is indeed an enemy because it threatens that worth.
Well it's not much different from a woman's worth being in how well they are able to look after children and clean the house, which is exactly the mindset of Paul and others like him. Oh, and also how much they love God, because of course, men like Paul love to judge women.
Many women in midlife allow themselves to undergo plastic surgery in an attempt to cling to the illusion of youthfulness.
Women who are considering implants should carefully evaluate the future health risks experienced by many women who have implants.
Everyone risks their health at some point, and often, telling them how dangerous it is doesn't seem to make a difference. Why? Because it has some other benefit. They're not doing it just to destroy themselves. Arguments against this kind of thing don't convince people because it's a personal decision. If you want to do something damaging to your health, go ahead. It's up to you, no one else.
A Christian woman must learn to value her body the way God designed it, and she must care for it as His temple (1 Corinthians 6:19–20).
In other words, your body belongs to God.
If she flaunts her sexuality in order to attract male attention, she is not honoring God’s temple. She is exploiting it by inviting lust.
Hear that? Better go and get a burqa!
A Christian woman needs to be honest with herself about the purpose of implants.
Presumably, it would be good for any person to be honest with themselves.
Male attention may be intoxicating, but it is a shallow win. As the adage goes, “Don’t advertise it if it’s not for sale.”
Well, sometimes a person's body might be on sale, but the game of sales doesn't stop where there's no money involved. You're in the game of "selling" your religion, just as we're in the game of "critiquing" a shitty product. Should women metaphorically "sell" their bodies? It's up to them. You get to do what you want with your body because it's yours. It's not a temple to God, or some other ridiculous analogy.
Christian women are not for sale. They have been “bought at a price” by God, and He loves His daughters just the way they were made (Colossians 1:16).
Ha! So it's not an issue of dignity, it's that God already bought them! That's astonishing.
By the way, Colossians 1:16 says, "For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him."
Yes - you were created specifically for God. What does that say about him? We'll leave you to decide; at a certain point, it becomes literally impossible to express how pathetically self-obsessed he is.
This is the second article in our series on GotQuestions.org, a Christian website which answers questions posed by readers and has a large archive of answers. We'll be using the site's "Random" feature to arrive at random questions, and then critiquing them.
Our first question is: "Does the Bible instruct us to have childlike faith?"
Unquestionably, faith is the essence of the Christian life. Faith is exhorted throughout the Bible and is presented as an absolute necessity. In fact, “without faith, it is impossible to please God” (Hebrews 11:6). The entire chapter of Hebrews 11 is about faith and those who possessed it. Faith is a gift from God, as we see in Ephesians 2:8–9 and not something we come up with on our own. All Christians have received the gift of faith from God, and faith is part of the armor of God—the shield with which we protect ourselves from the “flaming arrows of the evil one” (Ephesians 6:16).
This doesn't make any sense. If faith is a gift from God, how does he choose which people will receive it? You can't say he gives it to whoever prays or believes in Jesus because those things require faith. If you don't have any faith, then there's no point praying because you don't believe in God or Jesus.
The Bible never exhorts us to have “childlike” faith, at least not in so many words. In Matthew 18:2 Jesus says that we must “become as little children” in order to enter the kingdom of God. The context of Jesus’ statement is the disciples’ question, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?” (verse 1). In response, Jesus “called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: ‘Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me’” (verses 2–5).
It worked, didn't it? The mindset of Christianity is childish to the last degree. Christians are never encouraged to behave like autonomous adults. On the one hand, they're supposed to be "godly" people, and on the other, they're supposed to be like children, the acknowledged inferiors of God in every way, silent and obedient. The exploitation couldn't be clearer. That's the only "miracle" Christianity or Christ have ever perpetrated - they make people knowingly and willingly be exploited, all in the name of some God, who they don't know (they've only heard about him) and the misguided desire for an afterlife. Are they so desperate not to die that they will subjugate themselves in exchange for eternal life? Are they so blind that they think it's the right thing to do?
If God was half as great as people claim he is, then he wouldn't ask for a moment for people to worship him. He wouldn't micromanage people and he wouldn't have such backwards ideas about women (which we discussed in the first article in this series). He wouldn't desire glorification. When humans display these traits, they are vindicated. When God does the same, he is let off the hook. Not only is he let off the hook, but everyone maintains that he never did anything wrong in the first place. This twisted idea of God removes people's dignity and compels them to live a certain way or do a certain thing with their own life. It's all based on the reprehensible idea that God is inherently above us, infinitely more valuable, and as such, he has the right to tell others how to behave and what to think.
The Christian God is based purely upon human ideas of what God should be like. As you may or may not find out someday, he (she, they, it - whichever you prefer) has absolutely nothing in common with the hideous Judeo-Christian abomination.
So, as the disciples focus on what constitutes “greatness” in heaven, Jesus provides a new perspective: the way “up” is “down.” Meekness is required (cf. Matthew 5:5).
Yes, and it's required only because if you are a meek person, you are easier to exploit than people who retaliate and think for themselves. Jesus wanted everyone to be meek and timid because he wasn't.
Jesus exhorts the disciples (and us) to seek to possess a childlike modesty in addition to their faith. Those who willingly take the lowest position are the greatest in heaven’s eyes.
Could there possibly be a more corrupt ideology?
Friedrich Nietzsche said, I call an animal, a species, an individual corrupt, when it loses its instincts, when it chooses, when it prefers, what is injurious to it. [...] Life itself appears to me as an instinct for growth, for survival, for the accumulation of forces, for power: whenever the will to power fails there is disaster. My contention is that all the highest values of humanity have been emptied of this will—that the values of décadence, of nihilism, now prevail under the holiest names.
And it's all thanks to Christianity. "The meek will inherit the earth" ... there's nothing more decadent, more lacking in culture. There's nothing further from the truth.
A young child is destitute of ambition, pride, and haughtiness and is therefore a good example for us. Children are characteristically humble and teachable. They aren’t prone to pride or hypocrisy. Humility is a virtue rewarded by God; as James says, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up” (James 4:10).
But, as you know, humility is something we have to do, but God - there's no requirement for him to be humble, and indeed, he takes every opportunity to show us that he has no humility. What a hypocrite.
Of course, children are easily fooled and led astray.
In their artlessness they tend to miss the truth and be drawn to myths and fantasies. But that is not what is meant by having a childlike faith.
Of course not. Jesus told you to be like little children - you just get to pick which childish aspects reflect you.
Jesus promoted a humble, honest faith in God, and He used the innocence of a child as an example.
Of course he did.
Emulating the faith of children, we should simply take God at His Word.
It's not like you might be being led astray by people who call themselves "prophets."
As children trust their earthly fathers, we should trust that our “Father in heaven [will] give good gifts to those who ask him” (Matthew 7:11).
Earthly children grow up - or at least, some of them do. The rest remain children under their "Father in heaven." They know nothing about adulthood because they have never been adults. They're glorified children believing the worst of lies.
Next question: "What does it mean that our sins are washed away?"
When the Bible speaks of our sins being washed away, it means we are forgiven. Our sins, which had defiled us, are gone.
What does that even mean? You say the words, but you don't understand them. You're just repeating what you've been told.
By the grace of God through Christ, we are no longer spiritually corrupt; we stand justified before God.
By the grace of God through Christ - yet another platitude used without any clarification. Christians just say these things, and other Christians just accept them. It's only once you step outside Christianity that you realise just how nebulous and meaningless they are.
Do you want to know the secret of rhetoric? The main task rhetoric hopes to accomplish is to make you internalise it. If you can take a good guess at what I think about something in any given situation, then my rhetoric has succeeded. Its job is done. I have taught you to think in a different way - my way. That's why, when it comes to persuasion, rhetoric is often chosen. If I can make you get to know me well enough, I'll embed myself in your brain. I will be yet another viewpoint from which you can draw in order to make a decision. Of course, this doesn't work on someone who has their own opinions on it.
The Bible is nothing but rhetoric and the primary task of a believer is to internalise it. If the Bible can influence your thinking even when you don't have one with you, it has accomplished its task. Parental guidance works the same way - if you know what's considered right and wrong even when your parents are not around, you have internalised their morals. Internalisation is one reason why Christianity is so effective - often, you don't need to consult the Bible in order to know what it says about something. If you're looking for something specific, you might perform a lookup, but if you've read the Bible enough, you know all about its morality. In a real sense, you become a walking Bible.
Isaiah 1:16 commands the rebellious people to “wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil.”
Of course, what it really means is, "wash yourselves; make yourselves clean in the eyes of God; cease to do what God has decided he doesn't like." We all know that Christianity isn't about morality, but control.
God often used physical illustrations to help us understand spiritual truths.
Severely underestimating the intelligence and capacity of humanity is yet another of God's mistakes.
Throughout the Old Testament, God commanded people to purify themselves by following rigorous instructions about sacrifices, ritualistic bathing, and types of clothing to wear (Exodus 30:20; Numbers 19:21; Joel 1:13).
Why is any of that required? Christians don't sacrifice animals to God, so that clearly wasn't required from the start. Ritualistic bathing and clothing have nothing to do with being spiritually clean, from the Christian point of view. Of course it's absurd to say that wearing one type of clothing is morally worse than wearing another, so whence this commandment?
From ancient times, God’s people understood that sin makes us dirty, and dirty people are unworthy to enter into the presence of the Lord. Many of the laws in the Old Testament were given for the purpose of contrasting God’s holiness with man’s unholiness.
That's the most ridiculous thing we've ever heard.
Okay, it's not, but it's close to the top. You're saying that God gave humanity commandments - which they had to obey or they would be quite literally punished or even killed - just to make a contrast between people and himself? Come on, not even the pope believes that.
David wrote of his need to have his sins washed away. After his sin with Bathsheba was exposed by Nathan the prophet (2 Samuel 11), David repented with great sorrow.
Which makes David just the kind of man Jesus despised, don't you think? Jesus told people off for only doing good when it could be seen. And David only repented after he was exposed? Shame on him.
Human beings have always needed some way to have our sins washed away.
That's because God stubbornly condemns them, even when they are literally harming no one. Why? Because they turn our minds away from him, and any moment we're not focused on him is a sinful one. All he cares about is satisfying his immense, egotistical need to be loved, adored and worshipped by others. And he tells us not to have pride?!
The Bible makes it clear that every human being is born into this world as a sinner (Romans 3:23). That sin makes us ceremonially unclean and unfit to enter into the presence of God.
Why? Surely God can understand that humans aren't perfect and that some imperfection is characteristic of humans. Oh, wait - he doesn't because he has no idea what being a human is even like.
Hebrews 9 contrasts the old methods of cleansing with the new covenant that came through Jesus Christ. Jesus came to earth to establish a new way of being made right with God.
Why, was the old way not good enough? Was the old way that God taught people not good enough?
When we, through faith, apply the blood of Jesus to our unclean souls, God pronounces us clean (Titus 2:14; 3:5). He washes our sins away, as it were; He places our sin debt upon His own Son and declares us righteous in His sight (Colossians 2:14; 2 Corinthians 5:21). God chooses to forget our sin and remove it far from Him (Psalm 103:12). We are still sinners in practice, but righteous in position. An adopted child becomes a son the moment the judge declares him so, even though he may not know the parents well, understand their house rules, or be deserving of their love in any way. Over time, he grows to know and love them, assimilating into their family life, and becoming in practice what he was already declared to be in position.
So what you're saying is that sin doesn't actually contaminate our souls, but God sees our past sins in us, so all he has to do is forget about them. In which case, why was Jesus' sacrifice needed? Forgiveness of one person isn't built on violence to another. "I'll forgive you for what you did, as long as you acknowledge my son, who I killed so that I could forgive you." That isn't remotely how forgiveness works.
The joy of the Christian life is that, even though we are not perfect, we can live every moment with the confidence that our sins are washed away by the blood of Jesus and we have been pronounced “clean” by the final Judge (see Genesis 18:25 and Romans 8:33).
Notably, you wouldn't have the problem of sin in your life if it wasn't for Christianity in the first place. Christianity, much like God himself, tells you you're guilty and then forgives you and you're grateful. Christianity creates its own problems.
After a series of boring questions unfit to feature here, this one caught our eye: "I am engaged to an unbeliever. What should I do?"
Surely it wasn't an accident to become engaged to someone? If it's someone you love, why should your difference of beliefs matter? "I don't want to be your friend because you believe different things from me!" is such a childish position. Then again, we have been discussing the fact that Christians are told to be like children, so not such a surprise.
There is no doubt that you are in a difficult and painful situation. Your question shows that you have not deafened your ears against God and His good will for you. Your concerns are the result of hearing God’s warning whispers of danger ahead. The Spirit is leading you into righteousness.
There's no need to be so dramatic. The idea that believers should only date or marry other believers is cynical, asinine and ridiculous. If all you want is affirmation in your life, you might want to re-examine yourself.
As God’s child, you have a responsibility to do what is right, regardless of how difficult it may be. Concentrate on what God has said in His Word, and trust Him to lead you in making your next decisions on the basis of His life principles and commands. Ceasing to cohabit with your fiancé or fiancée is the first step. Putting the marriage on hold is the next.
The Bible says that believers should only marry other believers (2 Corinthians 6:14; see also 1 Corinthians 7:39—this verse specifically applies to widows, but the principle of “he must belong to the Lord” is present). So, your engagement to an unbeliever is problematic.
Religion should not be interfering in people's relationships.
Your Christian testimony is at risk. Sexual sin is something God tells us to be very careful about: “Among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people” (Ephesians 5:3). Living together before marriage definitely “hints” at immorality.
There's nothing wrong with two people who love each other sleeping with one another. Why is God so afraid of sex that he has to lock it down?
God does not want you to live in a state of sin, guilty feelings, or doubt. To have His full peace, follow Him fully. While your happiness, fulfillment, and usefulness to God are important, something else is even more important, and it should be your primary consideration: the exaltation of God’s name and the true reflection of His likeness in you.
God's glorification is more important than the needs and happiness of actual people. Again, what a narcissist.
Will you trust God enough to do what He says? Do you trust that He really knows what is best for you? Do you believe God has your best interests at heart?
How could he? You just said his glorification is more important than people's happiness! So, yes, your happiness is only important to God so far as you don't stop telling him how great he is.
Satan is a deceiver. He would like to trick you into believing that, once you make a poor decision, you are forced to make another, or that the only way to relieve the problems of one bad decision is to make a worse one. But God provides grace to renounce the past, to gain freedom from Satan’s deceptions, to take back the ground given to Satan, and to be restored to the Savior’s fellowship.
God, Satan, deceiver - they're all just labels, tools used by propagandists to put a spin on things. They tell us nothing about the nature of these two deities. When you read the Bible - actually read it - God looks like the bad one much more often than Satan does. In fact, in the spectacularly unlikely event we were ever convinced of the truth of Christianity, then we would become Satanists rather than supporters of "God."
After all, who other than the deluded would want to follow this "God," who assigns us no dignity and proclaims that we exist solely to glorify and satisfy him? Who would want to be the subject of such a cosmically arrogant and narcissistic individual, who created the world solely so that he could be praised? He claims to love humanity, yet no one has shown it more hatred than he. He controls us so much because he despises our nature. He is anathema, the pinnacle of everything that's insulting to humanity.
That's why we proclaim the Good News:
GOD IS DEAD
Imagine you're a Christian at some point in the future. You believe that humanity is God's beloved creation and that Jesus came to earth to redeem humans. You are mindful of the fact that God created other stars, but just to adorn the night sky, right? (Nevermind that ancient people knew nothing about the existence of other galaxies and virtually all of the objects in our sky that can be seen with the naked eye are either planets in our own solar system or stars - he just created other galaxies so that in the future, when we looked through telescopes, we'd still have something to look at. A bit strange, but nevermind.)
And suddenly, the world's media begins to blast out the story: intelligent life has been discovered elsewhere in the universe. But Christianity has no room for other life forms other than those that live on earth!
Of course, the ever-stubborn believers would simply ignore the inconvenience of this fact, just like they do every other inconvenient fact. Suppose that one other planet contains intelligent life. What would that planet's relationship to God be? Why wasn't it mentioned in the Bible? Would that planet have had its own Adam and Eve? If so, would Jesus have had to become incarnate on that planet as well, so those people could be forgiven? What rules would God have prescribed for them? Would they have their own Bible? Would it contain every commandment that ours does? Would it have a history of angelic interferences and godly miracles, as earth supposedly does? More importantly, why did God create that life? - God is the sustainer and creator of all life, so why create two intelligent species rather than just one? The Catholic Church once promoted the idea that earth is the centre of the universe - everything else revolves around it. We know this to be false, but it actually makes sense that God would create a universe that revolves around us if we're his special creation. He wouldn't create a seemingly endless expanse of stars containing life we're highly unlikely to even see.
Now, if there is one other planet with intelligent life out there, why not two others? Then would they both have had their own Adams and Eves? Would Jesus have become incarnate, died and been resurrected three times? If we were to compare the Bibles from all three planets, would they all teach the exact same things?
If we continue to add more planets, the situation quickly becomes ridiculous. Might the star-hopper Jesus have become incarnate on ten planets? Twenty? Fifty? A thousand? Surely there would have been a better solution than for Jesus to go to each and every single one of those planets, teaching before dying every single time. And what if they rejected Jesus? Would an entire planet then be condemned to hell, considering that Jesus' message didn't proliferate? Come to think of it, what if Jesus' message never got off the ground on our planet? Would we all now be going to hell, even though most of us would never have even known about Jesus? Might our rejection of Jesus have caused God to come up with a simpler, more elegant solution for our redemption?
The existence of aliens would spell doom for Christianity as a religion, proving it absurd beyond all reason. But then again, there have been many such events in Christianity's history, so it wouldn't be the end of belief in Christianity. People will find a way to believe what they want to believe, even if they are shown how wrong they are. The heliocentric model of the solar system triumphed, and the Church changed its tune, despite once killing people who dared to oppose the geocentric model. The model that actual lives had been staked on, that the Church believed so ardently in one century, is in another (i.e., right now) totally rejected by the very same church! If doctrines are so flexible, why should anyone have any faith in Catholicism?
Christianity claims to teach timeless doctrines that are universally relevant. In other words, they apply to all people, at all times. But apparently not if we're talking about the solar system. That's an incorrect doctrine that the church Jesus supposedly established once promoted with extreme zeal - because it rightly recognised the danger for the faith that the heliocentric model and other scientific findings posed.
Oh well! All water under the bridge! Sorry about that!
Why should anyone believe in Catholicism given that it once championed an incorrect doctrine to the point of killing people? Why should Catholicism ever be given the benefit of anyone's faith? If it can get it all wrong once, it can get it all wrong again.
That's why people who champion faith are morons. They may regard it as glorious, but in another age, it helped condemn people who stood for the truth, people who did nothing wrong. Faith is not a rational tool. It's what allows you to believe in whatever you find pleasing - and there is no glory or love or anything else in that. Anyone can use faith for any reason, to believe in anything they want. There's no goodness there.
Not to mention that faith is, intellectually, the laziest defence one can use to justify oneself. It requires no evidence, no proof, no arguments. You just believe, and thereby prove yourself deserving of heaven. What a crock of shit. What a ludicrous lie.
Have You Ever?
Have you ever asked a believer on what foundation their faith is sat? On what basis do they believe what they believe? A pretentious believer will say, "evidence." But evidence is not the same as proof. It isn't a difficult distinction to make. Evidence points to a conclusion, but does not affirm it. Any evidence could point to any number of conclusions. Simply pointing to evidence and claiming that this could have occurred if there is a God, doesn't prove anything.
An honest believer would say, "my own feelings and experiences and/or indoctrination," but how many honest believers are there? How many believers understand their beliefs? How many believers know what drives their belief? Most cannot bear to contemplate a scenario in which their beliefs are false, so they never pay any attention to any contentions brought against them. They have no intellect to speak of. They are controlled by their beliefs and drives, rather than controlling them. They have suppressed the intellect in favour of a vague notion of faith.
Ask a believer where the proof of their God is and they will either not bother answering you or they will spout some weasel-mouthed excuse as to why they cannot produce such proof. Those few brave souls who dare to attempt to prove their God are much more laudable, but there are always two problems: a) they almost certainly started believing in God as faithfuls, before they even thought about proving his existence, and b) they always commit blatant fallacies that are easy to spot if you're not a believer.
There are numerous ways of acquiring knowledge, but they broadly fall into two categories: empiricism and rationalism. Empiricism states that true knowledge comes from experience of the world. A key proponent of empiricism would be science, with its scientific method. Rationalism, on the other hand, says that true knowledge comes from reason, not from experience.
Faith isn't in this game at all. It's not a method of acquiring knowledge. In fact, it can be used to promote and believe wholly incorrect ideas. Faith is where you go to escape the issue of knowledge altogether. It's where you go when you have proven so inept intellectually that you just give up. It's where you go when you have no critical faculties and have therefore swallowed some snake oil pitch from some Z-list pastor who's from some obscure Protestant church somewhere, or else have seen the appeal of Catholicism and flocked to it like the good sheep you are.
Faith is for people who don't know how to think seriously about the world. Their holy book tells them everything they need to know. They adopt its position on every issue. Their minds aren't their own: they're being controlled by dead men.
Faithfuls believe that knowledge is "revealed" i.e., that humans are incapable of gaining any real knowledge on their own, and that this must be spoon-fed to them as if they're pre-schoolers (we may refer to this position as revelationism). No adult person would ever subscribe to such an arrangement. Believers are all childish when it comes to knowledge. They are almost never intellectuals. They imagine that knowledge simply arrives out of thin air, or in a burst of "inspiration" from God, and not that it requires many years of difficult and often repetitive study to acquire.
Why would one study things to learn about them? One can simply read a hugely dumbed-down article or fragment of a book on the subject and then call themselves experts. They're even worse than the people who watch science documentaries and then become convinced that they're top-rate scientists.
Reading the Bible and thinking you've cracked the code, you've found the answer, is an exercise for children. Don't you think it's time people stopped treating themselves as children and formulated their own informed opinions? Don't you think it's time to end the rulership of religious leaders over the thoughts of their underlings?
Mainstream religion is a business just like any other, and believers are the suckers who stake their very identities on the marketing drivel of whatever religion they happen to uncritically accept.
In the movie End of Days, Satan says, "Let me tell you something about him [God]: he is the biggest underachiever of all time. He just had a good publicist, that's all. Something good happens, it's his will; something bad happens, he moves in mysterious ways. You take that--that overblown press kit they call the Bible, you look for the answer in there, what do they tell you? - shit happens."
We'd absolutely join the cult of the double-crossing Satan in that movie if it meant getting away from God!
The Good News
Christians go on and on about the Good News - that Jesus was sacrificed for all our sins and so we can all enjoy salvation, but the Good News means something different round these parts:
Have you heard the Good News?
Faith is dead!
Scripture is dead!
The Prophets are dead!
God is dead!
Join the funeral parade. Toss God down into the earth. Bury him once and for all.
His hatred of humanity and human nature is no longer required.
His Scripture is an insult to us all.
Join the funeral celebration. Celebrate the death of God! Dance on his remains!
Drink and disobey.
Sin and celebrate.
For God is dead, and we have killed him!
Make no mistake: God is humanity's enemy, not its friend. He perpetuates master-slave, dictator-listener relationships. He is the most arrogant person ever conceived. He wants everyone to worship him and glorify his name day and night for all eternity. He wants everyone to remain like children merely so that he can assume the role of father. He has no regard for other beings. The only reason he decided to save humanity was that if he condemned all humans, there would be no one to stroke his enormous (and enormously fragile) ego. He's the epitome of toxic masculinity.
Anyone who worships such a deluded, arrogant deity is clearly lacking good judgement.
God is the Trump of religion, i.e., everyone except his supporters is fucking sick of him. Anyone who has anything slightly negative to say about him is automatically a bad person and a liar. Trump was elected by democratic (electoral college) votes. God was elected by popular belief. These figures are supported by the very people they're screwing over.
And fuck Jesus, with his teaching of "turn the other cheek." The only people who actively support their enemies are idiots. What's for certain is that God doesn't turn the other cheek, but Jesus delivered it as a teaching because that's the way God wants us to act as humans, i.e., he wants to be able to exploit us without us fighting back (and by "he," we mean his prophets, including Jesus).
If you don't fight against forces seeking to gain dominance over you, if you surrender your mind to the control of others via some holy text, then you pose no threat to prophets or their teachings. All you can do is uncritically accept everything you're told. Those are the people prophets and preachers are experts at looking for and recognising.
The JWs, for example, are (usually) good at recognising when someone is not receptive to their message due to being able to think for themselves. Anyone who questions JW teachings is written off as a "worldly" person.
That's the difference between faith and knowledge. You're not allowed to ask questions of the faithful. Questions are seen as obstacles to be overcome, not as elements of due investigation. Anyone who doesn't like you asking questions is trying to manipulate you. Never accept such people. Always reject them. Ask as many questions as you can come up with. Don't accept non-answers. Anyone who doesn't give you straight answers is trying to mislead you (e.g. politicians).
Question as many things as you can and you will build yourself a bullshit detector. You need to have a strong one. How many people fall for scams in today's world because they believe unduly things they are told? How many people are suckered into believing something that isn't true because they aren't skeptical enough? Faith gets you nowhere.
Believers aren't interested in learning what's true. They're all about insisting their beliefs are true while they arrogantly claim that everyone else's beliefs are false rather than admitting that they are talking out of their asses.
It's your choice to drink the Kool-Aid. No one ever forces you to believe anything. It's up to you what you believe. The first step to behaving in an adult way is taking responsibility for your own actions, yet most so-called "adults" in our world would much rather make up some excuse or narrative explanation for why they made a poor choice. They would much rather save face than admit that they were wrong.
Then again, the probability of Abrahamists taking responsibility is quite low since they believe their salvation will be delivered to them on a silver platter by God, so long as they believe in him. If your salvation isn't your responsibility, what is?
"Every sensible man, every honorable man, must hold the Christian sect in horror."