Friday, June 11, 2010

Do You Read Your Bible Like An Atheist?

The old testament is riddled with death and destruction handed down from God himself at times. While talking to a believer one night, she was telling me that she believes the bible is the word of God. I asked her if she believed the whole bible was the word of God. She said yes with the utmost of conviction. So I handed her my atheist King James Version bible. What is the difference between this atheist bible and your own, you may ask? Well, you know how you thumb through your bible, find all those beautiful, supportive, poetic sounding quotes, and highlight them with a neon marker to discuss in bible study and so you can read them off of those church signs while going down the highway and feel like you know something about your religion?
I do the opposite. I read through the bible and find all the disturbing, fucked up quotes, highlight them, and tab them (you know, for easier reference later on...). My bible is the best though, want to know why? I am sentimentally attached to my bible. That's right, you heard it folks, an atheist with an emotional attachment to a bible. How is this possible? (that's good that your asking questions, that's why I'm here) I'll be glad to tell you how:

My bible has been highlighted before. All those beautiful quotes that are highlighted in your bible, someone already highlighted in mine before I ever read it.

I did.
I highlighted it.

I did this when I was a child, a believer. I was a very good reader at a very young age, and being in a religious family, I read the bible. I would come across things that didn't make sense to me, and I would think to myself: I'm not smart enough to understand, I'm not wise enough to get it....I'm not old enough. I would skim my bible looking for something that sounded nice and encouraging like: St. Luke Chp 1 verse 78.

I am old enough to understand now.

That is why I say some one else highlighted the bible before I ever read it. Because once I read the bible, just like I do any other book (which I've read thousands upon thousands of, and have fully comprehended every one) I couldn't believe that I could be so...lead astray. Led astray of what this book was actually saying.

I come across a lot of people who treat the old testament like it carries no weight with today's society. They almost act like the God of the old testament was another God all together. Did the all knowing, all powerful God change his mind from old testament to new? In my opinion, not really. In God's opinion....I can't divine that, but from what I'm told....if God is all knowing....what is he going to change his mind to? He already knows what is going to happen, what has happened, none of it should be shocking, whatever.

When the person I mentioned in opening said that she believed the entire book of the bible was the word of God, I handed her my atheist bible, with all the pages of tabbed and highlighted sections of death, torment, and nonsense lit up like an "open" sign. Before I did this, I informed her that the old testament says that non-believers should DIE, in many ways, and in many versus the bible states this. I asked her if she thought that if I was born 2,000+ years ago, instead of 27 years ago, would she have agreed that I should be beaten to death with a rock, as the old testament states? She answered me that she believes the bible is the word of God. I asked her again: If I was pulled out of a vagina 2,000 years ago instead of 27, should I be beaten to death with a rock for not believing in your God? She tried to answer again by saying that she believes there are consequences, punishment, for our behaviors. I stated that punishment and discipline's purpose is to correct bad do you correct your behavior if your dead, beaten to death via rock? Her answer then became "I don't know." After I handed her the atheist's bible, and she read it, taking notes and all, she changed her statement. She now says that she believes some of the bible is true, not all of it. I asked her: Who are you to decide what parts are true, the actual word of God, and which aren't? Is the bible a cafeteria, pick which parts suit you best, leave the rest as the work of the devil?

So I implore you, those who are highlighters of the light and fluffy part of your bible. I ask not that you mark up your precious bronze-age-hand-me-down book, but that you read it as it is, a book. Try taking notes on some of the fucked up shit you come across. Did you ever continue reading versus that are before and after the ones your pastor/priest preaches about on Sunday, or the ones you talk about in bible study? Do you ever READ the BOOK of the bible, instead of the versus contained there-in? Would you pick Harry Potter up off a shelf, read a few lines here and there, then go around telling people you've read the Harry Potter book and witchcraft is most defiantly for REAL?


  1. the only problem with Gods supposed wrong doing in the old testament comes only from the eschatology Christians teach, as opposed to what the bible teaches.

    That Christians could believe God is all powerful, benevolent, and simultaneously unable to accomplish his own will just goes to show how thoroughly the warnings of the apostles have gone completely ignored

  2. Did you just say the old testament isn't a part of the bible?

    And let me give you an example of the supposed wrong doing of the old testament:

    (do you think these scenarios warrents death? and please explain why death for these reasons was OK in biblical times, but would get you locked up from society today, and they also happen to violate GODS 10 commandments)

    Exodus Chapter 21, Verse 15
    Exodus Chp 22 Verse 19-24
    Exodus Chp 31, Verse 14-15
    Leviticus Chp 21, Verse 9

    -I have a 100 more where these came from.....want me to keep the "supposed" wrong doings of the bible comming? I'll finish with how God tells you to kill children.

  3. Like I said, there is only a problem if people are getting thrown into a fire pit, and are to remain forever. Moreover, if you were a person who experienced the events preceding these chapters, why wouldnt you follow the laws? To read the rules laid down for this specific society from a perspective where an "untimely" death is the worst possible event is literally to not understand what was going on in the minds of those present.
    Id also like to point out that Exodus 21:15 is saying that if you kill either of your parents you are to be put to death.

    The word is H5221

    A primitive root; to strike (lightly or severely, literally or figuratively): - beat, cast forth, clap, give [wounds], X go forward, X indeed, kill, make [slaughter], murderer, punish, slaughter, slay (-er, -ing), smite (-r, -ing), strike, be stricken, (give) stripes, X surely, wound.

  4. You lost me.....I think what your saying is that the events of the old testament aren't true, that only the words of the apostle's of Jesus are true, as in the new testament? And that all the screwed up stuff in the old testament is...what? That's where you loose me.

  5. I was not taking for granted any unusual understanding of words, so no, and no. When I say "the bible" I am referring to the whole thing as it is commonly known.

    What I am saying is that there would only be fault with God for his words and his actions if he was malevolent, and enjoyed torturing people forever.
    Since the bible is clear he does not want people to suffer, Christians, as you likely well know, will chalk up their contradictory doctrines to "mystery" instead of finding the real answers (or at least A answer).
    Basically, if nothing is impossible for God, Christians would do well to understand that God can bring perfect justice and bring everyone to happiness in the end. So whatever temporary physical evil happens and seems unjust, according to scripture, its for a purpose which is the perfect benevolent will of God, which obviously doesnt include a place like hell.

    So yeah it seems harsh to kill someone for having sex with a pig, or whatever, but if understood from the point of view that "God wills order and good; but it happens sometimes that what is disorder in the part is
    order in the whole."(Leibniz) It can be understood as just.

    Im not trying to convince you of the validity of the events of the bible or anything. Im just trying to set the record straight, so that perhaps, you might have at least the knowledge of a legitimate perspective on what the bible says.

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