Thursday, June 19, 2014

I Have Issues with the Bible

My issues with the bible started when I was about 15 years old. I had a friend who was very ill, and many people told me that if I prayed, it would surely help. Indeed, there were prayers for the sick in the bible, and I diligently said them many times a day. Needless to say, my friend's condition worsened and she eventually passed away. 

The bible ended up in shreds, and I became an instant atheist. 

A few years after that I became acquainted with a born again Christian who suggested that I read the whole bible instead of being in a bad place about my friend's passing. 

So I did.

I have an open mind if I have anything, and I certainly liked the idea of giving God and the bible another shot. I had a funny, positive feeling about her suggestion. I felt I would read this book and have many revelations (no pun intended). 

And I did--but not the kind I thought I would have.

Instead of learning that God is a loving and kind being that the priest told me about when my mom could still get me to go to church on Sunday, I read that God is pretty vengeful and tricky.

For instance, he created man in his image, and gave him free will and the ability to choose. He also gave him original sin, although I do not understand why. So then he didn't like what his creations were doing--and destroyed them all! What? God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because he did not like what the people in the city had become? The bible said its inhabitants were "depraved". So instead of helping and fixing things (he was right there waiting!) he "rained down sulfur from the heavens." And he had already done this once before with Noah--not with sulfur, but with a terrible and all encompassing flood. Hmmm....

Sounds like a bad father to me...

Deuteronomy has plenty of He-Man Woman Haters Club quotes that not only make me angry, but make me feel I want nothing to do with the Christian religion. (I AM Christian, Russian Orthodox to be exact, but do not practice).

For example:

Deuteronomy 22:13-21 states that if a woman is not a virgin on her wedding night she must be executed. (No mention of men here...)

Deuteronomy 22:28-29 tells us that a virgin who is raped must marry her rapist.

Deuteronomy 25:11-12 warns that if a woman stands up for her husband in a fight by grabbing the other man's genitals then her hand shall be cut off and no pity shall be shown to her.

What the hell?!

God could not have said these things...could he?

And speaking of God saying things, why is it he was talking up a storm back then, but we hear nothing but a resounding echo of our own voices when we talk to him now?

Back to the bible...

Remember when you were in school and kids got picked on by bullies? The bullies said they would beat you up after school, or tell you to do something mean to another unsuspecting victim or else they would beat YOU up. Awful kids. Well, remember what God said to Abraham? He told him to take his only son Isaac and kill him. Abraham was ready to do it. Suddenly God said nope--it was just a test. I would not care if I were offered eternal life, a home in heaven, feathery wings and a solid gold halo--if someone or something told me to kill my only son I would cordially invite him to go fuck himself. I don't see much difference between this God and the bullies in school. Here is a chart that supposedly explains what God meant:

God told Abraham to kill his son

Why do I need a chart to explain this? Why does Jesus speak in such confusing language? In Mark, Jesus says he speaks in parables to confuse people so they will go to hell :) Again--what?? When Jesus was asked why he spoke in parables, he told his disciples they would be shown the mysteries of heaven--but not the others. So basically you had to believe BEFORE you were shown any of the truth.

Sigh. I don't like his methods.

Again--I would not hang around with this person in school and would not want him as a friend--why would I want to consider him my heavenly "father".

Old Testament, you say? True. But the new says in Matthew 5:17:

Jesus strongly approves of the law and the prophets. He hasn't the slightest objection to the cruelties of the Old Testament

I also don't care for the fact that we are told we can't do anything without Jesus--and we are nothing without him. That is very much contradictory to what I want my son to know. He should know that you have the power inside to run your own lives, and the decisions you make are what will shape you.

And why did Jesus need to kill a fig tree? A fig tree that he was mad at for not bearing fruit--even though it was not fig season...ah...he did it to show how much God hated figs, because he wanted figs and could not find any. This sounds like a petulant three year old who is told they can't have a lollipop.

Of course there is the part that says "true" Christians can cast out devils, speak in tongues, take up serpents, drink poisons without harm, and cure the sick by touching them. Nope. Just not true. Another radical Christian lost his life this past February after handling poisonous snakes and refusing medical treatment after he was bitten.

Yes, I know people go to church and feel Christianity and the bible show them the "good and proper" way to live, and I have nooo problem with that, if you are actually using it to be a better person. If you are a believer who condemns others, looks down on certain lifestyles, judges anyone who is not a believer in Jesus, or harms others because of your beliefs, then maybe you should find a better way to be a "good" person.

To sum things up, the bible is too contradictory to make any sense as a guidebook for my life. There are too many cruelties and atrocities and I would rather not follow a guide who condones that mindset.

Although I can't prove there is NOT a God, the book that tells me that I must believe in one or I will forever burn in a fiery pit of hell is not the kind of book for me.