This Sunday I visited the internet church of some fundamental-literalist, bible-thumping Christians. I miss them occasionally and love to go and hear an inspiring sermon now and again. Today’s sermon (a thread dialogue) was about God’s justice. I have paraphrased the conversation below for those of you don’t have time to go to church:
The Bible teaches not to steal or murder.
Come on, the Old Testament tells us that Yahweh ordering the destructions of entire cities — pregnant women, children, farmers, merchants — everyone! You can’t imagine they were all guilty.
Yes, the were all “evil to the core” otherwise Yahweh would not have ordered them killed. Yahweh does not kill innocent people because that would be murder and Yahweh doesn’t condone murder.
Seriously, everyone? Can you imagine any nation or city now where everyone is totally ‘evil to the core’.
Ah, you can’t compare to these days. The Bible tells us they were all evil. Every last one of them.
But the thumpers realize that their argument is weak and now offer 3 generic Christian caveats for why God is justified in killing innocents:
(1) The Evil Culture condemns Everyone:
Version 1: The utilitarian: “If the culture allows evil then all the people must be wiped or it will continue.” The great flood is just such an example, but it didn’t work. So it appears Yahweh does not remove the bad apple from the barrel, he just burns the whole barrel.
Version 2: Tolerating Evil is Evil: Since horrible evil occurs in the culture, everyone in that culture is condemned because they did not stop it. Their tolerance condemns them. Other thumpers joined in say, “Yes, and America is next because of tolerating abortion and pornography! You will all die! Praise Jesus!”
(2) Everyone is Guilty from Birth:
Yep, the all too familiar Romans 3:23. By this argument, the word “innocent” is ridiculous because no one is innocent anyway. Yahway can wipe out whoever he wants and be justified.
(3) We can not understand God’s Mind:
This is the favorite escape clause of Christians. When the argument gets tough, they inevitably run here. It is the equivalent of saying, “OK, it may appear that innocents are killed, but that is because we have little brains. We have to trust the Bible.”
So that was my Sunday visit to the Church of Bible Thumpers. I know you all have heard this stuff before. I actually try to look for the good that religion can offer occasionally but encounters like this make me realize why it is import to speak out about Atheism. Hope you will have a more reasonable Sunday than I have.
Note: If you are sick enough to want to read the source and check to see if my paraphrases are accurate-enough, here ya go. The sad thing about this post is that the author’s intent was to show why he doesn’t quote the Bible when he talks with non-believers (heathens). But the comment thread shows why he indeed does need his Bible — because he (and other fundies) don’t make sense without it. [or even with it]. OK, I realize this is a total waste of time and generic so I ask my readers for forgiveness. But sometimes, I just can’t help myself and go back to look at a world I left behind.