Where was god?

Thanks to Theresa for giving me the heads up on a story that ran yesterday. You remember the girl in the closet story I posted a few days ago? Well, there was a follow-up asking religious leaders, “Where was god?”

Here are a couple of their woefully inadequate responses:

To ask “where are you?” is to re-claim God’s promise to be with us; it is to re-call God to being the Life-Giving Redeemer we believe God actually is….when we also cry out the questions “How could you let this happen, God?” and “Where were you?” we are remembering that the God who has promised always to be with us is NOT OK with kids being raped, starved, kept from play, and living in their own filth.

Right, that makes total sense. (Not.) Do these people listen to what they are saying? God’s not here because he’s not ok with our behavior. (Please ignore the double negative.) Seems to me that this is just another lame excuse. And it’s somewhat annoying that people defend their god with these sorts of asinine claims.

Here’s another:

Similarly, the only answer that gives a logical framework to the suffering of children and the existence of an all loving God, is that everyone bears the burdens of past karmas of previous lives. Otherwise a solid case for neglect and cruelty could be made against the Supreme Lord.

Yes, karma. You see, abused kids are paying for sins in previous lives. You don’t know what the sins were, but you just know that you’re getting a beating for something you did before you lived–this time. Another idiotic excuse. I think I prefer his case for, “neglect and cruelty…against the Supreme Lord.”

If you believe in god, it seems to me, the most logical response would be: god had a heart attack and was incapacitated. Maybe Nietzsche was right. God couldn’t take it anymore. We killed him.

But you must surely realize that the holy books we have—the Bible, the Tanakh, the Qur’an—which are the basis for our nation’s religious beliefs, suggest that god never was. How many instances do we read of god’s love in the Bible? There are many.

For god so loved his children that he made them seriously flawed, dumber than not only rocks, but also talking snakes. For god so loved the world that he created monstrous men and women that could do inhumane things to innocent creatures.

God is and always has been a trickster and magician. From the beginning, he created fruit that was so tempting, tasty and terrible, that we would all–forever and ever–become children that god would loathe, that he would find continually disappointing. We suck.

Even as allegories, do these stories make sense?

I hope that someone reading this has a better answer to, “Where was god?” Please don’t say, “It’s not for us to know.” If you know he blesses you and answers your prayers and watches you, then you surely know why he checks out during the times he’s needed the most. Please don’t say, “He gives us free will.” Millions of people every day give examples of how god has stepped into their lives and saved them or a love one. He answers prayers. Clearly, a lot of people believe that god is hanging around here.

Seems that the only way to redeem ourselves as humans is to cut ourselves free from our imagined creator. We don’t need him. We can redefine who we are as a society and as people. We can move forward. We can be better. We don’t have to suck. Perhaps if we didn’t live under the belief that we have an evil nature, that we are prone to sin (yet unconditional love from god), we might hold ourselves to higher standards.

Whatever we were, we have evolved, and we are capable of yet so much more.

Happy Halloween. May the monsters you meet tonight all be pretend.

Advertisements

67 responses to “Where was god?

  1. Wow…sounds a little Gnostic 🙂

    They believed the creator was evil, and that messiahs were here to liberate us from the creator (or Jehova I as the Church of SubGenius calls him)

    Great stuff!

    Love your mails, keep em coming

    • @mktaverner Interesting: “They believed the creator was evil, and that messiahs were here to liberate us from the creator (or Jehova I as the Church of SubGenius calls him) ”

      Love your comments, keep em coming! 🙂

    • You should pray for them even if it is futile. For we strive not against man but the principalities of the air. Bet it’d be hard for them to conceive that we might be herded up all like cattle, abused, raped, sodomized, have all sort of unspeakabke atocities committed against us but probably not them. Cause if you stand for nothing, you’ll fall for everything.

      • @Aaron: What? Did you even bother reading the OP? To me it seems that you are just spouting some phrases learned at the Evangelicals “How not to use your brain and just fill the air with incoherent babble 101”.
        Writing stuff like that is not civilized nor does it do anything to make people think positive about religion or the religious. All that meaningless quoting and spouting does is affirm the idea that religion somehow poisons human brain.

        • @saab93f This is so true: “All that meaningless quoting and spouting does is affirm the idea that religion somehow poisons human brain.” I have a lot more respect for an argument, even if I disagree, if it comes from a place of reason.

  2. I have often thought that the world would be a better place if no one believed in an interfering god. Would we have wars if we knew the soldiers would be dead forever? Would we let children stay with abusive parents if we knew this was there ONE CHANCE for a life? Maybe we would all be kinder to each other if we knew we are all we have. Finally, maybe people would actually do something to improve the world rather than feeling like they accomplished something because they threw up a prayer.

  3. I love this. As always, thank you for your boldness in writing this. This kind of issue is one of the major things that pushed me out of Christianity. Because there really are no good answers to the question “How can a loving all-knowing, all-powerful god allow these things to happen?” The only good answer is that he doesn’t exist.

  4. You said it. I can never make sense of how people can believe there’s an all-merciful, all-powerful, all-loving god watching over us when senseless evil is so present. I can never make sense of how people can believe that THEIR prayers are answered, that god is watching over THEM, when other people get the shaft. The mental gymnastics that are required to keep believing are mind blowing.

  5. I remember a comic saying, “Sure I believe in God, it’s just that my God is a capricious prick.”

  6. When I was a christian, I was always reminded of the verse that says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28) He’s gonna make things right someday. Our ways are not his ways.

    Of course, in the case of the girl in the closet, she may or may not have been “called” according to his purpose. But for those of us who were called (and of course, we WERE!), we always took comfort knowing that someday, when we’re in heaven, everything would make sense.

    Convenient, huh.

    I was once given the analogy that god is a master rug weaver, creating a beautiful work of devine rug art: Our problem is that we can only see the back side of the rug, where all the ends of the yarn are hanging loose, all tattered and without a recognizable pattern. Someday, god was going to flip the loom around and we’d see the beautiful picture that he was working on.

    Makes perfect sense, doesn’t it? (To quote you, Deborah, “NOT!”)

    I can’t imagine a meangful answer to why this girl suffered (and will continue to suffer) the way she did. The only answer that religion gives is, “Have faith.” How is that helpful?

    As a christian, I was told that MY suffering was preparing me for “eternity in heaven.” (Never mind how that was all going to work out. Just have faith.)

    As a post-christian, my response is: “One quadrillion years from now, when I’m enjoying eternity in heaven, how the heck will the pain and s**t I endured during my four-score and ten on this earth a quadrillion years ago make an iota of difference?”

    No, religion answers the unanswerable with two words: Have faith.

    I have a one-word retort: Why?

    • @MattNorquist That’s an interesting rug analogy that I had not heard. We come up with a lot of good explanations that fall apart when you start to look closely or ask “why” as you said.

      Yeah, I can’t imagine, if there were a heaven, how incredibly f—ing boring it would be, even after the first year.

  7. Hmmm this is a hard question… I’m sure much more intelligent believers than I have tried to answer it before and I am sure I could look up some very eloquent answers. Honestly, I don’t know how to answer it personally. I myself ask that question. And I think even believers get angry with the God they believe in when they hear about something like this. At least I do. It’s hard to reconcile. It doesn’t diminish my belief in God, but it is hard to know He stood by and watched such suffering and did nothing. I even think using anecdotes of when one believes God HAS intervened and saved a child works because then it makes you wonder “why that kid but not this kid?” On the same note I find the “payment for past lives” justification you cited very troubling. I mean, wow, we are really going to victim blame a toddler??

    Maybe the *only* ray of hope is that something good comes from it? Maybe? I don’t think we can justify ruining one girl’s life to save others, but hopefully this spurs change? I know my husband and I, upon discussing this article, decided to sign up to receive information about becoming foster parents. Now, we are still a LONG way from ever actually taking in a foster child, and honestly the thought of doing so (especially if the child had been subjected to abuse) is terrifying. But, it’s something we both feel called to do… and we wish we could have some impact on those forgotten or lost or parentless or “unloved” kids. So, you hope that maybe one child’s suffering can somehow spur change that will save many others.

    • sorry meant to say “I even think using anecdotes…. DOESN’T work”. Look I used double negatives too. 😉

    • @Molly Wow. You sure do practice what you preach. I do have a lot of respect for you.

      First, admitting you don’t know but still believe does take some courage. I don’t think many preachers would admit that they don’t know the answer (yet it’s the truth-we cannot know).

      Second, to actually make a change after reading that article says a lot about who and your husband are. Kudos. I am going to follow your lead and look into mentoring a student…I did that years ago, and it was very rewarding.

      • @Deb I am certainly not worthy of any praise at this point… we are a LONG way from actually committing to a foster child. It just makes sense that if we have the space in our home, the money in our bank, and the room in our hearts, then we should try to share those gifts with a child who has no home or love. I think it would be incredibly challenging though, and at this point my biological children are too young to take on the additional responsibility. But, at some point, I think it is something we really *should* do. We will see what transpires.

  8. I am just sad. Sad first and foremost because of what that little has had to endure but also because otherwise smart people still try and excuse their deity.
    If only we people had enough faith in ourselves and others. That would render any supernatural being void and meaningless. One can only hope…

  9. Why do you sound so angry, as if people who believe in a God cause these bad things to happen? It sounds to me like you are directing your anger in the wrong direction. You clearly don’t believe in God, yet find a way to direct anger towards him. Seems misplaced.

    • Hi Markedfrombirth. I’m not angry, just incredulous.

      Are you angry with Santa when you don’t get what you want for Christmas? I’m not trying to be flip or mean in any way. I am just trying to show you that you cannot have any emotional response to something you do t believe exists.

    • Hi mfb! I think you understood everything Deb wrote totally wrong and got your knickers in a twist in the process.

      I am an unbeliever so Yahweh has as much meaning to me and IMHO to the world as do Ahura Mazda, Zeus or Thor alas nothing, zero. People who do believe in supernatural do however have meaning and they do affect also my life.

      What I find incredible is that otherwise rational people are willing to give infinite slack to their chosen deity – nothing bad ever is deemed his fault or he is never held accountable for anything yet he gets praise for every little good thing.

      Honestly, if there was an omnipotent benevolent God, would he not intervene in these horrific things? Using God´s respecting free will as cop-out is just disingenious and lazy.

      In extreme cases like refusing medical treatment for a child because God will sort things if the parents just pray enough is something so horrendous that I find it hard to describe my disgust. Yes, the majority of xians condemn that kind of neglect but still kinda understand and almost respect the parents´ choice because that is an act of real faith. As a consequence the parents´ have not been tried and judged as harshly as any other premeditated murderers. That is disgusting and worth loathing!!

      • I understand your point. I think it is unfair to point out anecdotal stories about one religious family choosing to do one thing or another but I understand the underlying concern when you hear stories like that.

        It just seems like the conclusion paragraph of the post places unfair blame on religious belief for the evil in the world. To use Deborah’s metaphor, no I don’t get mad at Santa when I don’t get what I want for Christmas…but I don’t see how attacking the kids at school who do still believe in Santa is going to change what I get.

        Religious people are going to defend what they believe because they feel attacked. The honest answer to why these things happen is “they don’t know”. They just don’t want to say that to you because they can’t show weakness when under attack.

        It is like lying. The more they try to cover up the truth, the deeper they dig their hole. You aren’t going to get a better answer to “Where was God?” than “I don’t know” because that is the only truthful answer. News reporters could just as easily burst into the police station and ask “Where were the police?” and likely receive an ill-contrived excuse for why it wasn’t their fault.

        If you are truly looking to understand peoples continued belief in God in the face of these horrible events, attack and criticism won’t illicit truthful responses, only defensive ones.

        If you are trying to ascertain the motifs of a God you inherently don’t believe in…well…we have come full circle and I don’t even understand why you are asking. You can’t trojan horse your way into understanding God.
        Faith will never be as solid a ground as you would like it to be, no matter how many rationalizations you hear.

        • @saab93f I think this is an important point you wrote, “People who do believe in supernatural do however have meaning and they do affect also my life.”
          @Markedfrombirth As I mentioned to Molly, who did response with an “I don’t know,” it takes a lot of courage to say that. I don’t think it’s a weakness to admit that at all, and I have more respect for a person who is truthful and admits that none of us know–could possibly know.

          Using this example, “Where were the police?” is not comparable. The police are here. They can–and are–held accountable. “God” is not. No one has ever seen, heard or felt him. As saab93f said earlier, god wins either way. He’s praised for the good–and if something bad happens…well, it’s our fault for being such sinners. I think the most rational response has come from dqfan2012 because his god is 100% hands off.

          I am actually not trying to ascertain the motives of a god I don’t believe in. You miss the point. As I said, this is about the people who claim that god is our leader, our guide, our savior, our moral compass. They are our neighbors, teachers, lawmakers. I’m saying, hello people. Where is YOUR god? Maybe if we stop focusing all our energy some place where we are not getting results, we can actually make changes.

        • @mfb:
          Why is it unfair to show that God is impotent for not being able to come to aid of children? Why is it unfair to show that He is not what the Bible tells, an omnipotent, omniscient and benevolent deity? Why is it unfair to add 1+1 and come up with an answer that God does not exist and we humans really have each other to rely on?
          I cannot of course say that there are no gods – all I can say is that there is NO evidence of any and the probability of Yahweh being anything more that a comforter for a nomadic tribe thousands of years ago is pretty close to zero. OTOH it is exactly as big as that of Zeus’ or Thor’s.
          I am coming quite close to saying that religious people do lie to themselves, to their fellow religionistas and their children. They have a nice story (in their opinion) and channels by which to share and multiply that. Truth is a non-issue.

  10. Do they not realize how contorted their logic is? Of course they don’t. Because if they did, they’d be forced to admit to themselves that their belief as a whole does not make sense.

  11. It is interesting to read the responses to this question in the linked article. These are all more than likely very intelligent, well-educated people, who give the topic a lot of thought and energy. Some points I almost agree with. But I do think this is a good indication of the need that people have for faith and belief in God. It is a need for them like air and water and love. God, or some sort of creative intelligence, MUST exist, and they lay out all these reasons and arguments and points to back up this need.
    Two of them quoted Elie Wiesel in his book “Night”. Reasoning that when he said God was hanging there on that gallows, it meant that God was right there with that dying child, suffering right along side him. I’ve even heard the theory that God actually experienced all extremes of human suffering when he was here on earth living as a human. I find this so………… presumptous, offensive, outrageous, you name it. First of all, what is described in that scene in that book, is so beyond horrible…….. and I’m thinking really, really, people actually believe God was right up there with that child? Was the child aware of this fact? Was his pain and suffering any less as a result of God’s presence? Did God DO anything? How could God be there with him and witness that? I just can’t accept that. Plus, none of these people, no matter how well educated in theology or religion they may be, can imagine for a second in even their worst nightmares what Mr. Wiesel experienced in that camp. They should not use his words and his experiences to make their points that God exists. And none of us can really know what Mr. Weisel meant in that quote either unless we ask him. I read that book, and this is just my opinion, but I don’t think that’s what he thought at the time he witnessed that atrocity. I think that could very possibly have been the moment when his faith in God was destroyed entirely.
    I grew up being taught that God was real and present, but really, I only believed because I was supposed to. And eventually I got to a point where I realized, there just isn’t any evidence whatsoever convincing me there is a God. And frankly, I just could not care less if God exists at all. He has no bearing in my life. And if he does, I find him to be extremely worthless and irrelevant. I don’t believe our society or human beings in general are any improved or better off because of the prevalence of faith. Lauren Kavanaugh surely wasn’t.

    • @Angie Great comment, especially “And frankly, I just could not care less if God exists at all. He has no bearing in my life.”

      I also was struck by their interpretation of Wiesel. I read it several years ago, but I didn’t interpret that line to mean that god was there either.

  12. This past weekend, the TV was on and a religious service came on (Sunday morning). I started listening out of curiosity. The minister started talking about how god talks to us and we need to just listen to him. He told several personal stories of how god’s voice guided him in making decisions, like buying (or not buying) a house because god gave him a sign by making it rain so the roof would leak. Or the story about buying the right car (I didn’t understand his story, but apparently god was helping him make this decision as well). But then you think about this little girl in the closet. I read through that entire story and it is just gut wrenching. It reminds me of the book “A Child Called ‘It'”… very similar story of a mother singling out one of her children. Anyway, it seems inconceivable that god would help this minister decide whether or not to buy a house or a car, but he would not save this little girl from years of torture and suffering. It is sad that people out there will try to rationalize it when it cannot be rationalized. There is no reason for it except that her parents were just bad people and they got away with it for a long time.

    • @Gina Yes, I find that very sad, too, when I hear someone say that god has helped them make a decision–or even helped them buy a house. Yet there’s so many kids who don’t even have homes or shelter.

  13. A lot of senseless things happen in life that are beyond our control. The arguments posed against believing in a god in these situations are completely justified. Why? Why would a holy, just, and benevolent God allow things like this to happen? I get the question. I have asked it many times before (like in my divorce).

    However, if I were to answer this from a “theological” perspective, this is how I would approach it:

    God created light and darkness. (Isaiah 45:7)
    God created peace and he created evil (more accurately understood as calamity/choas) (Isaiah 45:7)
    God created good and evil.
    God created male, female and the asexual.

    What I’m trying to say is that in life there is a balance between all things. You cannot have light without dark. You cannot have or understand good without evil. Our race cannot procreate without biological matter from both males and females.

    The evil was not created to make people suffer. The evil was not created to demonstrate who is better than others (IE. Why one person was chosen, yet another was not, we all know there are many evil people who seem to prosper in their way). It simply exists, because there has to be a balance.

    With the balance, there are clearly defined boundaries boundaries (imagine looking at the Yin-Yang symbol with its clearly defined boundaries). Some people will be rescued from their situation. Other, good people, will seem to have a great life and be killed in a car accident. I think a good way to view these things is a mixture between the chaos theory and the butterfly effect.

    This can be as simple as saving someone’s life using a lie. Lying is wrong. Saving life is right.

    The boundary provides gray.

    I don’t want to go into a delve too far into philosophical topics. But, this provides a small bit to think about.

    • Also, may I argue that people who are rescued are not rescued because of God? I believe God made the natural order of things and does not interfere with it … otherwise, God would be pretty sadistic and unfair.

      • @dqfan2012 I had a college professor that used a similar argument when cornered–that evil exists as a way to know good.

        It could make sense if it were not for the fact that god’s original intention, according to the bible (and other religious texts), was that Adam and Eve would live in perpetuity not knowing evil.

        • My point was a philosophical point, nothing more. However, while I understand the general consensus for Adam and Eve perpetually existing in the Garden, I personally doubt that was the actual intention. If that is such, it would have been easy to prevent the serpent from manipulating Adam and Eve to eat the fruit from the “tree of knowledge of good and evil.”

          • @dqfan2012 But you must surely realize that the whole idea of a serpent “manipulating Adam and Eve to eat the fruit from the tree” is a little “out there” to say the least. God creates a reptile that is smarter than his children? Snakes have neither brains or voice boxes. If you say that snakes evolved or de-evolved, then you cannot believe that god created them. If this god is all-powerful and all-knowing, he would have known that his Adam and Eve were going to fail. He could have designed them better if he did not want them to fail. So, either he is not all-powerful or he is mean-spirited.

            • That is an interesting comment that definitely deserves thought and consideration. I think some things are allegorical instead of literal. For example, “wolves in sheep’s clothing” is referenced in the Bible. If we took this meaning literally, then we’d be looking for an animal that disguises itself as another animal. This is ludicrous. Most animals don’t have this kind of reasoning capabilities. However, the phrase is kind of like a metaphor, simile, fable, where one thing clearly means something else. In this case, I believe its talking about people who would hurt “the sheep” intentionally. The case of the snake may fall in a similar kind of category. Of course, in this respect, the snake would be similar to the wolf.

    • I am sorry but I do not agree with you at all. Claiming that there needs to be evil so that we can respect goodness is just absurd. We unbelievers “have no choice” but to be good for goodness´ sake.

      Deities have struck a beautiful deal – they get praise from every good thing but do they get heat from bad or evil, nope.

    • Will there be both good and bad in heaven? If you believe in heaven, this explanation falls flat because there’s an obvious counter example to the appeal to balance. And the Bible’s full of promises about a time/place with no more suffering, which also suggests that the balance thing is just a post hoc excuse.

      • @Recovering Agnostic Yes, good point. Heaven, our intended destination, is supposed to be all good. So, we cannot know if, then, if there is no evil.

        @saab93f These arguments also ignore the fact that evil is complex, that there are many degrees. The most extreme cases—like keeping a child in the closet–is rare and horrifying when it happens. We think of that as pure evil. But there are times when people are just acting out because they were raised to hit children. There are times when people steal for selfish reasons. Pointing to god or satan as a source of evil over-simplifies the problem and does not lead to solutions…Since you live in a more secular country, I wonder if your government is more focused on solving these sorts of problems, on rehabilitation rather than punishment and forgiveness.

  14. Beautifully stated…as usual.

  15. If God were all knowing and all powerful, He has the access, knowledge and availability to stop a child from being raped, beaten and humiliated in any way to begin with. Still, He (if he existed) CHOOSES to do nothing.

    Think of how pissed we get when we learn of a child being abused by a parent right under the same roof as the other parent! Would it not seem downright stupid for that parent to say “I didn’t want to mess up man’s free will or play with fate, so, I just let the abuser beat our kid”? How stupid!

    Yeah, I expect that non-abusive parent to have just about as much responsibility as the abusive parent because he or she knew about it most of the time, if not, the entire time. How much more should the god who sees everything be responsible for His neglect, abandonment and rejection.

    I mean, seriously, He compares himself to a good father who would not give a stone to his child if he were hungry, He’d give him bread. Yet, He does not intervene when a poor immigrant or young teenage girl in this country unknowingly becomes a part of the sex slave industry? The rich keep getting richer by cheating and manipulating, but a poor parent has to work two or three jobs to keep a roof over his or her family’s head. Really? Where’s the help then, Gee Oh Dee? And if someone tells me we live through this shit because the world is in a fallen state I would have to remind them that there is no such thing as free will in Jesus Christ then. For if there was, we (especially little children and other innocents) would not pay for the sins of others. There is no karma and we do not reap what we sow, shit truly does happen, but it often happens to the ones who deserve it the least, not that often to the constantly crooked ones who hurt as many people as they can.

    People can excuse God all they want, but if he supposedly wants to hold human beings accountable for our actions, how much more responsible should he be for his actions or the lack thereof? If “He” wants to be the “better” god, he can start by bucking up on his part.

    • @CHope Great analogies. It’s ironic that we hold ourselves more accountable and to higher standards that we hold our “god.”

    • Oh, he will. He’ll beat you and them until you/they submit. He’ll break your/their arms/legs and heal you so you can learn or suffer again. Gehenna fire, destruction of the body and soul by fire, will not be implmented until the Thousand Year Reign of the Lord God(Lamb of God, Yeshua, Christ) is up then they’ll be thrown into the Lake of Fire. The flawed disposition of believers to think you go to Heaven or Hell, just like Purgatory, is a concept based upon that Harlot, The Catholoc Church, which has conducts fornications/adulteries with all the Kings of the Earth. The Lord God(Lamb of God, Son of God) rules in perfect love, punishes in perfect love because he was faithful unto death, and was the one that created mankind in the Garden of Eden at the Almighty Father’s command. If you suffered from abusive parents, I am sorry for your ordeal. It could have been word: you could have been starved/murdered brutally in a concentration camp, raped/sodomized before being murdered. Could have been tortured all you life or until your death? So, please stop with your attempt at secular humanistic fecal matter and stop demonizing the CREATORS(the Almighty and the Lord) unless they withdraw the gift of life and safety(cause they just might give you what I just spoke about).

      • Aaron, no one holds a bigger grudge than GOD himself. He punishes EVERY human being for the sin in Eden. The sin of “knowing more”. A “sin” that happened at least 6000 years ago. It was at that very moment (according to the Bible) that HE began causing pain for us women in birthing children. It was at that point that HE put thorns and thistles on plant life. “The fall of man” was also when GOD decided to cause men to work hard and sweat. And every single person has paid the price for the “sin” of Adam and Eve in Eden. Guess what? It didn’t go away with the cross, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ either! If there is anyone who is to be accountable for his actions, it’s God. If there is anyone who is more bitter than any other so called god or human being, it’s the Abrahamic God. And your precious father Abraham was a liar who God continually blessed while he lied to kings and raped a slave girl. It’s your God who punished those kings and that slave girl and NOT Abraham. It is your God who told his mighty armies to kill men and take their wives and their children as their own. You can call that whatever the hell you want to, but I call it the worst cases of rape, domestic violence and child abuse, EVER! It is your sweet precious Jesus who yells at his mom while she is encouraging him to perform his first miracle. It is also the “light of the world” who calls a Samaritan woman a dog.

        And by the way, don’t fake apologize. Don’t tell someone your sorry when you truly don’t mean it.

        • @CHope Excellent points.

          And this point: “It didn’t go away with the cross, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ either!” I wonder why more people are NOT protesting this. Talk about unfair.

          It’s frustrating that the Bible has been used to empower abusers, slaveholders, corrupt government officials, yet the victims think god gives them hope…God always wins.

  16. I originally came here to comment about the allegories early in the Bible. They don’t make sense if you read intent into them, but I think the story of creation is an excellent metaphor for our evolution and growing self-awareness. We know we’re killing other animals and people, and we’ve developed a moral understanding. It fits, right down to the pain of childbirth, which is caused by our oversized heads.

    That’s what I think, anyway. Have a look and see if you agree.

    • They make perfect sense if you have the intelligence to prove them, wisdom of GOD rather because its not our intelligence. Use the scientific method and presume that all the science crap you been led to believe is a huge lie. The evidence is there but you don’t want to do your homework. Close your shallow mind up, believe evolution BS, secular humanistic BS, satanism and the rest of its forms. Funny how Buddha is a representation of Christ, every other culture for the most part has a version of Christ( oh I forgot, Satan tried to confuse the simple and it looks like he’s succeeding. Hmm wonder why he wouldn’t want you to know the truth cause he hates you perchance), the Burning Bush found, Noahs Ark found, Red Sea parts. Free ur mind Opey.

      • Sorry. Meant to say stop believing evolution, secular humanism, Satanism, Wicca, Ancient Egyptian/Sumerian Mysteries, Druidism, Jainism, Hinduism, and all the rest, that do not teach that Judeo-Christian(Messianic Judaism), is BS. Wake up, NEO. Pull your head out of the ground, cant see whats going on around you.

  17. [image: Inline image 1]Great article, Deborah (as always….). Don’t think I can put pics in comments, but this is likely “the rest of the story…” LOL!!!!!

    dv

    -Dennis Volz

  18. I just wish all of the ministers that spend time explaining away the bible and how god gets all the praise in these situations would instead spend time showing how we can implement change and provide healing. There is no rational in such horrible circumastances but if you have the power to preach maybe you have the power to motivate change. There is a call there as an atheist to do so as well. Instead of sitting in the pews telling someone how off mark they are with their misguided beliefs, we can pull together and sow how change can be brought about.

    • @jenniebutter Yes, good point “There is no rational in such horrible circumstances but if you have the power to preach maybe you have the power to motivate change.”

      Personally, I do not wish to force or shame people to give up their religion, just to keep it private.

  19. “A God who could make good children as easily a bad, yet preferred to make bad ones; who could have made every one of them happy, yet never made a single happy one; who made them prize their bitter life, yet stingily cut it short; who gave his angels eternal happiness unearned, yet required his other children to earn it; who gave is angels painless lives, yet cursed his other children with biting miseries and maladies of mind and body; who mouths justice, and invented hell — mouths mercy, and invented hell — mouths Golden Rules and foregiveness multiplied by seventy times seven, and invented hell; who mouths morals to other people, and has none himself; who frowns upon crimes, yet commits them all; who created man without invitation, then tries to shuffle the responsibility for man’s acts upon man, instead of honorably placing it where it belongs, upon himself; and finally, with altogether divine obtuseness, invites his poor abused slave to worship him!” – Mark Twain, The Mysterious Stranger

  20. @LT Love Mark Twain. That quote makes me sad…

  21. Found this on Twain btw — He was comfortable with a deist god it seems (which is almost like an agnostic for my money).

    from: http://www.celebatheists.com/wiki/Mark_Twain

    According to Chapter 295 of Albert Bigelow Paine’s biography of him, he expressed deism on several occasions:

    Let us now consider the real God, the genuine God, the great God, the sublime and supreme God, the authentic Creator of the real universe, whose remotenesses are visited by comets only comets unto which incredible distant Neptune is merely an out post, a Sandy Hook to homeward-bound specters of the deeps of space that have not glimpsed it before for generations a universe not made with hands and suited to an astronomical nursery, but spread abroad through the illimitable reaches of space by the flat of the real God just mentioned, by comparison with whom the gods whose myriads infest the feeble imaginations of men are as a swarm of gnats scattered and lost in the infinitudes of the empty sky.

    At an earlier period-the date is not exactly fixable, but the stationery used and the handwriting suggest the early eighties he set down a few concisely written pages of conclusions, conclusions from which he did not deviate materially in after years. The document follows:

    I believe in God the Almighty.

    I do not believe He has ever sent a message to man by anybody, or delivered one to him by word of mouth, or made Himself visible to mortal eyes at any time in any place.

    I believe that the Old and New Testaments were imagined and written by man, and that no line in them was authorized by God, much less inspired by Him.

    I think the goodness, the justice, and the mercy of God are manifested in His works: I perceive that they are manifested toward me in this life; the logical conclusion is that they will be manifested toward me in the life to come, if there should be one.

    This is supported by Mark Twain’s Private War with the Almighty, which examined how his views of religion evolved over his life. After seeing how Thomas Paine got turned from hero to villain on account of his Age of Reason, he resolved to keep quiet about his religious skepticism and publicly attack only relatively “safe” targets. As the years went by and he became successful, he became relatively conciliatory toward religion, but as his fortunes reversed late in life, he became bitterly sarcastic and hostile.

  22. I messed up the formatting – this paragraph should not be a quote (italics) —

    At an earlier period-the date is not exactly fixable, but the stationery used and the handwriting suggest the early eighties he set down a few concisely written pages of conclusions, conclusions from which he did not deviate materially in after years. The document follows:

  23. Love, kindness, and gentle patience to all. I am saddened to
    hear from another disillusioned or ignorant person concerning the Almighty; hopefully, your just ignorant. The Almighty doesnt take a personal stand in our lives, he has already proved his perfect love through your creation, otherwise you wouldnt exist, the creation of the universe(governing laws of the universe, gravity and law of energy) and providing the ultimate sacrifice, (Lord Yeshua, Emmanuel, Yoshua ben Yosef, Jesus Christ if you prefer), for the atonement of our sins. You take a few that are not representative of the body of Christ. The Father loves everyone as does the Lord, Yeshua(Christ), God and they allow mankind free-will to come unto them. You talk using naturalistic, secular humanism, evolutionary and Satanic philosophies/theological presumptions probably taught to you by the education system or some other uninformed/dim person(s) and/or individuals. How can the created understand the creator? They cannot unless they decide to come out of the hive mind, take the blue pill NEO, accept that there is ONE CREATOR(simplesticly put, something(Infinite LOVE/ENERGY, GOD) must exist for something else to come into existence). Right if it wasnt for Yeshua mankind would be dead already because us Christians wouldn’t have been held back. We’d be just as abhorent as the people you believe are good. Bet you believe that guns kill people, people kill people, and that guns only in the hands of law enforcement(military) should he implemented. Benjamin Franklin said it best when he said, “They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Your premiss regarding Christians and GOD are flawed, we love you. Its the ones who say they ar Christian but preach hate that need help also. Don’t hate the sinner, hate the sin.

  24. @Debbie, I love your posts. And this one in particular was very timely. My spouse-like-creature and I had almost the exact conversation over the weekend. And then I read this blog post yesterday and was all “Damn. This lady says what I’m thinking but so much more eloquently.”

    I also love the conversations that follow your posts. Most of them, anyway. Sometimes, people feel the need to judge and proselytize instead of trying to read the opposite views and try to come to a closer understanding.

    If there is a god, and he allows these things to happen to children, then frankly, he doesn’t deserve my praise. I refuse to worship something so callous. It took me a long time to become comfortable with this. Being raised in a strict religion and the fear that was instilled in me from the time I was 3 really made it hard for me to think rationally about the topic. And stories like the girl in the closet reinforce my departure from christianity and all forms of deity worship. I sometimes admire those who can give it to god and excuse him for all the ugly in the world. But now that I have pushed away the fear that my church instilled in me, I see that this perfect god is imperfect. And believing in him was just a safety net.

    • I forgot to subscribe to comment follow ups. So just ignore this…

    • Hiya, jzbelle. I didn’t recognize the new moniker at first. Thanks for the kind words. I enjoy your insights, too. I, too, either admire or envy those folks who can “give it to god and excuse him for all the ugly in the world.” At least they think there will be some sort of justice in the end. Though when were dead, it won’t matter what we believed or who got justice.

  25. If the six days of creation were really millions or billions of years (basically saying that “the evening and the morning” don’t mean a day as written in the Bible), then plants and animals would have been dying long before Adam was created. The fossil record clearly shows imperfections, like disease. That is completely consistent with the fallen world that existed after Adam’s sin in Genesis 3. It is also completely inconsistent with a perfect “very good” world that existed prior to Adam’s sin.

I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s