I’m in two minds here about this one. I don’t really want to put down Christianity because I know some wonderful people who are christians and writing on the web now is a little like getting a tattoo – with Google and the way back machine, what you say kind of sticks around with you for.?? At least getting a tattoo, you know it’s going to turn into a big blue blurry blob on your old wrinkled skin when you’re 90.
I spent much of my schoolhood attending a nice, good ol’ Baptist School – we had a “non-contact” rule, or a “2 inch rule” ie: males and females who attended the same school were not supposed to go within 2 inches of each other and here’s the best part. This was in Australia in the late 80’s / early 90’s – we had been using the metric system for some 20-30 years already?
Anyway – here’s why Christianity needs to have a good rethink about it’s current situation.
- Adopt a Nun – I just don’t get the whole idea of priests, nuns etc retiring? What do they retire from? Serving God? Did Mother Theresa ever retire? What about Saint Francis of Assisi? I’ve never heard of an Indian Yogi or Buddhist Monk retire, though maybe they do and I don’t know it.
- The Christian version of ‘eternal life’ – let’s just get a ‘reference point’ – a few definitions of ‘eternity’
- Time without beginning or end; infinite time.
- infinite time; duration without beginning or end.
This one really gets me and I really understand Lewis Black’s frustration here because a common phrase in Christian rhetoric is “will have eternal life…” – now, I may be one for semantics but considering that eternity is without beginning or end, does it not stand to reason that I have always existed, am existing and will exist forever more into the ‘future’ ie: that I already have eternal life? The normal Christian dialogue here is that I only get eternal ‘life’ when I ‘die’ and it’s just a matter of which direction I go – up or down, to the nice guy or the bad guy, the hot place or the one with eternal air conditioning. Eternity is simply not eternity if it had a beginning ie: I only came into existence when I entered this physical body.
Now, let’s talk about ‘idolatry‘ – ooh, this one get’s me going. A friend of mine was once advised by his christian lady friend that she did not want to have a certain object in their house that was gifted to him by his Buddhist uncle because it was an idol. Seriously, I just love the little representations that we give atom and neutrons spinning around each other. When does something become an idol? Those familiar with ‘A Course in Miracles’ may remember one of the first lessons – “I have given everything I see all the meaning it has for me”. If I were to sit and pray under a tree, is that tree now an idol? If I stand in awe of a tall mountain, is that an idol? And what’s the whole issue with idols anyway? Here’s the lowdown
“I am the LORD your God…You shall have no other gods before Me. You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God” (Exodus 2:2-5).
Backup there because I somehow think that either Mr Author of Exodus has made a bit of an error, something got lost in translation or the God that Mr. Author of Exodus is talking about is just not the kind of God I think worth of listening to. Jealousy huh? How many Christians would stand up and say “jealousy is a Godly trait” – hey, I bitch-slapped my woman because I was jealous of her talking to that guy at church.. and the congregation says “amen”, yea right.
Seriously idolators, we put our work first, our ipod first, our relationship’s first, our mum and dad first, our family first, our blog first, our tv first.. so, that little buddhist statue thing is no worse than your little photo of Jesus now, isn’t it? Here’s one to ask your Christian friend who is offended about your little ‘idol’ – “Show me somewhere where God isn’t”
Another one of my favourites – Harry Potter is the work of the devil. You know, these Christians really belittle their God. Here’s the devil – he makes movies, he writes books, he’s out making fossils – I mean the guy’s really a bit of a happening dude and seems to be the omnipresent / omnipotent one here. Where’s God? Oh, he’s the quiet pacifist, who sits back and let’s the devil do his business.
It doesn’t stop there. The devil was apparently a fallen angel who want’s to usurp God’s position.. what’s that position? I mean, according to the Christian’s about the only useful purpose God has is to heal sick people (through human prayer – because until someone prayed, he just didn’t care right?) and his other purpose is to sit on some cool, golden throne with 24 elders passing judgement on those people who didn’t ‘believe Jesus died on the cross for them’ – nice guy..it kind of reminds me of the film “Baraka” where the baby chicks are getting sorted and debeaked. Now, the Christian version of God is definitely the kind of guy you’d want to be ‘your’ father right?
No wonder we have so many choosing aetheism these days. I see it more as a revolt against Christianity than anything else.
Anyway, on with my debeaking of Christianity – check this out.
The evil of any kind of ‘extra sensory’ powers like clairvoyance, clairsentience, psychics and the like. All of that stuff is from the devil also and yet, these are traits that Jesus displayed – notice any kind of contradiction when you read Mar 8? Ol’ Jesus was out there healing people, asking about reincarnation and predicting his death. His own people would call him the work of the devil, even today.
The Healing of a Blind Man at Bethsaida
22They came to Bethsaida, and some people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. 23He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the man’s eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, “Do you see anything?”
24He looked up and said, “I see people; they look like trees walking around.”
25Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. 26Jesus sent him home, saying, “Don’t go into the village.[a]”
Peter’s Confession of Christ
27Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, “Who do people say I am?”
28They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.”
29″But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
Peter answered, “You are the Christ.[b]”
30Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him.
Jesus Predicts His Death
31He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. 32He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.
33But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”
34Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 35For whoever wants to save his life[c] will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul? 37Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul? 38If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.”
I specifically like this part: Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him
and they went and told the whole world! They obviously can’t be trusted now, can they.
And here’s where Lewis Black wraps it all up into one well said piece.
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