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Does this kind of God
deserve  anybody's worship ?

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Great Thoughts about God,
by Great Thinkers :

"Murderers are punished,
unless they kill in large numbers and to the sound of trumpets."
– the French philosopher Voltaire – .

"I cannot believe in a God who wants to be praised all the time."
Friedrich Nietzsche
(German classical Scholar, Philosopher and Critic of culture, 1844-1900.)

A good example of such obsequiousness:
http://www.youtube.com:80/user/Since33AD.

" Question with boldness even the existence of a god;
because if there be one, he must approve of
the homage of reason more than that of blindfolded fear."
– Thomas Jefferson – , Letter to Peter Carr, August 10, 1787

"Never be afraid to stand up for what is right,
whether your adversary be your parent, your peer, your teacher,
your politician, your preacher, or even your God."
– Pope John Paul the First –

"It ain't the parts of the Bible that I can't understand
that bother me, it is the parts that I do understand."
– Mark Twain –

MarkTwain&Bible

 
"It was the Christian (Biblical?) tradition that produced atheism
as its fruit. It led to the murder of God in the consciences of men
because it presented them with an unbelievable God."
France's leading Jesuit philosopher; – Fr. Paul Valadier – .

The excerpt below shows how blind "bible-believers" can be to the barbarity of their "god". They actually praise their god for showing some mercy by "sparing some", as he creates a monstruous flood to inexcusably destroy every other man, woman, child and animal in the entire world!
       "Much is learned about the nature of God from this story. For example: (1) It shows He is a holy God and cannot tolerate sin. (2) It shows He is a just God and that sin will not go unpunished. (3) It shows He is a God of mercy in that He spares some."
       http://www.ldolphin.org/cisflood.html

In the very first article which he wrote in 1926, as Assistant Editor of his seminary newspaper, when he was just thirteen years old, the future very liberal Pope John Paul the First wrote "The problems of the western world will only come to an end when free nations, in accordance with their copyright laws, require all copies of the Old Testament he prefaced `This is a work of fiction. Keep away from children. . . The state is derelict in its duty in failing to place, at the very least, a warning on this book, as most people are using it to guide the way they live their lives and this is costing many others their lives."
        Through the intervention of his father, who was a dedicated socialist, the article was republished in a socialist literary journal and eventually reached all of Europe, drawing comments from many noted people. Most were critical of the young boy's audacity, some called for his removal from the seminary, others going so far as to call for his excommunication from the Church. On the other hand, one of them, who was to become a lifelong friend of Albino Luciani, Albert Einstein considered the article "the first bit of common sense to ever come out of the Roman Catholic Church" and he considered its author a child prodigy.
        Albino Luciani was the first man that Pope John XXIII elevated to the episcopacy and he often referred to Luciani as "the Einstein of the Roman Catholic Church."   Einstein himself once said of him, "Luciani thinks of things today, as the rest of us will think of them a thousand years from now. "


If the God that I believe in exists, then he or she may well have more respect for atheists who use their God-given intelligence to raise honest questions than for "believers" who don't. (Ray Dubuque)

How can any godly person believe
that THIS is the way God deals with
the childish pranks of "small boys" :

II Kings 2:23-24 

He (the prophet Elisha) went up from there to Bethel; and while he was going up on the way, some small boys came out of the city and jeered at him, saying, 'Go away, baldhead! Go away, baldhead!'  When he turned around and saw them, he cursed them in the name of the Lord.  Then two she-bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the boys."

How can any Christian believe that
THIS is the way God instructs clergy
to expose the misbehavior of women
(but not of men) in marriage ?

{ Numbers 5: 11 - 31 }  

And the Lord said to Moses, "Tell the people of Israel that if a man's wife commits adultery, but there is no proof, there being no witness, and he is jealous and suspicious, the man shall bring his wife to the priest with an offering for her of a tenth of a bushel of barley meal without oil or frankincense mingled with it – for it is a suspicion offering – to bring out the truth as to whether or not she is guilty.
        "The priest shall bring her before the Lord, and take holy water in a clay jar and mix into it dust from the floor of the Tabernacle.  He shall unbind her hair and place the suspicion offering in her hands to determine whether or not her husband's suspicions are justified.  The priest shall stand before her holding the jar of bitter water that brings a curse. He shall require her to swear that she is innocent, and then he shall say to her, 'If no man has slept with you except your husband, be free from the effects of this bitter water that causes the curse.  But if you have committed adultery, then Jehovah shall make you a curse among your people, for he will make your thigh rot away and your body swell.' And the woman shall be required to say, 'Yes, let it be so.'
        Then the priest shall write these curses in a book and wash them off into the bitter water. (When he requires the woman to drink the water, it becomes bitter within her (if she is guilty).) "Then the priest shall take the suspicion offering from the woman's hand and wave it before Jehovah, and carry it to the altar.  He shall take a handful, representing all of it, and burn the handful upon the altar, and then require the woman to drink the water.
        If she has been defiled, having committed adultery against her husband, the water will become bitter within her, and her body will swell and her thigh will rot, and she shall be a curse among her people.  ( Is this a God ordered, liturgical abortion? )
        But if she is pure and has not committed adultery, she shall be unharmed and will soon become pregnant.
        "This, then, is the law concerning a wayward wife – or a husband's suspicions against his wife – to determine whether or not she has been unfaithful to him.  He shall bring her before the Lord and the priest shall handle the situation as outlined above.  Her husband shall not be brought to trial for causing her horrible disease, for she is responsible."

Here's how the four gospels of the New
Testament itself "answer" the important question:

Was Jesus Christ Divine?

It seems so

(According to John 10: 31 ) Jesus said: "I and my Father are one"

(According to John 10: 38 ) "But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father [is] in me, and I in him."

(According to Matthew 11:27 ) "All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him."

It seems not :

(According to Mark 10: 17-18 ) As he was setting out on a journey, a man ran up and knelt before him, and asked him, "Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?"  Jesus said to him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone."

(According to Matthew 24: 33-36) The disciples came to him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will this be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?"  Jesus answered them, "Beware that no one leads you astray.  For many will come in my name, saying, 'I am the Messiah!' and they will lead many astray. . .

Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place.  Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.  "But about that day and hour no one knows, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."

Ambiguous :

(According to John 14:18-28)

"I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you.9 In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me; because I live, you also will live. On that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. They who have my commandments and keep them are those who love me; and those who love me will be loved by my Father, and I will love them and reveal myself to them." Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, "Lord, how is it that you will reveal yourself to us, and not to the world?" Jesus answered him, "Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; and the word that you hear is not mine, but is from the Father who sent me. "I have said these things to you while I am still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid. You heard me say to you, 'I am going away, and I am coming to you.' If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I."

"The Sins of Scripture" by Bishop John Spong,

        We cannot recommend enough this wonderful book. To give you an idea of what this great liberal theologian covers, here is :
The Table of Contents
          Section 1. The Word of God :
Chapter 1. Why This Book? This Theme, This Author
Chapter 2. A Claim That Cannot Endure

          Section 2. The Bible and the Environment :
Chapter 3. The Ethics of Overbreeding
Chapter 4. The Virtue of Birth Control
Chapter 5. The Earth Fights Back
Chapter 6. Bad Theology Creates Bad Ecology

          Section 3. The Bible and Women :
Chapter 7. Creation: The Woman Is Not Made in the Image of God
Chapter 8. Sexism in Christian History
Chapter 9. The Woman as the Source of Evil
Chapter 10. Menstruation and the Male Fear of Blood
Chapter 11. Recasting the Negativity

          Section 4. The Bible and Homosexuality :
Chapter 12. The Ecclesiastical Battle over Homosexuality
                Intense, Irrational, Threatening and Hysterical
Chapter 13. The Holiness Code from the Book of Leviticus
Chapter 14. The Story of Sodom
Chapter 15. The Homophobia of Paul

          Section 5. The Bible and children :
Chapter16.The Appeal in the Text "Spare the Rod"
Chapter 17. Violence Is always violent, whether the Victim Be a Child or an Adult
Chapter 18. God as Judge: Searching for the Source of the Human Need to Suffer
Chapter 19. God as Divine Child-abuser: The Sadomasochism in the Heart of Christianity
Chapter 20. Moving Beyond the Demeaning God into the God of Life.

          Section 6. The Bible and Anti-Semitism :
Chapter 21. Searching for the Origins of Christian anti-Semitism
Chapter 22. anti-Semitism in the Gospels
Chapter 23. The Role of Judas Iscariot in the Rise of anti-Semitism
Chapter 24. The Circumstances That Brought Judas into the Jesus Story

          Section 7. The Bible and certainty :
Chapter 25. The Symptoms: Conversion, Missionary Expansion and Religious Bigotry
Chapter 26. Creedal Development in the Christian Church
Chapter 27. Since I Have the Truth, "No One Comes to the Father, but by Me"
Chapter 28. My Vision of an Interfaith Future

          Section 8. Reading Scripture as Epic History :
Chapter 29. The Hebrew Scriptures Come into Being
Chapter 30. Escaping the Limits of the Epic: The Prophets, the Writings, the Dream
Chapter 31. Jesus and the Jewish Epic
Chapter 32. Jesus Beyond Religion:The Sign of the Kingdom of God
               
- the Epic Universalized and Humanized.

A Vanity Fair article on the best-selling "Left Behind" novels
provides a glimpse into the ultra-Conservative worldview, which doesn't distinguish between the worst parts of the bible and the best parts:

"Far from being a Prince of Peace, the Christ depicted in the 'Left Behind' series is a vengeful Messiah so vengeful that the death and destruction he causes to unconverted Jews, to secularists, to anyone who is not born again, is far, far greater than the crimes committed by the most brutal dictators in human history.
        When He arrives on the scene in Glorious Appearing, Christ merely has to speak and 'men and women, soldiers and horses, seemed to explode where they stood. It was as if the very words of the Lord had superheated their blood,! causing it to burst through their veins and skin.'
        'After the initial bloodletting, Nicolae Carpathia gathers his still-vast army, covering hundreds of square miles, and prepares for the conflict at Megiddo. As the battle for Armageddon is about to start, Rayford Steele climbs atop his Hummer to watch Christ harvest the grapes of wrath. . .
        According to LaHaye and Jenkins, it is God's intent 'that the millennium start with a clean slate.' Committing mass murder hundreds of times greater than the Holocaust, the Lord—not the Antichrist, mind you—makes sure that 'all unbelievers would soon die. . .
        Steele looks at the hordes of soldiers assembled by the Antichrist, and 'tens of thousands burst open at the words of Jesus.' They scream in pain and die before hitting the ground, their blood pouring forth. Soon, [Tim] LaHaye and [Jerry] Jenkins write, tens of thousands of foot soldiers for the Antichrist are dying in the goriest manner imaginable, their internal organs oozing out, 'their blood pooling and rising in the unforgiving brightness of the glory of Christ.' "


In the eyes of (former) Pastor Ted Haggard, the founder of "New Life", one of America's most powerful megachurches, and the president of the National Association of Evangelicals, as quoted by Jeff Sharlet in "Inside America's most powerful megachurch," in the May 2005 Harper's (speaking of emerging evangelicals in the Ukraine) :
        "They're pro-free markets, they're pro-private property. . .  That's what evangelical stands for."
        "I teach a strong ideology of the use of power," he says, "of military might, as a public service."  He is for preemptive war, because he believes the Bible's exhortations against sin set for us a preemptive paradigm, and he is for ferocious war, because "the Bible's bloody.  There's a lot about blood."
        [ from http://www.harpers.org/SoldiersOfChrist.html ]



        Here's an interesting take on the famous verse:  { John 3:16 }  

StopFollowingMe "For God so loved the world that
He "sacrificed" Himself,
to Himself,
to appease Himself,
and now is just beside Himself
with the idea of torturing,
for all eternity,
those who don't believe this story."

[author unknown]

Here are other thoughtful insightful and/or humorous takes on belief in God:

    Epicurus wrote 3 centuries BC:
  • "Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.
  • Is he able, but not willing ? (to prevent evil) Then he is malevolent.
  • Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil?
  • Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?

"Whenever we read the obscene stories, the voluptuous debaucheries, the cruel and torturous executions, the unrelenting vindictiveness, with which more than half the { the "Old Testament" } is filled, it would be more consistent that we called it the word of a demon, than the Word of God. It is a history of wickedness, that has served to corrupt and brutalize mankind; and, for my own part, I sincerely detest it, as I detest everything that is cruel. . . . When I see throughout the greatest part of this book { the "Old Testament" }, scarcely anything but a history of the grossest vices, and a collection of the most paltry and contemptible tales, I cannot dishonour my Creator by calling it by his name.
        Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason, Ch. VII.

George Bernard Shaw wrote:
        "The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one."

Doug McLeod "I still say a church steeple with a lightning rod on top shows a lack of confidence."

Who knows who said:
        "Philosophy deals with questions that may never be answered.
        Religion deals with answers that may never be questioned."

Steven Weinberg said "With or without religion, you would have good people doing good things and evil people doing evil things. But for good people to do evil things, that takes religion."

Ferdinand Magellan said:"The church says the earth is flat, but I know that it is round, for I have seen the shadow on the moon, and I have more faith in a shadow than in the church."

Outsanding YouTube videos :

If I were a great British former comedian and now internet sensation, like Pat Condell, this is the way I would summarize the contents of this web page, in 4 minutes:

and here's another by the brilliant video by the British satirist , Pat Condell:

And here's another excellent video, by a young American advocate on behalf of GLBT youth who suffer abuse resulting from Conservative Christian homopnobic propaganda. I would use more tempered language, but it's pathetic for Conservative Christians who can't be persuade to object to the actual offensive teaching of the Bible to whine about Daniel Savages choice of words to describe that horrible teaching.


Here's an excellent article on the future of belief vs. disbelief.

What kind of God do you love?

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