Occupy the Bible

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The Bible is being used to rob of us of religious freedoms and on a larger scale, to destroy the Constitution itself. The imagery of the Book of Revelation is frequently used by Christian fundamentalists to sow discord and fear: fear of the other, fear of divine wrath should tolerance be shown to the divinely despised other. This is the context of every Republican hopeful’s platform in 2012. The righteous wrath of God is said to sit over our heads, ready to be unleashed should America not pray and repent of its sins. But there are problems with these images most fundamentalists are not aware of. Their antecedents are pagan. They go much further back than Christianity to the Old Testament, and further back even than that – to the god the Old Testament loves to hate: the West Semitic (Canaanite) storm god, Baal.

The imagery we see in Revelation 21.1-4 is far from original:

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city and the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And  I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,

See, the home of God is among mortals

He will dwell with them as their God

They will be his peoples

And God himself will be with them

He will wipe every tear from their eyes

Death will be no more;

Mourning and crying and pain

Will be no more,

For the first things have passed away.

As Mark S. Smith writes, “In sum, the motifs associated with Baal in Canaanite literature are widely manifeste in Israelite religion.” For example, from the evidence we have from Ugarit, we see that in the Baal Cycle the storm god defeats the enemy, the Sea (the sea was no more), whereupon Baal would build his divine palace (And I saw the holy city and the new Jerusalem…) and then defeat the ultimate enemy, Death (Death will be no more).[1]

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The well known and oft-appealed to image of God associated with the end-times in Christian minds comes from Matthew:  “Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:30). But this too, is Baal.

Baal, the storm god, was known as the Cloud-Rider and he rode a winged war chariot and the imagery associated with Baal is repeated in Psalm 18 (2 Sam. 22:11), having YHWH riding on the wind like Baal, surrounded by the very storm clouds associated with Baal, the very same storm clouds Jesus will later appropriate. Ezekiel 1 and 10 and Psalm 65:12 even appropriate Baal’s divine chariot. YHWH/God/Jesus became Baal the storm god.

But Baal has a different sort of gospel, or good word. It is not one of salvation of the soul but of salvation of the earth. It would quite a different “revelation” we would be reading today had monotheism not triumphed in the Middle East. Witness Baal’s speech to Anat regarding the “word” he will reveal to humanity:

For I have a word I will tell you,

A message I will recount to you,

A word of tree and whisper of stone,

Converse of Heaven and Earth,

Of Deeps to the Stars,

I understand the lightning Heaven does not know,

The word humans do not know,

And Earth’s masses do not understand,

Come and I will reveal it,

In the midst of my mountain, Divine Sapan,

In the holy place, on the mount of my possession,

In the pleasant place, on the hill of my victory.

When his divine palace is built his word will manifest as cosmic fertility or blessing (the communication of Heaven and the Deeps is an image for cosmic fertility). Baal’s victory, says Mark S. Smith, “presages a glorious natural paradise on earth through the agency of his fructifying rains.”[2]

In the Old Testament this bounty was given by YHWH instead of Baal but not to the whole world, to all Earth’s masses. Jealous YHWH would extend cosmic bounty to Israel only and Heaven and the Deeps are replaced by a covenant between YHWH and Israel (here we see a manifestation of the True/False distinction created by monotheism). As Smith writes, “The words of Hosea bear the freight of Canaanite literary tradition, evoking, like Hosea 2:18, the imagery of the storm-god Baal and his divine blessings on the cosmos.”[3]

I don’t know about anyone else, but I much prefer the idea of a god who sends his blessings to the entire world and not simply to one nation, be it Israel, or as Republicans would have it, the United States. I much prefer the idea of salvation for the Earth itself than some sort of nebulous (and un-needed in my opinion) salvation for human souls. I can see and hear and feel the earth and see her agony. No matter how much I might believe in human souls, they are not something I can see; they are not tangible and their existence cannot even be proven (and if I have one, as I believe I do, it doesn’t require a god’s intervention to carry on after my death). But I know the earth exists, and I know its hurts are apparently beyond the ability of humans to fix, if we even showed any concern to do so, which we do not.

And not only that, but the much vilified Baal is not coming on storm clouds to destroy me (he never threatened to do so) or to send me to some invented place called hell. Baal is on storm clouds because he is the storm god and he is sending not wrath but rain. We’re not going to die because a supposedly perfect god reveals his manifest imperfections in the form of jealousy and kills us all in a divine snit-fit. I don’t worship Baal but he sounds like a fine fellow, as far as gods go. I am far less happy with YHWH.

Everything has a context. And the context of the divine wrath we’re all being threatened with if we don’t do what the Republicans want has the context of pre-monotheistic (pagan) theology. Words, actions, divine names and epithets, have all been “borrowed” from a more ancient tradition and re-purposed, if I can create a metaphor, from the 99 percent to the 1 percent. Any god worthy of his name would want all to benefit, not only an elite few.

Just as the Wealth Elite want us to subordinate our interests to their own, for what they claim is the benefit of all (which somehow, no matter how rich they get, never actually comes to fruition), so the Religious Elite want us to subordinate our interests (our liberties and freedoms) to their own (the Republican idea of religious freedom). All we need for the good of all to become manifest in this later scenario is for the Other (gays, feminists, Muslims, atheists, pagans, etc) to be reviled, punished, dehumanized and ultimately killed, and everybody will be better off because then YHWH won’t be jealous anymore.

This religious image is a lot like the wealth image in another way: the Republican concept of shared sacrifice, where the sacrifice is not actually shared. The 99 percent always seem to pick up the tab for the 1 percent, whether it is money or freedoms. It’s time we occupy not only the center of the Wealthy Elite, Wall Street, but, before it can be used to destroy us, the center of the Religious Elite, the Bible.



[1] Mart S. Smith, The Early History of God: Yahweh and the Other Deities in Ancient Israel, second edition (Eerdmans, 2002), Kindle edition, locations 1714-1723

[2] Smith (2002), locations 1524-1528

[3] Smith (2002), location 1534

41 Replies to “Occupy the Bible”

  1. By nature, the more humanitarian kinds of Christians are not militant, just as the more militant are not humanitarian. What it will take is their awakening to the threat of invasion by the steeplejackers. When that happens- if only it happens in time- you’ll see an Occupy the Bible movement.

  2. I always wondered what it takes for people to believe that a God actually loves them, created them, and has no problem sending them to hell. That’s not a God in my book. A God who loved his people would take all of his people back good bad or indifferent.

    Since when does a God need people to bow down to him? Since when does a God need to be worshiped? A God is all-powerful yet needs people to bow down and worship him. Really?

    I think the examples given here indicate to me that this Jewish religion is as I have suspected all along. A pickup religion. It started out having multiple gods. And then it went to one. Throughout his writings the Bible steals quotes from other gods. The result of two civilizations melding together? The difference between Baal and “God” was one of fear. You had to fear God in order to believe in him. Now thats some God. that is how people such as Elijah took people away from the worship of Baal, by telling them they should fear “gods” retribution if they didn’t believe in him. and this is exactly how the fundamentalists and the GOP will get you to buy into their brand of religion.

    The way I see it if you believe in one God you have to believe in all of them. What could be funnier than saying my God is the only god and yours doesn’t exist.

  3. Hrafnkell, thank you for another most excellent post. The depth of your knowledge never ceases to amaze me.

    I hope you will consider doing a future post about the “Revelations of John”. It’s been years since I read Asimov’s “History of the New Testament”, in which he explained that the author of Revelations was writing a coded anti-Nero/Rome message to the people who lived at that time–not, as popularly believed, predicting events 2,000 years in the future. And I believe Bill Moyers once did a segment about Armageddon being the brainchild of two immigrant preachers in the 1800’s. Trouble is, Asimov’s book is long gone, and only a hazy recollection of Moyers’ broadcast has stayed with me.

    Since Dominionists place great importance on their Seven Mountains stuff, and the fundies are eagerly awaiting the End Times, and the rest of us are left scratching our heads and wondering WTH?, I believe your take on this would prove most enlightening.

  4. I’ve got Asimov’s books on both the Old Testament and the New, and I can’t recommend them enough. If they are out of print, it might be time for some enlightened group to reprint them. Dr. Asimov certainly would have wished that kind of thing to be disseminated.

  5. So you want to occupy the bible. Probably just a matter of time when you’re going to wanna disrupt some Sunday school classes, prayer meetings and church services in progress with your protest signs and chanting along with some offensive gestures and acts?

    So you gotta big problem with the church, God and the bible. Think society is better off without anyone telling you anything you do is wrong, okay, don’t listen! Don’t believe in heaven or hell or the big “sky god”, fine, don’t. But when you start down south with this “occupy
    the bible” crap, just remember this one thing. AA churches know a thing or two about domestic terrorists, (i.e., cross burnings threats and church bombs.) We will not go along with the intimidation so passively this time. So, if you happen to see a few sisters, young and old, begin to stare at you real strange right before they slowly start taking off their earrings, their church hats and Sunday shoes,. . you’re being forewarned so you best be “fore-armed” too.

    You’re probably “fixin” to meet some of those supposedly “angry black women” you heard tell about real up close and personal. And it probably won’t involve praying for you at all. And before you “commence” to telling me my words “ain’t” all “christany”, don’t forget, I’m forgiven.

    We love us some Jesus but we’ve had about all we’re gonna take off anybody.

  6. The first Commandment to the Jews was “you shall have no other gods before me.” Not “there are no other gods.”
    Sort of begs that question about Moses’ gawd believing there ARE other viable gods.
    So YHWH wants to be first, not the only?

    As for the vindictive nature of the Old Testament gawd – would you date this guy? Introduce him to your friends? He’s a piece of arrogant s*** who holds a gun to your head, then wants credit for saving you from the gunman.

  7. I think she just made that plain in her post.
    Violence, hatred and threats. Real Old Testament stuff.
    Dr. King would be ashamed.

  8. “…in the Baal Cycle the storm god defeats the enemy, the Sea (the sea was no more), whereupon Baal would build his divine palace (And I saw the holy city and the new Jerusalem…) and then defeat the ultimate enemy, Death (Death will be no more).[1]…”

    This is the same myth of the Hindu God, Indra. Indra defeats Vrtri who pissed of Indra by stealing all the water from earth, causing great suffering…Indra is the God of Storms made clouds/rain storms and returned the water to earth…then Indra builds this palace…Just go to Wikipedia (Indra) scroll down, read the story of “Indra and the Ants”. The story has different versions but the tale remains intact…same myth!

  9. I can’t wait for the republicans t0 co op the bible and start re writing it as they have the Constitution.

  10. So, what I hear is that you and bunch of your church friends are going to defend your religious persona (hats, earrings and Sunday shoes) by going out and starting a new America-style Inquisition in order to rid the land of the secular heretics…crazy-eyed staring is so ugly and passe, can’t you “Good Christians” (including Mormons, too) come up with anything better?

    I know! How about something like the ultra-Orthodox Jews in Israel who spit on little girls for walking to school (“occupying” the sidewalk!) with the collar unbuttoned or calling women sluts for “occupying” (sitting) on a park benches…how about that kind of anger, hate, real up close and personal behavior because your self-image, self-esteem, persona, your behavior, NOT YOUR BELIEF, is threatened…is that what you have in mind for those who want more, different, better than what you have to offer?

  11. Actually, I meant intellectually and by speaking out GaMorn. If I had suggested occupying churches I would have written about occupying churches. Why so ready to feel persecuted? Ask yourself that.

  12. First, I am warmed by your threats of violence for people that do not agree with you. WWJ think about that?
    Do you see the hypocrisy in your thinking and post? You threaten violence because your beliefs are just being questioned.
    Yet, you have no problem forcing your beliefs on the rest of us that do not share your religious values. There are many, many people Christian and not who do not believe in the literal words of the bible, yet all the republican candidates, the republican party and have agreed to those ideas. They want to run the country according to their biblical ideas.
    This is not acceptable in the country that has a Constitution whose first amendment states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,…”
    If you write laws according to the bible, then you are not following the constitution.
    I don’t much follow the Old T, but I do abide by the teachings of Jesus Christ. on my own and in my place of worship. I will never force my beliefs on others. I respect the rights of Jews, Muslim, Mormons, Baptist to follow their own beliefs.

    A society is governed by laws, not a religion. I would hate to have to bring back slavery, stoning and worse.

  13. You’re right, Robyn.

    It’s all about the BEHAVIOR, not about BELIEF!

    If you break down the whole morality behind “the-sky-god-will-get-you” it’s all about getting people to behave and have trust or “faith” or “belief” that others will behave in kind toward you as you of them…but no, we can’t have anything “nice” like a simple golden rule that everyone can universally agree upon…
    No, we have to have a gun put to our heads by paranoid schizophrenics who hear voices and tell them to “kill” in the name of the sky-god…so you’ll get to heaven as your reward.

  14. Here’s my take now and for all time.

    I rest assured that our nation’s civil war revealed the true God’s hand of divine providence enabling the north to maintain the union after so many initial northern loses with it’s vast resources. With both south and north praying to the same god, He could only answer one. I see the providence that freed human chattel whose only weapons and recourse were prayers and faith and songs; calling on a foreign god named Jehovah and and his only begotten son, Jesus, for over 400 years til emancipation.

    I don’t think my ancestors credited or made mention of these other gods delivering them in the end. I don’t recall my “grands’ or “great-grands” calling on and getting an answer from those other gods during the civil rights movement full of water hoses, attack dogs, KKK and billy clubs across the head. So try to understand, we kinda go way back with those two, (Jesus and Jehovah.) We would have loved to have heard from other gods at that time; that is, if these other gods had felt the need to clarify whose power Jehovah was “pimping” and who really had our backs and brought us through those exquisite hells. Don’t get me started on the personal hells only faith in this God have delivered me out of completely.

    I rest assured that one day, HE WILL sort it all out, whose is god, whose not, whose right, whose wrong, what sin is, what it isn’t, who and where scripture can from and from who and where it didn’t, etc, etc, etc. Think, believe and do whatever seems right in your own eyes. Have at it. We will all find out in time. In the interim, its time to place your bets. If you’ll excuse me, I’ve got a president to go and pray for who needs God’s help and covering 24/7, . .no 25/8. And I am in no way confused about who I’m talking to and who I’m not.

    May Jehovah God bless and keep whomever will receive it. It’s on you.

  15. 1 Thessalonians 5:15-22
    “See that no one repays another with evil for evil, but always seek after that which is good for one another and for all people. Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit; do not despise prophetic utterances. But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil.”

    Matthew 25:
    On caring for the hungry, the poor, and the sick:

    “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”

    “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?”

    1voice1vote

    You Gamom, in your writings here, do not follow the dogma of Christianity. Verily I say unto you, check the “log” in your own “eye.”
    Peace.

  16. …”With both south and north praying to the same god, He could only answer one…”

    Mixing the myth of “godly intervention” with political outcome(s) made my man in backroom quarters holding the purse strings of battle only leads to only one thing; more explosions, terrorism and radical, “true believer” behavior. The rational mind stops the irrational fanatics, the “true believers” from destroying us all.

    “And I am in no way confused about who I’m talking to….”

    All negativity leads to confusions. Sadly enough, you appear negative, “confused” because you don’t seem to grasp the fact that you cannot mix spiritual myths with logical reasoning; myth as a belief system is designed to comfort and enlighten whereas logical reasoning owns the scales of secular rules/laws to govern all. History provides the facts for us over and over again regardless of who is in power; never once has there been a historical fact, not a mythical story, where the sky opened up and “god” intervened” to choose sides. You’re confusing myth with fact.

    If you can get to neutral, you might get somewhere…

  17. I Don’t hate any of you! Never laid eyes on you! It saps too much energy! The “hatred” meme is getting really old against anyone who doesn’t agree with you. What would Dr. King say to me? What would he say to you if ever you “occupied” him in the middle of services to decry the church, the gospel and the God HE served? Few today in church will be silent as lambs while you freely “raise hell” in their midst. Call their response radical old testament behavior, too, if you want.

    “Occupy the Bible” is a call to action against something in the kingdom of God,. . his church, his people, his institutions. Don’t threatened little kids in Sunday school-we’ve had them blown up before if you didn’t know that. Don’t threaten little old women and men praying in pews-we’ve seen them knocked to the ground for nothing. Don’t threaten young people coming to God for answers when they can’t go on anymore-we’ve seen them hanging from trees without a tire swing. Do you need Dr. King to tell you that’s unseemly?

    Many Christians would rise up against you “occupying” their church or assemblies, so would Jews and Muslims. Don’t threaten an inquisition against the Christian’s house of God, . what’s next the Jews’ synagogs or the Muslims’ mosque?

    Whether or not we serve the same God, understand or agree with one other personally or spiritually, people’s religious values and faiths should be honored, and if you can’t do that, just leave people’s faiths and their “churches” alone. Its all terrorism, even for those of you who are wrapped up in your secular self-righteousness.

    Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Since you’ve got issues with God, take it up with him.

  18. Your grands didn’t write the bible either. And gods is a mass murderer if he had a hand in the civil war. I don’t want any part of him

    There were plenty of gods before your god and plenty came after. Your god depends on fear and death to get by on.

  19. That is only if you believe there is such a thing as a kingdom of God. GaMom, you have a right to your beliefs. Nobody is questioning that and nobody is proposing occupying churches. We have freedom of religion in this country and that is what I am writing about here: being forced to believe an alien belief system at the point of a gun. Worship YHWH or whoever if you wish, but nobody has a right to force the rest of us to do so, or to live according to the often hypocritical dictates of those who do.

  20. …”I Don’t hate any of you! Never laid eyes on you!”

    GaMom, I’m not sure if this is the “Jerry Springer Show defense” the “You don’t know me so shut up the hell up and quit booing” or you’re using a cult technique called “thought stop” as a means get anyone questioning their belief system to shut up.

    OR,

    I’m-rubber-you’re-glue-defense as a way to deflect your prior post where you threatened people you are now claiming hate you…your exact words were as follows:

    …”you’re being forewarned so you best be “fore-armed” too. You’re probably “fixin” to meet some of those supposedly “angry black women” you heard tell about real up close and personal. And it probably won’t involve praying for you at all…and…”The “hatred” meme is getting really old against anyone who doesn’t agree with you…”

    Once again, I find your words confusing, conflicting and negative in their presentation as a way to convince others that you’re not hating.

    Defending your Sunday School when no one at any time threatened it or made any mention of protesting, disrupting, or harming it is disturbing. Creating monsters and problems that are non-existence seems as if that is the meme of the evangelical fundamentalist christian who long for either mass destruction or personal martyrdom…both creates superior thinking.

    The reality or truth is, GaMom, the rest of the world is tired of IT’S ENERGY being sapped by Fundamentalist Christians, Jews, Muslims, etc; all fundamentalist are huge thorns in the side of all civilized society everywhere! Fundamentalist make life difficult and miserable for all communities where ever they go…they disrupt schools demanding prayers, kill doctors they don’t like, beat up people who are same sex oriented, on and on…name me one contribution of fundamentalism that is universally enjoyed by all…

    “…Don’t threaten an inquisition against the Christian’s house of God, . what’s next the Jews’ synagogs or the Muslims’ mosque?”…

    It appears again that you are confused by the facts; it was and will always be the Christians who started Inquisitions. The Christians throughout history (with the exception of the 20th century) tortured Jews and Muslims; not the “secular” citizens minding their own business, not creating monsters, bigotry, prejudice and problems in order to force their beliefs…it was the Christians, GaMom who threaten with their vengeful god because Jews. Muslim, pagans, heretics would not convert.

    My hope is many Christians rise up against fundamentalist evangelicals and teach them the real meaning of their faith instead of this trumped up version created after the civil war as back-lash against the northers for helping the freed slaves, as in, “liberal” social justice Christians.

  21. The Bible is NOT the problem. Those who take words out of context: literal, contextual, societal, …, are the problem. They grab a few sentences here and there and go forth to create havoc. These are the people that need Occupying. Jesus, that they claim to follow, tried to change the understanding of God from the god of wrath, to a loving father-god who cared for all his children. Both Peter and Paul came to understand that Jesus literally meant ALL of God’s children, not just the Jews, but all people. It is this kind of thing that makes me say, “don’t Occupy the Bible, Occupy those who take the Bible and use it for their own purposes”.

  22. I have both of Asimov’s books on the bible and I agree they are excellent. I have rubber bands around both copies as they are falling apart.
    On the issue of Baal.
    Baʿal (Biblical Hebrew בעל, pronounced [ˈbaʕal], usually spelled Baal in English) is a Northwest Semitic title and honorific meaning “master” or “lord”[1] that is used for various gods who were patrons of cities in the Levant and Asia Minor, cognate to Akkadian Bēlu. A Baalist or Baalite means a worshipper of Baal.

    From Wilkipedia:

    “Baʿal” can refer to any god and even to human officials; in some texts it is used as a substitute for Hadad, a god of the rain, thunder, fertility and agriculture, and the lord of Heaven. Since only priests were allowed to utter his divine name, Hadad, Ba‛al was commonly used. Nevertheless, few if any Biblical uses of “Baʿal” refer to Hadad, the lord over the assembly of gods on the holy mount of Heaven, but rather refer to any number of local spirit-deities worshipped as cult images, each called baʿal and regarded in the Hebrew Bible in that context as a false god.”

  23. Why do you deliberately insist that we, or anyone, intends to physically invade your church? That is erecting a straw man so you can knock it down. Why the huge chip on your shoulder? Are you even what you say you are, or are you “lying for Jesus”? You could well be a Dominionist white male, and I won’t conclude you’re not.

  24. So let me get this straight. You’re saying a religion is obstructing the freedom of religion so we should rally against this religion… for what freedom again???

  25. Gamom. Your examples of churches being bombed, Sunday school being disrupted, people being knocked out of pews etc. are bad examples. None of those horrible things happened because people disagreed with your religion, it was all about about racism which is not the subject of this article.

  26. Cultures and religions evolve, just as living things do. Plus, nothing exists in a vacuum.

    Only fundamentalists are uncomfortable with that truth.

  27. Some years ago, when I protested against the use of a living person as negative examples in a sermon, I was asked by a fundamentalist church elder “How else can we control them?”.

    Then I caught that elder in a lie – it was claimed that the person used as a negative example (actually preached against) was dead.

    Religion should NEVER be about controlling people. That’s what laws are for… and laws should only limit one’s freedom up to the point where they infringe on another (plus they are needed to keep a culture regulated and in order – like traffic laws).

  28. I’ve read that from several sources over the years. Another interesting point is that the Revelation of St. John almost didn’t make it into the Bible. In order to get enough votes to excommunicate Arian, his opponent(s) traded inclusion of that book for the required vote. Only a handful of bishops actually wanted Revelation to be included… many more did not. So, in essence, the book was included because of hate based politics.

    An Episcopal priest said that the book was meant to be used to encourage people facing persecution (which DOES happen, but not like the fundies/dominionists think), even though it was targeted at Rome. It was never meant to be used to beat people over the head or to encourage fanaticism.

  29. Oh, fun! Another threat from a fundie!!! You going to burn my house this time, or poison some more of my kitties? Maybe take a pot-shot at us???

    I’ve seen what you fundies are really like – hate filled and violent. Nice image of Jesus you are – NOT!!!

  30. Jehovah God??? Do you know the etymology of that name (probably not, because you are coming across as quite ignorant)?

    It’s very much like the name Europeans gave to the person they call Jesus- which is (let’s see if I get this right) the mispronunciation of the Latin pronunciation of His name spelled in Greek – which wasn’t even the language He would have commonly spoke (Aramaic). His name was (English pronunciation) was Yeshua.

    It’s the same with Jehovah. It’s the Pronunciation of YWYH (Aramaic or Hebrew formal name for God) taken through a couple of different languages.

    BTW… it is very possible that your ancestors were Christian before they came here. Africa is not all pagan and never was – some were certainly Muslims, and others, well, Africa was exposed to Christianity shortly after it began. My own ancestors (which BTW almost certainly include some African slaves, although I can’t prove that yet) knew Jesus before the Europeans came here… and you can see what happened to us.

    Re-read Job, and remember that the most important line of scripture to understanding the book is when God tells Job’s friends that they didn’t tell the truth about God like Job did – and then re-read Job’s statements.

  31. Rally against a single expression (or a few related versions if you split hairs) of a religion which seeks to force itself on others, more like.

    We too have freedom of religion, and that freedom includes being free of having to have that form of religion forced on us (a regular occurrence).

  32. I have wondered if what we are going through now is God’s answer to our inability to see that religion should not be placed before so highly. Maybe it is the fundies and others that are wrong and we all must suffer as a result of their misunderstanding of the Bible and Gods way

  33. There IS such a think in the works (or was as of a couple of years ago) – they were re-writing the Bible to remove “introduced liberal propaganda” or something like that.

    Unfortunately, they would remove most of the content of most of the books if they did so.

    One thing I remember reading that was on the way out “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do!”

  34. #OccupyTheBible – Count me in

    So what’s next? Mic-Checks at Mega Churches? Anybody down with that?

  35. The CHINOs (Kris-Chuns In Name Only) seem to have missed Matthew 25: 31-46. In this chapter and these verses, Jesus is quoted as providing a specific metric regarding who gets to go to Heaven and who don’t. The CHINO CHRISTIAN NATIONALISTS might be surprised to find that they don’t even have a…”snowball’s chance in Hell”..of getting to Heaven. It is a “good read” for anyone, but if the supernatural stuff annoys you, just ignore the first and last few verses and permit Buddha Jesus explain what all those “persons” on Wall Street should be doing. ; )

  36. You stole these lines almost verbatim from a speech given by President Lincoln in 1864…It took me a few weeks to clear the “fuzzy” knowing I’d seen those words before…

    “…I rest assured that our nation’s civil war revealed the true God’s hand of divine providence enabling the north to maintain the union after so many initial northern loses with it’s vast resources. With both south and north praying to the same god, He could only answer one.
    I see the providence that freed human chattel whose only weapons and recourse were prayers and faith and songs;….”

    You just twisted it around a bit to make it look as if you said those words, when in fact, you do what the usual con-artist of your “religion” does all the time; take from others scared words/text and pretend you got it from “god’s lips”. Nothing but a bunch of fakers and takers…a pox on your house.

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