Heddle’s website is here. Heddle appears to be a Christian engaging us in a slightly problematic concept by dismissing my argument that levite law is still practiced.
No he doesn’t. The Old Testament law also tells Jews to sacrifice animals for sin atonement. It was commanded and it was moral. For Christians, however, sacrificing animals for atonement would be an abomination. What was commanded and moral in the OT is not automatically commanded and moral in the NT. Animal sacrificing is the clear example (at least it should be) that invalidates your simpleminded “gotcha” rule. (Will you argue, stupidly, that if Christians understood their own religion we should still sacrifice animals for atonement rather than call on Jesus’ sacrifice?)
Which is a terrifying attitude to take considering the divinely mandated rape, slavery and genocide in the same region. The virulence of hate mirrors other similar massacres at the time. Why must the Romans be shockingly violent for the desolation of Carthago but the Jews be considered heroes for their rape and slaughter of other tribes?
If Christians received a sufficiently believed message from a prophet that rape and genocide were acceptable they would do it.
Don’t look so surprised, it’s happened quite recently.
If Levite law and the Old Testament are pointless then why keep them? They clearly add nothing to the Bible apart from a historical context that god was clearly not a moral being and happily killed innocent people on tribal lines. We can excuse the behaviour of Jehovah by realising he was a tribal god and tribal sensitivities run strong along feud lines. Where tit for tat attacks and escalation results in a permanent state of hatred.
We know our gods are man made which is why they behave like men.
Not to mention that Jesus himself violated OT laws, for example in the way he handled lepers. It is a stupid, common argument you are parroting. But I’m sure you’ll continue to make it without thinking.
He handled a leper and did so to demonstrate magical powers. However it didn’t stop centuries of Christians. Also? Son of a god gives him special compensation.
Also? Matthew 5:17 points out that Jesus did not come to cause the Old Testament to be invalid. It’s explicit that he came to uphold the law by your own book.
Thank you for a textbook internet atheist response. A predictable response based on the ubiquitous model among non-thinking atheists:
It’s a textbook response because it doesn’t need to be anything more. Must we come up with elaborate responses to disprove of fairies and unicorns too? Must I debate the Harry Potter fan with scientific evidence to disprove the existence of wizards? Must I do this for a million gods? Must I disprove the existence of Shiva and the lovely Parvathi at Kailasa? Or of Jehnna? Or of Naraka?
You may guffaw and say that it’s “nonsense” to compare those things. However I am just treating your god in the same way that you treated my old gods. Or indeed how we treat other mythological beings.
Well Jehovah! Don’t be silly!
My “gotcha” was demonstrating that the people from Duck Dynasty quoted a specific line from the Bible that begins by exhorting against lawyers and upholding the Bible and the priest as a method of solving disputes rather than “judges and courts” yet one cannot run a Multi-Million Dollar business without lawyering up.
And then I quoted the variety of biblical references to the wickedness of hypocrites.
So far your argument against the response is “heard it before”, not “this is why it’s wrong”.
1) The old testament laws are there for all to read
2) The old testament laws must still apply because it is a double victory for us:
I refer you to Matthew 5:17
Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.
For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
Good to know that Jesus is wrong on this one.
a. It is convenient for us to point out how brutal they are.
Well it’s the Christian claim that all morality is born out of directly handed down laws from Jehovah and therefore the rape, genocide and slavery of the Old Testament should ring alarm bells because it did not encourage people to be BETTER than their peers but to be as brutal as any other civilisation.
There is no moral high ground, the Old Testament is not a moral code by the standards of today and neither is the rest of the Bible. So to use it to enforce bigotry is an immoral act.
b. It is especially convenient to point out that the only reason Christians do not call for the adherence of OT laws (especially its capital offenses) is that they don’t have the stomach for it.
No, I think it’s because we have secular law. If Christianity had it’s way and was allowed to persecute homosexuals in the way they have been allowed to do so in the past we would see a return to the fundamentalist standpoint. Religious progression only really happens under the umbrella of secularism.
In every situation, theocracy and large interference in the state by Religion has ended relatively poorly. Must we keep making that mistake because it will work “JUST THIS ONCE”.
No, good people have the stomach for it. I wrote about the other problem with Duck Dynasty’s star. The “lynching” of black people was quietly ignored by him as were the Jim Crow laws. And in that good Christians would happily attend a lynching with the air of a carnival. They even took momentoes and traded in photos of events. A real kodak moment for the whole family!
And these were people who saw nothing wrong with what they were doing. These were people who stood for good strong biblical values and that included hanging uppity black people and rape and torture.
These were men and women who went to the Church and read the Bible and had no qualms about what they did. Not because they had no stomach but because they found a way to excuse their behaviour and remain moral.
Do you think the Nazis never went to Church? Do you think they never found a way to excuse their behaviour through the teachings of the Catholic Church and the writings of Luther? You may in retrospect call them “False Christians” or “misguided” but I am afraid people are capable of brutality if they can excuse their behaviour. Religion provides a handy excuse. We see it in the Bible itself.
Why massacre? Why commit genocide?
Because god said so and we have to listen to the voice. It was our sacred duty.
That excuse was pulled out in the aftermath of Massacres. It was a “Sacred” duty. From the Nigerian Mall Siege to Anders Breivik to the sectarian massacres of Northern Ireland to the Sunni-Shia civil war in Iraq to the actions of Palestinians and Israelis to the Caste Violence in India to even the actions of the Buddhists in Burma. Hell we don’t even need religion to think like this if we look at gang violence in the USA or among football supporters.
This excuse is not new, it’s not special and you are not more enlightened and superior that your faith is immune to it. Unlike the Hindus who cut out the laws of Manu via the reform of the Buddha and Dharma and the Bhagavad Gita’s morality dialogue we have not seen any such radical change in Christianity.
3) We will summarily dismiss any attempt to say that the NT nullifies the OT laws as “cafeteria Christianity.” This must be done at all costs to maintain our advantage.
The NT HAS to nullify the OT in the minds of the modern Christian otherwise Christianity cannot survive in the modern world where we jail slavers. The OT cannot survive in the modern world and is only really fished out by the fundies when they want to bash either women or the GLBT while wearing their polycotton jumpers.
4) Don’t be afraid to employ this model—it is guaranteed to achieve maximal nods of approval and backslapping. With the added benefit that you don’t have to do any homework
.I have done more homework of your faith than you have of any of the faiths you claim are false.
As usual, atheist apologetics adds nothing to the discussion at hand.
The fact we are discussing the personal opinions of mythological beings and taking such seriously is not lost on me.
What discussion? The Duck Dynasty family are racist and homophobic, they are utilising religion to oppose the rights of the GLBT and to encourage laws that discriminate against the GLBT over decisions that do not affect them in any single way possible. They are part of a group of people that do this.
Must we find Biblical reasons as to why Homophobia is bad? Or is “your religious view is discriminatory to the GLBT and such bigotry is unacceptable in our modern life. Furthermore we do not like the fact you are utilising religion to reduce the rights of others and legislate your discrimination and homophobia. This is not persecution, this is preventing your from persecuting others. The validity of your gods has nothing to do with this.