Can we be moral without god? »« A Skeptic’s Wager?

More mail…


Left “as is”…and anonymous:

“hey, Matt or whoever is reading this I recently stumbled onto your videos on you tube and I don’t know if you still remember a video of where you and a gentlemen who was Christian. were going back and forth over how you say your morally supine than God.”

I may not remember the specific instance, but I’ve said this on many occasions – because it’s true. Also, you should stop watching short clips on YouTube and start watching full episodes at our archive, you need more than just the McNuggets.

I’m proud to say im a Christian and I believe in god, and thought I do not agree with your choice to be atheist im not going to try to change you mind. but going back to the conversation you had with that gentleman you said and I quote ” that the lord condone’s slavery ,genocide,sodomy, and a lot of more unethical things.”

I won’t waste time explaining why the phrase “choice to be atheist” is wrong, we’ve got bigger problems to address. Yes, I pointed out that the Biblical god condones those things…it’s true and you agree. Your argument is that it’s morally correct for that character to condone those things because…

but when god first created man he made us with free will and he only set one rule. do not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil. when Adam and eve did this god punished them by evicting them from the garden of edam forever,which is not understandable there was 1 and only rule don’t eat from the tree. so in my opinion I agree with God for what he did.

Which makes you just as immoral as the god you worship. If you think it is morally correct to permit one human being to own another human being, you’re immoral. If you think, as you apparently do, that this is justified by the argument that one man broke one rule about what to eat – then you’re just as immoral as the god you worship and neither you nor the authors of the book you’re supporting have a proper understanding of justice or morality.

The doctrine of original sin is immoral. The doctrine of substitutionary atonement is immoral. Rather than realizing this, you’ve take the lazy route out and allowed someone else to do your moral thinking for you – and you’ve picked a collection of dead people who managed to get it horribly wrong.

Your position is that there was just one simple rule, Adam broke it and that suddenly means that slavery ‘becomes’ a morally correct act and that genocide is “OK” as long as it’s God killing off sinners (you’re about to say this almost word for word)…

“but you also comparing the old testament and the new testament which both had two separate ideas. the old testament men had to lay sacrifice for our sins to be forgiven and God allowed a lot of unethical things. and as the bible states when he had enough of it he rid the world of sin with the flood.”

How’d that turn out? Oh yes, it failed. The Bible is a comedy of errors. God creates the world with only 1 person…and that turns out to be a mistake, so he makes a companion. Two people in the world, one rule…whoops, that failed. Let’s kick them out and make life more difficult, in the hopes that this will work…whoops, that failed. OK, let’s drown everyone on the planet except for the one most righteous family…whoops, that failed. Let’s confuse their languages…fail. Let’s pick just one small group as the chosen group…fail. Let’s ignore them for a while…fail. Let’s pick and guide one king…fail.

Let’s send ourselves down and take human form in order to sacrifice ourselves to ourselves as a loophole for a rule that we made…epic fail.

The god of the Bible has no better understanding of morals, human nature or reason than the backward band of bronze-age buffoons who wrote the book. Curious, that.

“also in the book of Kings it talks about mostly slavery/war/genocide all in which god was riding the world of the worst sinners.”

I’m sorry that your religion has so severely poisoned your mind that you’re able to construct that gross rationalization. This is exactly the reason that I do what I do.

“yes at first when I studied the bible at school it was confusing to me on how a God could have a double standard. how in the old testament he let all this immoral things happen; by sending his only son to die for our sins. when Jesus died on the cross all the our sins were forgiven if we except Jesus as our savior for the sins. ( and yes I know you don’t so you don’t need to state that :) ) but in doing so he also knows man are flawed and we cannot live a life without doing thing immoral. which then reverts back to the fact Jesus died for our sins and all we have to do is ask for forgives..”

When you started reading the Bible, your brain hadn’t been poisoned and you still retained some humanity. You sacrificed your humanity on the altar of servility. Someone convinced you that you are a reprobate, deserving of punishment and you became a “battered housewife for Jesus” who now runs around telling people “no, no, he really loves me…I just drive him to this because I’m so wretched.”

“and to bash on my beliefs saying im a moron and everyone who believe in God is just not able to make decision on their own is doing exactly what every atheist ive meet has cried about for years on how Religious people force their religion onto them.”

Bashing someone’s beliefs isn’t the same as objecting to them; and neither of these is the same as attempting to legislate or force beliefs onto someone.

” I respect your choice if your Life and you have free will and you choose not to believe.

and before you say well if I believe your going to hell, I honestly can’t say that the Bible also says do not pass judgement onto others for if you do it will be dealt back onto you ( I once again im flawed so ive done this also)”

Yes, I’m aware that you are unable to think for yourself…curiously, I think you’re aware of that as well, as that’s one of the points that bothered you enough to mention.

The secret, though, is that you can think for yourself again, just as soon as you give yourself permission and start doing it. You can say, “No…there is no moral justification for slavery – ever” and “No…original sin is not a moral doctrine” and “No…I do not have a rational, evidence-based justification for my religious beliefs”…

You can stop living your life out of fear and self-loathing and start living a better life.

“But I would rather believe in something and be wrong than not believe and it comes out to be true.because if I die and God doesn’t exist im going to be fertilizer for some cemetery lawn. but if he does im going to be judged and sentenced to either eternal damnation or a eternal life in the pressance of God.”

Pascal’s wager. Worst. Argument. Ever.

I hope to hear from you soon with a response. and your opinion on what dive wrote.

and please if you respond do so kindly :)

I think I’ve been more than kind, though I don’t expect you to see that.

Comments

  1. says

    Wow, the bible condones sodomy? Who knew?And why be morally supine? I thought kneeling was good enough.LOL, the verification is "butstab"! (Mature much? I know.)

  2. says

    > by sending his only son to die for our sins.I have only a passing familiarity with Christian theology and apologetics, so forgive me if this is a common point, but:When a person loses a child, it’s a tragedy. When one loses an only child, it’s even worse because it’s their only one, and worse yet if they can’t have any more.How is any of this relevant to an eternal, omnipotent Being?

  3. says

    "I'm proud to say im a Christian and I believe in god."No kidding. I can tell by your spelling and grammar throughout your letter.Seriously, what is up with religious people not knowing how to write?If you cannot demonstrate that you are functionally literate, how can you expect us to think that you understand your religious book, which is not only written in Ye Olde English, but is written in Ye Olde English based on multiple translations from one language to another???

  4. Strangelove says

    Also, I wonder why Adam an Eve were craving that wizened fruit if they were surrounded by all that delicious cheese in the "garden of edam". Yeah, yeah, it's probably not fair to make fun of somebody who speaks English as a second language. But so do I, and it's just too hilarious to ignore it.

  5. says

    As the first commenter to this wonderful and incisive post, let me just use this rare opportunity to say…MMM! GARDEN OF EDAM!

  6. says

    I think what annoys me the most about such letters is not so much the supposed arguments but that they have been refuted so many times before and detailed refutations are easily found online BUT these people either can't or won't find them out. Consequently, it's a tedious case of "Hasn't this been dealt with before? Why can't these people actually bother to look up the response? Are they idle, stupid or both?"

  7. says

    Matt, I love you man.See, you and Jeff have one thing that the other folks don't: You're just a bit pissed off about it all.Okay, Jeff is pretty pissed off about it all around where as you're more of a "Oh, wait for it, okay now I'm pissed off" kinda guy.I love that. It's good to see people who're just willing to be ticked off a bit.I charish the idea that we should all be nice to each other, but.. man sometime's it's good to give off a "No, realy, you're a fucking idiot" vibe.Cheers!

  8. says

    I'm gonna get the Godwinning over with and point out that "ridding the world of wickedness" is the exact same justification Hitler had for the jews and poles. This is letter is exactly why I say True Christians would be absolute monsters.

  9. says

    Mark B wrote:Wow, the bible condones sodomy? Who knew?And why be morally supine?Seems to me that being supine would make it difficult to perform the Biblically-mandated sodomy.

  10. says

    This letter is exactly why I say True Christians would be absolute monsters.As much flak as they get from all sides, I think the Westboro Baptist Church is the closest thing there is to a True Christian church, if you measure TC by how much they take the Bible at face value without trying to rationalize its contents.

  11. says

    >"But I would rather believe in something and be wrong than not believe and it comes out to be true.because if I die and God doesn't exist im going to be fertilizer for some cemetery lawn. but if he does im going to be judged and sentenced to either eternal damnation or a eternal life in the pressance of God."This is the thing that breaks my heart. This is the "abused wife" statement right here."They talk about love, but when push comes to shove, they live for things they're afraid of." -RushI believe because I'm afraid I'll roast if I don't. And if you explain that it's more noble to refuse to hand over your life to a monster who would torture you, you're told "Oh, no, wait, that's not what I meant–I meant god is love. I follow because I love god."No, you FEAR. The prevalence of Pascal's Wager is a testament to the weight of the threat they're indoctrinated with.

  12. says

    Dorkman:As much flak as they get from all sides, I think the Westboro Baptist Church is the closest thing there is to a True Christian church, if you measure TC by how much they take the Bible at face value without trying to rationalize its contents.I had this same thought quite some time ago. I've never raised it in discussion though because I think too many "no-I-really-am-a-true-Christian" believers would have a knee-jerk reaction and feel like you were just trying to insult and condemn their religion by bringing up one of the worst modern examples of it. Basically I can't see that raising this point to an average believer would advance the discussion in any positive way.

  13. JTG says

    wow. How old is that kid. Sounds like they can't be more than 12 or 13. What a waste of a life ahead.

  14. says

    I have a suggeston to make to the blog's authors: since the these kinds of agruments that religious people make have already been refuted many-many times, instead of answering them every single time, why don't you guys just answer them with links to the appropriate Iron Chariots article(s) ?

  15. says

    I disagree with answering with links. Firstly it's much more fun to involve a little passion into the discussion. But more importantly, whenever a link gets thrown in as an argument it smacks of quoting the bible. Or more specifically, if a christian said to you that you should really just read a web site in answer to a discussion, what would you think? I would NEVER go to that link except as a joke. Hell, it could be Ken Ham.

  16. says

    Quite a lot of the time, I do respond to messages with links to Iron Chariots. But you don't see those emails on the blog. :)

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