Pastor: God Spared Those Not Killed


In the aftermath of the Aurora shootings, lots of the good people of the local community flocked to the churches for comfort. And then they heard stupid things like this from at least one of the local pastors who had several members of his church at the theater when it happened:

The pastor said 33 church members had been in Theater 9 and nearby Theater 8 when the shooter unloaded dozens of rounds.

“I’m very, very happy God spared you,” he said.

Really? God spared them? So what are you going to tell the families of the ones who were killed? That God didn’t love them enough to spare them? That the ones who survived were just more special than the ones who died?

Taylor urged parishioners not to focus on the “senseless act of a sinful man,” but rather how they could help their community heal.

“The atrocity of the innocent losing their lives is the story of Jesus,” he said.

Atrocity? I thought God was in control of everything? If he decided who would be spared and who would die, he was in control of the whole thing. How could it be an atrocity?

Comments

  1. anteprepro says

    “The atrocity of the innocent losing their lives is the story of Jesus,” he said.

    Yep. Why Jesus just won’t end his killing spree, we will never know.

  2. unbound says

    Remember, God works in mysterious ways…unless those ways are the way I want it, in which case, that is the way God really meant for it to be, non-mysteriously.

  3. davidct says

    God loves blood sacrifice. It says so in the Bible so it must be true. If god was in charge, what justification do we have to punish the killer? We should be celebrating his wondrous act.

    The whole religious mentality is so repulsive when these sad events happen.

  4. says

    So God did — what exactly? Bend the bullets like that movie Wanted? Made the parishioners impervious like Superman?

    And if he could do it for these people, why didn’t he do that for the baby who got killed? Or everyone, for that matter? How come god didn’t just make the bullets disappear in thin air? Or have the gun misfire?

    What an asshole that god is.

  5. anubisprime says

    That thar ‘fistikated feelology’ is powerful ju ju I tells thee!

    What a fucking moron…mind you considering the scam they perpetrate…the more moronic the better!
    The Douche bags-R-Uz head honchos must have some of the lowest IQ’s on the planet…mind you any congregation that nods sagely in agreement to such bollix do not deserve any better.

  6. raven says

    If the gods were really on the ball then:

    1. James Holmes would have been run over by a car a few days before the shootings.

    or

    2. The police would have asked him why he was stockpiling body armor, guns, ammo, grenades, and tear gas.

  7. raven says

    Well, look at it on the bright side.

    God must love me. I was also spared from getting shot by James Holmes.

    In fact, I was well over 1,000 miles away at the time. The warm and fuzzy feeling is someone diluted by the fact that billions of other people were also spared.

    Hmmm, although given the deity’s notoriously poor aim, he might have had it in for me and just missed.

  8. says

    “The atrocity of the innocent losing their lives is the story of Jesus,” he said.

    Jesus, the worst spree killer in history; although 2000 years is a bit long for a spree.

    If god is actually taking some action he could have had James hit by a car, and not killed or badly injured, while he was loaded down with all his weapons and then be arrested and rehabilitated. Isn’t that what a loving and merciful god would do? A god that uses a dartboard to decide which of the people in the theater would die and which ones live is just an asshole.

  9. Larry says

    This xtian theme of their sky fairy protecting some subset of people from a disaster or mass murder scene has always bugged the shit out of me. I remember a plane crash some years ago where a handful of passengers survived while the majority were killed. Some idiot at that time declared god was protecting them.

    These fools are so saturated with the woo they can’t even conceive of how stupid these remarks are and how painful they must be to those who lost their loved ones. I am really starting to wish the rapture was coming real soon and get these god-botherers out of our hair.

  10. Trebuchet says

    “God spared those not killed.”

    And he killed those who were not spared. Just like he wanted George Zimmerman to kill Trayvon Martin. All part of the plan.

  11. Michael Heath says

    Taylor urged parishioners not to focus on the “senseless act of a sinful man,” but rather how they could help their community heal.

    Calvary Chapel Aurora and pastor, per its statement of faith along with other claims on its site, clearly reveal they purposefully abuse the children in their charge. This page is particularly repugnant when it comes to how they deal with children.

    So why would we believe Mr. Taylor and his church will be committed to “healing” the community beyond merely talking about it and some cursory actions to few in the short-term? Unless it helps them better market their brand, beliefs, and membership. I’m totally unconvinced regarding his sincerity.

    I wonder how many Christians in Taylor’s conservative Christian flock would support a reduction in magazine capacities, and other gun control laws which would reduce the odds and effect of such killing sprees? How many would go beyond temporarily mouthing support and actually vote for politicians who focus on the national interest rather than the conservative Christian tribe’s talking points and bigotries. What’s more important to them? Their children’s future or getting gays back in the closet and turning their kids into delusional slavish idiots just like their pastor and these church members?

  12. tubi says

    I posted a question as my fb status update a few days ago asking, “Did God know, 24 years ago when He created James Holmes, that his creation would go on to murder multiple innocent people one night?”

    One of my religious friends answered, unequivocally, “Yes, of course.”

    I replied, “So Holmes had no choice,then, but to pull the trigger and carry out God’s plan?”

    So far no response. The logical disconnect and lack of empathy are palpable in some people.

  13. raven says

    I posted a question as my fb status update a few days ago asking, “Did God know, 24 years ago when He created James Holmes, that his creation would go on to murder multiple innocent people one night?”

    Predestination, Calvinism.

    James Holmes was predestined to dye his hair orange and shoot up that theater.

    The 70 people that were shot and/or killed were predestined to…get shot and/or killed.

    All part of the plan. Which is apparently to make a world that looks like there is…no gods and no plans.

  14. Sastra says

    When you get right down to it, most believers judge God’s plan through the application of a simple heuristic: it’s to increase faith.

    Why were some people in the theater spared? So that we would all marvel at God’s miraculous act of mercy and learn to believe in Him and trust Him even more.

    Why were so many people in the theater killed? So that we would lean on God to get us through the tragedy and learn to believe in Him and trust Him even more.

    What outsiders see as a serious disconnect and contradiction is what insiders instead consider a very simple rule of thumb, evenly applied. You use it after the fact — after any fact. Always look at what happened and imagine it as part of a story about strengthening either your certainty that God cares, or your certainty that you OUGHT to try to see God as caring (and the harder the “struggle” the more exemplary it is.)

    Religious faith is a personal commitment to the act of spinning.

  15. slc1 says

    Re Michael Heath @ #12

    What’s more important to them? Their children’s future or getting gays back in the closet and turning their kids into delusional slavish idiots just like their pastor and these church members?

    The latter, of course.

  16. footface says

    Why were some people in the theater spared? So that we would all marvel at God’s miraculous act of mercy and learn to believe in Him and trust Him even more.

    Why were so many people in the theater killed? So that we would lean on God to get us through the tragedy and learn to believe in Him and trust Him even more.

    It’s more important to god that X strengthen his faith than that Y not be brutally murdered.

    God’s not really too interested in making himself look good, is he?

  17. kagekiri says

    He calls it “being spared” because the Bible says we all deserve death for deigning to be born sinful humans.

    The idea of mass murders being cases of “innocent people losing their lives” is pretty much the opposite of what the Bible teaches. None are innocent, none are worthy of being spared.

    That’s why these things aren’t atrocities to them, not really; they aren’t even examples of God being unjust. God kills his own people without remorse because none are sinless to him. Being human is already punishable by death. Hell, he even fucks with Job, who WAS perfect. God is a fucking asshole who refuses all responsibility for his supposed sovereignty.

    Damned Jesus nailed to a stick, I fucking hate that God character.

  18. says

    Things are worse than that: apparently Holmes mailed a notebook with drawings of shooting people to a psychiatrist, which was left unopened for several days before the shooting (it was only discovered on Monday). Did God make the university mail workers leave it in the mailroom so that His Plan could be fulfilled?

  19. footface says

    Oh, but it’s infinitely worse than that! Think of the infinitude of events that had to happen just for this massacre to occur. The numberless ancestors of everyone present who had to meet and reproduce, for starters. Then there are the endless machinations to insure that countless people not be there. The creation of cinema! Of the internet! Of zoning laws that resulted in the theater being where it was!

    It’s like god was spending all his time making sure this happened.

  20. says

    He calls it “being spared” because the Bible says we all deserve death for deigning to be born sinful humans.

    The idea of mass murders being cases of “innocent people losing their lives” is pretty much the opposite of what the Bible teaches. None are innocent, none are worthy of being spared.

    It’s deeply disturbing when I come across someone who believes in that idea. It makes me wonder how likely such an attitude could lead to mass killings similar to Holmes’s. If someone truly believes everyone deserves death, how will they resolve the cognitive dissonance when they weigh that statement opposite the idea that murder is bad?

    It also essentially negates anything resembling moral judgement of individuals compared to one another. A good person, as sane people would define one, is not significantly better than a criminal. This also means that criminals would be judged little worse than a good person, if at all. Under that false equality, people don’t need to feel any worse for doing evil or any better for doing good.

    Disclaimer: I’m not saying that Holmes was one of these types, since I lack information to draw conclusions about his beliefs. He’s just the hot topic as an example of a mass killer, serving as an example.

  21. sundoga says

    I would have liked to comment directly to the LA Times – but they don’t allow people outside the US to do so.

  22. says

    Larry “These fools are so saturated with the woo they can’t even conceive of how stupid these remarks are and how painful they must be to those who lost their loved ones. I am really starting to wish the rapture was coming real soon and get these god-botherers out of our hair.”
    I’m terrified of the Rapture. If He smites gay people in San Francisco by making tornadoes in Kentucky, how can we possibly hope He’ll be any more accurate in enRapturation?

  23. Ichthyic says

    If the gods were really on the ball then:

    1. James Holmes would have been run over by a car a few days before the shootings.

    or

    2. The police would have asked him why he was stockpiling body armor, guns, ammo, grenades, and tear gas.

    3. James would have gotten help before he ever decided to weaponize himself.

    4. James wouldn’t have even needed help, since the gods helped him pass his qualifying exams, and thus alleviated the stress that was breaking him.

    5. endless regression is fun.

  24. Ichthyic says

    Religious faith is a personal commitment to the act of spinning framing.

    modified for satirical effect.

  25. demonhauntedworld says

    This quote from a CNN story is mind-boggling:

    “In Christianity we call it prevenient grace: God working ahead of time for a particular event in the future. It’s just like the God I follow to plan the route of a bullet through a brain long before Batman ever rises. Twenty-two years before,” Strait wrote.

  26. Victor says

    And don’t forget –

    If a christian died, it was because god loved that person so much that god wanted them in heaven.

    If a christian lived, it was because god loved that person and wanted them to live.

    If a non-christian* died, it was because god hated that person and punished them.

    If a non-christian lived, it was because of god’s love.

    * depending on the specific beliefs of the speaker, this rule also applies to gays/lesbians (e.g., WBC)

  27. says

    Assholes that babble about the “Will-O-GOD” make me fantasize about putting a gun to their head and saying;

    “Here, sparky, flip this coin. Heads, you live; tails, you live forever–starting now–in the sweet, sweet bosom of the LARD! Go on, it’s okay, it’s teh “Will-O-GOD”!”.

    Not that I ever would, it’s just a leeeeeeeeeeetle bit cathartic.

    “I would have liked to comment directly to the LA Times – but they don’t allow people outside the US to do so.”

    Put whatever you wanted to say to them on this thread and I’m sure someone will be happy to cut’n’paste it into a letter to the editor at the LAT.

  28. LDTR says

    A being that everyone knows to be fictional, who kills innocent people and makes others suffer as “part of his plan”: an evil, insane villain.

    A being that billions consider to be real, who kills innocent people and makes others suffer as “part of his plan”: God.

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