Funny quote

If there is one verse form the Bible that Christians are likely to be able to recite verbatim, it is John 3:16 which goes:

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

Tebow 3-16You often see the words “John 3:16” scrawled in large letters all over the place, on T-shirts, alleys, bathroom walls, and on bed sheets draped over the railings of the upper decks of stadiums hoping that TV cameras will pan over it. It is a sign that you are a true believer. Some ostentatiously religious athletes like Tim Tebow also inscribe it in the blacking under their eyes, no doubt to inspire them to great things, though in his case it seems to have not helped. (Whatever happened to him, anyway?)

So I was highly amused to come across this quote on the internet and was surprised that I had not heard of it before.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him will believeth in anything.” – Hitchens 3:16

I don’t know if Christopher Hitchens actually said this or it was ascribed to him. It does look like the kind of thing he would come up with but I can find no record of him actually saying it.


  1. invivoMark says

    If there was ever proof that Christianity is a death cult, John 3:16 is it. They’re absolutely obsessed with death, and can’t deal with it like the rest of us.

  2. kyoseki says

    I never understood the idea that Jesus’ death was “the ultimate sacrifice”

    … it’s only an “ultimate sacrifice” if you stay dead, it’s not “ultimate” if you come back to life less than 48 hours later.

    That’s not an ultimate sacrifice, that’s losing a long weekend.

  3. glodson says

    I think the whole line fits in nicely with the thought that god is a sadist, as presented in the Bible. Instead of just forgiving mankind for our sins, something many of can do nicely when people have wronged us and show remorse after the fact, God has to send his kid to be tortured and brutally murdered so that only those who believe him will be spared Hell, which he created.

    Not the act of a loving character. In fact, that sounds an an evil bastard to me.

    But that quote attributed to Hitchens, while funny, is wrong. We all can name many things Christians won’t believe. Other gods, to be sure. Some of them won’t believe Evolution, radiometric dating, much of geology, the Big Bang theory, paleontology, pretty much the vast majority of the prehistorical existence of mankind, much of history before about 6000 BCE and many, many other things I’m not even able to think of off the top of my head as there’s just too much for some Christians to disbelief.

    The problem is that all those things disbelieved have a mountain of evidence in support. Expect the other gods.

  4. says

    Ironically, the first half of John chapter 3 (including 3.16) is too well written to have been a conversation that actually happened. There’s a pun about being “born again” that only makes sense in Greek. Meaning that any sort of historical Jesus and Nicodemus would not have had that sort of conversation since they would have been Aramaic speaking Jews; it could have only happened in Greek.

  5. Rodney Nelson says

    Whatever happened to him, anyway?

    According to the Bleacher Report:

    Now the Jets are reportedly trying to trade Tebow, and they will be lucky if they can get even a late-round draft pick in return. As one general manager put it (via Adam Schefter of ESPN), “I think his career is over without playing another position.”

    In only three short years in the league, Tebow may have already run out of chances to be an NFL quarterback. The issue is not only that the Jets are unable to get value for him in a trade. It is that it is unclear if any team wants him at all, even for free.

  6. Jared A says

    I was always told that Christianity is a Dionysian cult. Death and salvation is a major part, yes, but so is eating your god.

  7. says

    “will believeth” is not good English. I very much doubt that awkward construction dropped from Hitch’s mouth.
    I further doubt he said it because a corrected version (“will believe anything”) is too close to a similar quote by H.L Mencken, I believe it was, that atheism doesn’t mean so much that you don’t believe in god as that you believe in anything at all.

  8. Mano Singham says

    Thanks for that link that I read. I had no idea that Tebow was so disliked personally and his abilities so practically everyone in the game.

  9. MNb says

    “but have everlasting life”
    I have always found that an excellent reason to discredit Jesus as my saviour. Eternal life in heaven must be so boring that on the long term any difference with hell disappears. Example.
    I like to play chess. In heaven everything is perfect, so I won’t make any mistake when playing. Neither will my opponents. Result: always a draw. Then why would I play chess?
    Only the brainless will enjoy Abrahamistic heaven. At the other hand I can’t remember being unhappy and complaining anything before my parents conceived me. No points for guessing what I prefer.

  10. Vote for Pedro says

    There’s a great bit on the afterlife in The Order of the Stick (a comic about a Dungeons & Dragons-style adventuring team). A character dies and visits it, including such places as The Debate Hall Where You’re Always Right and the Bar Tavern of Infinite One-Night Stands (comic here) – it’s worth visiting for the followup gags on just those two. Even those pleasures would pale, surely, and they do in the comic as well, with the dead continuing up the mountain past the shallowest afterlife pleasures.

    We’re on the same page – just thought it was a pretty funny take. (And a really clever comic, which delves into surprisingly deep territory at times. One of my favorites, and I was lucky enough to find it just before the epic Kickstarter happened last year. But I digress.)

  11. garnetstar says

    At Conservapedia, they’ve been moaning that the liberal NFL won’t put Tebow in games because they’re anti-Christian and want to play liberal atheistic quarterbacks instead.

    Who knew.

  12. wholething says

    But 1 John 2:15 says
    15 Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them.

    If God loves the world, he doesn’t love himself. We’re supposed to love God but not the world. How come we’re held to a standard even God can’t do?

  13. left0ver1under says

    Tebow’s head is so fragile, so prone to concussions that he *can’t* play another position except perhaps kicker.

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