Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Van Robison: "Is God a Monster as Portrayed by the Bible?"

It leaves me speechless that so many "Christians" seem to relish punishment, judgment and pain for those whom they consider "sinners."   You indeed must be a "sinner" if your views differ with that of "Christians" or church goers, or the "pastors" of churches.    Some seem to think that Sunday church goers are so evil, that they have no chance of salvation, because they are part of "Mystery Babylon the Great."   Without realizing it, Saturday Sabbath keepers are a very small minority among human beings on earth.  In fact they are a speck of sand upon the seashore of humanity.   Are these the only people who will survive into eternity?

Oh foolish human beings, who follow preachers who take captives.   Every pastor takes captives and only the childish in thought, follow such people.   Pastors of churches dearly love to cause church goers to live in FEAR, that "God is going to get you, if you do not comply."   For thousands of years, the simple minded have been screwed by the religious rulers who assume power and control over the childish, naive and gullible minds of non-thinkers. Pastors of churches love to quote verses from the Bible, that instill FEAR in church goers.   Naturally FEAR is one of the greatest motivations in life on earth.

Preachers endlessly proclaim "tithe or be cursed", "obey those who rule over you"  or God will "get you."   I suspect that this fraud actually has been going on long before preachers, who use the name of Jesus Christ fraudulently ever existed.   In the old days, it was purchase your animals from the priests or temples and then sacrifice your animals for your sins, or be cursed.   The benefactors have always been the priests and the pastors.

Among the greatest frauds in life on earth, are "pastors" of churches and "priests" who pretend that they speak for God.   No one but the most childish of adults would submit their lives to such charlatans.   Every church goer who thinks some "pastor" or "elder" or group of men, speak for God, is among the most STUPID of human beings on earth.   Until God Himself speaks to you individually and personally, you actually know NOTHING about God, other than BLANK SPACE.

Van Robison


DennisCDiehl said...

While I understand the sentiment, I think we are talking about fundamentalist and literalist pastor types and not all pastors. Many more open minded and intellectually honest denominations produce pastors who really do pastor, are not tithe hawkers or yell shoulds and musts at the congregation. They are neither trained that way, nor that kind of person having been drawn to ministry out of a sincere heart.

I knew no Presbyterian minister in my own experience that remotely was this kind of person or pastored the congregation with anything but genuine concern and support etc.

Like any profession, it has it's share of jerks and goofballs.

In horrible hind site, while I thought I was going to the WCG Seminary, lol, I was trained to be a Bible reader and undertrained on pretty much everything else including the real origins of scripture, real church history and proper and compassionate counseling. In hindsite, I didn't learn much more at WCG than I did in Sunday School as a Calvinist kid.

All that to say, I know a number of very sincere and great men and women whose hearts are in the right place for what they feel they have to do . They also are extremely well trained and know even the problems of scripture privately but still do their daily ministry.

None of them obcess about prophecy or gun laps.

I have never sensed any current COG minister has looked outside the box and become more than just being a Bible reader. Even GCI/WCG of Tkach has merely reinvented the wheel thinking they have come to see truth they didn't have and while I consider myself able to understand most thing, Ted Johnston's Surprising God Blog promoting CGI Trinitarian views is an enigma to me. I don't think I have ever read such theological jibberish in my life.

DennisCDiehl said...

PS I also have access to encourage hundreds of ministers, male and female who, at midlife, realize they have made a mistake, are over it and only wish to move on intact and still married or spoken to by their children.

It's a tough position to be in but the stories are all fairly similar and the outcomes of doing so quite common though painful.

Trust me.....

Anonymous said...

"Is God a Moral Monster" by Paul Copan gives an explanation to why God told the Israelites to kill, etc. as well as explains the rationale for many laws in the Law of Moses that seem to us to promote ethnic cleansing, oppression of women, endorsement of slavery, etc. The title, Is God a Monster as Protrayed by the Bible" reminded me of this book.

Allen C. Dexter said...

Definitely, the fraud has been going on since the earliest shaman decided he had the answers and nobody else understood like he did. Then, he noticed what a rich and easy life he could lead by getting everyone to faun over him and bow down to him.

I recognize that all ministries are filled with some who have good motives and sincerely want to serve those they are supposed to serve, but most of them have to ignore a lot that they realize in the back of their minds and conclude that it isn't really important. There's a load of compromisin' on the road to some horizons.

In the final analysis, it's good that none of us have the burden of having to judge individuals other than rejecting what is clearly a load of bull crap, once we come to that understanding.

DennisCDiehl said...

There is NO rationale for any "God" (In the guise of Hebrew leaders with their own agenda) ordering genocide of men, women, children who got in the way of the chosen ones. If you toll it up, in the OT "God" kills off 1.6 million not including the flood and exodus myths. I am sure most OT kill numbers are exaggerated and so often come right out on the even number of 80,000, 25,000 etc. Nice trick.

There can be an apologetic for such behavior but no rationale that leaves women, to this day, subject to cultic retribution in a world where men rule and do so badly.

Women were stoned for relationships because in that culture it was very important to be able to know whose child was whose due to inheiritance rights. Since there was no effective way of knowing, women were threatened and killed for such behaviors men could do with impunity. Men don't get pregnant. Death for women was to insure paternity proof by making them fear to stray.

Remember our friend, the possibly mythical Moses came down the mountain with "thou shalt do no murder," got pissed and ordered,"everyman to kill his neighbor and in that day 3000 died." It should have said, "you shall not murder each other."

I can't imagine Moses holding a Ten Commandment class that next week and trying to explain the previous weeks killing in light of the "great law." lol I imagine everyone looking at each other and asking "what the hell was last week all about?"

It's a big topic but there is no rationale for such human carnage and rules that when it is all said and done, did not come from any god but from leadership, priests and those who, like today, just want to win and control.

There is a rationale for beheading teenagers and shooting women in the head at local shopping centers for effec too as well as throwing acid in the face of a daughter or sister who wants out of the insane values of her culture or wishes to date and marry who she choses. not who are chosen for them.

Want the OT God? The Taliban lead the way.

When it says, "You shall have no other gods before me...for I the lord thy God am a jealous God," it is better said "You shall not bring any other gods into my presence (there were lots of gods just like this god at this time)because I am a jealous God."

This God was not kidding. He couldn't change that there were other gods, but just don't bring them into my presence, says God. Being jealous is such a human thing. It was only later that the OT evolves YHVH into the only God and polytheism fades for monotheism. Long but fascinating story.

Byker Bob said...

I don't have any problem with the Bible's description of God. There are both loving and fearsome passages, much the same as one might expect to be written of a good parent.

The problem comes into play with the balance, or lack thereof, with which human preachers teach us about God. I have come to believe that the ways in which theologians teach often gives us insight into their own personalities, moreso than that of God. It also tells us what kinds of parents they might have had.

Law and punishment exist because people miss the mark, or make wrong choices. The most grievous, worst case scenario punishments apply to the most flagrant abusers.
Problem is, people like the Armstrongs and their pupils seem to like to apply worst case universally, to everyone. This evokes an image of an angry judge of a God, just waiting to punish for any minor infraction. If you carefully read the teachings of Jesus without WCG filters, you realize that God wants a relationship with his human children, and His purpose is to draw and reconcile us to Him. This is the John 3:16 mold.

Even in the book of Revelation, the Lake of Fire is described as having been prepared specifically for Satan and the demons, although some humans will also be cast into it as well.


DennisCDiehl said...

God Vs. Satan

Rationale this.... :)

How many has God killed?
I kill ... I wound ... I will make my arrows drunk with blood, and my sword shall devour flesh. -- Deuteronomy 32:39-42

How many people did God kill in the Bible?

It's impossible to say for sure, but plenty. How many did God drown in the flood or burn to death in Sodom and Gomorrah? How many first-born Egyptians did he kill? There's just no way to count them all.

But sometimes the Bible tells us exactly how many were killed by God. So what happens if you total all of these killings? What number do you get?

Well, here's what I came up with: 2,476,633

Note that this number is a gross underestimate of the total number. It doesn't include, in many cases, women and children, and it completely leaves out some of God's more impressive kills. (Like the flood, Sodom and Gomorrah, the firstborn Egyptian children, etc.)

So what happens if you use estimates when the Bible provides only numbers for adult male victims or no numbers at all?

Here's my estimate: 25 million

And here is a complete list of all of God's killings in the Bible.


Much more information about God's killings, with a chapter on each of the 135 killing events, can be found int the book:

Drunk With Blood: God's killings in the Bible
Dwindling in Unbelief

DennisCDiehl said...

PS Satan, on the other hand is credited with 10 kills in Job....

Jace said...

Dennis Diehl wrote:

"PS Satan, on the other hand is credited with 10 kills in Job....

Making Lucifer the considerably lesser evil of the two LOL!

Which brings me to...

Van Robinson wrote:

" you actually know NOTHING about God, other than BLANK SPACE

The same space that is inhabited by any evidence for god in the first place.

Anonymous said...

A personal view of the church and bible
When I read some of the comments about God and the bible it is apparent that many fail to recognize that it is historical writings that reveal the beliefs, actions, and faith of a people who have recorded them in different languages and in a world that different than the world today. I personally look for principles that can be applied to every generation.

Today people look at sacrifices as being an inhumane action that belongs to a primitive class of people, but in reality it reveals an exalted view of what we call LIFE. The belief was and is that blood is the life line to a living being whether it is animal or human. We think that the use of blood was a gory process, but if we think of the fact that the animal died (was slaughter) so we can live there is a whole different perspective. For human life to live something has died whether it be plant, fish, bird, or animal.

Today millions of living creatures are slaughtered without a thought about the fact that they were sacrificed so we can continue to enjoy and experience life. This is just one small example of the use and abuse of what the bible tells us. Something to think about: maybe we need to focus developing a true faith, hope, and love that puts the bible in perspective.

A. Boocher

Anonymous said...

ummm.....haven't I heard somewhere that Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden were vegetarians. Probably just speculation.

Then I know someone who believes that the gods walked amongst us in the olden days, and liked to eat meat. We were scared of them and tried to placate them with burnt offerings.

I also heard that Yahweh wasn't the only god, but he was jealous. When he says worship no other gods before me, I have heard that interpreted to mean, 'yes there were other gods'. Those other gods liked sex too, with human women, but probably only the good looking ones.
Just shows the Bible can be interpreted many different ways. When I read it, I am so happy I live now and not them. I might have been sacrificed at birth or stoned for some false accusation or made to have sex with some horny god/half-god (would I have been desirable enough?) Its all enough to turn me into a vegetarian, now what was wrong with Cain's offering I always wondered?

Anonymous said...

Anon: it appears to me that you are negative thinker in reading the biblical stories. Your paraphrases are distorted and you apparently do not recognize that the biblical God was not pleased with the way human life was developing and had a solution built into the master plan.

The bible recognizes there are two ways a person can live; it is defined as good and evil.
One is the way that produces people who will enjoy a harmonious unity that considers the good of the community and everything that supports it. This way will focus on things that produce healthy characteristics and a free community that is growing.

The other is the way produces people who are focused on personal self interests and those agreeing with those self interests. This way is subject to a variety of unhealthy characteristics that enslave people and produce the fracturing that leads to destruction.

The biblical God sets before us these two choices and allows us to choose. As I read it God say to choose what is good. It is not for me to determine what is good for each individual, but I believe the first choice will produce the best results at least for me.

A. Boocher

Anonymous said...

Anonymous (Boocher) thank you for your answer. Somehow what you are saying sounds familiar. Didn't HWA talk about the way of give and the way of get? I was a child then, and I never did really understand what he meant. Seemed like he was doing a lot of getting and the ordinary people were mostly giving.
Is what you are saying just an ideal, I don't really know too many living in harmonious unity, no doubt there must be some. You talk about the good of the community, I have done my share of community living, and eventually decided humans are primarily motivated by personal goals, isn't that why communism failed? Not to say this is bad or evil, it is something to do with our nature and can still by directed towards goodness.

Anonymous said...

My answer to ANON:
Yes HWA did use a simplistic presentation of the way of give and the way of get and I am not sure how he perceived it. What I wrote was a personal view I have gleaned from deeper studies that look for principles that apply to everyday life and the development of characteristics that would be in harmony with the character attributed to the God as revealed through Jesus Christ. Yes it is an ideal that may be difficult to achieve due to a human nature that has personal needs to fill: ideally if we were all concerned for each other everyone’s needs would be met.

The New Testament story about Jesus Christ is about one human being that was willing to sacrifice for all human failings with the recognition that human nature by itself cannot achieve this high level of living.
Some may not believe there is such a power available, but my approach is that there must be a committed effort made before anything can be achieved.

My personal opinion is that until all humanity recognizes the need to make a dramatic change from self serving to what I refer to as a whole life dedication to building a life that is focused positive encouragement of one another; we cannot expect perfection it the order of things, but this should not deter us from trying to do the right thing, at the right time, for the right purpose.

May original concern was that a negative view of what the bible teaches misses the wisdom it teaches about dealing with real life.
A. Boocher

Anonymous said...

Boocher, I don't necessarily believe those negative interpretations of the Bible, I have just heard others say them, and feel it is a way of interpreting the Bible. The WCG said we were to just read the Bible and follow it, but that cannot be true when we see what went on in the OT. Then in the NT there are also contradictions. What comes to my mind is the love and acceptance of Jesus message -- him befriending prostitutes and wine bibbers and accepting the thief on the cross. Then some of the letters of Paul, back to rules and vindictiveness, and then finally the book of Revelation.
WCG had their own interpretation and an answer for everything, but now it seems this was just glib talk especially when coming from the mouths of GTA and HWA.

After a whole childhood of programming I recognise the pattern of HWA and WCG terminology and think very easily. It is inaccurate and it is simplistic.
As for the Bible....yes I have learned much wisdom from the Proverbs, Psalms and Ecclesiastes, but some of this was written by Solomon who wasn't necessarily good. I have found that people who aren't "good" are often wiser than people who are "good" for some reason.