Compelled to Challenge

Once again, my Australian friend and mentor, Robert D. Brinsmead, says it much better than I could. Just as Jesus challenged the religious establishment of his day, we are compelled to do likewise. For all the reasons cited in my previous posts, I hereby challenge Christianity’s purpose behind their “holy week.” Rather, I would hope that you might put them all aside and think about how the “resurrection” is your own, TODAY, and how it changes your life, TODAY, and how the scandal of the  known near death experience (NDE) by-passes all the religious formulas. ~ Henry Hasse; April 17, 2011


The “God with us” of Christianity turns out to be a very qualified, very exclusive, and not at all an unconditional kind of “with us.” There is a Christian theology which quite explicitly says, “If you don’t listen to us you are condemned already and God will punish you severely.”

Human psychology is such that you can’t say stuff like that without ending up wishing, Jonah-like, that God will punish them or even thinking that the church/state system should start the punishing process in the here and now. But even if we remain pacifists, we can’t talk this New Testament talk without thinking ill of certain people because they don’t believe what we believe. The New Testament says “Have nothing to do with them,” and “don’t give them any hospitality or wish them God’s goodwill.” Well, that’s a bit better than Moses who says they should be taken out and stoned to death if they err from right teaching.

Even Paul in the letter to the Thessalonians loses patience with the Jews who don’t listen to him and so he starts damning them in bitter words. The fourth Gospel does this as an almost central theme. John’s gospel is atrociously antisemitic, and this is now universally acknowledged and regretted.

Luther started out with warm thoughts and hopes for the Jews, opining that if they had been treated better, they would surely respond to the gospel. When they proved to be recalcitrant to his evangelical overtures, he raved and cursed them bitterly and thereby must share the blame of the Holocaust. His rage against the Jews is nothing short of outrageously inhuman.

 Even the earliest Christians beat people over the head with intellectual and spiritual thuggery – to put it bluntly, if you believe what we tell you, you will have all these wonderful things like God’s acceptance and eternal life of happiness to boot, and if you don’t listen to us and believe what we tell you, God is going to belt the hell, not out of you but into you – and don’t tell me that some of them did not believe in an eternal Celestial Torturer, because the plain fact is that some New Testament writers did – no matter how Annihilationists squirm around and try to explain away passages such as “the smoke of their torment ascends up forever and ever.”

So indeed, this Christian theology is bound up with the intellectual thuggery and bribery of making offers that people find difficult to refuse, even on the grounds of good fire insurance. Fundamentalists want to gloss over this pornographic religious stuff as if it hardly existed and refuses to see why the Christian religion became the most bloodletting regime in religious history.

The poor Muslims have just not caught up with the spirit of the Enlightenment and Liberalism that swept Christian culture with a more humanizing spirit. This enlightenment did not come from more Bible study I can assure you.

 Father Tim Moyle, the Catholic priest, who wrote the article, “Where is God in the wake of all the world’s misery”, poor guy, saddled with his original sin story thinks that this atrocious religious myth may in some way explain the pain and suffering of the world. This is part and parcel of the doctrine of blood atonement and savagery of hell reserved for the most of mankind who are left out of the comforts of “God with us.”

His God is someone who not just sentences Eve to banishment from Paradise (direct access to God) and death because of her naive and innocent human curiosity, but sentences a thousand generations of her children to a cursed planet AND her sex to pain in childbearing and subjection to male domination (because she was the first who sinned, a la the Timothy letter supposedly but not actually written by Paul), and must be so ashamed of her sex that she must be silent in church, must not be in any teaching role, but must confine her questions to her husband at home, etc., etc.

Do I hate all these good Christian teachings? To borrow words from the Psalmist, “You bet I do! I hate them with perfect hatred.” With Jefferson I say, “It would be more pardonable to believe in no God at all than to believe the atrocious teaching of the Christian theologians.”

I write my diatribe against religion with a big smile on my face just as Jesus told outrageous stories that poked fun at the religious establishment; not with an ugly scowl, but with a big smile on his face.

Comments from Bill Ferguson:

….If you take the Hell doctrines seriously, I don’t think you can help but come up with some pretty screwed up ideas of what God is….

Humanity got off track sometime before Egypt became a nation. The great priesthoods of Egypt encompassed not only religion but also the technology of its time. Kings were surrounded by them, and scarcely given time to think on their own and certainly never beyond earshot of cabal that truly ran things in the various empires. One adopted Royal becomes a priest over the Israelite slaves and before you know it the system of priesthoods is carried away north, along with a couple cross pollinations with Babylon beliefs during exile.

We come into Jesus time, one man’s independent thinking poses such challenge to the existing power structures they constantly seek ways to murder him. Murder, slander, and shunning never seems far from the priestly toolbox. The priests had cut their piece of the Judaic pie under Roman occupation in exchange for being left in power – and for the most part that served Roman interests to leave it intact.

Later the emerging Christian sects are seen as a way of uniting Rome, and the State moves in with full force to co-opt the faith and produce its own cannon of books, while burning libraries of other texts in Alexandria Egypt and other libraries of scrolls in Greece. The great Roman wars with the Vandals and Visigoth “barbarians” were in fact a war between two Christian sects. War between one Christian country and another is the legacy of Europe….

Published in: on April 17, 2011 at 3:44 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Tim Moyle isn’t really a Christian, even though he is a priest.

    I reject his take on Christianity. I think most Christians do. Certainly most Catholics do. I like yours better.

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