Monday, November 1, 2010

I Want Your Input!

I thought it would be an interesting task to make a comprehensive list of what Christianity asks its believers to accept, but seem incoherent and backward to people not raised in it.  A couple examples of what it would be:

Christianity asks us to accept:
  • Our ancient ancestors were told to not eat a fruit, but did it anyway, and now every person who has ever lived since then is sinful and fallen from God.
  • Everything, including humans with our many defects (and vulnerabilities) were created by a perfectly all-powerful, all-knowing, and infinitely far-reaching being, and he said it was "good."
  • This same being, being infinitely powerful and knowing, cares about what job we get.
I am still compiling and will soon be lining up scriptural citations for the applicable ideas.  Let's see if I still remember my Bible!

This is where I need your help.  Can you think of some interesting things that Christianity (or just the Bible) asks its believers to accept?  I am looking for doctrines, historical and scientific claims, moral imperatives, etc.  Please list them in the comments section of this post or email me at doubtingeric(at)  Thanks!

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capnjammer said...

How about:

-a perfect and kind being created the universe, but he either made mistakes or was being purposely mean because so much of science can't account for his actions, for example: why did he create the light of stars already visible to us billions of light years away if he expects us to believe the world is less than ten thousand years old?

-A kind and loving God puts us through plenty of trouble here on earth that tests our faith, and still allows us to have the supernatural intervention of a personal devil.

-a book that can be proven to be full of contradictions, factual errors, scientific and historical fallacies, and plagiarism from many previous mythologies is the final word of a perfect and all-wise god.

-The Roman Empire, known for assimilating cultures and religions as a means of conquest, had nothing to do with the formation of what became one of the world's largest and most successful religions, with its headquarters in Rome, and with the first popes and great missionaries having been Romans, and with classical depictions of the saints clearly mimicking Roman gods (ie. St. Peter carrying a crooked staff and holding two fingers up, just like in classical depictions of Jupiter), and with the first major councils regarding its formation being hosted by Roman emperors... there is supposedly no connection?

That's just a few... I've got a ton more.

Eric Burton said...

Good ones! I find this question a bit overwhelming because it seems like I keep discovering more and more things that sound ridiculous as time goes on. It's hard to narrow these things down sometimes.

Please feel free to post more!

capnjammer said...

Well, how about these?

-God created man above all beasts, with a clear faculty for advanced thought, logic, reasoning, etc., and yet would choose to have him forsake this and accept him based entirely on faith?

-God would allow the suspension of known natural laws to perform miracles to prove that he was real in front of a bunch of superstitious sheep herders, but refuses to do so in this modern age of science.

-Hundreds of people witnessed Christ's miracles, hundreds more witnessed the resurrection and ascension, thousands witnessed the descent of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost, and every resident of Jerusalem witnessed graves open up and saw dead people get up and walk around during the crucifixion, but only four guys decided to write five books about it fifty to a hundred years later (which, by the way, was well beyond the human lifespan of the day, considering most of them would have been between 25 and 40 when Jesus died)... no one thought to record a mass zombie outbreak, except one sentence in the book of Matthew?

-A kind and loving God who claims to have died for everyone will watch uncaring while an African child calls out for help and dies of malnutrition or violence, but he will jump on the ball to help people in the fattest, laziest, richest country in the world pass a test, or get a new car, or safely drive to Grandma's for Thanksgiving?

-(thanks to Christopher Hitchens for this one) God sat back and watched the trials and tribulations of the human race for some time before finally choosing to make himself known in an illiterate and superstitious part of the Middle East, and then commanded them to go on a rampage and genocide entire races so they could be the “master race?” But today, in our scientifically advanced society he is completely silent except through people who believe those Bronze Age myths?

Justsomeguy said...

How about the idea that good and perfect justice is not simply punishing a criminal, but also punishing his friends, family, and unborn descendants over multiple generations... because they had the audacity to associate with or be related to a criminal?

Or how about the part where infinite punishment is entirely appropriate for any crime, no matter how small?

I think the most absurd thing about it is that a petulant, whiny, overreactive, child-minded being is the creator of everything...

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