Understanding the Bible|
Imagine that we are good friends. One day we are talking:
You: What's it about?
Me: It is a manual for living a better life. It is also a guide to creating a better society for ourselves and our children. It has changed my life!
You: That sounds like an important book. Who wrote it?
Me: The author is supposed to be the smartest person in the universe.
You: That's amazing -- if the author is the smartest person in the universe, the book must be absolutely brilliant. I can't wait to see it. Do you have a copy with you?
Me: Absolutely! I carry it with me everywhere I go! Here, have a look for yourself...
If any turn to mediums and wizards, prostituting themselves to them, I will set my face against them, and will cut them off from the people. Consecrate yourselves therefore, and be holy; for I am the Lord your God. Keep my statutes, and observe them; I am the Lord; I sanctify you. All who curse father or mother shall be put to death; having cursed father or mother, their blood is upon them.
If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbour, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall be put to death. The man who lies with his fatherís wife has uncovered his fatherís nakedness; both of them shall be put to death; their blood is upon them. If a man lies with his daughter-in-law, both of them shall be put to death; they have committed perversion; their blood is upon them. If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall be put to death; their blood is upon them. [Leviticus, chapter 20]
Me: Well, that's in the old testament, you see. The book is really two books, and the "old" part of the book doesn't really apply.
You: Are you saying that the smartest person in the universe once wanted us to kill every adulterer and homosexual, but then changed his mind? That somehow makes it better? If the "old part" no longer applies, then why did you hand it to me when I asked to see the book?
Me: Well, parts of it do apply.
You: Didn't you just tell me that it doesn't apply?
When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. If she does not please her master, who designated her for himself, then he shall let her be redeemed; he shall have no right to sell her to a foreign people, since he has dealt unfairly with her. If he designates her for his son, he shall deal with her as with a daughter. If he takes another wife to himself, he shall not diminish the food, clothing, or marital rights of the first wife. And if he does not do these three things for her, she shall go out without debt, without payment of money.
Whoever strikes a person mortally shall be put to death. If it was not premeditated, but came about by an act of God, then I will appoint for you a place to which the killer may flee. But if someone wilfully attacks and kills another by treachery, you shall take the killer from my altar for execution.
Whoever strikes father or mother shall be put to death.
Whoever kidnaps a person, whether that person has been sold or is still held in possession, shall be put to death. Whoever curses father or mother shall be put to death.
When individuals quarrel and one strikes the other with a stone or fist so that the injured party, though not dead, is confined to bed, but recovers and walks around outside with the help of a staff, then the assailant shall be free of liability, except to pay for the loss of time, and to arrange for full recovery.
When a slave-owner strikes a male or female slave with a rod and the slave dies immediately, the owner shall be punished. But if the slave survives for a day or two, there is no punishment; for the slave is the ownerís property. [Exodus, chapter 21]
You keep opening the book to random pages, and nearly everything you find is utter nonsense. Either it is meaningless, completely irrelevant, disgusting or downright wrong.
If you are a scientist it is even worse, and it starts with the very first line:
Ask yourself this simple question: Why, when you read the Bible, are you not left in awe? Why doesn't a book written by an omniscient being leave you with a sense of wonder and amazement? If you are reading a book written by the all-powerful, all-knowing, all-loving creator of the universe, wouldn't you expect to be stunned by the brilliance, the clarity and the wisdom of the author? Would you not expect each new page to intoxicate you with its incredible prose and its spectacular insight? Wouldn't you expect the author to tell us things that scientists have not been able to discover yet?
Yet, when we open the Bible and actually read it, we find it is nothing like that at all. Instead of leaving us in awe, it leaves us dumbfounded by all of the nonsense and backwardness that it contains. If you would look at the Bible fresh, and read what it actually says, you find that the Bible is ridiculous. The examples shown above barely scratch the surface of the Bible's numerous problems. If we are honest with ourselves, it is obvious that an "all-knowing" God had absolutely nothing to do with this book.
The Bible is a book written thousands of years ago by primitive men. A book that advocates senseless murder, slavery and the oppression of women has no place in our society today. It is time for us to recognize this simple fact.
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