Daily Archives: July 24, 2008

Atheists Know the Bible.

Check it, yo:

You know the Bible 77%!

 

Wow! You are truly a student of the Bible! Some of the questions were difficult, but they didn’t slow you down! You know the books, the characters, the events . . . Very impressive!

Ultimate Bible Quiz
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I didn’t even cheat. See what happens when you beat the daylights out of a little kid with a ruler every time her eyes stray from the holy book to look outside?

Someone on a rather frothing message board* earlier asserted with rather smug satisfaction that, as an atheist, I can’t possibly know the bible. I’m frankly a bit bored with the assertion, coming as it does every time I say something about this book in which people put so much stock. I know the bible. Well. 77% of it, anyway, and frankly, I don’t need “Jesus’ love” to interpret the passages, any more than I need the Green Man’s love to figure out Beowulf (was going to go with Odin, but I’m trying to stay regional).

Is it really considered a valid argument that one cannot understand  a text if one does not believe that text? Somehow I don’t think so. Is it valid to automatically assume one cannot read the Bible without accepting it in full? No. Atheists read and study and question the bible. It’s how most atheists become  atheists. It seems self defeating to enter into an argument with someone who has not only read something, but read it critically and then accuse them of not knowing what they’re talking about. Of course, that’s just my opinion….I could be wrong. But I don’t think so.

*I don’t want to name them, but they have this pizza on their site and use the words “left behind” a lot.

All Christianity is “Cafeteria” Christianity.

Yes, I know. It’s a blanket statement. It’s also accurate. And yes, I know….it applies to other religions, too. Not all, but many. Can I continue now? Thank you.

Here’s the thing. There is simply no way to live biblically in today’s world, AJ Jacobs notwithstanding. Don’t believe me? Okay. Short quiz. How many garments of undyed natural fibers do you own? How many animals have you killed, cut up, and burnt as an offering to god? Stone your kids when they don’t listen? Do you have kids? Did you take a lamb or a couple turtles to church the week after they were born? NO?! What’s wrong with you? Okay….something easy. Diet. Do ya like lobster? How about bacon? Cheeseburgers? All, as it turns out, an abomination and unclean.

Incidentally…the bible. That part where god says not that anyone who changes his word is curst. Of course…he says that in Ancient Hebrew in the TORAH, before Jesus even existed. That was then changed, translated, changed again to sound pretty, interpreted and re-worded into Latin, interpreted another dozen times or so, re-worded into English, and then re-interpreted to mean whatever you now think it means. Words can change so quickly, 20 years is enough for a word’s meaning to go from one thing to another. But somehow, the bible means exactly the same thing now as it did 2000 (or, several hundred, depending on your version) years ago? Nnnno.

People believe the parts they want to believe and leave off the parts they don’t like. Which means they should probably leave off telling people the WHOLE book is the word of god, and we all need to follow it exactly, when THEY can’t even follow it all themselves.