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Is the Christian God good by modern standards?

11 July 2012, 07:30

I will break away from my personal views as an Atheist, and accept that the Bible is the word of God, and that is is absolutely true and a representation of history and a set of instructions to be good people, just for the sake of argument.

Lets start with the basic things you need to do not to be a bad person. They are the age old crimes of theft, murder and rape.

Now, the Bible is very clear that theft should not be done, and I completely agree with that. So lets move on.

Murder. Thou shalt not kill is a very well known part of the Bible, but, there are exceptions to this rule. I will be quoting from the Bible.

Anyone arrogant enough to reject the verdict of the judge or of the priest who represents the LORD your God must be put to death.  Such evil must be purged from Israel.  Deuteronomy 17:12

You should not let a sorceress live.  Exodus 22:17

If a man lies with a male as with a women, both of them shall be put to death for their abominable deed; they have forfeited their lives. Leviticus 20:13

A man or a woman who acts as a medium or fortuneteller shall be put to death by stoning; they have no one but themselves to blame for their death.  Leviticus 20:27

Whoever strikes his father or mother shall be put to death.  Exodus 21:15

All who curse their father or mother must be put to death.  They are guilty of a capital offense.  Leviticus 20:9

 If a man commits adultery with another man's wife, both the man and the woman must be put to death.  Leviticus 20:10

A priest's daughter who loses her honor by committing fornication and thereby dishonors her father also, shall be burned to death.  Leviticus 21:9

If your own full brother, or your son or daughter, or your beloved wife, or you intimate friend, entices you secretly to serve other gods, whom you and your fathers have not known, gods of any other nations, near at hand or far away, from one end of the earth to the other: do not yield to him or listen to him, nor look with pity upon him, to spare or shield him, but kill him.  Your hand shall be the first raised to slay him; the rest of the people shall join in with you.  You shall stone him to death, because he sought to lead you astray from the Lord, your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, that place of slavery.  And all Israel, hearing of this, shall fear and never do such evil as this in your midst.  Deuteronomy 13:7-12

Suppose a man or woman among you, in one of your towns that the LORD your God is giving you, has done evil in the sight of the LORD your God and has violated the covenant by serving other gods or by worshiping the sun, the moon, or any of the forces of heaven, which I have strictly forbidden.  When you hear about it, investigate the matter thoroughly. If it is true that this detestable thing has been done in Israel, then that man or woman must be taken to the gates of the town and stoned to death.  Deuteronomy 17:2-5

But if this charge is true (that she wasn't a virgin on her wedding night), and evidence of the girls virginity is not found, they shall bring the girl to the entrance of her fathers house and there her townsman shall stone her to death, because she committed a crime against Israel by her unchasteness in her father's house.  Thus shall you purge the evil from your midst.  Deuteronomy  22:20-21

There are many more, but lets see who God has instructed us to kill. Here it goes, someone who disagrees with a priet/pastor/reverend, gay men (not women, just the men), witches and fortune tellers, people who swear at their parents or if they hit them, adulterers, non-virgin priest daughters, non-virgin brides, someone who tries to lead you away from God, someone who prays to another God.

Seeing as we live in a modern country where freedom of religion is allowed, difference of opinions and gay rights, all of the killings of these people would be deemed murder and not the trait of someone who is a good person. Therefore, these clear instructions cannot be seen as a good way to live your life in modern times.

Now lets move on to rape. Once again, quotes from the Bible ensues.

   If within the city a man comes upon a maiden who is betrothed, and has relations with her, you shall bring them both out of the gate of the city and there stone them to death: the girl because she did not cry out for help though she was in the city, and the man because he violated his neighbors wife. Deuteronomy 22:23-24  (if she does cry for help, only the man dies)

If a man is caught in the act of raping a young woman who is not engaged, he must pay fifty pieces of silver to her father.  Then he must marry the young woman because he violated her, and he will never be allowed to divorce her. Deuteronomy 22:28-29

Now, lets look at this properly. On the one hand, if the woman is engaged to be married and she goes free, they both are killed. This is a bit harsh, because I dont think that the victim of a rape should be punished for it, because lets face it, thats just not justice. So now, she must be murdered for the crime of being a rape victim and maybe being so scared she didnt cry for help. But if she did cry for help, she will be OK.

But lets look at what happens to a girl who is not engaged to be married who gets raped. Ah yes, the man has to pay her father for damages in silver, and this smacks to me of insult to injury. Now, just to add more injury to insult, she is forced to marry him and face him every day, being forced to sleep with him even more. "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord." Ephesians 5:22. Once again, this does not feel like justice, this feels more like another punishment for the crime of being a rape victim. Because, just imagine it. You are an innocent girl, who is probably still very young due to not being engaged yet, and all of a sudden you are raped, scared and then the man pays your father, in effect for your virginity. Then, you are forced to leave your family to go live with this man, fulfilling all wifely duties to this man who has hurt you so badly. If you can imagine this, and still say that these instructions are good, then you need some professional help. Because by this reasoning, to get a wife all you need to do is go look for a virgin who isnt married. I prefer the old fashioned way of dating and getting to know a person.

The only thing that God says as an instruction that is valid in today's society seems to be dont steal. Now the argument can be made that these instructions are from a social time where they were relevant. I fully agree that these are very outdated rules on social structure, but they are still instructions from God, for they are very clear instructions of what to do in the Bible. So either God's instructions are no longer valid, or modern society isnt valid. It's up to you decide, I already have.

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