Thursday, February 25, 2010

Speaking for God

The Huffington Post has been covering the story of the California Pageant Contestant who announced that the Bible is very clear about how God will punish homosexuality with death.

What I want to know is how you can effectively argue with people who just cite God and the Bible as their main sources of information. There seems to be no way to combat "faith" with "logic." Or even compassion, in this case.

I do respect people's rights to their opinions, so that's not my issue with this. As a college professor once drilled into my head "If you don't agree with freedom of speech for speech you don't agree with, then you don't agree with freedom of speech." I just wonder what kind of education or argument would sway this woman and many like her.


Elizabeth said...

None. She'd likely need a time travel machine to enable a completely different life experience.

Joe said...

Well, you can start by asking them to be consistent and not read the Bible so selectively (if, of course, they've read it at all). The admonishment that a man who lies with another man should be killed is from Leviticus 20:13. Just above it, Leviticus 20:10 says a man and woman should be put to death if they commit adultery. Same book, chapter 20, verse 9 says you should be put to death if you curse your parents (wouldn't that be a good way to keep the population down to a manageable size?). And it wasn't like the guy who wrote Leviticus was just being crabby on the day he wrote those verses. If you go to Exodus 31:15 you find that anyone working on the Sabbath deserves to die. Ask the believers if they believe that.
Let me point out one more reason not to throw your lot in with Yahweh. Exodus 21:20-21 reads in full,
When a man strikes his male or female slave
with a rod so hard that the slave dies under
his hand, he shall be punished. If, however,
the slave survives for a day or two, he is not
to be punished since the slave is his own
Think that was used among some devout Christians in 19th century America?
Two final thoughts. First, there was a movement in the early Christian community to disavow the god of the Old Testament as a different being from the god of the New because of these and many more examples of his vile attitude. The proponents of that idea were declared heretics.
Second, if you find any of this interesting, I recommend reading "Jesus, Interrupted," by Bart Ehrman. He is an ordained minister and professor of theology at North Carolina University.

eric said...

Well said, Joe. All kinds of crazy stuff in there. Another example from Deuteronomy 25:11

“If two men fight together, and the wife of one draws near to rescue her husband from the hand of the one attacking him, and puts out her hand and seizes him by the genitals, then you shall cut off her hand; your eye shall not pity her."

I wonder what Ms. Ashley would say about that.

Carolyn Miller said...

This is what I would do. Walk up to them, and quoting Jesus(or The White Stripes), scream "Get behind me Satan!"...or "Demons be gone!" as loud as you can. This in no way guarantees that they will change their extremist views, but you will definitely feel closer to God.

Jay Nicolosi said...

Well said Joe.

In my experience, you can not argue reason to those who can not think for themselves.

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