Monday, July 2, 2012

Yahweh Wouldn't Do That!

In my last post, an atheist reader challenged a Christian reader about morality.  The question was standard (paraphrased), "What would you do if Yahweh ordered you to kill me?"  The Christian's response was also standard (paraphrased), "Yahweh wouldn't do that!  It isn't in its character as a being of love and morality!"  Notice no answer to the question was given.

BULLSHIT, BULLSHIT, BULLSHIT!  This is the same Yahweh that ordered the sacrifice of Abraham's son, killed all but one family in a flood, sent bears out of the woods to murder children for calling a guy bald, turned a woman into a pillar of salt for turning around, orders you to kill homosexuals, witches, adulterers and disobedient children, killed all of the first-born of Egypt, sends people to eternal torture in Hell, ordered genocide, whose messengers sent virgin women to a crowd of men to be raped, etc. etc. etc.  What the hell is wrong with you people?  I think Yahweh's character is pretty clear from these examples.

The standard Christian response, and the one used by our visiting Christian friend, is (paraphrased), "Oh, but they were wicked and they deserved to die.  It wasn't murder, it was capital punishment."  FUCK!  OK Christians, so how do you KNOW that the atheist reader was not wicked?  How do you KNOW that he is not a homosexual or a sorcerer, or that he didn't call a guy bald?  How do you KNOW he doesn't deserve to die in the eyes of Yahweh?  So then, how do you KNOW that Yahweh wouldn't order you to kill him?  It clearly IS in Yahweh's character to order the murder of people it feels are unfit.  So the atheist's question is perfectly valid, and the Christian response is a cop-out (not that we should expect any better).  So answer the fucking question!

I'll go a step further.  I'll say that if you hold this kind of belief, that anything Yahweh does or orders is moral, then you forfeit your right to make any moral judgments for anything anybody does at all!  How do you KNOW that woman didn't kill her children because Yahweh ordered it, because it knew that they would grow up to be wicked?  How do you KNOW that Yahweh didn't order the murder of the Tutsis in Rwanda?  How do you KNOW that guy didn't punch the other guy because Yahweh ordered it?  How do you KNOW anything about morality or why people do what they do, if you believe that Yahweh orders people to do things that would normally be considered bad, and that anything Yahweh orders is good?

If you believe these things, then your morality is pretty fucked up, and I do not respect it.


David said...

I was talking to a friend a while ago about something along these lines. It started with me saying that I didn't like religion because it's basically a bunch of people believing things that are untrue and trying to get other people to believe the same things. He said something like "then what about people like the apostle Paul or Mother Teresa? Were they bad people because they were purveyors of lies?" To which I responded, "Oh, sure. Have some orphanages! You're gonna need 'em, because you can't have birth control, because that makes Jesus sad! And with Paul, it's important to love each other, but make sure you don't let any women teach you, because that's not okay." Then he turned it around and said "God is pragmatic. Those are just the attitudes of people," and some more explanation about how Yahweh TOTALLY isn't like that. I tried explaining that "No, Brady, YOU are pragmatic, and you're making your own god in your own image." The conversation went on for a while and turned to theistic vs. humanistic ethics, and I pointed out that our ethics are shaped by our society and not actually by the religious texts we claim to take them from. Then I made the mistake of telling him that his ethics were actually pretty good, at which point he said "well, I'm a lifelong theist, so maybe you should consider that religion might not actually be that bad," thus proving that he'd entirely missed my point.

Wow. I just wasted a lot of space to say "religious people are stupid when they say things like 'god wouldn't do that,' or 'god isn't like that." Sorry. Just had to get it off my chest.

David McNerney said...

...ordered the woman to have the abortion because he was just tired of having to kill all those babies and wanted someone else to take a little of the load off him.

Anonymous said...

i asked my friend the very same question: "if god were to tell you to kill me, would you?"

her answer: "without question."