Why You Should Read the Bible Regardless of Your Religious Beliefs

jesusliberalKarl Marx once said “Die Religion… ist das Opium des Volkes” which roughly translates into the famous quote “religion is the opiate of the masses,” and that couldn’t be any more true when I see the way religion is used in politics today.

I’m personally indifferent when it comes to religion and consider myself to be an agnostic Jew. However, I have religious friends and family who have bought into the cult that is right-wing politics. Most of them are nice, well-meaning folks who honestly believe that the GOP is the party of all that is good and holy, and liberals are the brainwashed tools of Satan himself. They’re firmly convinced that all we need to do to make the USA the greatest country on the planet is ban all abortions, push gays back in the closet, stop teaching sex education and evolution in schools, and keep cutting taxes for the rich.

When you point out to them that Jesus never said one thing about gay people or abortion and said that it was easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to get into Heaven, the evil glares and finger-wagging begins.

I’m not one of those people who believes that religion is the cause of all the wrongs in this world, but it is often used to justify those wrongs and to get people to accept poverty as their lot in life or to die in a suicide mission in exchange for riches in Heaven.

These are all things I’m sure you’ve already figured out, so what’s next? Here’s what we need to do, whether you’re a religious person or not—we need to school ourselves on religious teachings and know their texts. Whether it is Christianity, Judaism, Islam or any of the other major religions. You should be able to point out that Jesus never condemned anyone other than the greedy, the self-centered and the religious establishment that worked with the government of his time. Yes, the Pharisees of the first century C.E. were the Jimmy Swaggarts and Pat Robertsons of our time, and he paid the ultimate price for defying them.

Let’s face it, if you’ve read the Bible and have an education that wasn’t from a Christian version of a madrasa, then you should know that Jesus didn’t look like a long-haired Caucasian Abercrombie and Fitch model. You should also know that despite the current “gospel of prosperity” being taught by a lot of churches (and the GOP), Jesus had little use for the religious elite, the rich and politicians.

This article isn’t intended to be a recruitment drive for your local church or synagogue, or mosque. I’m just saying that when people want to quote their twisted narrative of their religion to justify bigotry and exploitation, you should be able to take their own religious text and throw it back at them.

There is one thing I’m sure of from my knowledge of the Bible—if Jesus were alive today, he’d have a serious bone to pick with a lot of the people who claim to represent him and be his “greatest followers.”


Facebook comments

  • Know thy enemy. In our case it’s the uneducated.

    • John1966

      You have just shown that you have never read the bible. Go educate yourself.

      • Aaron

        Read the Bible myself. Don’t see what all the hype is about. Long, boring walls of text about women and donkeys and genocide. I wouldn’t recommend it to children.

      • After I read Genesis 19, I figured the reason bibles were printed with such small type was so children would not be likely to read it.

      • phukk rightwing trash

        hey john,,,, I have read the bible,,,the tao…..the bhagavad gita,,,,, conversations with GOD,,,,varieties of religious experience,,,,the road less travelled,,,, countless other religious and spiritual books,,,,, do you REALLY want to attempt to discuss religion and spirituality with ME??? here is MY secular conclusion: spirituality is the WAY– as GOD is TOO big to be defined by a FINITE flawed creature-such as MAN. RELIGION is ( and always has been) aggressively used as a tool; a control mechanism by many in power to manipulate the less fortunate and capitalize financially upon that. THAT WHY JESUS HATED the wealthy and the Pharisees….OK JOHN– you are up! lets hear your educated comeback!

      • Pelu Maad

        Religion is mostly about social conformity…..spirituality is about everything.

      • Rebecca Sousa

        Amen my friend, Amen, Amen!

      • IBEW683

        The bible is hardly educational. Fiction is for entertainment, and the bible fails there also.

  • Jason Kenney

    Unfortunately we will never convince some people that the world is not flat.

    • John1966

      I’ll take your arrogant insult as proof that you have nothing rational or intelligent to say. Unfortunately we will never convince liberals that contempt is a prejudice that insulates you against facts.

      • AJ

        or religion is a prejudice that insulates YOU from facts

      • yah im having fun reading your comments where you try to look intelligent but instead are just an insulting, degrading pile of dog shit

      • Wayne Bassett

        Kinda noticing that myself

      • jeffrey

        Why don’t you go back to when the bible was created and see what it meant back then. The only true translation is Hebrew and before that it was actually Greek! Check your records if you so choose. You will find out but, most people don’t want to find the true source. Its fear that makes religious people think the worst thoughts. Fear equals: False, Evidence, Appearing, Real. Get educated!

      • phukk rightwing trash

        jeff,,,,todays “enlightened” Christian CHOOSES how they interpret the bible,,,and they generally stay away from MOST of the OLD testament as it will show that what they believe today is a collection of monkeypoo

      • Op3

        I believe it was actually the other way around… Hebrew for the Old Testament, Greek for the New…

      • It was Aramaic for the New. then was first translated to Greek and on and on and on until half of what’s in it originally meant something else. Add to that the actual manipulation of translation by the Catholic Church…and you get the picture.

      • BrotherRog

        Nope. The NT was in fact written in koine Greek.

      • Parts were translated into Hebrew from (I thought) Aramaic. Hebrew into Greek and Latin and then into, in no particular order, French, German, Chezc(sp?), Russian, Polish, Spanish, Portuguese, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, English, Gaelic, Welsh, Dutch and a bunch of others. Can you imagine the changes that took place between languages and cultures?

      • phukk rightwing trash

        this john guy is intensely idiotic,,,,, probably thinks JESUS ( todays version) hates gays and abortion and anything OTHER than the CRAP christians puke forth. no need to reply here JOHN,,,,, I wipe the vomit off myself daily from coelecaths such as you all day long.

      • John1966: We actually understand how difficult it is for you to believe in an open minded approach to God. You have been so brainwashed by the stories that the church made up that you believe the fantasy is the reality. It’s not that we have anything to be arrogant about but if you can not accept that other people are entitled to view God differently and point out the hypocrisy of all then religions than maybe you are the arrogant one. On another note, do you truly believe that any religion is rational or intelligent? Religion is a system of “beliefs”. There are no “facts” to insulate against. I fact can be demonstrated in a number of different ways. You can not provide one “fact” in your religious “beliefs. Yes, some historical events have been shown to have occurred with archeology but not one |”fact” of the religious belief. This is not to say that you should give up your religious beliefs, nor am I saying your view of God is ‘wrong’; I just want you to acknowledge that others have a right to their own views of God. And as trying to make secular law from your religious views…?…. well, that puts you in the same category as the Islamic Taliban. You may even have heard the term Christian Taliban; now don’t be insulted unless of course you agree with the Christian Taliban that this country should be changed to a Christian Nation.

      • John1966

        The way you lash out with insults over things you know nothing about reveals your ignorance and contempt. Try reading the bible for yourself before you speak of things you know nothing about. But of course you won’t do that, because it’s a thick book with a lot of big words. And worst of all, you wouldn’t be able to tolerate the morality that exists on those pages; it would rub you the wrong way so hard you could never get through the whole thing. Reading the bible is too much of a challenge for you, so you’ll never be in a position to speak intelligently on the subject.

      • Margaret Mills

        Because it’s so moral to rape a woman and then force her to marry you.

      • Glenn Kennedy

        Irony, thy name is John1966.

      • RabbiHirram Ben Yahuda

        Notice John1966 says nothing of substance. He hurls insults. He is not interested in this topic. He is simply an internet troll trying to get a rise out of us. Ignore him!

      • RabbiHirram Ben Yahuda

        John1966 says nothing of substance. He hurls insults. He is not interested in this topic. He is simply an internet troll trying to get a rise out of us. Ignore him!

  • AMEN!!!!

  • ARealHousewifeInOC

    hey you forgot rick warren!

  • I don’t know why this point has been so overlooked, Everybody must know their Bible for one pragmatic reason, to guard against the charlatans, Those who attempt to miss lead by claiming to be divinely inspired. If you do not believe that the Bible is Holy writ, one still must understand what our civilization is based on. The list of leaders whom have misled using The “Word of God” is legion. Read your Bibles everybody.

    • Pelu Maad

      Do you realize what a turn off sanctimony is for many folks? I like the Bible….”Christians” are the last people I want to be around….LOOSEN UP!

  • Tink

    I’m not sure. People can believe all kinds of crazy things, and I don’t think it’s my responsibility to research their bizarre belief systems or to throw it back in their faces. I don’t think people who are grasping at religion to justify their exploitative behaviors or calm their fears are going to change their views, no matter what I say. The fact that people believe that if there is a consciousness capable of generating the universe, it’s sitting around writing rule books and instruction manuals puts them in the same category as people who believe they are a fried egg. While I’m on this ride, I’m not interested in wasting my time on them. It isn’t going to accomplish anything.

    • John1966

      Sheesh, even the mere suggestion of curing your ignorance is rejected out of hand. Typical liberal.

      • just had to throw in the name calling didnt you . you sad sad little person

      • besides you small brained trogladyte you missed the whole reason behind the article try again and use some intelligence

      • phukk rightwing trash

        donn’ be dissin’ my negga’ DOGG

      • phukk rightwing trash

        people PLEEEEEZ,,,,,, JOHN is since here— yet he thinks a manila folder is some anti Christian Filipino contortionist

      • Pelu Maad

        Typical “conservative” babbling….HEAL THYSELF!

  • Estowisdom

    What is so bizarre about maddog Maddow is that she does the very thing she chastises the right for doing. Quoting select Bible verses out of context and believing her interpretation is the right one. She has no clue about what the Bible really teaches. I can show quotes where the Bible says things like “those who don’t work, will not eat”. As the Bible says, ‘the devil can cite scripture for his purposes”. As far as abortion, one commandment is very clear, “thou shalt not kill”. Jesus was particularly protective of the weak, such as the yet to be born . So please refrain from your outlandish comments and spend some time in a Bible based church.

    • Ryan

      So, out of all the things that the right does, the only one that gets your vote is the anti-abortion issue? Well, you’ll be relieved to know that the left has waged the largest successful anti-abortion campaign in the history of the country. It’s called ‘the right to birth control and sex education’. For the rest, perhaps YOU should read your Bible.

      • Estowisdom

        And how is that campaign working out? More out of wedlock births and STDs than any previous period in American history. Also millions of terminated fetuses and infanticide deaths. Are you proud?

      • Tink

        I couldn’t care less about “out of wedlock births”, but for the rest of it, sex education and readily available birth control and protection are the logical solutions.

      • My daughter is eight, her mother and I are not married. We’ve raised her together and own our second home together. I think YOU need to look at “out of wedlock” births a tad differently. My daughter is MUCH more happily raised and better adjusted than she would be in the home of some bigots who called themselves “Christian”. Pull your head out of your ass, then shake it vigorously to get the shit out of your ears, then you can hear the ludicrousness of your argument.

      • John1966

        Your 8-yr-old daughter is watching your example of gratuitous, arrogant contempt.

      • im guessing your a westboro ass kisser. you are pathetic trash that doesnt deserve to be allowed to talk without permission

      • Anonymous Sorrow

        Didn’t your god say “Judge not lest ye be judged?” Sounds like you’re going straight to hell. And I’m going to be too busy laughing at self-righteous pricks like you being burned to ever be tormented while I’m there. (Of course this is assuming hell exists, which I doubt).

      • phukk rightwing trash

        ive been to hell,,,,, seriously: as MOST truly educated people ( schooled in the LIFE of HARD KNOCKS college) will attest to,,,,heaven AND hell are here for all of us to learn from and help others with when they start to travel that road

      • zaphod1

        heaven and hell = the carrot and the stick, for the blind faith crowd

      • phukk rightwing trash

        and she is forming her opinion which is her RIGHT to do,,,so let her do it ON HER OWN

      • Paisley Blackburn

        Awesome comeback!

      • thats because of you pathetic christian republican trash

      • Gandalf

        That’s a rather difficult claim to substantiate, considering that many kinds of STIs (as they are properly referred to) were not well-known for hundreds of years, and doctors were not terribly skilled up through the early 20th century (one could argue that many still aren’t, but that’s an argument for another place and time). As to out-of-wedlock births, marriage was a standard in previous periods, and not necessarily for the reasons you may think. Marriage for some time was more about the transfer of property (a dowry) for a young couple than about any sort of religious affirmation. Many couples these days choose not to get married and instead choose to cohabit, and some have children together. Out-of-wedlock births doesn’t correlate to reckless behavior, although quite a bit of it is a result of such behavior, to be sure. However, I’m sure that the actual number of people having reckless, out-of-wedlock children has varied very little throughout the decades.

      • phukk rightwing trash

        what did I tell UUUUUU about bring those silly lil FACTs into this discussion????? stop bothering the people who eschew FACTS and lets continue with “opinions”!!!

      • phukk rightwing trash

        still waiting the answer as to the MILLIONS brutally TORTURED and slowly killed by BIBLE toting zealots thru the ages,,,( lets look at history; shall we???)

      • rozlee

        Doesn’t the bible have all kinds of infanticide like the slaughter of the Midianites, where Moses tells his men to kill all the “men, women and little ones, but save the virgins for your own use.” And has the Prophet Samuel tell Saul to kill all the Amelikites down to “the last suckling babe?” And to slaughter all the people of Jericho to the “last babe in arms?” Not to mention human sacrifice, like Jephtha killing his daughter as an offering to god when he bargained that he’d sacrifice the first person that came out of his home. Or kings that had hundreds of wives and concubines. Yeah, I think I’m a whole lot happier living in this modern age than in those days of murderous patriarchs.

      • Which version? American Standard? 1901Amplified Bible? Common English Bible? Contemporary English Version?English Standard Version? Español Otra/Other SpanishEspañol? God’s Word? Good News Translation? Holman Christian Standard Bible? Interlinear Bibles? International Children’s Bible?Jerusalem Bible? King James Version? La Biblia de las Americas? New American Bible? New American Standard? New Century Version? New International Readers Version? New International Version? New Jerusalem Bible? New King James Version? New Living Translation? New Revised Standard? Nueva Traducción Viviente? Nueva Versión International? Original Languages? Other English Versions? Other Languages? Parallel Bibles? /Reina Valera 1909? Reina Valera 1960? Reina Valera 1979 Actualizada? Reina Valera 1989? Reina Valera 1995? Revised English Bible? Revised Standard Version? Tanakh? The Living Bible? The Message? The Voice? Today’s English Version? Today’s New International? Versión Popular?

      • phukk rightwing trash

        aaaaaaaaa-man!! aaaaaaaaaa–men,,,, AAAAAA-men; amen ( from LILES OF THE FIELD Sidney poitier movie)

    • What exactly did she quote “out of context”? There is more than enough evil in the bible without having to make something up.

      • “There is more than enough evil in human history without having to make something up.” See, I can do it too. 😛

        It just goes to show that humans are evil, and will do anything to accomplish their own ends. I wouldn’t want to read a book that doesn’t accurately describe human nature anyway. What were you looking for? A nursery rhyme with colorful pictures and a daycare center? Good grief.

        I’m not posting this as a conservative (as I am a liberal), but I am also a Christian, and it is rather intolerant to dismiss any religious text as evil.

      • phukk rightwing trash

        all the texts I have read– substantial– have good points,,, they also have dubious and at time OUTDATED points

      • Sidra Whitedove

        Is it intolerant if it’s your true belief? As an ex-christian who spent over 40 years researching Christianity’s history, I came to the conclusion that the personification of evil in this world is the true creator of Christianity! Call the evil what you want — Satan, the Devil, or Reptilian, all the same.

    • And another thing… There is no evidence of a historical Jesus

      • John1966

        Your home planet needs you. Go.

      • the grave needs you. get in it

    • Tink

      What I find bizarre is that you assume your belief system should hold some sway over other people’s lives and ideas. Believe whatever you want, but they’re called “beliefs” for a reason. I don’t have to share them, nor does anyone else.

    • He was protective of the weak, “Suffer the little children” meaning don’t try to starve them to line your own pockets. “Let ye who are without sin cast the first stone” which apparently right wing christians have deleted from their bible. And I have not found that quote “those who don’t work, will not eat”. Can you educate me and tell me where you found that one? Just curious. (Does that mean that we let the elderly, the disabled, the children starve? How charitable of you)

      • John1966

        Wow, you don’t know what you’re talking about. “Suffer the little children” does not mean what you said. “Suffer” is a 17th-century version of the word “let”; see Matthew 19:14. The quote about not working is 2 Thessalonians 3:10-12. Instead of broadcasting all your ignorant and childish superstitions about the bible, maybe you should put your contempt aside, muster the courage to learn facts, and actually read it.

      • Jess

        “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your eye?” Matthew 7:3-5

        Practice what you preach, John. Your heart is full of hatred. And it’s a real downer. Seriously, Jesus is an awesome guy that was all about charity, Love, and Acceptance. He wanted people to chose to come to him. Not force them. And he certainly didn’t want his followers so full of “contempt”. The word you over use, and have so much of yourself. It’s sad. I’ll pray that one day, you can let the bitterness drain out of your heart, and can accept and love others for who they are.

      • I think you forgot to read the parts where Jesus was angry at the sin among the Pharisees. The same ones who preached against fornication and adultery were the same ones committing it. I think you forgot all of the times that Jesus made long schpeals against the religious leaders of his day. I specifically remember him insulting the Pharisees in many different areas of their lives. Even calling them sons of hell.

        //Seriously, Jesus is an awesome guy that was all about charity, Love, and Acceptance. //

        Jesus wanted changed lives, not acceptance. He wanted people to leave their lives of sin, instead of accepting them for what they were ‘doing’ (keyword here is “do”.). Jesus was more revolutionary than anything you described him as. In fact, his teachings are far more revolutionary than any liberal or social progressive of today could ever imagine.

        Although John does seem intolerant and hateful at times, I’m sure he is not meaning to sound so.

        You need not judge the quality of John’s heart and life either.. That is a direct sin against Jesus’ do not judge commandment, when John has done no such thing. YOU, on the otherhand, presumed to know what was in John’s heart, and that IS judging. John may have been judging, but you too have also judged. Quoting Jesus like that doesn’t make you any more “loving” or less “judging” than John is. I suggest that we shouldn’t tell anyone if they are judging or not, and instead let them live out the fruits of their beliefs. That IS what Jesus taught.

      • zaphod1

        the bible is rife with lame superstitions

    • markofthebeasts

      The first murderer worshiped god and still went on to kill. The first victim of murder was ‘favored’ by that same god, yet ended up dead. Yes, scripture can be used to justify anything one wants. I have spent enough time in a bible based church to know what they want. Ben Franklin said it very well about how a religion ought to thrive IF “god” truly supported it and that when that religion sought government support, “twas a sign that ‘god’ did NOT support it. “Though shalt not kill” followed by a ‘plan’ for ‘salvation’ that involves killing his own ‘son’ in a blood sacrifice to himself. You are quite good at citing scripture for your own purposes to. Are you the devil?

      • John1966

        Wow, your contempt is off the scale. If I ever need a square peg jammed into a round hole, I’ll call you, since you have no use for rationality.

      • markofthebeasts

        I recently watched some right wing christian make a speech exonerating proponents of easy access to assault rifles of blame for, in this instance, the Columbine tragedy. He opened with the story of Cain and Abel. He then went on to blame it on not forcing kids in schools to pray to his god. I have studied the religious right for years. It sounds like you are confusing rationality with rationalization.

    • Anonymous Sorrow

      Abortion isn’t killing. Aborting a fetus at any time the child would be considered alive is illegal. And beyond that, if you don’t like abortion, don’t get one. Those that want/need one can get them and there’s really nothing you can do about it since it is legal in America.

      • best way to prevent abortion is to make birth control easily available, and teach younger people respect for self, respect for partners, and if push comes to shove and ya GOTTA get it on, either use condoms, or use a sex toy. Sorry if that’s crude but it works.

    • phukk rightwing trash

      though shalt not kill,,,,,,,,,,OK: I will “bite” momentarily,,,,,, explain to me the millions KILLED by BIBLE toting zealots thru the ages IN GODS NAME?????,,,,,,( Im gonna go get some coffee and a Danish while I wait– you guys and gals want anything? I think this will take some time)

    • IBEW683

      Would rather have a sharp stick stuck in my eye than spend time in a bible based church.

    • rozlee

      Tamar and her unborn twins were condemned to burn by the patriarch, Judah, when she was discovered pregnant out of wedlock. Evidently, pregnant women weren’t exempt from execution in ancient Judea, along with their unborn. The Trial of Bitter Waters in the Book of Numbers made women that were pregnant by adultery miscarry. The Prophet Hosea says, “Give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts.” Hosea 9:14. And Jesus, his Apostles and St. Paul never said a single word about abortion, although they were surrounded by cultures that practiced it and extensively used the abortifacient herb, silphium, in their cooking.

  • Me me me

    God has committed mass abortion, sodom and Gomorrah, he wiped out two entire cities. Just to name two. How many pregnant prostitutes and whores did he kill. God has killed over 2 million people in the Old Testament alone.
    God has no problem with abortion. He does it every day.

    • John1966

      Take your medicine.

      • take yours

      • phukk rightwing trash

        my medicine is physical activity ( varied) every day,,,,, comedy and laughter,,,,, good relationships,,,, a big chested slender girlfriend,,, and just enough self doubt to keep me painfully humble.

      • Pelu Maad

        LOL….I ain’t mad at you.

    • So true. Drowned everyone in the world but the Noah family. Still the largest abortion provider and don’t get me started on Job story.

    • phukk rightwing trash

      don’t be placing these fact on this site please,,, we are TRYING to be entertained by idiots who eschew facts!

      • motherunit

        Those aren’t facts. Those are bible stories.

  • Soupgoblin

    Quoting scripture to someone who is brainwashed doesn’t work very well. I have tried many times, with barely any luck. A Christian who was brought up in a household where they learned to worship “Republican Jesus”, simply refuses to believe that Jesus wants them to help the poor, feed the hungry, heal the sick and pity the elite.

    Let’s face it, 70% of the population in this country are so willfully ignorant and stupid that no amount of logic, reasoning and common sense will ever make them change their minds. They were taught from a very young age that NOT thinking for themselves is the only way to do things. You can quote the Bible (they don’t read), you can quote facts (they dismiss), you can give proof (they ignore), you can show a picture with circles and arrows drawn on it and a paragraph on the back explaining everything in detail and they will still remain completely oblivious. They are completely convinced that they already know everything they will ever need to know, so nothing can penetrate the dense stupidity shield that they have surround themselves with.

    No one can cure stupid.

    • John1966

      You liberals just never stop with the ignorant insults. You think you’re so smart and self-righteous. What a joke.

      • you deserve to be picked up by a roaming gain of animals and beat to within an inch of your pathetic miserable life

      • phukk rightwing trash

        I disagree,,,,I prefer the JOHNs of our life should be allowed to live that long and undignified life staying small and hating all those who dare to attempt to show him anything he does NOT want to look at,,,GO GET’EM JOHN BOY!!

      • Pelu Maad

        Long live hillbilly handfishing!

      • “Forgive them, for they know not what they do”.
        Even a wretch like him can eventually see the light and experience his own amazing grace.

      • phukk rightwing trash

        john,,, we donot “think” we are smart
        ,,,,,,,,,,,,, we are educated by looking at BOTH sides and drawing the most logical conclusion from what is presented.
        YOU are “SMART”…we are educated

      • The difference John is that we liberals will include you even if we disagree with you. Conservatives try to exclude EVERYONE who doesn’t share their belief (mostly thru underhanded policies) and that includes other republicans who stand up to its party. Case in point Chris Christie, by far the one republican that most liberals would vote for if they had to vote republican. Republican politicians? They hate him- too liberal lol

      • Pelu Maad

        You yahoos just whine and whine and whine. If you were paying attention you’d realize “conservatism” has NEVER accomplished a goddamn thing….It’s BULLSHIT.

      • rozlee

        What are you even doing here? If you’re such a good Christian, shouldn’t you be all sweet-natured, loving and kind instead of calling names and picking fights? Go say ten hail marys and screw yourself.

      • That’s the same penance my priest gave me in confession when I was young. At least he didn’t screw me!

      • You were lucky. I knew some alter boys…..

      • Not true! We think that Christianity as practiced today is so hypocritical and mired in religious dogma that was added over the centuries to give the church power over the people and to steal their wealth. If you doubt that see what the estimates are on buying up the property of the Catholic church, add the cost of structures, paintings statues, gold, hand made robes, garments and other material wealth; then tell me if this is a religion whose primary purpose is to help the poor, heal the sick and feed the hungry. Then do that for the Mormons, the TV ‘evangelists, and numerous other of the sects. Well John1966, I’m Rod 1943 and if you think Jesus Christ would condone the hate and discrimination coming from the Christian religion today (and over the last 1900 years) then you are a bigger self-righteous hypocrite then the Pope and all the other ‘snake-oil’ pushers in the “Religion Business”!

      • John1966

        Wow, you’ve got a serious chip on your shoulder. Soothe yourself with contempt all you want, but it’s no substitute for facts. You don’t know what you’re talking about. Try reading the bible before you comment. But of course that’s impossible for you; educating yourself is too risky, you can’t afford to learn anything that would contradict your prejudices.

      • buricco

        Again with the projection.

    • xstevex1

      The best we can do, then, is to try to set an example; to live a life of love, kindness, and selflessness. Just like John1966, here.

    • amen!

    • jeffrey

      Amen! Doesn’t anyone know what language the bible was intentionally written? Was it greek or Hebrew?

      • phukk rightwing trash

        based upon the collective destruction and pain it has caused mankind I would say it was written(??) in jibberish

      • Glenn Kennedy

        Dude, you can’t even SPELL gibberish.

      • Pelu Maad

        The Old Testament in Aramaic and the new in Coine Greek and Hebrew?

      • The old testament was originally written in Hebrew, the new testament was originally written in Greek, but most of the conversations it describes were originally conducted in Aramaic.

      • buricco

        Old Testament mostly Hebrew with a few chapters in Aramaic; New Testament Greek.

    • phukk rightwing trash

      I disagree,,,,,,,,,,,,, a shotgun cures them,,,but My freedom is not worth losing over it

  • Phil Wood

    You’d enjoy just a little more of Marx’s writing from the quote you cite: “Religious suffering is, at one and the same time, the expression of real suffering and a protest against real suffering.Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.”

  • richard

    and don’t forget, Jesus looked a lot more like Yasar Arafat than those “Photo’s” of him looking like he came from Denmark.

    • John1966

      The only ones who care about Jesus’ appearance are you liberals. Go ahead, make jokes. It just proves you love your blissful ignorance.

      • you and your trash are the ones who try to impose your ideals about him on everyone. and i just love your version of so called christian humility. you and your religion disgust me and should be banned and everyone who talks about it should be arrested and executed

      • Joe Cool

        Hold on there. John1966 is a douche, but why stoop to his level? Saying a whole religion being banned and executing people is a pure conservative tactic. Don’t belittle yourself by following his lead.

      • Anonymous Sorrow

        It’s like that old saying. “Religion is like a penis. It’s fine to have one, it’s fine to be proud of it, but it’s not ok to whip it out in public, and it’s not ok to shove it down other people’s throats.”

      • phukk rightwing trash

        unless they beg for it…….

      • phukk rightwing trash

        agreed,,,,,,,,,,,,,, I don’t mind smelly monkeys at the zoo screaming at me

      • Pelu Maad

        So you’re saying “conservatives” should be caged?

      • Pelu Maad

        He volunteered to be a human hacky sack…have a kick.

      • John

        I sense that John1966 is a masochist and may be diddling himself while trying to keep a losing argument going for his own weird pleasure.

      • Pelu Maad

        Do you ever shut the hell up? Have you ever considered the next intellectual step beyond mindless repetition?

    • phukk rightwing trash

      but that wont sell in a caucasian world so we make him look like a sexy surfer-dude model

    • Pelu Maad

      You saw that reconstructed first century Palestinian skull thingy too…?

    • If he was an actual person (rather than a conglomrate of stories) suspect he would have looked more like Saddam Hussein, with the right haircut and mustache.

  • John1966

    The bible has about 1200 pages. Your reading of a few verses doesn’t count as “knowledge of the bible.” Those of us who really have read every word of it can tell from a mile away that you have never done what you are suggesting.

    • you have never read it if you have you have no clue about what you read. your posts prove it greatly

    • Gandalf

      You appear to have either read the wrong Bible or have only read “a few verses of it” yourself. Every comment of your’s that I have seen has been an attack on someone else, whether it’s blatant name-calling or disgusting implications that have no place in civilized discourse. The amount of hate that you have spewed throughout this comment section is on par with that shown by the Westboro Baptist Church. Perhaps you should join their congregation.

    • Neal Sims

      John 1966. Why are you so angry? It seems to me that the angry things you say about everyone who doesn’t agree with you, probably apply to you. BTW, I have read the bible cover to cover several times, and I just don’t believe a word of it. So maybe you might get an education, to use your words, and read Christopher Hitchens, God Is Not Great with an open mind, if that’s possible. Otherwise STFU.

    • Damo

      obviously you think there is nothing wrong with inbreeding, science must have it wrong when they say inbreeding causes mental and physical deformities, because YOUR book says we all started with inbreeding, Adam and Eve had 2 sons, where did we all come from after that, now i will give you your answer, i have heard many reasons for this, Adam and Eve were perfect and could not have deformed children and also there were other people on Earth but no in Eden so when they were banished to Earth they bred with the other people, ok i can sort of see that, but answer me this, God flooded the world, and the only survivors were one of each sex of animal, they all would have to inbreed to repopulate, also people, there was Noah, his wife, his 2 daughters and their husbands, very small gene pool to use to repopulate the world, we should all be at least 50% deformed in one way or another according to your story book, now tell me i am wrong, but do not just say it, prove it

  • it’s really sad that although this piece is trying to be really progressive, it’s still only focuses on Western ideologies.

    • The reason we tend to focus on the western ideologies, is because it happens to be the biggest threat at the moment. If this piece was written in the middle east it would be attacking islam, and in china, would be attacking communism. All are ideologies, unwilling to compromise, until they collapse under the weight of their own BS. Only liberalism, with its freedom of speech, and freedom to practice one’s own religion without torment from others is the only logical solution.

  • jeczaja

    Amen. Well done.

  • Grumpmaster_Zz

    Read all “religious” texts (Bible, Quran) with a critical eye. Track the contradictions, inconsistencies, and delusions. It’s the fastest way to become an Atheist. And more Atheists = better chance for world peace.

    • Paisley Blackburn

      Amen to that!!!

    • phukk rightwing trash

      actually I cannot agree with atheists: allow me to edify: (a) believers CLAIM to have PROOF of the existence of GOD,,,,,(B) atheists CLAIM to have proof of NONexistance of GOD,,,,,,, (C) agnostics,,,,”ME”” look at all arguments- both secular and religious,,,,and weighing out all evidence I conclude that GOD IS; AND IS TOOOO BIG TO BE DEFINED,,, ergo I don’t waste my time TRYING,,,so I simply DONT F*CKING KNOW!!!

      • zaphod1

        atheists do NOT claim to have proof of nonexistence of god. we say that there is NO proof of god.

    • Pelu Maad

      Or…read for the nuggets of wisdom?

  • paul1revere

    “When you point out to them that Jesus never said one thing about gay people or abortion…. ”

    …and so we see dearly, that this author has never read the Bible.

    • But He did NOT. I HAVE read the Bible. Yeshua did NOT say one word about gays, nor did He say one word about abortion (although in a larger context it could be considered infanticide or just murder).
      There is only a handful of passages outside of the Pentateuch that speak of homosexuality at all (unless you count 1 Samuel and the story of David and Jonathan, possibly), and it is only really spoken of in the NT by Paul.

      • zaphod1

        it can not be infanticide or murder unless there is an actual infant. zygotes are not infants.

    • rozlee

      In the same chapters that god condemned gays, he also condemned wearing clothing of different fabrics, tattoos and eating shrimp. In the New Testament, St. Paul condemns homosexuality in the same chapter he condemns women who wear short hair, men who wear long hair, and women who wear no veils. You can cherry pick your scripture to point the finger of judgment on those you want to persecute, but you’ve got your own sins to answer for. Your bible fosters an Us vs. Them mentality with Them being the sinners and Us being pure and good. Newsflash: at the end of the day, your sins were just as bad, but it’s not fun to unleash your hate on yourself, is it?

      And Jesus never, not once, said anything about abortion. Neither did his disciples or St. Paul. The only abortion it talks about is when Tamar was sentenced to death for being pregnant out of wedlock by the patriarch, Judah. No concern for her unborn at all. And when the Prophet Hosea condemned the Samaritan women to “miscarrying wombs and dry breasts.”

    • willardcottrell

      You’re the one casting stones – give us the quote from the 4 gospels. I personally don’t give a shit about Paul or Leviticus

  • rwsandersii

    I convinced my house church at the time to let me lead a teaching on the bible and environmentalism. I made jaws hit the floor with 4 pages of scripture that supported every major tenant of environmentalism.
    So when I asked to do one on war, they wouldn’t let me.
    Funny thing is the more I read it the more I discover there isn’t a single verse to support the republican party platform.

  • This is your best topic ever. I love it because I am a JW.

  • TruthBeTold

    You guys should read A Case for Christ, Mere Christianity and More Than a Carpenter. These are just a few books were intelligent people set out to disprove Christianity. Didn’t turn out as they expected. It’s funny how atheist and the like just blow off the Bible as false without really studying it. So take the advise of this article, read the Bible, try and disprove it and let God show you otherwise!!!

  • I have to think here for a minute, but isn’t a true Christian to show unconditional love and to help the poor and so on. and from what I was taught in church was to love thy neighbor and to never judge someone. I mean come on Republicans and gop members who only care for the protection of the wealthy while the people who voted for them suffer and discriminate anything they don’t think is natural but yet its ok for them to go f**k up and then try to blame the president… sure, religion is great im a believer in Christ, but I consider myself more spiritual because I love all similar and different big and small.
    And you would have to be an idiot to believe in the values of the GOP and Republicans who only wanna protect themselves and the other wealthy.

  • rjenki9

    Why is it, that if believers quote the Bible without adding to or taking away from the text are placed in this light of the finger pointing, all going to hell person? You can believe, quote and still be a good person!
    Does quoting text mean we are this type?
    Religion is personal and only you will stand in the time of judgment! Sorry, no lawyers allowed to represent you….You do have a selection….Haven or Hell…both have life eternal… which, is your decision!
    Point being, nobody, as I see it, are trying to push gays back into the closet, or prevent being successful.
    I am saying that if you believe, you will be changed. Jesus never said, “your sins are forgiven, so keep doing wrong”. If you believe, you will be changed, inside and out. Jesus didn’t come to change the laws, but to fulfill them. If fact, read and you will find he added to the laws…. just saying.
    God Bless!

  • Barbara E. Ward

    Wow! After reading this article and the comments below all I can say is horsefeathers on it all. Don’t know where most of you go to church (if you do) or what Bible you read and what kind of Bible study classes you have attended (if any) but you got it all wrong!!

  • Jeanne Hazzard

    I like to throw Acts 2:45 in the face of righties.It speaks of how the early church ran their finances. “Selling their possesssions and good they gave to anyone as he had need.” Socialist much?

  • Venus Brown

    In response to those saying to ignore the trolls. That would be a great way to shut them up after a while if everyone ignored the trolls. The problem with that is that everyone will not ignore them, and if even one person engages a troll there trolling continues. Even, if by some crazy miracle or coincidence, everyone did ignore trolls, they would still post their damaging thoughts for all to witness. If you really want the trolls to go away just ban them and remove their nonsense as soon as you know they are trolls.