Yesterday I got into “it” with a Christian, over a post I made that was shared by one of my fellow Atheists. The post’s exact words were: “As an atheist I can celebrate Easter too. This Easter I’m free from mental dissonance, I’m free from having to believe there’s a supernatural cause to anything, and I’m free to believe in mankind knowing that nothing supernatural will ever help mankind to be free of the problems that plague it. I’m celebrating freedom by embracing mankind’s potential. As an atheist I am free. #SecularwhileEaster #Atheistduringresurrection”
I really don’t think those words were triggering, or offensive, just a secular version of a holiday loaded with magic, and hope. But this status was shared by an acquaintance who happens to be an Atheist. His “shared” post, was met with ridicule and scorn, by Christians who claimed because of our “pride” we’d be banished to hell. Because of that, I want to expand upon a prior post I made, entitled “Hell”
He himself spoke of God and of the notion of any crime befitting a punishment of an eternity of suffering. His example was fascinating, and I believe it’s important to talk about the specific example he used.
“People go I’m a good enough person to go to heaven.
Let’s find out.
You go into a court room for speeding
He says “You have a 400$ fine”
But you go “No no judge, don’t mind that speeding, I pay my taxes and go to school, I donate to charity’s sometimes etc. “
He’s still gonna be like “Yeah, that’s good but you still broke the law, you must pay”
That’s why a perfect man, JESUS paid our fine.”
That was his exact example. So of course I questioned him. Because the notion that a “speeding ticket” or the divine equivalent of one, will result in an eternal damnation is one that shouldn’t scare, but rather amuse. If we’re expected to believe that God is actually all-good, then we should also expect him to have at least a tiny bit of mercy. But that mercy shouldn’t come at the expense of Jesus. If anything, true mercy is genuine forgiveness, without the notion of blood, or sacrifice anywhere therein.
The notion that Hell is eternal, and that there is no leniency whatsoever should be a difficult one to fuse with the concept of an all-good, God. And the notion that in order to step into Heaven, you must fall to your knees and give yourself to Jesus, is one that should also make a person question God.
I suppose you could say I’m a bit more than a Atheist. I do not believe God exists, but even more than that, I wouldn’t worship him even if he existed, BECAUSE he existed. Someone creating something alone does not make that person worthy of praise. If a parent gives birth to you, but abuses you, and beats to the brink of death once a week, would that person be worthy of worship and or praise? I would need evidence that God is truly all-loving, and all-good, before I worshiped him. And at least to me, the death of Jesus isn’t compelling. I’m horrified at the thought of someone murdering their only son, under the guise of obtaining forgiveness for me. If I want to be forgiven, I would one, actually have needed to do something worth being offended by, and my mere existence alone does not qualify an offense worthy of being offended over, and two: expect that a good creature could forgive me, without blood, without murdering someone else to sate his blood-lust.
The notion that any sin EVER deserves the death penalty, but worse, for all of eternity, is so absurd it makes me wonder how people truly believed it. If I lied to a gunman who wanted to find my friends and murder them, that doesn’t deserve the death penalty+. If I stole some food because I was literally starving, that doesn’t deserve the death penalty+. And the notion that someone had to literally die, for me to be worthy enough to ask for forgiveness, for stealing something I needed to live, is absurd.
I’m going to respond to some comments made by someone who followed my blog (Thanks Colie, you rock!)
1: Evil could certainly be considered a byproduct of free-will. And I’d like to believe, that if God did exist (which I respectfully don’t think he does), he’d still consider man worthy of free-will. I like to believe he’d find those of us who strive to defeat evil, more worthy than those who chose to commit evil for the sake of evil.
2: I don’t know of any reason to consider “Hell” a relative term in the Bible. I think the punishment for the Anti-Christ is pretty not relative. I think eternal pain, or eternal oblivion is not relative. Yes people can use it “relatively” but I meant it in a biblical sense. Though I understand what you’re saying. This reminds me of that argument that people say “hell” is separation from God. The Bible seems to be saying something else. The Christian Broadcast Network has an interesting article on this, which is certainly worth reading if you’re interested in at least one other interpretation of Hell. It discusses both the “separation” aspect and the “terrible fire” aspect. Certainly worth a read. It also briefly mentions the notion of Jesus’s suffering being necessary. It shouldn’t be. It really, really shouldn’t be. This article also talks about the notion that “You know of God!” by saying (and I quote) “Therefore the spiritual standard for America would be the gospel of Jesus and everything in the Old and New Testaments. But someone who grew up in an uncivilized jungle might be held to account for the fact that something in his conscience told him there is a Creator worthy of his worship”. This is not the way it works. A baby does not of God. A baby does not have unconscious knowledge of Jesus.
Here’s that article: https://www.cbn.com/spirituallife/cbnteachingsheets/FAQ_hell.aspx
If you enjoyed this, and or want to hear more from my point of view, on the topic, comment! Have a great day everyone!