SuperChristians: More Pious than Jesus

January 4, 2008 at 9:12 am 74 comments

SuperChristianThe phenomena of the SuperChristian is, for sure, nothing new. Just read the mid-second century document, The Marytrdom of Polycarp. Not only did his entire martyrdom mirror that of his Saviour, he was accused of being an atheist (for not believing in the gods of the Romans), served Christ flawlessly for eighty-six years, and found the persecuting crowd unworthy of his time.

Today I seem to meet a lot of modern-day SuperChristians. Sure, in the gospels they might be condemned as “Pharisees,” but, of course, they really do love Jesus. So who is a SuperChristian? How about someone who doesn’t drink or go out partying? I have always found this interesting. Do these people know Jesus was a Jewish man in the 1st century? Have you ever been to a Jewish wedding? Well, back in 1st century Palestine, these weddings were “off-the-hook” as we young wannabe-gangsters say. Jesus himself famously gave the best stuff at the end of night, even after everyone was already tanked (John 2:1-10). It is amusing to watch the lengths these SuperChristians go to explain that passage. And if John’s gospel is too mystical for you, the relatively anti-semitic Gospel of Luke furthers the Lord’s party animal instincts: “For John the Baptist came neither eating bread nor drinking wine, and you say, ‘He has a demon.’ The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and “sinners.” (Luke 7:33-34).

This isn’t a post about whether Christians should drink or not – I don’t care. I write this as I watch the conclusion to the Iowa primaries and see one pretentious Baptist minister and a Mormon ideologue finish in the top two spots on the Republican side of the spectrum. As Mike Huckabee, who is anti-abortion, anti-homosexuality, anti-gun control, and pro-capital punishment won the first of political orgies for the 2008 American elections, I continue to wonder in amazement about that “crucial evangelical vote.” What do these evangelicals really think about the teachings of the person they call Christ? Did Jesus have a picket saying “I made Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve!”? My mind just isn’t wrapping around it anymore. Could you imagine the little Palestinian revolutionary saying that he is both “pro-life” and “pro-death penalty”? Could you imagine the so-called Son of God telling people that prayer is between themselves and God, but at the same time making official state “Prayer Days” and demanding prayers to be “brought back” in schools (whatever that means)? One has to wonder why evangelicals don’t read into the reason behind Jesus’ constant prayers of solitude – not to mention various explicit commandments to do so.

And how about that martyrdom complex? Even the earliest Christians, as we see in the example of Polycarp, martyrdom was the sign a “true Christian” – someone who was totally “souled out” for Christ. Some of the earliest Christian writers even went so far to say that if you were not martyred, you were barely a Christian. Today’s persecution complex is much more tame, but still extremely prevalent. If hardship comes towards you at the hands of others, you must be doing something right – Satan and his minions are testing your faith. I am amazed how often I hear an evangelical speak of being persecuted in some way. Maybe they are, maybe they aren’t – but they sure let everyone know about it.

So who is a SuperChristian? Do you party less than Jesus partied? Do you picket with more passion than Jesus picketed? Do you support causes that alleviate the immorality of the world so Jesus doesn’t have to hang out with the scum of the world the next time around? Do you pray louder than Jesus prayed? Do you annoy everyone around you more than Jesus did, just so you get your just desserts? If you answered yes – you are a SuperChristian.

-The Apostate

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Christianity is Confusing How to discover counterfeit Christianity?

74 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Jeremy Myers  |  January 4, 2008 at 12:25 pm

    Very funny and pointed.

  • 2. JustCan't  |  January 4, 2008 at 12:27 pm

    Thank you for the post TA. Writing this today from Canada, I watched the Iowa Caucus on television last night. It is so scary seeing someone like Mike Huckabee have any type of support at all. Yet, they said that 60% of the delegates were evangelicals. What?!? What a world it would be if his ilk continue this run for power. It is getting bad enough already, but just imagine the collective intellectual power of a generation that was home-schooled by people who believe that science is a theory, or even a religion itself. I can almost SEE the IQ of the USA dropping with every step backward they take.

    One of my problems with Islam is that they seem to yearn for the days of donkeys and robes. I have been walking up to the fact that Christians can be just as willing to turn the hands of time backwards, are just as apocalyptic, and are willing to turn their back on reasoning (something that sets us apart form other forms of life). With people like this in power, this isn’t just a slippery slope — it is a waterslide of idiocy. It is blasphemous (nice word, huh?) to our entire race.

    Where I am, I have no vote, but I am scared for the USA and for the world as a whole. Everybody just needs to stand up and say NO! to this before it is too late. It would be nice that the next time Iowa had a caucus, much less than 60% of the delegates are evangelicals with a death wish and a divine delusion. Better yet, if the media actually criticized the pious instead of tip-toeing around them, we’d be getting somewhere. Then maybe claiming faith will not immediately reap respect, and perhaps then the voter respect will turn to disgust at these statements, tactics, and missions. Maybe some day you’ll be laughed off the ballot for having Huckabee’s beliefs, or Romney’s. If you’re going to pray for anything, pray for that!

  • 3. BDearmore  |  January 4, 2008 at 2:27 pm

    I agree with everything you just said, Just Can’t.

    For the past seven years, we’ve had one of the most dangerous presidents in US history; and he still has another year to go. I hope we can replace him with somebody a little more rational before it’s too late.

    Personally, I’m not sure yet who I’m going to vote for when Election Day comes to Texas. (I’ve narrowed it down to probably two. Both are leading Democrats, of course.) But I know several who definitely will NOT get my vote.

    This is one of those times when I’m tempted to say, “If God wanted me to vote, I think He would give me somebody to vote for.” :) Not really. Just kidding. But it has been a long time since I’ve been able to vote for somebody I felt comfortable about.

    I can only say that I feel less uncomfortable about some than the others, and I will vote accordingly. The lesser of two (or several) evils is still the best choice.

  • 4. Nic  |  January 4, 2008 at 3:15 pm

    Brilliant Post!

    You have a smart and witty style and you make a well deserved point.

    As a former “Super Christian” you don’t know how on the head you hit it.

    Brilliant!

  • 5. LeoPardus  |  January 4, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    There’s a tendency for non-believers to speak of believers in the same hyperbolic, panic mongering tones that believers use when speaking of non-believers. That’s just inciting distrust, bigotry, and animosity. It helps no one.

    Frankly I don’t want an “all atheist” congress anymore than I want an “all Christian” congress. Both would be awful. I like a mix. As Federalist Paper 10 said it (paraphrasing here) factions are a pain in the butt, but we need them all to check each other.

  • 6. societyvs  |  January 4, 2008 at 4:30 pm

    Great points about the drinking aspects found in the gospels – I have always thought the same thing about the wedding in Cana and that passage about John and Jesus. I am not sure Jesus was a drunk or what have you – but I am failrly sure he had a drink here and there (or maybe just had very little problem with it).

    I wrote a post about this Mike Huckabee a while back looking over his candidacy and what he is running based on (his beliefs) – that dude scares me on some level. I can’t believe how blindly Christians are throwing there support behind him – some of it smacks of real selectivism. I have raised points about his gun control policies, stance on the war, and even his support of Israel (with more weapons for them). I found the stances a little waroed but that’s my personal opinion when I try relate that stuff with a Christian stance.

    As for the Super Christian thing – duly noted also – good points!

  • 7. Thinking Ape  |  January 4, 2008 at 4:55 pm

    An additional comment concerning the Martyrdom of Polycarp:

    Not only did Polycarp simply die a martyr’s death in an execution-style manner, he even helped the executioners along the way (13:2), and was compared to a ram – much more expensive than the sacrificial lamb (14:1). Upon deliverance to the pyre where he was to be burnt, he not only could not be consumed by the fire, but he augmented an aroma of sweet perfume (15:1-2). Furthermore, when the executioners saw he wasn’t burning, he was stabbed, only to, lo and behold, have a dove fly out from his body and spewing forth so much blood that it extinguished the fire and covered the crowd! (16:1-2)

    Of course we can’t compare Polycarp’s bones to that of Jesus (since the latter apparently ascended to heaven), but we know that the former’s bones were more valuable than gold and precious gems (18:2).

    What I wonder, however, is that if the account of Polycarp’s death was written a mere 50 or 60 years earlier and by someone claiming to have apostolic connections, would this story have been canonized and subsequently accepted as being a literal account by Christians in the 21st century?

  • 8. LeoPardus  |  January 4, 2008 at 4:57 pm

    One thing I like about Catholics and Orthodox. They know how to party. Every big C or O shindig I’ve been to had alcohol. And there might be dancing, card playing, and other “Baptist sins” too.

    Still there are SuperCatholics, SuperOrthodox, SuperAnglicans, etc. too. Could I just buy a bunch of blue T-shirts with red S’s on them and pass them out to those folks?

  • 9. LeoPardus  |  January 4, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    The accounts of miracles occurring at the deaths of martyrs are largely believed and recounted by believers today. In the Protestant churches i attended I heard accounts of ancient martyrs referred to many times. And of course the C and O churches do treat them as literal and pretty near equivalent to Scripture.

    What I always wondered when I heard these accounts was why the martyrs always ended up dead. First they can’t be burned, or they can’t be stabbed, or they can’t feel torture, or they bleed gallons of blood that quenches fires, but in the end they still die. It’s as if the killers finally found the “Kryptonite”.

    Seems a rather less-than-omnipotent god who can keep you alive in a fire, but can’t keep you alive when an axe falls on your neck.

  • 10. Thinking Ape  |  January 4, 2008 at 5:07 pm

    Leopardus says,

    What I always wondered when I heard these accounts was why the martyrs always ended up dead.

    I’m sorry, I laughed so hard when I read this (i.e. if they didn’t end up dead, they wouldn’t be martyrs). I think the whole point is to show how miraculous their deaths can be. Personally, I think Rasputin still has more on some of these guys.

  • 11. HeIsSailing  |  January 4, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    LeoPardus ponders:

    Still there are SuperCatholics, SuperOrthodox, SuperAnglicans, etc. too. Could I just buy a bunch of blue T-shirts with red S’s on them and pass them out to those folks?

    All the major superheroes have their defining religious affiliations. Ever want to know if Superman was really a SuperChristian? Check this out:
    http://www.comicbookreligion.com/

    Strangely, only the evilest of the superevil are atheists in the superhero world. Go figure..
    http://www.comicbookreligion.com/index.php?Religion=Atheist

  • 12. Jersey  |  January 4, 2008 at 5:49 pm

    My friends and others I usually associated with in high school were gays, drunks, stoners, sluts and whores, pagan and various other non-Christians, atheists and agnostics, poor and rich, abled and disabled, various Christians within all kinds of denominations (from Mormon and Catholic to the Pentecostals and Korean Methodists).

    I am bi and was almost a practicioner of every major non-Ibrahimic religion out there (was Christian twice in my short 21 years of life thus far). I drink. I once smoked and hated it. I was a kleptomaniac.

    I was perhaps as bad a well-off white kid could be short of major thieving, murdering, and doing illegal drugs. I hung out with so many my religious family would consider immoral. My parents were secular.

    You know what? I am perhaps more of a Christian now (as a philosophical humanist) than when I was one. I, the still complete dooch-bag of a sinner, am still more forgiving than my somewhat-self-righteous family and church,

  • 13. LeoPardus  |  January 4, 2008 at 6:02 pm

    HIS:

    Hey! Waitaminute! Yellowjacket, Ms Marvel, Collossus, Booster Gold are good guys. And Wolverine is totally cool. :)

  • 14. LeoPardus  |  January 4, 2008 at 6:03 pm

    TA:

    Nice catch. I got a good laugh too once I saw it. :D

  • 15. Thinking Ape  |  January 4, 2008 at 6:16 pm

    For those who responded regarding the Mike Huckabee comments – check my updated postscript on the article concerning an upcoming blog carnival.

  • 16. HeIsSailing  |  January 4, 2008 at 6:46 pm

    Just for you, LeoPardus. Ever catch any of these SuperChristians sharing the pew with you?
    http://www.comicbookreligion.com/index.php?Religion=EASTERN%20ORTHODOX

  • 17. LeoPardus  |  January 4, 2008 at 9:51 pm

    Elektra, Black Widow, and Silver Sable! Wooeee! The O’s got the HOTTEST super babes. And their all martial artists to boot. I am sooooo turned on.

  • 18. LeoPardus  |  January 4, 2008 at 9:51 pm

    Correction: “And they’re all……”

  • 19. the deacon  |  January 5, 2008 at 12:13 am

    TA …. Thank you for several thought providing statements.

    SuperChristians, SuperMoslems, SuperEtc. are seem to be trying to prove their worthiness by their actions and statements. They also tend to be out of faith streams that have legalistic definitions of what it means to be a true believer.

    One of the other issues associated with leaders that are associated with this complex is that if you raise questions or suggest other options you are viewed as being less faithful. That in itself is a powerful tool to press for conforming and unquestioning loyalty.

    Leopardus…. I concur that a congress overly dominated by one viewpoint is dangerous, even if that viewpoint is mine. Diverse views and debate hone ideas, push us to think of other options and help us to be mindful of others in our country with differing ideas.

  • 20. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 1:11 am

    A “SuperChristian” has no place in politics at all. “My servants are not of this world, else would they fight.” Jesus will put the world right, and it will be by force. “When they judgements are in the earth, then will the world learn righteousness.”

  • 21. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 1:20 am

    Correction, that is “thy” judgments, not “they” judgments. “for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness” Isa 26:9

    On the other hand, your pointing out the hypocrisy and confusion within Christendom in no way lessens your responsibility to God.

    Were you to point out the most hypocritical ignorant child of God, his place is infinitely better than yours.

  • 22. Thinking Ape  |  January 5, 2008 at 1:47 am

    Were you to point out the most hypocritical ignorant child of God, his place is infinitely better than yours.

    What a sensible, loving statement from one of God’s little messengers. Granted, hypocrisy doesn’t lessen the truth of Christianity – it only supports reasons to start doubting to find the truth.

  • 23. JustCant  |  January 5, 2008 at 1:47 am

    idiopathogen said: “Jesus will put the world right, and it will be by force. ”

    How do you know that? I mean, how do you know that other than you read it in Isa in the book you’d be trying to prove is accurate by quoting from the very book you are trying to prove is accurate?

    idiopathogen said: “On the other hand, your pointing out the hypocrisy and confusion within Christendom in no way lessens your responsibility to God.”

    There is no such thing to quite a few of us. This is apologetics at its weakest. I’d think that there’d be more to the argument than threats of retribution without sound proof or knowledge, or a somewhat insulting judgement of implied responsibility as a rebuttal. Oh, and the insult at the end…
    “Were you to point out the most hypocritical ignorant child of God, his place is infinitely better than yours.”
    Again, how do you know that?

  • 24. locomotivebreath1901  |  January 5, 2008 at 1:39 pm

    There are zealots all across the human spectrum, that’s for sure, but you write as one incredulous that life doesn’t happen in a vacuum.

    Also, how’s that relativism working out for you?

  • 25. asymptosis  |  January 5, 2008 at 2:41 pm

    Who are you talking to?

  • 26. JustCant  |  January 5, 2008 at 3:43 pm

    Loco:

    Relativism as opposed to absolutism? I’m also not sure who you are talking to, but you said a sentence without making a point.

    Also, when you talk about life not happening in a vacuum, again, what is the point of the comment? The statement doesn’t sit well on its own without a bit of context for the remark. Perhaps if it was attributed to a particular statement, like this: Your comments seem to suggest that you write as one incredulous that your statements could present themselves to others as being in a vacuum.

  • 27. Samanthamj  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:07 pm

    This post was pretty funny… thanks.

    I couldn’t help but picture the last paragraph as a part in a stand up bit… similiar to Foxworthy’s “if you ever _____, well then, you just might BE a rednecK” jokes… except, “if you ever ____, well then, you might just BE a SuperChristian”. lol. Hey… I bet we could combine them, and have Redneck SuperChristian jokes too. ;)
    ~smj

  • 28. lostgirlfound  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:31 pm

    TA: “Right On” (as us young, hippie-wannbes say)! People in the church will go to great lengths to call what Jesus did “grape juice” (the very thought of him infusing grapes with high-fructose corn syrup…), or dilute his teaching to that not of an anarchist (which he was by all definitions of his time and ours) pisses me off! All I ask is for people who want call themselves “Christians” to at least know what the man taught, in contextual, historical venues and hold true to what that teaching would mean today.

    BTW, I laugh right out loud (sadly and with unbelief) every time I see or hear a Christian say in the same breath they are “pro-life” and “pro-death penalty.” The absurdity of it all …

  • 29. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:35 pm

    The Post-Modernist — the self-centered spirit of Relativism

    The post-modernists does not believe in truth, which is simply spiritual suicide. Pilate asked the Lord, “What is truth?” (John 18:38) so we know it is not a new idea, but simply put, the truth is God’s point of view. People tend to want to justify themselves. They like being right. So why not all be right, right? That way everyone is self-justified, and God is left out. The post-modernist believes that two people can believe different things, and both be right — as a consequence God’s point of view does not need to be considered. I have my religion; you have yours. My religion is right for me. Your religion is right for you. We can agree to disagree, and who cares what God thinks about it, so let’s strike a deal under the table to not talk about this stuff, and God will smile and ignore us.

    Do Christians ever put on post-modernist blindfolds after professing to believe on Him who said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me?” (John 14:6). Unfortunately, we do. Such blindfolds become necessary to initiate and participate in any ecumenical or interdenominational movement, or maintain friendships with non-seeking unbelievers. Christians may refer to “My Christianity,” “My Religion,” or “My Theology” when someone disagrees with them. How different from the Philadelphian Church of whom the Lord could say thou “hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name” (Revelation 3:8). The fact is, Christian, your point of view does not matter. Learn to be wrong and learn to receive correction. Relativism is selfish and leaves the Lord out. The depository of the truth for the Christian must always be the Word of God, which is God’s point of view.

  • 30. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:36 pm

    Here’s another good one from a paper I am writing on the blind, the blindfolded, and the man of God:

    The False Humble

    The false humble man is a special type of Pharisee that takes pride in his humility. As unbelievers they are often post-modernists, and are proud that they are humble enough to let others have their own beliefs, and that they never would sink so low as to make anyone else uncomfortable about their personal beliefs. Since they have hidden their pride behind a cloak of humility, they feel justified at accusing believers of being “elitists,” “bigots,” “exclusive,” “dogmatic,” “legalistic,” or “proud.” This is a deceptive form of pride. It is not the cedar of Lebanon, but hyssop on the wall (1 Kings 4:33). Both are exalted up high above the ground in superiority to others, but one is a tiny plant, and the other is a gigantic tree. This isn’t to say that believers are not responsible to hold the truth in humility, but refusing to yield the truth to someone who will not accept it is often done for the good of the unbeliever, not pride. Judging the motives of others is never a good thing, and an activity that only God can do. ”Judge not that ye be not judged,” a scripture that is very popular among unbelievers when it comes to comparing their own behavior with Christians, but what about pride? (Matthew 7:1).

    Christians, because pride is something they know to disdain, will often wear this blindfold quite proudly when another Christian’s conscience is more careful about scripture than they are, and suggest or blatantly imply the more careful Christian is proud. It’s a quick and easy way to make someone else feel bad for being obedient, but a mature Christian will sense the beam in the eye of their accuser and respond graciously. Unfortunately, it is especially destructive when those that are older and respected confuse and stumble the young and inexperienced Christian who may be walking in the newness of first love in a more careful manner than the older one who is too “humble” to let such a thing go without rebuke because his own conscience is pricked. “Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoso shall receive one such little child in my name receiveth me. But whoso shall offend one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.” ( Matthew 18:4-6 ).

  • 31. LeoPardus  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    I don’t see why it is absurd to be against abortion and for the death penalty. On the surface I can see it, but it only takes a brief reflection to see why the two positions can be held by one person.
    Now to be for abortion and against the death penalty… THAT is absurd.

  • 32. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:43 pm

    Your definition of a Pharisee is also flawed.

    The Pharisee — The Religious Flesh

    It is common to address an unbeliever regarding their need of salvation and belief in the Lord Jesus Christ, but they very quickly will list off good people that are not Christians, and perhaps some bad people, or hypocrits, who are Christians. They speak a lot about “good” people they have met, and appreciate goodness in man, but know nothing of the goodness of God in sending his only begotten Son into the world to die for sinners that would lead them to repentance (Romans 2:4, 1 John 4:10, John 3:16). Pharisees do not necessarily shrink away from religious experiences and worship, and, in fact, may thrive on religious experiences only as long as it confirms their own goodness. They are often occupied with their religious ceremonies, carefulness about personal behavior, and may go above and beyond and make rules and regulations for themselves beyond what God has given them. All of these things are in fact a cover up for what they really are: polished, clean graves with dead men on the inside (Matthew 23:27). What makes the position of a Pharisee so vile is not their strict rules, ceremonies, or manner of life (Matthew 5:20), but the fact that they, like Cain of old, refuse to approach God in God’s way and admit they are sinners. “God, I thank thee, that I am not [a sinner] as other men are” (Luke 18:11) they say, when God is waiting to hear them say, like the publican, “God be merciful to me a sinner.” (Luke 18:13). It was not Cain’s fruit that was objectionable (Genesis 4:3,5), but his sin lying at the door that made his bloodless sacrifice inadequate (Genesis 4:7).

  • 33. LeoPardus  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:47 pm

    idiopathogen:

    OK. We see that you can brainlessly cut and paste. Is this because you can’t think on your own?

  • 34. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:49 pm

    I wrote it (just not today). Did you read it?

  • 35. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 4:50 pm

    I don’t need to write anything fresh. I’m hearing nothing new

  • 36. LeoPardus  |  January 5, 2008 at 5:08 pm

    Ah yes. I see. You’re a specialist in creating tidy labels, and neat, clean, theological categories. Helps you to be able to pigeonhole people and to prop up an untenable belief system.

    You’re right. You don’t need to write anything new. You’ve got it all figured out. Now you just need to spread your wisdom and insight to all us blind ones.

    Nice to have pat answers to get you through life. Enjoy them.

  • 37. LeoPardus  |  January 5, 2008 at 5:09 pm

    Sorry. Didn’t answer your question in #34. Yes, I read them. I read a number of articles at your sites too. I didn’t see anything new.

  • 38. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 5:17 pm

    Pigeonholing is exactly my intention. It’s for your conscience. All truth comes in through the conscience. People can reason away anything.

    I don’t need to reason with you or make a defence for what the Bible says. You do. If not now, then later.

    “Every knee shall bow.”

  • 39. Phil  |  January 5, 2008 at 6:43 pm

    Lets get real. Religion was understandable when we’d just got out of the trees. For too many years people have killed on all sides in he name of “god”. More people have died in the name of god than anything else. Yet, god is good? Only narrow minded intolerant bigots have a need for religion. I don’t believe in the tooth fairy, santa, or fairies. The proof for a god is no more convincing.
    If you’re so conceited you believe you’re here for a greater purpose, please let it be something like a cure for cancer and not saving the world from people who don’t believe the same as you.

  • 40. LeoPardus  |  January 5, 2008 at 8:28 pm

    idiopathogen:

    Just because you make dogmatic declarations, does not make them true. You are welcome to your dogmas. Once I shared them. And with every bit as much certainty as you have. And like you I “reasoned away” all the difficulties and impossibilities.

    But you should realize that your irrational, mindless way of non-reasoning and feeling your way to your beliefs, leaves you with nothing to say to a Muslim, a Hindu, or to anyone who just wants to say, “Truth was revealed to my soul/conscience/liver/etc.”

  • 41. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 8:46 pm

    Feeling my beliefs? No. That won’t do either. I’m still working on that one:

    The Passionate Man

    Bad practice or doctrine validated by religious emotional feelings or experience. <– not much here yet.

    Did you really share my beliefs, or did you merely “Taste” or “feel” them (heb 6).

  • 42. JustCant  |  January 5, 2008 at 9:16 pm

    idiopathogen said “but refusing to yield the truth to someone who will not accept it is often done for the good of the unbeliever”

    Tell ya what…..you can believe what you want, and you can delude yourself about the above statement if you wish, but don’t try to tell other people that you are pushing your pathology on them for their own good. Such conceit and arrogance can be chalked up to the “virtues” of your belief, just like homophobia, anti-semitism, and the the harmful dogmas that spew forth as if a pre-recorded announcement. Such tactics are old, over-used and ineffective. You aren’t preaching to the choir here, so you may as well stop it. You’ve only got your book, we’ve got everything else (that you are afraid to look at).

    To Leo you said: “Did you really share my beliefs, or did you merely “Taste” or “feel” them (heb 6).”

    Ah yes, I haven’t heard that for about 2 minutes…..”You never were a true christian in the first place.” Never anything new, just the nickname on the posts change. Sigh.

  • 43. idiopathogen  |  January 5, 2008 at 9:54 pm

    I have a gay employee, and it was Christians like Corrie Tenboom that were getting killed trying to save Jews in the Holocaust.

    Oh, yeah, that’s right Hitler was a good Catholic. Evolution had nothing to do with his plans to design the perfect race. It was Christianity. I forgot.

    I suppose the communists were not atheists, right? Only people who believe in God kill people.

  • 44. PB and J  |  January 5, 2008 at 11:55 pm

    thinking ape,

    this was probably your best post yet (that i have read at least)…

    very witty and hits right between the eyes.

    i myself went through this journey not too long ago. i realized there were so many inconsistancies in what i believed. i was a “christian” so naturally i was pro-life, anti-gay, pro-war, etc…the more i studied, the more i have found there is so often a much better middle ground. and for sure, the “christian right” isnt really following christ, but their own befuddled minds.

    with that said, i still follow Yeshua as my Rabbi, but in a much different way than i ever did before. before he was some white, middleclass republican who drove an SUV. now, he’s a very jewish, very different man to me.

    thanks for the good read.

    peter

  • 45. JustCant  |  January 6, 2008 at 12:01 am

    I suppose you could read history or go to a study group, or even take a real leap and read someone who sums up facts about the whole Hitler/Communism/Dictator discussion very well and read some Christopher Hitchens (gasp).

    But ultimately, you must educate yourself about things we actually know. These people did nothing in the name of Atheism. Can you think of an evil act done by a leader in the name of Atheism? Now can you think of someone who committed an evil act in the name of religion (christianity in specific, but not exclusively)?

    I’m glad you have a gay employee. Have you ever shared with them your belief that they will burn for eternity in hell? Oh, and Corrie Tenboom is often spoke of, but if you feel like reading a long list, search for Christians and Christian leaders that aided, abetted, or looked the other way for the Nazis. I’ll brace for the “they weren’t real Christians rehash if necessary, sigh). Sadly one name wouldn’t do it justice, just as one name makes no argument here for your point either. Sorry. Still nothing new, same old stuff, answered thousands of times before.

    Wait, there was something new there for me. Hitler was motivated by evolution. Wow, bold move, that one is off the hook! How much time have you devoted to studying Science in relation to the bible? If it is not much, or taught by religious point of view, I suggest you discontinue evoking it in debate until you have.

    Hitler was a bad dude, but people are capable of doing bad things all of the time. I’ve been hardly patient with your point of view today, for example. And you tell people to go to hell. Did atheism make you do it? Evolution perhaps?

  • 46. JustCant  |  January 6, 2008 at 12:01 am

    oh, above was for idiopathogen

  • 47. idiopathogen  |  January 6, 2008 at 12:51 am

    If I sent someone to a small grocery store to purchase something “in my name” on my behalf, and I showed up to purchase something that the storekeeper KNOWS I would never purchase, what I am doing is not really in keeping with my name and what I represent. The storekeeper may reject the purchase being made “in my name.”

    If a professing Christian commits crimes in the “name” of Christ, yep, couterfeit. But such people are still better off than apostates that leave the Christian profession all together — which is what this site represents.

    The unbeliever in Christianity brings dishonor to the name of Christ. The apostate that abandons the profession without really seeking God blames God for the inconsistency of Christians.

    That’s a very dangerous place to be in. I would not trade places with you any day. “He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad. Wherefore I say unto you, All manner of sin and blasphemy shall be forgiven unto men: but the blasphemy against the Holy Ghost shall not be forgiven unto men.” Matt 12.

    “for thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.” Psalm 138:2.

    “Nevertheless the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord knoweth them that are his. And, let every one that nameth the name of Christ depart from iniquity. But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and of silver, but also of wood and of earth; and some to honour, and some to dishonour. If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honour, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work. ” 2 Tim

  • 48. LeoPardus  |  January 6, 2008 at 1:03 am

    idiopathogen:

    The apostate that abandons the profession without really seeking God, blames God for the inconsistency of Christians.

    What about one who abandons the Christian profession after really seeking God?
    What if one does not blame God for the inconsistency of Christians, but rather blames the inconsistency of humans?
    What if one doesn’t blame God for anything, since there’s no tangible or credible evidence that such a being exists (or if he does, he doesn’t interact with humanity)?

    There is a series that I posted here recently. “Reasons I can no longer believe”. You can look for it in the Archives. That might give you some indication of the real reasons many of us left.

  • 49. JustCant  |  January 6, 2008 at 1:09 am

    idiopathogen:

    We’ve all read the bible, so do you have any thoughts of your own? I mean, using a book to prove the facts in the same book is rather weak, so when you quote your bible for justification of what it says in the bible, well, its just circular logic isn’t it? How do you know any of it is accurate or valid, or that you are interpreting it the right way? Without evidence available outside of the text, how can you criticize people with evidence contrary to the text?

    There’s nothing beautiful about condemning people who just have questions.

    I’ve written this more than once today, but….

    Don’t look for morality in that thing. You’ll be a much more moral person, and give much more to society, if you turn away from all of that black and white judgement. After all……

    That’s a very dangerous place to be in. I would not trade places with you any day (your words).

    On the opening remark of your last post……If I went to my grocery store and the shopkeeper wouldn’t sell me a canned ham because I normally don’t buy canned hams, well, I’d get another grocer. Have you ever tried another “grocery store”? It is quite liberating!

  • 50. Thinking Ape  |  January 6, 2008 at 3:28 am

    idiopathogen,

    The post-modernist believes that two people can believe different things, and both be right

    Unfortunately I was busy at work all day today, but I feel bad for missing some of this horrendous discussion. idio, have you ever actually read a “postmodernist” work or, for that matter, understand anything about postmodernism? The fact that you actually equated postmodernism to relativism, in addition to that wonderful quote above, tells me you know absolutely nothing about postmodernism and philosophy in general for that matter.

  • 51. Thinking Ape  |  January 6, 2008 at 3:47 am

    PB and J,
    Glad you enjoyed the article – I am even more enthralled that you picked up the point of the blog, unlike some others. What someone believes Jesus/Yeshua to be is a matter separate (although related to) how we are to live, the politics we get involved in, and the issues we support (or reject). My posts will always come back to this idea that Christianity, as a social construct, continues to focus on the mythology, whether true or not, rather than the ethical teachings, whether unique or not.

    Hypocrisy has always bothered me, whether I was a fundamentalist or not. But this is no reason to throw out an entire belief system and, as I alluded to before, this was not the point of my post. I fear for my southern neighbors. I remember being thrilled when Bush II won in 2000, along with the other Republican sweeps. Now I watch in horror as every contending Republican option for the White House, whether Guiliani or Huckabee or Paul or Romney, scares me twice as much as Bush does now. And what scares me the most is that it is the evangelicals that put them there – and it just doesn’t make sense to me anymore. I don’t know how someone can read the Beatitudes and the rest of the Sermon on the Mount and still go out and vote for these people.

    Of course, once one starts dabbling in liberal Christianity, where does it stop? It was much easier being a conservative Christian where all the rules are laid out by cliches and packaged passages.

  • 52. Mark  |  January 6, 2008 at 6:15 am

    Great post!
    I went to a super-christian’s wedding. We couldnt drink alcohol. We weren’t even allowed to buy alcohol from the bar. (They had been banned from selling it by the bride & groom!.) Now I’m remember from my Xtian days the slogan WWJD? Damn- if only he was here!

  • 53. PB and J  |  January 6, 2008 at 10:25 am

    thinkingape.

    you said,

    “Of course, once one starts dabbling in liberal Christianity, where does it stop? It was much easier being a conservative Christian where all the rules are laid out by cliches and packaged passages”

    exactly!!! there is no question that i have found being part of the church a struggle because i no longer check yes to everything on the doctrinal and political conservative viewpoint. i have received much rejection and negativity.

    i guess this is what it means to follow a man who was rejected himself. Yeshua chose to stand in the middle often. for instance, he critiqued (notice i say critique not criticize) a sect of the pharisees for one thing, and then condemned the opposing group of sadducees. he made enemies with the hellenized jews and with the orthodox ones.

    so i guess following such a rabbi has natural consequences.

    peter

  • 54. sciencerepublic  |  January 6, 2008 at 2:54 pm

    There’s something I really can’t understand. Help me, I need to think of it: why do they call themselves Christians, if they are pro-death penalty and pro-war? o_O I’m not joking… maybe I’m just too naïve, but I’ve always thought that Jesus’ teachings were against both… or am I wrong?

  • 55. PB and J  |  January 6, 2008 at 7:47 pm

    sciencerepublic

    it is funny you mention this, because i am writing about this issue myself right now on my blog. if you want, you can come check out what i am talking about.

    but i agree there does seem to be a lot of issues with being a “christian” conservative. (but to be fair, i think the same can be said for “christian” liberal)

    peter

  • 56. locomotivebreath1901  |  January 6, 2008 at 7:47 pm

    To those who addressed my comment above: it is my understanding of web etiquette that a posted response is specifically addressed to the author of the original post, unless otherwise noted.

    But perhaps that decorum is not recognized here.

    To wit: my response was directed specifically to ‘thinking ape’, and his original post. As such, the context can be found therein.

    My apologies for the confusion.

  • 57. Thinking Ape  |  January 6, 2008 at 10:55 pm

    locomotivebreath,

    My apologize, but your comment (#24) had very little context. JustCan’t (#26) attempted to give somewhat of an answer, but regardless if your original comment was concerning the original article, it didn’t seem to connect with anything. If you would like to explain what you said, I am sure I, or someone else, would be happy to respond:

    There are zealots all across the human spectrum, that’s for sure, but you write as one incredulous that life doesn’t happen in a vacuum.
    Also, how’s that relativism working out for you?

    I concur with the first clause, but the second needs some explanation, as well as the third. What do you mean that I am unwilling to accept that life doesn’t happen in a vacuum? Does life happen in a vacuum? What do you mean by that statement? Likewise, relativism? That comes out of left-field, no? If you would like to talk about cultural or moral relatively, I suggest reading some church history beforehand – unless I am mistaking the tone of your comment.
    Part of commenting on a blog is realizing that we are not mind readers and we only know your ideas via the written word.

  • 58. idiopathogen  |  January 7, 2008 at 2:40 am

    re post #54.

    What about pro-ethnic cleansing? Don’t Christians sanction Israel’s ethnic cleaning at the time God told them to do so in the old testament (like the city of Ai, men, women, children, and even the animals), as well as stoning adulterers, etc?

    Inconsistent “SuperChristians” that mingle in politics should consider ethnic cleaning of Muslims as well as stoning as a form of execution amongst their congregations. I wonder if the Westerburo bapstist church would consider doing that if someone was found to be gay among them.

    I can sympathize with the fact that people would be uncomfortable with Christians in politics because if the righteousness of God was enforced now the way it was back then, and will be in the millenium by the Messiah himself, it could be a very scary thing for unbelievers.

    I’m thankful God is waiting in patience and grace right now. To the believer the righteousness of God is refreshment. To the unbeliever, it is terrifying.

  • 59. Thinking Ape  |  January 7, 2008 at 2:46 am

    You know, idiopathogen is right. Too bad, however, that there is little to distinguish his God from his Enemy. Tell me, idio, what makes “God” more full of patience and grace than that of Satan?

    “He who creates life, may also take it away”:

  • 60. genesiawilliams  |  January 7, 2008 at 3:10 am

    as a general ‘try to live like Jesus’ (or at least with the same purposefulness) Christian, I find ‘Super Chrisitans’ as described here a mess. But People do what they think they gotta insecurities are not healed by the ‘acceptance’ or ‘rejection’ of religion, so people have just found a new vehicle to push those things they struggle with on the rest of the world.

    I would say that these people do no justice to the message and life of Christ.

    Not going for sainthood here I just respect the process of honest dialouge

  • 61. sciencerepublic  |  January 7, 2008 at 4:03 am

    @idiopathogen: well, ethnic cleansings are just plain wrong from any point of view. What Israel has been doing so far with Palestine is wrong, IMHO, and should not be tolerated by any country. You shouldn’t read the Bible and blindly approve anything that’s written on it, but you should instead understand that most of what’s written in it has been written by men living in a completely different time, when even the mere concept of “ethnic cleansing” didn’t exist, and they didn’t care if it has been an act against what’s written in the Gospel. Currently, this concept exists, and defines an hideous act that I’m pretty sure God wouldn’t approve.

  • 62. HeIsSailing  |  January 7, 2008 at 9:33 am

    idiopathogen:

    To the believer the righteousness of God is refreshment. To the unbeliever, it is terrifying.

    correction: To the unbeliever, it is unbelievable.

  • 63. Iris  |  January 7, 2008 at 1:08 pm

    Leopardus

    I can see being pro-choice and anti-death penalty as a tenable position, particularly when considering who is on death row and why (overwhelmingly poor and black). I think it is far more tenable for those who struggle for societal progress to hold the above position, as opposed to being pro death penalty and “pro-life” (which nearly always includes being anti-contraceptive, education, etc). The second position prefers Dark Ages reasoning.

  • 64. Iris  |  January 7, 2008 at 1:12 pm

    I meant that you can’t separate support for capital punishment from who is on death row and how the ‘justice’ system works in the U.S. I have spoken with people who don’t necessarily exclude the death penalty in all cases, but realize that having the death penalty in the U.S. is absurd, considering how our racist court system works. Cheers for the moratorium…

  • 65. karen  |  January 7, 2008 at 2:47 pm

    I can see being pro-choice and anti-death penalty as a tenable position, particularly when considering who is on death row and why (overwhelmingly poor and black).

    Let’s not forget the hundreds of people who are being freed today by DNA testing after being jailed unjustly for decades. There’s good evidence that the system is broken.

    But such people are still better off than apostates that leave the Christian profession all together — which is what this site represents.

    Y’know, your dire threats and warnings aren’t going to get you very far here. If we’re such dangerous people, why do you bother interacting with us? Aren’t you afraid of being tainted by association?

  • 66. undergroundexiles.com » this one intrigues me  |  January 7, 2008 at 10:01 pm

    [...] again. I stumbled across a blog called de-Conversion. While poking around the blog, I came across this post, which made me laugh, and made me want to strangle a few of my fellow Christian brothers and [...]

  • 67. LeoPardus  |  January 8, 2008 at 12:49 am

    Iris:

    I can see being pro-choice and anti-death penalty as a tenable position, particularly when considering who is on death row and why (overwhelmingly poor and black). I think it is far more tenable for those who struggle for societal progress to hold the above position, as opposed to

    Upon reading this I have the following thoughts/questions. It is notable that as a trend, poor and black neighborhoods do in fact have much higher crime rates that non-poor, non-black neighborhoods. Could it be that the reason there are a disproportionate number of poor and black in prison is because they actually commit a disproportionate amount of crime?

    So do we need to establish quotas for the death penalty? Why not just establish a standard of proof for it on the order of “beyond the shadow of a doubt” as opposed to “beyond a reasonable doubt”?

    Another question springs for this ”considering who is on death row and why”. Do you really know why? I proposed that maybe it’s because they commit a disproportionate amount of crime. Seems there’s some support for that too.

    being pro death penalty and “pro-life” (which nearly always includes being anti-contraceptive, education, etc).

    ???? Not in my reading, nor in my experience. Where did you get that from?

    I meant that you can’t separate support for capital punishment from who is on death row and how the ‘justice’ system works in the U.S.

    Who is on death row? Presumably murderers. Now I’m all for a high standard of proof for a death sentence. “Beyond the shadow of a doubt” would seem the only acceptable level. But then, given a fellow who gunned down 10 people in full view of witnesses and was caught on the scene, I’m all for removing him from the planet.

    having the death penalty in the U.S. is absurd, considering how our racist court system works.

    Sorry. Don’t buy it. I will readily acknowledge that money buys one off in the courts. So that would put the poor at a disadvantage. But I don’t buy the racism bit. (OK. In some towns I’ll buy it, but not countrywide.) When I see that minority neighborhoods have the highest crime rates, and see that more often than not they are committing crimes against others of their own race, I’m more inclined to conclude that a good chunk of “racism” is “homoracism” to coin a term.

    Karen:

    Let’s not forget the hundreds of people who are being freed today by DNA testing after being jailed unjustly for decades.

    Most of whom weren’t under the death penalty. But I know some were. I’m all for a standard of “beyond a shadow of a doubt” for a death penalty conviction.

    There’s good evidence that the system is broken.

    Pish-posh. Broken? Hardly. Try running the stats on ‘correct convictions’ vs ‘incorrect convictions’. Be stingy with the former and very generous with the latter. You’ll find that the rightful conviction percentage still heavily outweighs the wrongful ones.

    The system is not broken. It’s simply imperfect. Like everything we humans do.

  • 68. karen  |  January 8, 2008 at 3:00 pm

    The system is not broken. It’s simply imperfect. Like everything we humans do.

    Which is one reason why we maybe shouldn’t make irrevocable decisions, like killing people who may not have done the crime they were convicted of.

  • 69. Iris  |  January 8, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    Hear, hear, Karen. Leopardus, it is obvious that the justice system is extremely classist. If black and Latino youth are disproportionately impoverished, undereducated and abused by police, doesn’t it follow that the justice system is racist as well? And I can’t accept any Bill Cosby arguments here.

    Also, my experience as an intern for Planned Parenthood is that Christians who consider themselves ‘pro-life’ often have some problem with contraceptives or sex education–mind you, in varying degrees; arching from ‘umm…sex ed should be private and condoms are ok at this age’ to ‘no sex before marriage, EVER, virginity is holy, kill all abortionists, etc’. The scope of these degrees ignore the basic facts that free condoms, comprehensive science-based public sex ed, and safe abortions lower the infant mortality rate and are part of human life and responsible sexual conduct. Being anti-abortion *and * anti-sex ed etc, seem to be bundled up into one Dark Ages, misogynistic bundle much of the time.

    Of course not all anti-abortion people are anti-sex ed, etc; I think that part of the reason ‘pro-life’ is used instead of specifically ‘anti-abortion’ (besides the PR) is because it encompasses other things that pro-lifers considered protective of ‘life’–like denying the morning after pill, birth control pills, condoms, science-based sex ed which may lead us into temptation, or whatever.

  • 70. LeoPardus  |  January 9, 2008 at 11:37 am

    Which is one reason why we maybe shouldn’t make irrevocable decisions, like killing people who may not have done the crime they were convicted of.

    Which is why I am in favor of “beyond the shadow of a doubt” as a level of proof for death penalty convictions.

  • 71. LeoPardus  |  January 9, 2008 at 11:47 am

    Iris:

    If black and Latino youth are disproportionately impoverished, undereducated and abused by police, doesn’t it follow that the justice system is racist as well?

    Sorry, but I honestly don’t even see the connection between ‘impovrished… undereducated’ and ‘justice system is racist’. And ‘abused by the police’ is a claim, not a fact.

    the basic facts that free condoms, comprehensive science-based public sex ed, and safe abortions lower the infant mortality rate and are part of human life and responsible sexual conduct.

    “Basic facts” ? Sorry, but again I don’t see the connection.

    Lower infant mortality is a consequence of better pre- and post-natal care and improved medical technology.

    And how are ‘free condoms’, ‘science-based sex ed’, and ‘safe abortions’ a ‘part of human life’ or or ‘responsible sexual conduct’? I mean human life went on a long time without ‘free condoms’, ‘science-based sex ed’, and ‘safe abortions’. And abortions aren’t part of sexual conduct are they? Seems like responsible sexual conduct would eliminate the need for abortions.

  • [...] SuperChristians: More Pious than Jesus [...]

  • 73. Alban  |  June 12, 2013 at 4:41 am

    (From the original persecution complex then linked to this one) I may have a little bit of insight here. What separates er actually unites us with someone that has what Jesus did have in life is that, that person is truly free. Free period. What does that mean…is it free “from” something or like Jesus, immersed in, or “one with” the essence of Freedom Itself? Maybe that’s not far off in where we could be and where we actually are.

    Many times in history at parties that person did not want to be on display but realizes that is our nature…to gawk, to stand in amazement and when we do, we embarass ourselves (though we don’t see it at that point) and more embarassingly crowd around him or her (yes it can be and has been I’ve heard a female as well) so that its hard for that person to be physically able to move freely.

    The insight, the stories, the jokes and the humor reach a zenith that makes the warmth of that person sooo real that ‘surreal’ is left in the dust. So yes, If you ever have the chance to ‘party’ with that person even in a crowd, you want to savor every single second even though a part of you may not feel as though you are being directly addressed; you get the full enjoyment because you are being directly addressed. It is part of the magic of the ‘Show-er’ when and if he or she wants to place his or her self in that position.

    I couldn’t imagine a cooler, more down to earth, in tune, right there, fun person who is so naturally charismatic that time just disappears in those precious, precious moments. I have often thought to myself if I could choose an eternity to be in forever starting now, with absolutely full acceptance including no regrets, that opportunity is a glimpse of a no brainer.

    There is some preparation to enjoy a situation like that- to really enjoy it, if it ever comes your way. And that is pretty enjoyable too…takes a little more focus to acclimate to what is appreciating and what is able to be appreciated within… kind of like a retraining of what it means to be alive. No concept of God(s) necessary

    I always remember Vince Lombardi holding up a football at summer football training camp inspite of winning several championships: ‘Gentlemen we have to begin with the basics…this is a football.”

    One of his longtime players quipped late in his career “Hey Coach, slow down please” I don’t know-did he need more information?

    Suffice to say people that could enjoy a social celebration with Jesus probably had a really memorable outing and got a better appreciation for the basics of life at the same time.

    What happened that we now argue the rights and wrongs of ideals while forgetting where inside us the inspiration of what is, comes from?

  • 74. Alban  |  April 27, 2014 at 6:39 am

    #74. Curious. Are you referring to the initial post, or are you commenting on a subsequent post on this page?

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Attention Christian Readers

Just in case you were wondering who we are and why we de-converted.

de-conversion wager

Whether or not you believe in God, you should live your life with love, kindness, compassion, mercy and tolerance while trying to make the world a better place. If there is no God, you have lost nothing and will have made a positive impact on those around you. If there is a benevolent God reviewing your life, you will be judged on your actions and not just on your ability to blindly believe in creeds- when there is a significant lack of evidence on how to define God or if he/she even exists.

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