Inconvenient categories: The real reasons de-cons leave the faith
Recently, with help from several folks around here, I put together a list of the convenient categories that Christians like to come up with to explain why people leave the faith.
Now, with help from several folks around here, I put together a list of the inconvenient categories that amount to the real reasons why we left.
Here are the inconvenient, real reasons that a number of de-cons on this blog have given for their leaving the faith. I’ve edited them a bit for clarity, and I’ve removed some extra or explanatory text that some de-cons included. This was just to get them all down to as concise a set of statements as I could. If any of you feel I’ve overdone it, and messed up your meaning, my apologies. Please post a correction or fuller explanation.
And if you don’t see you’re reason in here, please add it in a response below.
1. God never shows up. Not in visions, miracles, visitations, angelic appearances, or challenge matches (think of Elijah vs. the Baal priests).
2. Prayers are NOT answered.
3. Christians are NOT different from non-Christians.
4. Church disunity.
5. The Bible is contradictory with itself, reality, and morality.
6. God is NOT loving, merciful, good, just, etc.
7. Everyone makes up their faith and their ideas of God as they go along.
8. The Universe is capable of functioning without divine influence
9. There is no proof of ANYTHING supernatural
10. Christians use dishonest tactics to support their beliefs.
11. Pascal’s Wager is a horrific false dichotomy.
12. The idea that God would hurt someone to test their faith is completely disgusting.
13. “God works in mysterious ways” or “We’ll get all the answers in heaven” are not satisfactory answers to important questions. They’re code for: “Shut up and stop asking.” –OR, as stated by another de-con¬– I took a Systematic Theology class and discovered all my deepest questions were answered with, “It’s a mystery.”
14. Christianity promised life fuller and more abundantly. Instead, it separated me from life. It made me miserable. –OR, as stated by another de-con– Having “Jesus in my heart” didn’t give me joy or peace.
15. If there is an infinite almighty all loving Creator who has one single, simple message to impart to us, why is he so spectacularly ineffective at doing so?
16. There are no outlying data about the Christian Bible not explained by the 5-word sentence: “It is a human text.”
18. I visited the Natural History Museum in NYC.
19. I analyzed my own religion in the same way I had others.
20. I realized Christianity’s stories are just as ridiculous and fantastical as every other religion’s.
21. Eternal punishment for wrongs committed in a mortal lifetime, or for failing to figure out which religion to follow, is in no way just or moral.
22. I stopped going to church and didn’t become a prostitute or drug addict as I was told I would if I “backslid”.
23. I read other things besides the Bible, including a lot of science books, and the other books made more sense.
24. No matter how much money I give to churches, preachers, or prosperity-gospel ministers, I’m never blessed with abundant health, wealth, or prosperity other than what I work my ass off for.
25. Original sin, The notion that God chose Adam to be the federal head of all humanity, knowing that he would fall, and that all of mankind would be born with a predisposition towards sin; that these creatures, would act in accordance with their fallen nature, and as a result would be tortured and tormented forever and ever, and that the church would call this just.
26. To be a good Christian you must continually defer your own judgment to that of a book as interpreted by your church.
27. I had sex for the first time and then I knew I’d been lied to.
28. I realized my parents lied to me about everything else too.
29. The core of Christianity is a rejection of the Jewish tradition, not the fulfillment that it declares to be, and the history of this Christian religion has only proved to be an overtly anti-semitic one.
Updated 4/8/08 to include the latest contributions.