Posts tagged ‘politics’

My 9/11 Prayer

It is the evening of September 11th, 2007 – the sixth anniversary of the terrorist attacks on American soil by Islamic Jihadists. I am driving home from work, listening to the ceremonies and tributes paid on NPR. I am nearly home. Just as I round the corner to an adjacent street, I see this new message on the church marquee:

Skyline Baptist Marquee

You are reading that marquee right. The good folks at Skyline Baptist Church have seen fit to place this threat of eternal fire to the heathen and the promise of eternal paradise to the saint to commemorate this anniversary…

Continue Reading September 11, 2007 at 11:59 pm 16 comments

New Age Christianity

Norway MapNorway is a constitutional monarchy without separation of Church and State. The constitution declares the “Evangelical-Lutheran religion” to be the State’s religion, and also requires the king to hold to and protect this religion. You can imagine, then, that when Princess Märtha Louise (who, had not law at the time of her birth favored males, would have been heir to the throne) decides to start up an independent school which will educate its students in such New Age concepts as healing, reading and contact with angels, by media dubbed “the angel school”, there’s gonna be some public discussion. When this occurs during summer—when there’s simply less news for the media to write about—it’s caused massive media coverage.

Reactions are varied, of course: a televangelist condemned her as being a demon from Hell; a range of people condemned her as a fraud and for immorally profitting from people’s spiritual needs (some of them hypocritically looking the other way when they, as employees of the State Church, do the same); a lot of people demanded that she withdraw her membership in Den Norske Kirke, the State Church; the Princess herself thinks that, had she lived some hundred years past, she would’ve been burned as a witch; and a lot of people, including Crown Princess Mette-Marit, spoke out in her defence.

As an atheist, this fight between religions is both amusing and depressing. In my eyes, Christianity and New Age-style healing, miracles, contact with angels and the like are all contestants on the same, irrational game field…

Continue Reading August 14, 2007 at 2:05 pm 35 comments

The Persecution Complex

immolation.jpgBlessed are they that have been persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when [men] shall reproach you, and persecute you, and say all kind of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven… You are the light of the world. (Matthew 5:10-14a)

It could be argued that this is the beginning of the Christian persecution complex – or at least the reason for it. Of course, the early church had plenty of “valid” reasons to be persecuted – their core beliefs were directly opposed to the established Jewish community from which they arose and, furthermore, the early Christians, especially of the Pauline variety, were downright treasonous in the eyes of the Caesar-worship of the time. These beliefs had little to do with morality, and everything to do with loyalty. Martyrdom – not the kamikaze murderous kind of present extremism – became an increasingly noble cause. In the time of Ignatius – writing in the late 1st century, possibly predating some canonical gospels and pseudo-Pauline epistles – martyrdom was perhaps the single greatest act of faith that a Christian could show (see Ignatius’ letter to the Romans). It was, after all, the ultimate act of following Christ…

Continue Reading July 29, 2007 at 6:00 am 34 comments

The book that made me doubt my Christian faith

Many doubting Christians and apostate former Christians seem to enjoy the recent publications of anti-Christian polemics. Most of us are by now aware of the storm of debate caused by books from the likes of Daniel Dennett, Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens. I have not read any of these books. My tastes tend toward older, academic, lesser known books that I can check out free from the library or find in dusty corners of a used book store. And most of my Christian doubt was fueled by some very unlikely sources.

Let The Trumpet Sound - A Life of Martin Luther KingMy slide away from Christianity began in large part to this seemingly innocent book, Let the Trumpet Sound – A Life of Martin Luther King, by Stephen Oates. I have always had questions and doubts about my faith, as most honest Christians do, but this book forced me to confront those doubts head-on, to take them from under the rug, and to seriously re-evaluate my beliefs in Christianity.

Early last year, I was convicted by my ignorance of some practical aspects of the world around me. I am educated, yet I knew next to nothing about the civil rights movement of the 50s and 60s. So I picked up this 500 page biography of Martin Luther King…

Continue Reading June 23, 2007 at 5:41 pm 30 comments

Bible Literalism ala The West Wing

I remember watching this scene from West Wing when I still considered myself a Christian. At that time, it made an impact on me. I’ve been trying to find it after my de-conversion and recently discovered it on Null’s Tumblelog.

- The de-Convert

June 8, 2007 at 12:27 am 23 comments

Jeezus – The American Jesus!

Click on the comic and maximize for a nice big view: …

Continue Reading May 31, 2007 at 11:50 pm 13 comments

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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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