What Happened To Thou Shalt Not Kill?

 “If thy brother … or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying Let us go and serve other gods … Thou shalt surely kill him … and thou shalt stone him with stones that he die.” Deut 13:6, 9, 10. So if someone you love wants to be another religion and asks you to consider joining their religion, you should disobey the Ten Commandments, and righteously kill him, condemning their soul to eternal torment in hell? This is the command of a god you want me to worship and love and dedicate my life to? Really? I think I’ll pass.

Please visit my main page (https://doubtingthomas426.wordpress.com/) to gain a better understanding of where I am coming from. There you will find all my observations regarding religion and the bible categorized on the right hand side of the page. Please feel free to read through them and leave a comment or two if you like.

DoubtingThomas

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32 Responses to “What Happened To Thou Shalt Not Kill?”

  1. DT . . . I visited your blogs a few times. You are really adept at finding the dissonance in the Bible. You might spend some time looking for the continuities. There are some.

    The Bible is a living, breathing piece of literature and you can’t read it as if it espouses only one way of thinking. I’m going to argue again that many atheists, skeptics, and agnostics and many conservative evangelical and fundamentlist Christians read the Bible the same way, but arrive at different results. Let it be literature rather than a history book or an ethical guide or a science book.

  2. Lone Wolf Says:

    Some translations of the bible say “Thous shalt not kill” while others say “Thou shalt not murder”

    Jason what does “living breathing” mean? Do you mean the bible is subject to change? If so, Thant far from inerrant.

  3. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Jason, thanks for visiting my site again. You state that you wish I would view the bible as a piece of literature rather than a history book, ethical guide or science book. I guess you haven’t viewed much of my site as that is EXACTLY how I view the bible. As a piece of imaginative or creative FICTIONAL writing. And you religionists really must stop insisting that when I quote the bible that it isn’t fair because YOUR particular branch of Christianity chooses to only see the flowery parts the ‘good’ book. Either this is the word of God or it isn’t. Yes, many different people read the bible and come to different conclusions. Guess what, Jason, YOUR one of them. YOUR conclusion is that God doesn’t mean what he says. Other people take Him at his word. Exactly whose interpretation should I dedicate my life too? Yours? Theirs? One of the other 80+ sects of Christianity? And the idea that the bible is a ‘living, breathing piece of literature’ is just ridiculous. The only thing that is ‘living and breathing’ is the people who interpret its pages to suit their purposes. I choose to show the bible in its LITERAL form because the idea of manipulating God’s word, any god’s words, seems to go against the ENTIRE concept of what a god is.

  4. Mary from Meander With Me.
    I’d like to respond to what Jason wrote regarding people reading the same Bible but coming to different conclusions. Would not that be considered “confusion”? I do not have the scripture at my fingertips at the moment, but God states that he is not the author of confusion. If God personally directed the words contained in the Bible, then, indeed, just as the Apostle Paul admonished the churches to be of one and the same mind, so should all readers of the Bible be able to come to the same conclusion after reading it .

  5. Welcome agnostics, Welcome Atheists, Welcome Skeptics. Why do you not welcome Christians?

    “the idea of manipulating God’s word, any god’s words, seems to go against the ENTIRE concept of what a god is.” Here, you are absolutely right.

    “Either this is the word of God or it isn’t.” Again, flawless. Have you ever thought about becoming a preacher?

    Im sorry i cant help myself, i really shouldve never joined this blog!

    1ben

  6. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    1ben, of course Christians are welcome on my site. Have you read my main page? You are referring to a few of the tag phrases I use. These are used to direct search engines such as google to this site when people type in common phrases (such as Welcome Agnostics, Welcome Atheists, Welcome Skeptics).

    Regarding the rest of your comment, I’m not sure what you’re getting at. When I said “the idea of manipulating God’s word, any god’s words, seems to go against the ENTIRE concept of what a god is” I was addressing the common complaint that so many of the Christians who visit this site have: That I am unfairly taking the passages of the bible ‘out of context’. I take the bible literally. I believe it must be either accepted as the genuine word of God or dismissed as a fairy tale. This means that one can not ignore all the passages that reveal the Christian god to be a bigoted, petty, vile, cruel, merciless, brutal, bloodthirsty, depraved, petulant, monster. You state that I am ‘absolutely right’ and what I say is ‘flawless’ so I take it you agree with my conclusion.

    Thank you for your comment and please keep checking out the site.

    DoubtingThomas

  7. yeah, well i dont agree with you about god being a monster, but i agree with your stance on absolutes ie. you either beleive or you dont., genuine word of god or not. there is a scripture that says something about those that are neither hot nor cold, but lukewarm. that they say neither yes or no. its cool that i say yes, and you say no (to god) but we can talk in peace right?

    ben

    p.s. i would value your feedback on my couple of blogs if you have the time.

  8. God has degreed that the punishment for sin is death. God is the giver of life and He has every right to take it at His pleasure. However, you pointed out the injustice of sending sinners to spend an eternity of torment in hell. I would agree with you that that is ridiculous. The Bible does not teach that God sends people to hell to be tormented forever; that is just another distortion of the word of God. Nowhere in the Bible does it say man will be tortured forever. There is a judgment, and there is a hell, but the punishment for sin has been the same since the first pages of Genesis, and that is death.

  9. Space: The bible disagrees with you on the subject of Hell. It describes hell as a place of torment, sometimes fiery torment.

  10. Torment forever? The Bible never says so. There is a eternal punishment (death) and there is suffering on the day of judgment, but the day of judgment is temporary not eternal, only the consequence is eternal, which is to be dead forever.

    God is a God a love, goodness, holiness, righteousness, justice and mercy. Tormenting people for an eternity does not fit the characteristic of God and is an insult to His holy name.

  11. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Space, thanks for visiting my site and taking the time to leave a comment. You are, however, incorrect in your assertion.

    [[Space said the following – “The Bible does not teach that God sends people to hell to be tormented forever; that is just another distortion of the word of God. There is a judgment, and there is a hell, but the punishment for sin has been the same since the first pages of Genesis, and that is death … Torment forever? The Bible never says so.”]]

    I submit the following:

    Mark 3:29 – “But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of ETERNAL damnation.”

    Jude 1: 7 – “Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of ETERNAL fire.”

    Revelations 14: 10-11 — “The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for EVER and EVER.”

    Revelations 20: 10 – “And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for EVER and EVER.”

    Matthew 23: 33 – “Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?”

    Mark 9: 43-48 – “And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that NEVER shall be quenched: Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. And if thy foot offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that NEVER shall be quenched: Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire: Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.”

    2 Peter 2: 17 – (referring to hell) “These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved FOR EVER.”

    Space, certainly I am not the first to mention the Christian concept of burning in eternal hellfire for ones sins am I? This is hardly new. You seem to belong to one of those sweet and tender sects of Christianity that ‘pick and choose’ which parts of the bible they want to embrace. For an Atheist like myself, all these countless versions of Christianity and their constantly changing interpretations of this supposed holy text, always leaves me baffled. A hundred different Christians will address one of my questions by supplying a hundred different explanations. I never am able to understand which one I should take to heart as they are all certain THEIR interpretation is the true one. Understanding the Christian mindset is an endless exercise in frustration.

    [[Space also stated the following – “God is a God a love, goodness, holiness, righteousness, justice and mercy. Tormenting people for an eternity does not fit the characteristic of God and is an insult to His holy name.”]]

    Space, your perception of the god depicted in the pages of the bible is certainly a willful one. I can find very little to support it. Perhaps you could take a minute to review my THE CRUELTY OF THE CREATOR category (see link below) to gain a fuller understanding of the god you have chosen to dedicate your life to.

    https://doubtingthomas426.wordpress.com/category/religion/the-cruelty-of-the-creator/

    DoubtingThomas

  12. Lone Wolf Says:

    Space

    God is a God a love, goodness, holiness, righteousness, justice and mercy. Tormenting people for an eternity does not fit the characteristic of God and is an insult to His holy name.

    Firstly Exodus 15:3 (KJV) “The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.”
    Second: Is God a god or mercy or Justice? It can’t be both. A god of Justice would punish people in a way that exactly fit there crime but god of mercy would be merciful which means that it would not punish people in a way that fits the crime, there punishment would be less than what fits the crime.

  13. Lone Wolf Says:

    Forgot 1.
    You want to see what God considers righteous? Read up on Noah, Lot and Abraham.
    Noah: Gets drunk, necked and when his son did not want to deal with his necked body, he enslaved his (Noah’s son) grandson.
    Lot: Would rather give his daughters to a crowd of rapists than his house guests then had sex with his daughters.
    Abraham: Willing to murder hi son cause God told him too.

  14. Hey DoubtingThomas,

    You have a great website and I appreciate your openness to investigate these important issues. If most Christians approached the scripture as diligently as you, I tend to think that this world would be better off. I usually avoid online forums and posts because I frankly prefer face-to-face conversation. But I suppose I’ll give it a whack this time!

    Rather than paraphrase extensively, I simply refer you to the website:
    http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/notkill.html

    In my spare time, I like to investigate many of the questions you have raised on this website. If you prefer, I could send you a list of websites (usually Christian apologetics, but not always) that have helped me learn to defend the faith I base my life upon. You may enjoy browsing the following website. It attempts to answer many of the popular “contradictions” in the Bible:
    http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/contra/answer.html

    A quick note: The Hebrew word ratsach is used in Exodus 20:13 (I doubled-checked it in my Strong’s Concordance). Although earlier translations of the Bible record “Thou shalt not kill,” (KJV in 1611) newer translations record “You shall not murder.” The word typically translated as the Hebrew word for killing for slaughter is hereg. The first website I listed comprehensively lists the definition of the word ratsach.

    It seems to me that the English word “murder” is a much better translation of the word ratsach than the English word “kill.” The Wikipedia article on the Ten Commandments has a brief explanation in its “Killing or murder” section that may be of some use: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ten_Commandments#Significance_of_the_decalogue

    Additionally, the Wikipedia article on “Fremantle Prison” references the following:
    • ^ The Hebrew word ratsach, used in this commandment, is close to the word murder; kill is a mistranslation, but it does not translate directly to the word murder. While most uses of the word ratsach are in passages describing murder, in Proverbs 22:13 a lion ratsach a man to death, causing many to believe that since a lion cannot murder anyone, murder is a flawed translation as well. In Joshua 20:3, ratsach is used to describe death by negligence. A closer translation would be to “kill in the manner of a predatory animal.” Some Jews take offense at translations which state “thou shall not kill,” which they hold to be a flawed interpretation, for there are circumstances in which one is required to kill, such as if killing is the only way to prevent one person from murdering another, or killing in self-defense. See Ten Commandments#Significance of the decalogue
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fremantle_Prison

    I hope I haven’t overwhelmed you with information and sources. I have looked over these sources, and even the Wikipedia articles seem to be well-referenced! I pray that I have helped in some way. My sole desire is to love God with all my heart, mind, soul, and strength. His son Jesus Christ came as God in the flesh (Immanuel), and lived a life that no mere man could have lived. All the prophecies Jesus of Nazareth fulfilled are one of the most convincing proofs (to me) that he was indeed the promised Messiah. My sin condemns me, but his life saved me. Hell does not contradict God’s love- it affirms His justice. God does not want us to go to hell (2 Peter 3:9), but I sadly profess hell is the punishment for those who choose not to believe (Matthew 25:41). I have chosen to believe and follow Jesus, a decision that I humbly declare to anyone who will listen.

    Many people, however, have their own criticisms of Jesus and Christians. Have Christians messed up? Indeed, a thousand times yes! Has Jesus messed up? No, according to scripture. However defending the validity/reliability of scripture is not the focus of this post—perhaps next time!

    Thanks, DoubtingThomas. I hope you find the answers you are searching for. I didn’t find “all” the answers before I believed in Jesus (which you have probably found is true of most Christians). For me, the answer IS Jesus and everything else in science, philosophy, history, etc. are “answers” that point to him being the truth. Do you need all the answers before you believe? Or has someone in your life driven you away from ever wanting to believe? I’m sorry for those who have done you wrong in the church. If you ever have any questions about anything or want to talk more about what it means to believe in Jesus, please contact me. Matthew 16:26, Luke 19:10, John 10:9, John 11:25, Romans 10:9 are good verses if you are interested.

    God bless you,
    Toby

  15. DoubtingThomas, I am certainly not a pick and choose Christian, and I know those verses well. I believe that the Bible is the literal word of God, and our only sources of truth. However, I disagree with how a majority of those who call themselves Christians interpret those passages of Scriptures. Now there are many real Christians who believe in eternal torment, but still that doesn’t make it true. Let me go over some of those verses you mentioned.

    Mark 3:29 – I’m not sure what translation you used, but a better translation would be eternal sin or eternal condemnation. It any case, why do you think it means eternal torment? That is a leap of logic. IF the punishment for sin is death, it will be eternal because death is eternal.

    Jude 1:7 – Now here is a verse that makes my case perfectly. Here it says that Sodom and Gomorrah are examples of those suffering the vengence of eternal fire. So what happened to them? They were destroyed by fire and are dead. Do you see them alive and in torment? Of course not. They are dead and gone, vanished from the face of the earth. That is our example of being burned by the eternal fire; it means you will be completely destroyed.

    Revelatin 14:10 – This is a judgment to those who will get the mark of the beast during the tribulation. They are warned of their fate, which is similar to Sodom and Gomorrah, which is to be burned with fire and brimstone. It does not say they will be tormented forever. It does say the “smoke” of their torment will rise forever. That means the remembrence of what happend will be forever, not their torment. That they have no rest day or night is not their condition in hell, but on earth after they recieve the mark.

    Revelation 20:10 – Here we see an example of eternal torment, but it is not man but the devil and his angels. After all hell was made for the angels, as Christ said in Matthew, right?

    Matthew 23 – Here we see Jesus ask how the Pharisees can escape the condemnation or damnation of hell. But what is the condemnation of hell? It is death, not eternal torment. There is a punishment, but the punishment is death.

    Mark 9:43 – Here we see Jesus describe hell as a place where the fire in not quench and the worm does not die. Does this really mean eternal torment. I don’t think so. Jesus is quoting a prophecy in Isaiah 66, where he says:“ And they shall go forth and look upon the corpses of the men who have transgressed against Me. For their worm does not die, and their fire is not quenched. They shall be an abhorrence to all flesh.” Notice one important thing, it say they will look upon the corpses of the men. They are dead. They are not alive and suffering torment, they are dead. So what is the meaning of fire that is not quenched, and the worm does not die? It means that their destruction and shame are complete and eternal, not their suffering.

    2 Peter 2 – “for whom is reserved blackest darkness forever”. Now it seems to me that that is a perfect description of the punishment of sin, death. They will have nothing, absolutey nothing, because that is what death is, a complete cut-off of life itself.

    I hope I have at least shown you that they way most people interpret those passages is not necessarily the way they should be.

  16. Lone Wolf Says:

    I agree Doubting Tomis should site the tranlation but that does not mean the bible agrees with you.

    Mark 3:29
    King Jame Version:”But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation.”
    Young’s Literal Translation: “but whoever may speak evil in regard to the Holy Spirit hath not forgiveness — to the age, but is in danger of age-during judgment;”
    Darby Translation: “but whosoever shall speak injuriously against the Holy Spirit, to eternity has no forgiveness; but lies under the guilt of an everlasting sin;”

    Jude 1:7
    KJV: “Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.”
    YLV: “as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them, in like manner to these, having given themselves to whoredom, and gone after other flesh, have been set before — an example, of fire age-during, justice suffering.”
    DT: “as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities around them, committing greedily fornication, in like manner with them, and going after other flesh, lie there as an example, undergoing the judgment of eternal fire.”

    Revelatin 14:10
    KJV: “The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:”
    YLT: “he also shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, that hath been mingled unmixed in the cup of His anger, and he shall be tormented in fire and brimstone before the holy messengers, and before the Lamb,”
    DT: “he also shall drink of the wine of the fury of God prepared unmixed in the cup of his wrath, and he shall be tormented in fire and brimstone before the holy angels and before the Lamb.”

    Revelation 20:10
    KJV: “And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.”
    YLT: “and the Devil, who is leading them astray, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where [are] the beast and the false prophet, and they shall be tormented day and night — to the ages of the ages.”
    DT: “And the devil who deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where [are] both the beast and the false prophet; and they shall be tormented day and night for the ages of ages.”

    Matthew 23
    Darby Translation
    Young’s Literal Translation
    King James Version

    Mark 9:43
    KJV: “And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched:”
    YLT: “And if thy hand may cause thee to stumble, cut it off; it is better for thee maimed to enter into the life, than having the two hands, to go away to the gehenna, to the fire — the unquenchable –”
    DT: “And if thy hand serve as a snare to thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having thy two hands to go away into hell, into the fire unquenchable;”

    2 Peter 2
    King James Version
    Young’s Literal Translation
    Darby Translation

    The bible diagrees with you.

  17. – Lone Wolf, you asked “Is God a god or mercy or Justice? It can’t be both. A god of Justice would punish people in a way that exactly fit there crime but god of mercy would be merciful which means that it would not punish people in a way that fits the crime, there punishment would be less than what fits the crime.”

    God’s mercy does not negate his justice. If He wants to give us more than what we deserve, that is His right. Consider the parable of the workers in the vineyard. Some worked all day, others only briefly. Yet they all recieved the same wage, a denarius. Was this fair? Yes, because the workers who worked all day agreed to the wage, and therefore were not cheated. But by his grace the landowner gave those who worked only an hour the same wage. It was his right to give more if he wants to, and his justice is still upheld.

  18. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Space, the workers in your analogy WERE cheated. They didn’t ask for more or protest out of fear. The landowner was anything but graceful. He was a slave owning tyrant. This was not justice it was slavery – with a pittance.

    And God isn’t justified in his unfair brutality just because he is God.

    DoubtingThomas

  19. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Space,

    I apologize for not making it clear I was using the KJV of the bible. I find the revisionist bibles that followed pathetic attempts at sanitizing the true ugliness of the Christian religion. They weren’t attempts at correcting inaccurate translations but blatant attempts to make certain passages more acceptable to those who found them offensive.

    And, Space,how is it you can willfully ignore the fact that in Revelations 20:10 (KJV) false prophets are also being sent “into the lake of fire and brimstone” to be “be tormented day and night for EVER and EVER.” These were human beings, Space. They were being punished for their sins with eternal torment. Period.

    [[Space, you say you “…disagree with how a majority of those who call themselves Christians interpret those passages of Scriptures. Now there are many real Christians who believe in eternal torment, but still that doesn’t make it true…” AND “I hope I have at least shown you that they way most people interpret those passages is not necessarily the way they should be.”]]

    But, Space, YOUR opinion/concept of Christianity is no more legitimate than those other Christians you disapprove of. Your TRUTH is an opinion just like theirs is. You belong to a sect of Christianity that believes when someone dies that’s it, lights off. Fine. But the vast majority of Christianity disagrees with you. You can call them wrong all you want (and I agree with you) but that doesn’t make you right.

    And in your response to my Mark 9:43 quote you mention how they were looking down on corpses and that proves that there is not torment in hell? Huh? I don’t think I’ve ever met a Christian that would suggest viewing the corporeal shell we leave behind proves anything about the afterlife. You have heard of the soul, right?

    Your interpretation of the bible is as willful as everyone else’s and no more authoritative.

    Thank you for your comments.

    DoubtingThomas

  20. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Toby Tatum,

    Thank you for visiting my site and taking the time to comment.

    The sites you provided regarding the Thou Shalt Not Kill vs Thou Shalt Not Murder issue is an example of revisionist Christianity. It is not about correcting an inaccuracy it is about making the ugly parts of the bible more acceptable to those who find/found it offensive. And even if I were to concede that the command is Thou Shalt Not Murder, what does that change? All it does is change the fact that God didn’t kill all the people he is shown killing in the bible, he MURDERED them. Ok. And?

    Toby, you said – “All the prophecies Jesus of Nazareth fulfilled are one of the most convincing proofs (to me) that he was indeed the promised Messiah.”

    I believe what you meant to say was that all the prophecies CONTAINED IN THE BIBLE that SOMEONE THE BIBLE SAYS was named Jesus fulfilled ACCORDING TO THE BIBLE are proof to you that he was indeed the Messiah (although the Jews, God’s chosen people, disagree). You choose to accept the bible as truth. Fine. I’ve seen no evidence to support your belief. Until I do I can’t believe as you do.

    You say hell is a place for those who CHOOSE not to believe. Toby, what about those who were never given a choice or were incapable of making such a choice? I’m referring to babies, children, the mentally retarded, the mentally ill, the brain damaged, those that have never even heard of Christ, all those who died long before Christianity was created, those ancient people who naively invented and worshiped other gods, etc. Do you worship a god who would condemn such people to hell? If you believe these people get a free pass, what are the qualifications for the free pass?

    Toby, you said – “For me, the answer IS Jesus and everything else in science, philosophy, history, etc. are “answers” that point to him being the truth.”

    I’m sorry, but everything in science and history DO NOT point to Jesus being the truth. In fact it is quite the opposite.

    And, no, I don’t require all the answers to believe but I do require evidence. I refuse to dedicate my entire life to the hope that a thing is true. No, no one ‘drove me away from wanting to believe’. Have you read my main page? You might want to check it out (I highly recommend reading the comments that follow as well) to get an idea of how I went from die hard believer to DoubtingThomas.

    https://doubtingthomas426.wordpress.com/

    We may not agree on this religion thing, Toby, but I do appreciate you taking the time to state your position.

    Take Care,

    DoubtingThomas

  21. – Space, the workers in your analogy WERE cheated. They didn’t ask for more or protest out of fear. The landowner was anything but graceful. He was a slave owning tyrant. This was not justice it was slavery – with a pittance.

    DoubtingThomas, the workers did ask for more, but the landowner showed them that what they were paid was fair and just, because that is what they agree to. They were not slaves but free men, who agreed to the wages the landowner said he would pay.

  22. – “And, Space,how is it you can willfully ignore the fact that in Revelations 20:10 (KJV) false prophets are also being sent “into the lake of fire and brimstone” to be “be tormented day and night for EVER and EVER.” These were human beings, Space. They were being punished for their sins with eternal torment. Period.”

    The beast and false prophet were men, but empowered by fallen angels. The Bible says the beast came out of the abyss. Is this talking about a man? No, it’s talking about the spirit that empowered the antichrist. Later it says that three spirits came out of the dragon, beast and false prophet. These are fallen angels and these are the ones who suffer eternal torment.

    – “And in your response to my Mark 9:43 quote you mention how they were looking down on corpses and that proves that there is not torment in hell? Huh? I don’t think I’ve ever met a Christian that would suggest viewing the corporeal shell we leave behind proves anything about the afterlife. You have heard of the soul, right?”

    Why look at a bunch of corpses to understand what it means to be eternally tormented? It doesn’t fit.

  23. “For an Atheist like myself, all these countless versions of Christianity and their constantly changing interpretations of this supposed holy text, always leaves me baffled. A hundred different Christians will address one of my questions by supplying a hundred different explanations. I never am able to understand which one I should take to heart as they are all certain THEIR interpretation is the true one. Understanding the Christian mindset is an endless exercise in frustration.”

    well observed Doubting Thomas. The only way to find God is to transcend my opinion, my ‘version,’ your ‘version’ our interpretations, mindsets and frustrations… then and only then may we get somewhere. Frustrating, isn’t it!

    ben

  24. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Space,

    I still don’t get why you think your parable is an inspiring one. No matter how you read it, the story depicts a typical land barren treating his lowly workers in an unfair and despicable fashion. It was his RIGHT to give the workers a fair wage if he wanted to?! Sure, and it was the slave owner’s right to beat, rape and kill the slaves he was unhappy with. This does not equate justice. To paraphrase your parable; Two workers agree to do the exact same construction job for the same pay. At the end of the day the foreman discovers that one man did his job for his full shift while the other did absolutely nothing but chat on his cell phone all day. It is the foreman’s right to still pay both men the same but it is the OPPOSITE of justice.

    A god that punishes his people “more than they deserve” is not a god that deserves to be worshiped.

    And you still haven’t explained why looking at the body someone leaves behind after they die reveals what happens to their soul in the afterlife.

    DoubtingThomas

  25. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    1ben,

    Sorry, but you are not asking me to transcend my opinion, or your opinion or their opinion of god in order to find him. You are asking me to transcend my, your and their opinion of god to find YOUR opinion of god. That is where the frustration comes from. You can’t escape the fact that you believe that your concept of a god is truth while the others are fiction. I guarantee you did not transcend your own opinion to come to this conclusion. Most religionists don’t consider ANY other god than the one those who raised them told them was the real god. The frustration comes from religionists unwillingness to confront themselves with the simple truth that to believe that ONE particular god out of the thousands mankind has invented is real is utterly willful and is arguably a little bit cowardly as well.

    DoubtingThomas

  26. DoubtingThomas, it’s funny that your hatred of God and His word leads you to such illogical and unfounded arguments. It reveal how far from God you really are. Of course, the Bible expains why you cannot understand the truth of scripture: 1 Corinthians 2:14 sats: “But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.”

    Your interpretation of the parable of worker’s in the field and the landowner is absurd. The worker’s WORKED for one hour, not talk on their cellphone. They did what was asked of them. The landowner gave them more than what was due them, as a free and generous gift, and you accuse him of being evil? If you were to recieve money from a wealthy person just because he wanted to give you a free gift, would you then accuse him of being evil? You hatred of God is leading you to irrational agruments.

    God does not punish people more than they deserve, which is why I fight against the popular idea of hell. It is not justice and does not fit the charachter of God. The Bible does not teach eternal torment, no matter how much you wish it does. You close your eyes to the truth just so you have some basis for hating God. Eternal torment is not in the Bible, not anywhere, only judgment and death. But I know you will not admit it for anything, because it is your greatest weapon for slandering God.

    – “And you still haven’t explained why looking at the body someone leaves behind after they die reveals what happens to their soul in the afterlife.”

    This should not be hard to understand. The soul is dead just like to body is dead; otherwise there would be no purpose at all in looking at a dead body.

    Doubting Thomas, just because there is not eternal torment does not let you off the hook, and free to do whatever you want. For one, you have life on this earth, and if you do not repent the quality of your life will continue to deteriorate until it ends in ruin. Your sins will come back to haunt you, and destroy the quality of your life. Then you will die and face judgement of God. You will stand before a holy and righteous God and give an account of your life. All the evil and all the sins of your life will be revealed before God and all creation to your everlasting shame. Then you will be cast into hell and suffer your eternal punishment, which is death. This is the truth that the word of God reveals.

    Do you have love, peace, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness or self-control? Those are good things that we can have only by the Spirit of God. But you are faithless and godless, and dead in your sins. You falsely accuse God of being evil but it is you who are evil.

    Galations 5:19-23 “Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”

    Believe, repent and be saved, and enjoy the goodness of God.

  27. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Space,

    Thank you for your comment. It helped cement my theory that most Christians suffer from multiple personality disorder. They can speak to you of love and faith and heaven and an ever loving merciful god, and their tone is always pleasant and calm … until they realize that you aren’t being swayed and that you continue to believe that their god and religion are bunk. And then, watch out! Out comes the fire and brimstone and the fury and the hatred and the wide-eyed fanatical accusations and the condemnation and the judgment and the regurgitated scripture and the comforting dogma, oh so much dogma. So, first let’s address the issue I have mentioned many times on this site, please refrain from quoting scripture or repeating comforting but empty religious dogma in your attempts to explain your position. The bible no longer holds any authority for me so repeating a passage from it has no impact whatsoever. Anytime I see or hear someone quote scripture all I see/hear is “Because the Bible Tells Me So.” Remember, I use passages from the bible to confront the believer with what they supposedly believe not as proof of a thing.

    Space, you said – “your hatred of God and His word leads you to such illogical and unfounded arguments. It reveal how far from God you really are.”

    I don’t hate god, Space. I also don’t hate Zeus. Nor do I hate Ra. Nor do I hate Baal. Nor do I hate Allah. Nor do I hate Buddha. Nor do I hate Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy or the Easter Bunny. And I am just as far away from these fictional beings as from your god.

    And when exactly did I state that the landowner was evil? My point was that a land barren treating his workers so unfairly is not a good example of justice. And I never suggested that a wealthy person giving away their money should be defined as evil (I’M the one making illogical, irrational and unfounded arguments?). If any person employs two people to do a job for a certain amount of pay and when they come back they find that one of the workers didn’t do half as much work as the other, it is a really shitty employer who still pays them both the same amount. I would certainly never want to work for such a boss again. You’re saying you would?

    Space, you said – “God does not punish people more than they deserve, which is why I fight against the popular idea of hell. It is not justice and does not fit the charachter of God.”

    The bible is filled with people being punished more than they deserve (did you forget all the innocent babies and children floating on the waters surrounding the Ark?). Again I refer you to my THE CRUELTY OF THE CREATOR category found here:

    https://doubtingthomas426.wordpress.com/category/religion/the-cruelty-of-the-creator/

    And don’t get me wrong, Space, I ADMIRE your fight against the popular idea of hell. The concept of worshiping a god who would send all those who have died and will die (without accepting Christ as their personal savior) to burn in eternal hellfire is revolting. You say it very well when you stated – “It is not justice and does not fit the charachter of God.” My issue is that this is YOUR opinion. You choose to believe in a particular concept of what the Christian God is. You choose to interpret the bible as not supporting the concept of a sinner’s soul being sent to be tormented in hell but instead simply dying along with their body. And, Space, I LIKE YOUR INTERPRETATION! I much prefer it to most of the other sects of Christianity I’m constantly bumping up against. (Is it just me or is there a new one every day?) I just don’t believe your interpretation has any actual biblical support. That’s all. That doesn’t mean it isn’t appealing.

    And my argument that the bible DOES support the concept of a sinner’s soul being sent to be tormented in hell IS NOT my greatest weapon for slandering god. So we are clear, I am VERY careful not to slander god. All my opinions on the Christian god are based on the bible (the holy word of God). I also judge him based on how those who claim to follow him represent him. And remember, YOU YOURSELF agreed that this is the “popular idea of hell”.

    Regarding my confusion as to how someone staring at a corpse will understand what happens to their soul upon death, you said – “This should not be hard to understand. The soul is dead just like to body is dead; otherwise there would be no purpose at all in looking at a dead body.”

    Space, according to EVERY other Christian I have spoken to your position IS hard to understand as NONE of them understand how you came to your conclusion. The soul is DEAD? There is no purpose AT ALL in looking at a dead body but to contemplate how the soul is dead as well? A person can stare at a dead body as long as they want and will not be any closer to understanding what happens to a person in the afterlife (if you believe in such a thing).

    Space, you said – “Then you will die and face judgement of God. All the evil and all the sins of your life will be revealed before God and all creation to your everlasting shame. Then you will be CAST INTO HELL and suffer your ETERNAL punishment, which is death. This is the truth that the word of God reveals.”

    First, if when I die my body AND soul dies, what exactly will be standing before God awaiting judgment? What will God cast into hell to be punished ETERNALLY? If my body and soul are already dead, how can my eternal punishment be death? And what kind of punishment is death? Most Christians would find the idea of a serial child rapist and murderer being punished by God with death and nothing more to be unsatisfying and against everything their religion stands for. Where are the consequences for ones sins? Death? That’s all? Really?

    Space, you said – “you have life on this earth, and if you do not repent the quality of your life will continue to deteriorate until it ends in ruin. Do you have love, peace, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness or self-control? Those are good things that we can have only by the Spirit of God. But you are faithless and godless, and dead in your sins. You falsely accuse God of being evil but it is you who are evil.”

    The quality of my life will CONTINUE to deteriorate? When did it start to deteriorate? Love, peace, joy, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control? An interesting list of qualities, each of which I possess in spades. Do you? If I had to judge you based on your last comment I would have to question most of them. You say I am evil so I must ask you to define what makes a person evil? Is everyone who doesn’t agree with your interpretation of the bible and the Christian God evil? Are only the people who belong to the same sect of Christianity as you good? Are those who belong to the same sect of Christianity as you capable of being judged as evil? Ever? Is a Mormon or a Scientologist or a Muslim capable of possessing the qualities of love, peace, joy, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control?

    And, Space, please remember you chose to visit MY site. I appreciate that, I really do as I am truly curious to understand how people continue to believe when confronted with the same issues that caused this lifelong Christian to abandon his faith. But please refrain from name calling and proselytizing.

    Take Care,

    DoubtingThomas

  28. Doubting Thomas, you are a mighty wordsmith with a mighty passion. You are an atheist seeking answers and i don’t know that i can give you any. I absolutely understand your problem with absolutes. All i can say with full conviction and faith, is that there are 2 paths in this life, and 2 paths only,

    take care,

    1ben

  29. Lone Wolf Says:

    Spice

    God’s mercy does not negate his justice. If He wants to give us more than what we deserve, that is His right. Consider the parable of the workers in the vineyard. Some worked all day, others only briefly. Yet they all recieved the same wage, a denarius. Was this fair? Yes, because the workers who worked all day agreed to the wage, and therefore were not cheated. But by his grace the landowner gave those who worked only an hour the same wage. It was his right to give more if he wants to, and his justice is still upheld.

    No it was not fare and they were cheated. The action in the story is nether just nor merciful. And it ignores the problem that you can not always be both merciful and just at the same time. Some times you can be just, others you can be merciful and very rarely you can be both.
    And (hypothetically) even if God exists, he does not have any special rights or authority and he would have to fallow the rules too.

    You still ignore the fact that the bible says hell is a firy place of tormint not none existence. You have not realy delt with any of those verses.

    Mark 3:29
    King Jame Version:”But he that shall blaspheme against the Holy Ghost hath never forgiveness, but is in danger of eternal damnation.
    Young’s Literal Translation: “but whoever may speak evil in regard to the Holy Spirit hath not forgiveness — to the age, but is in danger of age-during judgment;”
    Darby Translation: “but whosoever shall speak injuriously against the Holy Spirit, to eternity has no forgiveness; but lies under the guilt of an everlasting sin;”

    Jude 1:7
    KJV: “Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
    YLV: “as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them, in like manner to these, having given themselves to whoredom, and gone after other flesh, have been set before — an example, of fire age-during, justice suffering.”
    DT: “as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities around them, committing greedily fornication, in like manner with them, and going after other flesh, lie there as an example, undergoing the judgment of eternal fire.

    Revelatin 14:10
    KJV: “The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb:”
    YLT: “he also shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, that hath been mingled unmixed in the cup of His anger, and he shall be tormented in fire and brimstone before the holy messengers, and before the Lamb,”
    DT: “he also shall drink of the wine of the fury of God prepared unmixed in the cup of his wrath, and he shall be tormented in fire and brimstone before the holy angels and before the Lamb.”

    Mark 9:43
    KJV: “And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched:
    YLT: “And if thy hand may cause thee to stumble, cut it off; it is better for thee maimed to enter into the life, than having the two hands, to go away to the gehenna, to the fire — the unquenchable –
    DT: “And if thy hand serve as a snare to thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having thy two hands to go away into hell, into the fire unquenchable;

    The bible is clear (one of the few times it is) hell is a place of firy torment

  30. offensivechristian Says:

    Doubting Thomas,

    It looks like you got the whole eternal damnation thing pretty well cleared up between your post and Lone Wolf up there. Man, you are a good skeptic! I don’t want to give up on exchanging with you but I need some time right now. Your questions are awesome and really help me stretch my brain but I can’t give you the attention you deserve. I will keep at it and get back with you on the questions you posted on my site but I gotta say you seem to have more time available to you for this stuff than I have. Don’t give up on me – I’ll be back.

    Yeah, I’m sure there is a Hell and that the unsaved go there after death. Scripture says so (if you’ll allow me that little affirmation of why I’m sure, I know that doesn’t convince you)

    Thanks man,

    OC

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