Things I Don't Mind About the Bible

Well, it's Hump Day for National Bible Week, and I thought I'd clarify some things.

I don't hate the Bible. There are some things that I don't even mind about the Bible, such as:

  1. Confusing and Contradictory Messages: God says "Thou shalt not kill", but then orders his chosen people to "slay both man and woman, infant and suckling".
  2. False Prophecies: Mark said that Jesus would return before his followers' generation was dead. Still waiting.
  3. Impossible Conundrums: Who did Adam's sons marry?
  4. Passive/Agressive, Pissy, Mind-Fucky Deity:
    • Let's say Adam's sons (as it is sometimes argued) did marry their own sisters, but then, later, God declares that incest is a sin? If you argue that this was a necessity given the limited amount of DNA God had to work with a the beginning, then why does God set Noah's family up for yet another incest-fest by destroying most of the available human gene-pool?
    • There's a whole section of Exodus where Moses tries to talk God out of destroying the Israelites, and basically wins the day because he convinces the Almighty that it just wouldn't look good for Him.
    • And seriously -- from Day One? That whole Garden of Eden thing looks like a gigantic setup:

As whack-doodle as I think some of this is, I will repeat that I don't mind it. The Bible, in itself, does not drive me crazy every day. It's not like I sit around brooding about it all the time -- unlike my Xtian brother-in-law who once informed me that he prays every day that I will get "saved", and turn from my sinful "lifestyle".

The Bible doesn't bother me at all. It's what people DO with it that chaps my ass.

If my brother-in-law wants to think that I'm going to fry in an extra-hot section of Hell (most likely extra-hot because all the lesbians are there, doing their lesbian thang), that's his right.

If he wants to believe that the Earth is 6,000 years old, because that's the number you get when you add up the generations listed in the Bible, that's his right.

If he wants to get all fixated on the evil homos (who are only mentioned 4-5 times in the Bible, three of these vague references with debatable meanings), but somehow breeze past the adulterers (who are mentioned more than 40 times in the Bible), that's his right.

HOWEVER -- if he -- or any Xtian, for that matter --wants to take his "inerrant word of God" and use it to legally determine: Where I can live, and how, and with whom I can make love, and who I can marry, and what can be taught in public schools, and whether I can enjoy all the rights that are afforded to heterosexual citizens, and whether my uterus is my own possession, and whether people who believe in other books can live their lives free of harassment -- well, that's the shit that bugs me.

The day that this priest can finish his opening prayer in Congress uninterrupted,

I'll be glad to start talking about National Bible Week readings being included in the Congressional Record.

I said I'd talk about it.

Posted byPortlyDyke at 3:25 PM  


Anonymous said... November 21, 2007 at 5:49 PM  

Is it wrong to prefer the Ricky Gervais version? No? Good.

PortlyDyke said... November 21, 2007 at 9:26 PM  

Not only is it not wrong -- it's perfect -- because it makes more sense.

Personally, I think God is big enough to take it.

Emily said... November 22, 2007 at 5:30 AM  

Who did Adam's sons marry?

I have always wondered (worried?) about this myself.

Amy said... November 22, 2007 at 12:14 PM  

I love literature, even strange and imperfect literature, so I can't help but love "The Book." Still, it's a big ol' shitpie, as you point out -- but only because people believe in it. I like to think of religion as the "ultimate fiction": it's the most extreme version of the "suspension of disbelief" accompanied by a belief that the reader/audience is a part of the story (both as minion/sheep and as a "hero" whose soul's fate is important).

It's like this insane global performance art, only, nobody realizes it.

Anonymous said... November 24, 2007 at 9:21 PM  

Well said, Amy.

I'll be happy to entertain the concept of National Bible week when it runs in a series with National Kora'an Week, National Torah Week, National Bagavad Gita Week, etc.

Excellent series of observations/responses, PD!

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