Friday, December 26, 2008

Church sign

This sign is in front of the church next to my gym. What a wonderful, loving god these people have. If you don't accept our loving god, YOU WILL BURN IN HELL FOR ETERNITY! Nice. They probably don't realize that their god would consign literally billions of people to hell. Do they realize how hateful that is, and what a completely evil god that would be? Do they care? Using fear tactics is always a good way to win over converts, too.

I'm currently reading godless: How an Evangelical Preacher Became One of America's Leading Atheists by Dan Barker. Bill got it for me for Christmas :-) It's extremely interesting so far, but one of the things that struck me was something his mother said. She and his father were born again Christians who raised him in one of the Charismatic churches where they spoke in tongues, and "healed" people. Because of his explanations about why he didn't believe in God anymore both of his parents eventually became atheists.

Within weeks Mom concluded that religion was "just a bunch of baloney," as she told [a] reporter. She felt a "tremendously great disappointment in God." She began to do some reading and thinking of her own, and eventually started calling herself an atheist. "I don't have to hate anymore," she said happily.(emphasis mine)*
Doesn't my new phone takes good pictures, though!
*Pg. 58


Hairslave 24/7 said...

It takeses wonderful pictures ;•))

Mr Farty said...

Should you even be allowed Ecksmas presents? *grumble*

Your story reminded me of a Father Ted episode where Father Dougal managed to convert a Catholic bishop to atheism, LOL.

Laurie said...

Probably not. But can I have them for MY birthday? Two days before Ecksmas? And can I buy them for other people?

I think that, although I've never watched an entire Father Ted episode, I've seen that clip!

Craig E. (Pennsylvania) said...

Fascinating. I'm currently reading "Godless..." as well. Fascinating stuff. Good resource. After which I'll be reading d'Holbach's "The System of Nature"

Anonymous said...

I agree with you that this is not the best way to commend God or Christianity to anyone. However the question of Hell itself deserves further consideration I think. Dostoevsky, C.S. Lewis, and other thinkers have pointed out that Eternal punishment may be also thought of as primarily an aquired state of being (or non-being), apart from God's Grace. Timothy Keller called it the "trajectory of a soul". This means is that there is more than one way to think of Hell, in addition to God's active punishment of unrepentant sinners ... and that the differences between these two ways of thinking about it become insignificant once the reality is acknowledged as a possibility. The worst images of Hell, after all, may only be symbols. And yet Christian Theology has always held that the thing symbolized must be worse than the symbols. The worst aspect about Hell would have to be the fact that it comes from rejecting a person of complete benevolence and love. If you could imagine being tormented by an evil or vindictive person, a sense of injustice would offer some solace no matter how bad it was. But the torments of conscience at having trampled love itself, would be intolerable. God has indeed actively decreed the torments of hell, by the very nature of his being. It is the necessary antithesis of who he is. But Biblically, Hell is best described as self condemnation ... a loving of darkness rather than light. Again I understand your reaction to such signs (They annoy me too). But I think there is far better "apologia" for Eternal Punishment, than such popular expressions as "hellfire" marquees at the local church.