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8. Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev. 19:27. How should they die?
9. I know from Lev. 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?
10. My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev.19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? Lev.24:10-16. Couldn't we just burn them to death at a private family affair, like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)
I know you have studied these things extensively and thus enjoy considerable expertise in such matters, so I'm confident you can help.
Thank you again for reminding us that God's word is eternal and unchanging.
5.7b The Bible tells me so
Obviously, the letter-writer's main point is to ask why fundamentalists - who claim that the Bible is the inerrant work of God - ignore many of the Bible's commandments to focus so much time, money and energy on condemning one form of behaviour which is actually discussed very little in both the Old and New Testaments . . .
. . . while gay and sympathetic Christians point to exactly the same book and insist that it proves that God loves us all. At the same time, rationalists stand on the sidelines, noting that fundamentalist and progressive Jews and Muslims make exactly the same opposing points in those religions.
Or peer into the ugliest corners of Christianity and you will find a small number of pale-skinned people claiming in all sincerity that dark-skinned people are children of the devil - a stance reflected in Islam by a few dark-skinned people who are convinced that pale skins are a sign of Satan. Come back into the mainstream and meet one group of believers who insist that only men can represent God, and on the other side of that divide another group who are convinced that women too can wear the robes of priesthood. Around the corner you'll find Creationists say that God created the world less than 10,000 years ago, arguing with believers who have no trouble combining God with evolution. And so on and so on.
In brief, for every conceivable opinion, attitude and prejudice, you will find a believer who insists that their views are sanctioned or mandated by God - and the more theologically inclined among them will swiftly point to the scripture or pronouncement that supports his claim. No evidence, no argument, will shake their faith. This is what the Bible tells them; other interpretations are plain wrong.
5.7c My faith, not God's
What should reasonable people make of this? It doesn't need a degree in psychology to come to the conclusion that an individual's faith is based not on the word of God, but on that person's character and outlook on life. Believers who are uncomfortable with homosexuality use scripture to confirm their viewpoint; those who believe God made them gay are equally convinced that the Bible or Quran approves of them.
People with rigid, unforgiving personalities can easily find passages in the scriptures that show that God is vengeful and unforgiving. Those of a more generous nature will find verses that prove that God is compassionate and loving. Men uncomfortable with women point to doctrine that prohibits women priests; men with no such reservations find theological proof that allows them. The next time you hear a believer argue a point of principle, listen not to what they say, but why they say it - their words reveal not the word of God, but their own strengths and weaknesses.
Believers claim that God gives them principles to follow, but that is not true. The reality is that believers attribute to God the principles they already hold. People's faith reflects their personality, not the God they claim to believe in.
A Moral Code
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If God existed, he would...
admire the beauty of a universe that he did not create
recognize that eternity is meaningless
deny both heaven and hell
disown all men and women who speak in his name
denounce the harm caused by religious "morality"
help the human race to thrive without him
If God existed, he would be an atheist.
What is the difference between science and faith?
science is certain of nothing and requires proof of everything
faith is certain of everything and requires proof of nothing
Which do you trust?
"I know there is no God"
"I believe there is no God"
Check the answer