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5/28/2008                                                                                       View Comments

Punished by God? No one believes that!

By Dave, the WM

I was just reading about 71-year-old Rev. George O. Lowe, that he is in prison for sexually abusing a child in his congregation back in the 80s. There’s nothing particularly unique or interesting about the story; it's just another in a long, long line of sexually perverted religious leaders. What caught my eye in this story is that that the good reverend had recently tried to appease his victim who is now an adult by quoting Bible verses that discourage Christians from taking Christians to court and by claiming that God had already sufficiently punished him.

Quoting Bible verses to support a position (any position) is typical, but the statement he made that God had already punished him, that one got me to thinking.

The doctrine that God does or will eventually punish the wicked is universally touted as true by every variety, branch and stream within Christendom. Christians are frequently encouraged to leave to the Lord all thoughts of paying back the wicked for their wickedness.
Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. -- Romans 12:19

Is the promise that "God will revenge" provide adequate comfort to Christians who are victims of abuse or crime? Consider a couple whose child is kidnapped and never found. Does anyone honestly think that a belief that God will eventually bring the criminal to perfect justice extend real solace to a parent in this situation? Or do you think that even the most faith-filled Christian parent would find more comfort in working tirelessly until the kidnapper was found and made to endure “imperfect” human justice?

If Christians really believed that God would righteously avenge all the wrongs in the world, then there would be no need for any Christian to ever press charges, sue, or even complain about being a victim. In fact, if Christians really believed God would avenge, Christians would meekly turn the other cheek as Jesus commanded.

The fact is, Christians do not believe in divine justice in the here and now. Oh sure, they say they believe in it, but by their actions and lifestyle, most Christians are just like anyone else when some thug tries to victimize them. When I was Christian, I knew I would defend against and possibly kill anyone who illegally entered my home with the intent to do harm to me or my family. I purchased a weapon designed for that purpose. I had no intention of turning the other cheek, blessing those who cursed me, or giving a thief my cloak. I was fully prepared to defend my castle and if necessary, met out swift ultimate justice to any who crossed my threshold with evil intent.

Most Christians I knew were of the same opinion when it came to defending one's home.

At this point some Christians might argue that human justice is an expression of divine justice. Those Christians will claim that God works through our justice system. Of course on another day those same Christians will bemoan the inadequacy of the justice system and proclaim that human stabs at justice can never measure up to God’s justice.

You can't have it both ways, Christians! Either God is in charge, or we are. Either we resist not evil as Jesus said, or we resist it and disobey his command.

In the hundreds, soon to be thousands, of years since the birth of Christianity, much has changed in the way Christians believe. Christians are not nearly as concerned with developing personal piety as they are with crusading for various political agendas. Christians have to be constantly admonished to read and memorize the Bible even though it is supposedly the very Word of God to mankind! They have to be told to tithe and feed and clothe the poor. Yet, when it comes to aggressively campaigning against the personal, legal, and private choices of non-Christians (Insert here homosexuality, abortion, alcohol, anal sex, or any other private matter that Christians feel licensed to condemn.), those same lazy-brained Christians are somehow energized. When it comes to war – any war – Christians can be found waving the flag the hardest. “Nuke em ‘till they glow!” was the clarion call of many modern Christians at the start of the Iraq crises.

Getting back to the main point: By their behavior, their words, and their causes, most Christians today demonstrate a lack of belief that God will avenge injustice. Just like all human beings everywhere, Christians know deep down that whatever justice we have on this planet is entirely up to us. How we want our society to operate, what we want to tolerate or allow, it is all entirely up to us. If victims are to ever be avenged, it is up to us. If criminals are to be stopped, it is up to us.

Ultimately everyone, regardless of rhetoric or position, understands that we are the sole agents responsible for crafting human society. Even Christians reject as foolish the teachings of Jesus suggesting we all sit around and wait for God to do something. Even Christians would scoff at the suggestion that a pedophile need not be brought to "human" justice because "God had already punished him."

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14 comments:

Trans-man said...

Now that's easy.....just ask for forgiveness and be a born again christian and you even get out of god's punishment.

eris.discordia said...

Hey Dave!
GREAT post! I am glad you posted this information because many young Christians or and Ex-Christians may not have realized or understood this policy in the church at large. I came up against this rhetoric time after time during my 25 dark years. It was very frustrating for me to see crimes knowingly being committed and absolutely NO justice by the authorities! I witnessed numerous accounts of child abuse and wife abuse. When I reported these things to the pastor I was either told to keep my mouth shut and let God handle it or to mind my own business. These were not isolated incidents either. I witnessed this kind of stuff in different churches with different pastors, even in two different states!

I actually did report child abuse in the church to the proper authorities not once, but three times. And I regret not reporting a fourth incident in yet, another church here in Indiana. I reported the incident to the paster and got ripped to pieces by the paster for not minding my own business. That was the coup de gras for me! I was done with the Christian church for good after that incident. I guess I wasn't brainwashed enough.

Christians are told never to sue another Christian. It is ok to sue a non-Christian though! You can only turn the other cheek so much, I guess! Having come from a family that was half composed of Jews, I can tell you with some authority that this policy along with many of the other Christian ideas and traditions originated with the Jewish faith. According to the Talmud suing another Jew was a big no-no! All Jewish disputes were to be settled by the local elder.

This policy might have worked for Christians if the pastor/priest stood up for what was right and actually made an attempt to help the victim! From what I saw in the Christian church over the last 25 years the victim rarely got help, especially if he/she was a child.

The problem is the church leadership does not want to get involved in peoples disputes but they also do not want the people to take their disputes to a secular authority. So they came up with yet another incredulous bullshit story to keep the sheeple under control. And you know what? The majority of them buy it! That just goes to show how incredibly brainwashed they are!


Back when I was a divorced Christian I purposely would not date fundie Christian men because I knew so many who were abusive to women and children. Thank goodness I had enough sense to marry a recovering Catholic instead! Together we have raised a Pagan, an Agnostic, an Atheist and a Thelemite. Each of them found their own path without any help from us. We never felt the need to beat the devil out of them or to censor their reading materials. They feel good about themselves as people and they all have compassion for the other creatures on this planer. But don't fuck with them! they all have good lawyers!

Aspentroll said...

Trans-man said:
"Now that's easy.....just ask for forgiveness and be a born again christian and you even get out of god's punishment".

I totally agree. The fundies all say "just accept Jayzeus
and all is forgiven.

Who would want to go to heaven and sit on a cloud next to Hitler, Sadam, all the Catholic Popes and priests and especially Jerry Falwell.

Give me hell any day, at least you can cook a steak or have
a wiener roast anytime you want. eh?

Jackie said...

You know, Dave, their response would just be "God will punish them in the afterlife." I suppose by sending them to hell. But what if they commit the crime, 10 years later repent, become a functioning citizen of society and by all means an example Christian. Then they go to heaven. Isn't that how that works? So, no matter how they look at it they don't have a leg to stand on.
I think I've posted this comment before but I really think that most Christians, way deep down in the abyss of their being (so far that it's almost subconscious) that they don't really believe any of it and their whole religion is hogwash.

Lemonyatheist4 said...

Yet another argument that proves the cherry-pickin' that goes on when xians interpret the Bibble. What these gobsters refuse to understand is that their morality is a social, cultural, economic and political construct. Gob is only a three-letter word.

billybee said...

When I was a "babe in the lord" I was involved in a situation where I had to choose whether to sue a guy or forgive his crime.

I believed that I should just forgive my offender like the bible said.

That was when my pastor jumped in and told me to "Sue the pants off the guy!".

Well I did just that. I won the case. .....and the church was delighted to take it's cut...

so much for "..and Jesus said;...."

Steven Bently said...

Being a Christian in america is the best stance to have...how can anyone do anything wrong?

You can rape, murder, embezzle funds, molest, divorce, lie, cheat steal, go to prison, be a model Christian, get out of prison open up a church and all the former things will be wiped away.

Praise the lard!!! A christian cannot be punished, he/she will always have their reward awaiting them.

The AntiChristian said...

Lock up the pedophilic mutherfucker and throw away the key.

Insanezenmistress said...

Dave , Premier observations indeed. It was the hardest thing for my to try to get over when i was a chrisitan. Their practice and the intentions i read into Jesus' teachings did not match. I kept asking well why dont they jsut follow their religion?

I remember one youth vacation bible school the theme was somethign like the good semeritian. And i was a new chrisitan so i took the lessons seriously. I agreed with Jesus that we needed to judge people less and respect them more. To love them, etc. But i still got picked on during that week. I still got left out. It didnt even occur to me that they wherent also trying to grow in christ. wheren't they chrisitans also?

This sharp reality check kept me confused? If Christ is the "power and the glory" then why isnt he replicating himself in his followers?

mikegordon4321 said...

..

mikegordon4321 said...

Dave,
I must say that I was 'cut to the quick' after reading your article. I'm a Christian. Let me say something weird. I'm sorry! I'm sorry for the way we Christians have acted through the ages. We've hurt a lot of people. Will you forgive us for the Crusades, for being in bed with the Repulicans, for not giving a damn about Dharfur, for speaking out at college campuses about what we're against (homosexuallity, abortion, etc.) instad of speaking about what we're for (love, grace, the gospel). Forgive us for going on television and rambling on about stupid stuff. Most of all, and most disgusting...will you forgive us for molesting children and even thinking about dragging God into the equation? We're a mess!
I'm sure that many of you on this sight have abandoned your faith due to intellectual reasons. Cool. I wouldn't try to argue with you. However, there are many here that have abandoned their faith due to hypocritical Christians. Maybe you've had it rammed down your throat. I'm sorry! I'm to blame!

webmdave said...

Mike,

My guess is that you haven't been authorized by anyone to be the official spokesman on behalf of all Christendom. To be more clear, you can only apologize for actions YOU have committed. You can't apologize on behalf of millions of people who lived over the past couple thousand years.

What I would suggest to you, however, is that you take a closer look at Christianity and ask yourself a question. If Jesus is building HIS church, and GOD is omnipotently running the universe, why is Christianity so screwed up? Why are there over 1,300 recognized denominations if the Holy Spirit is leading Christians into all truth? Why is there so much rampant crime and perversion within Christianity if Christians are new creatures in Christ?

Consider those questions rhetorical. There is no need to answer.

sconnor said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
sconnor said...

Mikeg4321,

What you don't understand Mikey, is you possess the same deluded thinking, that causes those things you mention, above. You are a member of a club that has a long, disturbing and bloody history. Your defense is like saying that you are in the KKK -- I'm sorry for killing black people and destroying property and being racist but we do give to charities and we believe in Jesus' grace and love.

You are nothing but a brain dead drone who's way of thinking is the scourge of humanity.

You are the equivalent to those brain dead women in that polygamist cult, in Texas.
You are nothing more than a primitive man thinking that an eclipse of sun was a punishment from god.
You possess the same deluded thinking that made it possible to burn witches at the stake.
You possess the same deluded thinking that made it possible to torture non-believers during the inquisition.
You possess the same deluded thinking that led to a massive cover-up and continued to let priest rape children in the Catholic faith, over and over. (Father So and So couldn't have raped little Johnny, he's a man of god).
You possess the same deluded thinking that made it possible to kill non-christians during the crusades.
You possess the same deluded thinking that makes it possible for JWs to withhold blood transfusions, allowing their children to suffer and die.
You possess the same deluded thinking that made it possible for parents of an eleven year old girl to die, because they only prayed over her, neglecting medical intervention.
You possess the same deluded thinking that allows christians to use a rod on their children.
You possess the same deluded thinking that makes it possible to relegate women to a subservient role to their husbands.
You possess the same deluded thinking that makes it impossible for women to become pastors or priests in certain sects like evangelicals, Baptists, and Catholics.
You possess the same deluded thinking that made it possible for Jews to mutilate their baby boys penises.
You possess the same deluded thinking that made it possible to justify slavery in America.
You possess the same deluded thinking that made it possible for sick, fucks to blow up abortion clinics.
You possess the same deluded thinking that preaches creationism over evolution, breeding ignorance in the science classroom.
You possess the same deluded thinking that calls gay people an abomination.
You possess the same deluded thinking that makes it possible for christians to have a hundred different interpretations on how to obtain eternal life, with an array of endless combinations, all the while claiming their interpretation is the one and only truth?

Take your insincere pleads for forgivenes and stick them up your ass.

--S.