I’m not sure if this post can be defined as a rant, but I’ve been thinking about this for a while and it’s really bugging me. So I thought I would write about it.
Just to make sure we are all on the same page, the “get out of jail free” card is an element of the board game, Monopoly. It has also become a popular metaphor for something that will get one out of an undesired situation. The metaphor is what I’ll be talking about in this post. It’s kind of like the phrase, being let of the hook. With that being said, it seems that the Christian god and the Bible have get out of jail free cards for just about every situation. And it’s annoying.
I used to do it. When I was a Christian, and someone questioned god’s character or the Bible, I felt obligated to defend him. Isn’t that funny? It seems like if god existed and is as powerful as people think, this god should be able to defend himself/herself/itself. Maybe he/she/it isn’t concerned about such trivial things as having to explain why something did, or did not happen. If a person applies sound logic and reason to any situation regarding god or the Bible, Christians have to jump through a lot of hoops to explain away said sound logic and reason. One interesting thing about that is that the hoops are not consistent. Different Christian groups will use different hoops depending on their theology.
The examples are endless. But we will look at a few. COVID-19. Some say it is god’s judgment because there is so much sin in the world. So this is our/humans fault, not god’s. “He’s not judging the people, he is judging the sin”. Oh, bullshit. According to the Bible, didn’t god’s judgment fall on Jesus for us? “There are still consequences for sin”. Ok. Whatever. Even when you have all this prayer going on all over the planet, Kenneth Copeland “blowing” the virus away, and any other examples you can think of, it’s still here. When all else fails, things fall under god’s ineffable plan. People will say, “I don’t know why these bad things are happening, but I know god is good”. Hmmm…. So this good god still gets the get out of jail free card.
A quick side note, speaking of god’s ineffable plan. If you haven’t seen Good Omens on Amazon prime, I highly recommend it. I enjoyed the hell out of it. See what I did there? Hell out of it… There is scene where an angel and a demon are talking after Adam and Eve have been cast out of the garden. The demon thinks that god overreacted and doesn’t see the problem with humans knowing the difference between good and evil. When he expresses this to the angel, the angel says that it’s best not to speculate. It’s all part of the great plan. The great plan is ineffable. Another scene is at the building of the arc and the angel has told the demon that god is going to drown everyone except Noah and his family. Again, the demon thinks that to be a bit harsh, but the angel again talks abought god’s ineffable plan. God gets out of jail, again.
All the suffering in the world? It’s because of sin and/or the devil. Not god’s fault. I prayed for healing and didn’t get it? I didn’t have enough faith. Not god’s fault. What about all the contradictions in the Bible? They are apparent contradictions, but it’s really just humans not being able to understand some things about god. After all, his ways are higher than our ways… Again, total bullshit. What about errors in the Bible? Nope, the Bible is perfect. It must be human’s lack of understanding that makes it appear like there are errors. You get the idea. God is never at fault, never just being an asshole, it’s always either the devil or we humans bringing all the bad stuff on ourselves.
I read an article lately that started with, “I have to say, the Bible is a poorly compiled piece of work”. And I agree! Where I am now in my beliefs, or lack thereof, is because I studied the Bible thoroughly with my brain on, using logic and reason and what I know about science and history. There is a YouTube channel called Leaving Religion hosted by William Jones. In the intro to all his videos he says, “The purpose of these videos is to get you to think. Turn your brains on and think. Use logic, use reason, and realize that religion is fake”. I was talking to someone recently who had been doing some critical thinking, and she said that it seems like if god allows things to happen, it’s the same as… she wouldn’t finish the thought, so I did it for her. It’s the same as he caused it to happen. She flinched a little, like I might get struck by lightning. Yep, let a little bit of logic and reason slip in there and you might be thinking all kind of shit you never thought you’d think about god.
When I was in church, we heard it on a fairly regular basis. Never question the scriptures or god’s goodness. If something happens in your life or you read something in the Bible that makes you question god’s character (his character being that he is good, and he is good all the time), it just means you don’t understand. God is still good and faithful and all that. So quit trying to figure it out. Ugh!
It seems to me that if you take god out of the equation, life on this planet just makes a little more sense.