Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Where the Saying Comes From

Is Saul also among the prophets?

I plan on spending some time (and some posts) on one of my favorite Biblical figures, Saul, and I'd like to kick it off with a nice little contradiction. There's two places in the Bible where a (supposed) single author explains where the above saying came from (I know, it's not as in vogue as it used to be to ask about Saul's prophetic abilities) and he gives different stories. The book is 1 Samuel and in chapter 9 we learn that Saul is to become a great king, the leader of god's people. Chapter 10 shows Samuel seeing the signs that are told to him by Samuel so that he can be convinced that he will be king of god's people. Part of this is that god will come upon him and he will begin to prophesy, which is what happens. When the people see this, they ask, "Is Saul also among the prophets?" Thus explaining where the quote comes from.

Or does it? Chapter 19 tells a different tale altogether. By then, Saul is already king, but he's worried about David who is to take his place (more on that in a later post). So, he sends out people to kill David, but to no avail. He keeps sending people and they keep coming under the spirit of god and prophesying. So, Saul goes himself and the spirit of the lord comes over him and he to begins to prophesy, taking off all his clothes and lying naked all day and all night with the other prophets, which is why people ask, "Is Saul also among the prophets."

So, which story is true? Like so many tall tales, it's a story with multiple origins where some people swear that it happened one way, and others swear it happened a different way. The question is, why is god's book undetermined on the origin of the story? Why couldn't god get it right?

Update: I typo-ed Chapter "18" instead of "19." The error has been fixed. The correct chapter is 19.

Sunday, 20 July 2008

Group Selection Pressure

Group Selection Pressure

The video is funny, but upon further reflection, it reminds me of the pressures that religious evangelizers put on others and how easily it works sometimes.

Saturday, 19 July 2008


That bwessed event.

But seriously, what is marriage? To the modern Xian, it is a union between one man and one woman, which they claim it has always been, as ordained by god. Many Xians I've met have also shown disdain for Mormons (who are technically also Xians, which is denied by most non-Mormon Xians) for the Mormons' views historical and present on polygamy. 'That's not what god had in mind,' they claim. So, why does god - through the Bible - not seem to have a problem (at the very least) with polygamy?

Abraham, Lamech, Esau, and Jacob all had multiple wives and that's just in Genesis! Exodus and Deuteronomy both lay down the foundations for laws on having multiple wives instead of banning it (why would god set down laws for how to do something that he didn't want his children to do?) Later, King Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines (how did he find time for them all?) And, we even see references in the NT in Mathew 25 to 10 virgins going to marry one man.

How is it that some people can be so ignorant of the religion that they supposedly hold so dear and use it as a cudgel against others? Have they no shame?

Friday, 11 July 2008

Belief = Morality?

OK, so god is going to torture me for eternity for not believing in him, right? But why? Am I acting immorally for my disbelief?

Let's say, for the sake of argument, that I am deciding not to believe in god. Is this an immoral stance to take? No, of course not. We are talking about a belief in a factual matter, namely the factual existence or non-existence of god. The statement, "I believe/disbelieve in god/allah/Santa Claus/Thor/Zeus/Baal/FSM/invisible, pink unicorns," is a factual statement on what your view of the evidence (or non-evidence really) of these myths is. This is not a statement that lends itself to a moral judgement. If all non-Xians are wrong, and god does exist, then we are guilty of no more than simply not having all the evidence or not reading the evidence correctly.

So, why would god torture me for eternity for making an error in reading the "evidence" of world? Is god really too stupid to understand the difference between a statement or an action of a factual nature and one of a moral nature? I think the answer to that question is that he's either too stupid or he doesn't care. This, once again, leads to the conclusion that if god exists, he is surely not omni-benevolent.

Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Three Days

So, supposedly Jesus died and was resurrected after three days. So, he died on a Friday - which Xians now celebrate as Good Friday (Yay, Jesus is dead!) - and came back to life on a Sunday. Three days, Friday to Sunday......Oops.

Friday, 4 July 2008


Xians (from the US). Just remember while you are watching or setting off fireworks, while you are eating bbq, while you are waving your flag today and being patriotic and all that, that this country was founded by a bunch of deists on secular principles from the enlightenment. Remember that these people were not setting up a Xian government. When some of you strive to Xianize this country, you are in opposition of what this country was meant to be.

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

So I was on the phone with God this morning discussing foreign policy when something he said really ground my gears. We were on the subject of potential genocide in Zimbabwe when he told me about his history:

2 Kings 2:23-24 : 42 children are killed for calling a prophet "baldy", by two she-bears.
1 Samuel 6:19 : 50 070 (or 70) people are killed for looking in (or "at") the Ark of the Covenant.
1 Kings 20:30 : God makes a wall fall on and kill 27 000 of an army retreating from some Israelites.
Numbers 16:16-49 : Death to all those who complain (14 950 of them altogether).
2 Samuel 6:6-11 : God kills someone for accidentally touching the Ark of the Covenant.

Anyone notice these?