Thursday, 28 August 2008

Good god?

There's a question that I've asked many a theist and never gotten an actual answer to, so maybe one of the theistic readers here can answer it. Here it is:

How do you know that god is good?

Monday, 25 August 2008

Evil Spirits

When we last left Saul, god had decided (for the second time) that Saul would no longer be king of the Israelis. So, what did god do? Did god kill Saul? Nope. Did god have Saul deposed? Nope. Did god remove Saul as king? Nope. Hmmmm, for a god that doesn't want Saul to be king anymore, you'd think he would have removed him, but he didn't.

No, instead god leaves Saul as king, but sends evil spirits to torment him.

Let's let that sink in for a second.

Of course, god is incompetent as always, because the spirits he sends can be held at bay with the sound of someone playing a harp. Really, I can't understand how anyone could read this stuff and think that god is either good or mighty.

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Jesus and the whip

Let us read from the book of John, Chapter 2, verse 15...

OK, let me paraphrase...Jesus gets mad at some money changers hanging out and doing business in the temple, so he fashions a whip and goes into the temple and drives them all out under threat of violence.

But, I thought Jesus was supposed to be peaceful and sin-free? Is it not sinful to whip other people? Ah, some apologists have jumped on this and said that the Bible doesn't say that he actually whipped anyone, so it's all right. But, it's not all right. It's certainly against the law in this country to threaten someone with a weapon (it's called assault at the least). Even if Jesus merely used the whip to frighten the money changers out of the temple, he assaulted them. This is not moral, and violates the same laws that he laid forth in some of his sermons. Apparently, we find once again that god does not have to follow the same moral laws that he expects all of us to follow.

Wednesday, 20 August 2008


I'm laughing so hard at this that I simply have to share it.

Check this out

Monday, 18 August 2008

Adam and Eve Redux

OK, some apologists just don't get it, so let's use an analogy.

Let's say your kid who is all of 2 years old like to run in your garden and you don't like it. You go and confront the little kid and tell him, "Don't run into my yard, for the next time you do so, you shall surely feel my wrath." You don't put up a fence or do anything to keep the kid out - in fact you do the opposite and put something in the garden that the kid will be irresistibly drawn to just so that you can ensure the kid will enter the garden. Next thing you know, the kid is in your garden again. If you were an insane, egotistical, sadistic, angry person, you might take the following actions:

1. Banish the kid from your house forever and toss him out on his ass.
2. Inject him with some sort of genetically designed virus that causes birth defects in all his off-spring for all eternity.
3. Blame the kid for everything and convince him that it's all his fault that you are taking such extreme actions, but that you are doing it out of love.
4. Create a place of torture for this kid and all his descendants to go to if they don't bow down and kiss your feet and convince them it's all their fault.

etc. etc.

If you think that those actions are pretty insane, then consider god's actions against Adam and Eve. Yes, the analogy falls a little short, only because god's actions are even harder to defend and even more insane - he knew they would eat the fruit, he actually puts people in hell for all eternity, etc.

Friday, 15 August 2008


Apologists like to claim that god is good. When atheists point out the evil deeds that god commits in the Bible, apologists like to state that we are not in a position to judge god since god is too far beyond us.

Anyone else see the contradiction?

Apologists can not simultaneously argue that we can not judge god while also arguing that they can and have judged god and found him to be good. This is contradictory and illogical. Either they have to say that we can judge god and they find god to be good, but that the question is open, or they must claim that god is above judgement and that they can't say whether god is good or not.

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

The Goodness of god

A logical disproof:

1. god is good
2. The Bible is god's word and true
3. The Bible describes god's actions truthfully
4. In the Bible god commands and carries out genocide
5. Genocide is not good
6. Those who commit genocide are not good
7. Therefore god is not good
8. Number 7 contradicts number 1 - therefore god is either not good or does not exist.

Some apologists will argue, of course, that god's acts of genocide are necessarily good, but this is not an envious position to be in; to have to defend genocide. It makes me wonder who else they'd like to kill. But, there's a problem still, because they are guilty of begging the question. They assume that god must be good, so they fit all the facts and data in order to fill their already assumed conclusion. This is logically fallacious. You can't simply conclude and then fit the evidence to your conclusion. Unfortunately for them, all apologetics do this.

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Good vs. Evil

Typical apologist argument for god: god exists because good and evil exist and we could not have good and evil without an objective standard from god.

There are, of course, numerous problems with this argument. First, it is assumed that good and evil are objective things, which has not been shown. This would be begging the question. The best we can discern is that the concepts of good and evil are man-made. They come from our culture. This is why a Muslim man might find killing his daughter to be good if she has dishonored the family while another person would look at this action as highly immoral.

Another problem is the assumption that without god, nothing can be objective. This is simply not true, however. There are numerous philosophies devoted to developing objective standards of good and evil, like Utilitarianism, that don't depend at all on some edict given from on high from some deity.

Another problem is the fact that the argument assumes god's existence and that only god can provide such things as good and evil. This is begging the question. Since we have no evidence for god, what is left for the apologist is to argue against every other conceivable option, until only the option of god is left. This is clearly impossible though, because how would one know if all the options (known and unknown) have been examined properly?

One more issue I'd like to bring up is that the apologist in the this argument usually seems to demand that only their god can fit the bill, when in reality, if their argument actually held weight, just about any god would be capable of fitting the bill. In short, even if this argument didn't have the above problems, it would still only be an argument for some type of theistic thought and that's it.

Friday, 8 August 2008


Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?
- Epicurus

Wednesday, 6 August 2008

god's Regret?

So, twice now has god decided that Saul should not be king of Israel. In fact, god is repentant about it. He says so in 1 Sam. 15:11. Of course, Saul is repentant too, he really wants to please god, but god will have none of it. This begs the question as to why god won't show mercy on Saul. Saul is trying, which is what many modern Xians tell us that we are supposed to do, yet god rebukes him for it. god wants blind obedience and if you can't blindly follow and get the commands right - which seems to be Saul's problem - then too bad for you. In fact, Saul wanted to please god, with burnt offerings, to which Samuel rebukes him by saying that obedience is much more important. Samuel sets it up that obedience is the sum all, be all of our "relationship" with god. Does this sound like a loving relationship? Should a loved one demand complete obedience from you? Would you feel loved if this were to happen?

Also, how can god feel regret? How can a perfect being do something with which to feel regretful? Yet, god plainly says that he regrets making Saul king. Of course, just 18 verses later god reverses himself and claims that he never repents, only to reverse himself again 6 verses later and re-affirm that he repents making Saul king.

How can one not look at this story and see a ridiculous god?

Sunday, 3 August 2008

The Bloodthirsty god

The Xian god is one of the more bloodthirsty deities that have been conceived. He is directly responsible for multiple genocides either by his own hand or sanctioned and ordered by him. The next installment of the saga of Saul is just one of those cases. Samuel comes to Saul and tells him of god's wish that Saul should annihilate the Amalekites. See, god is angry at something that Amalek did many years before and now wants to extract revenge, so he tells Saul that he must go and kill them all. No one and nothing should be spared, according to god. Saul must slay all the men, women, children, oxen, sheep, camels, and asses. In short, Saul is to leave nothing alive. Perversely, god has already said that Saul should not be king and that he's taking away Saul's kingship, but also tells him that he has to do this because god made him king. god is such a swell guy.

Anyway, Saul does as he's told, except that he allows their king Agag to survive and he takes the best of the livestock for his people. This angers god. Saul has not been ruthless and vicious enough for god, so god once again decides that Saul is not a worthy king and will be replaced. Of course, he had already decided that before, which begs the question, why is god so forgetful?

Anyway, once again we find god to be much less than perfect and certainly not loving. In fact, god is cruel, vindictive, provincial, and bloodthirsty.

Friday, 1 August 2008

Saul the King

Picking up the story where we left off, Samuel promised that Saul would be the King of Israel. Hooray for Saul, right? Well, Samuel tells Saul that he will go to Gilgal and then wait 7 days for Samuel's arrival at which time Samuel will tell him what god wants Saul to do. Easy right?

In the meantime, Nahash makes a move against Jabeshgilead. The people of Jabesh basically surrender and Nahash says that he wants to take out all their right eyes. The people of Jabesh ask to send out messengers to find a savior, and miraculously Nahash allows it. What kind of moron would allow this to happen? Anyway, Saul uses the opportunity to slay the Ammonites (Nahash's people) all throughout the day. This gives him leverage and he goes to Gilgal to become the king. As so often happens in this book, the man who can cause the most bloodshed gets to become king! Anyway, Samuel comes and officially makes Saul king, although there is no mention of how long it took.

Two years later, the Philistines and the Israelis start warring. Saul goes once again to Gilgal and somehow remembers that he's supposed to wait 7 days for Samuel, even though he's been there before and Samuel didn't specify when this would happen. This is all very strange of course, but let's move on. After 7 days, there's no sign of Samuel. Saul's army is leaving him, he's about to be beaten by the Philistines, so he orders a sacrifice to god. At this point Samuel finally shows up and rebukes Saul for not following god's orders and claims that god will now choose a new king.

But, what was Saul to do? If he were smart, he might have invoked the Jewish law that said a prophet that is mistaken does not come from the lord and must be put to death, but he didn't do that. Instead, he found himself in a bad spot because god's messenger didn't do what god said he would. IOW, god lied, and Saul ended up paying the price for it. Not only that, but Saul was seeking to please god and was rebuked for doing so. Is there any way one can look at god's actions here and not see a capricious, mean deity? Didn't god know this would happen? So, why make Saul king at all if Saul would disappoint? Once again, we find a god that is very much less than perfect.