One thing that has been coming up with the responses from the Xtians, including Snodgrass, is that hell isn't gods torture chamber but just a place that will seem bad compared to heaven because of the absence of god himself. These folks conveniently forget the words of their own bible when it suits them. This all seems like pretty proactive aggression here...
"But whoever does not fall down and worship shall immediately be cast into the midst of a furnace of blazing fire."
"...The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. Just as weeds are collected and burned (up) with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his kingdom all who cause others to sin and all evildoers. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth."
"And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire."
"I tell you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that can do no more. But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear him who, after the killing of the body, has power to throw you into hell. Yes, I tell you, fear him."
2 Peter 3:7
"By the same word the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire, being kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men."
Here is another site I came across that uses many of the same tactics as christianity. You can't completely prove it's not real, so it must be true, and they berate you for being too stupid to have faith in their truth. truthism.com/
Jeff...not the Snodgrass kind...Wells
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I just love how you communicate and get the christians to make your point in their own words. Too bad they can’t actually hear what it is that they are saying.
The Snodgrass Files are just too much and I just love the illustrations you put to Rebecca’s Dream. I find it ironic that a god of love has to use violence to beat belief in himself into you. That is the real message of the followers of the magic dude in the sky.
Keep it going man!
Prescott E. Small
PS.. please consider doing a book. You have such a unique perspective that could only add to the reason of Dawkins and Hitchens. You bring a lighter side to the struggle for reason.
|“You're idea of world peace is to drive out the notion of God so we can all think as one.”
Sounds nice Bob,
But that's not the way it happens at all. We'll never have a heaven on this earth (as much as I'd like to think we could) because there is sin in this world. We will always have suffering. Talk about science! If science is observation, then let's observe human nature for awhile. It seems that no matter how many advances we make in science, our attitudes toward our fellow man are still the same. Humans have been killing each other for as long as the history books can tell us. Let's, for a moment, consider "the study of human nature" to be a science. If this is so, can't we consider "human suffering" to be a scientific law that will always apply.
You're idea of world peace is to drive out the notion of God so we can all think as one. I know that you see religion as nothing more than a cause for people to start wars with each other. But religion isn't the fundamental cause wars, Bob. Sin(greed, envy,...etc) is what causes war. Religion is often a good excuse. What better way to rally a people to war than to say "God supports our actions".
You may think that I view the world's suffering as a punishment from God for our sin. But that's not what I think at all. Bob, if we could somehow rid the world of all greed and selfish motives, then we COULD use science to solve problems that cause human suffering as God would rather see us do. Science may have helped us improve our standard of living, but as long as people are still selfish and greedy, then we will never end suffering. You see, Bob, I don't view the worlds suffering as God's punishment, I view it as a direct result of our own sin.
Bob, you must agree with me that sin(or whatever you want to call it: examples...greed...envy...etc) is at the root of the worlds suffering.
Also, To say that we all arose from a primordial soup is a wild assumption based on Darwin's concept of "natural selection" and "survival of the fittest". I have no objection to either of these concepts as they are both brilliant scientific discoveries. They may even explain our origin to an extent. But just because they can explain our origin, doesn't make it the actual fact of the matter. It would make it a theory. The existence of a God also "explains" our origin, but I don't go around claiming my beliefs as factual science just because it "explains" it. There is no actual way for science to prove our origin. You have to believe what you want to believe.
I spotted another misconception in your last letter. Hell is not a torture chamber of God's making. Hell is "not Heaven". There is no place in between (I don't think) once God destroys his creation. I haven't studied up on this so I can't give you a reference, but I believe the Bible refers to Hell as being "outside". That is, if you hate God, the only other place for you is outside his house.
P.S. On that last part, I understand that you believe all this to be a fairy tale so there's no need to tell me again. But what you original wrote was under the category of what "I believe" so I thought I'd clarify on it.
This time really,
Dr. Jeff Snodgrass
Wow. Your view on the world is terrifying. I find it incredible that you believe we should spread this message of doom and hopelessness to everybody as soon as possible so they'll go to paradise in the afterlife.
It is correct that we will never reach perfection, but that's no reason to throw in the towel and usher in the apocalypse! We have progressed a great deal over the centuries, and millenniums! What advancements have we made in regards to reducing human suffering, you ask? Jeff, did you know that science has been able to extend the life expectancy of the average human being? Are you aware that slavery has been almost entirely eliminated in the civilized world? Did you know that democracy has only grown throughout the world since the dawn of man, and never in history have two democratic nations gone to war? On average people's neighborhoods are getting safer! Isn't that terrific?!? And what about tolerance, you ask? Are attitudes the same as they've always been? Did you know that overall, societies as a whole have only become more tolerant? Where once discrimination was the norm for women, blacks & gays, now the rights of human beings have only gotten more equal over the centuries? Societies do advance in their thinking! We are very spoiled in many ways, Jeff! Food is plentiful, the average human lives better now than he did a hundred years ago! In fact, we've got solutions to so many ailments that people forget there was a time when the flu, chicken pox, measles, mumps and the black plague used to wipe out entire societies! Not any more though! Even certain types of cancer are treatable, HIV & AIDS doesn't mean you don't have another 20 years on the planet! This is all great news, Jeff!
Sure, we'll never reach perfection, but Jesus Christ, Jeff! Your plan throws out the baby with the bathwater and essentially lays out a welcome mat for the apocalypse! Listen to your own words and think about the future they prepare for mankind! Think about the implications of encouraging the divisions of societies into favorite gods and accepting the "we'll all just kill each other anyhow so why fight it" attitude! You almost seem proud that your belief in gods has inspired good people to commit treacherous acts of violence throughout the ages. I mean, without them there wouldn't be half as many people going to heaven, huh Jeff?
#1- Human ignorance and #2- Unalterable, undebatable divisions regarding God's Word are at the root of human suffering, not "sin" ie: Crimes against the maker of the Universe for which He transforms into natural disasters & increased emergency room visits. Education and debate has spared many lives and countless suffering, and these are two things that fundamental religious beliefs do not inspire. Driving out the notion of God and His non negotiable Word is essential if we hope to open minds to the idea of debate. It is dialog that's removed from the table when one claims to know God's Righteous Commands. And it's dialog that spares lives. Get with the times, man!
|“Yes, it's true, I don't have much hope for this human race as a whole.”
"My belief in Gods has inspired good people to commit treachorous acts of violence throughout the ages"
How do you come off mudslinging at me like that? Yes, it's true, I don't have much hope for this human race as a whole. I do, however, have hope for every person as an individual. I'll do what I can while I'm on this earth, but I can't speak for anybody but myself.
I'm not out killing people who don't believe what I believe. Nobody who loved Christ would.
Perhaps, it's you who are inspiring hate with your words. You're saying to have peace, we must rid the world of the notion of God. If you spread this idea around and it becomes the norm, then how are people in the world that believe in God going to be treated. You're not going to tell me that there wouldn't be violence towards Christians are you?
So maybe I should blame a bunch of murders on you and your beliefs...hmm.
You see, Bob, what I'm saying is that you and you're beliefs are no more going to bring peace to the world than any one of the religions that you hate.
Essentially, what you're saying is that if everyone believes like me, then we will have peace. Whether or not you include the idea of God in you're beliefs or not, in a sense, you're rigid pattern of thought is just the same as anyone else. "Believe what I believe and then there will be peace"
Later on down the road, there may even be some crazy sect of athiesm that sees it nescessary to kill anyone who has a religion.
Dr. Jeff Snodgrass
Well, no. Sorry. Gods tell people to think less of others, whether it's because they're going to hell, possessed by the devil, puppeteered by the devil, cowardly infidels, or lost, unchosen, soulless animals not worthy of the one true whoever. It's written down in the goddamn bibles as law, for Christ's sake. And in turn gods also pronounce their followers THE most valuable, important, heaven worthy saints - heroes in the eyes of a supreme being. In democratic nations I assure you that violence and hatred against Christians won't be implemented as law.
A belief in absolutely no gods puts everyone on the same playing field, at least in regards to beliefs in myths. No one's better or worse, eviler or holier, higher or lower in the food chain in any way. It dismisses the subject from the table and pulls everyone down to the same level whether they like it or not, just as it should be – as evolved mammals. Forcing us to be one more step closer to judging each other on our actions, not our color, culture, race, sexual orientation, earlobe length, or religious beliefs! Another wall of division demolished, as it should be. Judging each other solely on actions, and nothing more. That's how it should be. You don't have to be a god to figure that out.
To me that there is THE most obvious and irrefutable evidence that gods aren't real, unless they wanted to see us divide and conquer. It dazzles me that you can't see such an obvious truth as that.
PS. In my opinion, blind faith is an action worthy of judging someone on, whether it's blind faith in a Douser's Wand, astrological charts, Ouiji Boards, ghost stories or Bibles. And the harshest action this judgment inspires from me is to think twice before trusting a believer's logical insight. It does not inspire hatred.
|“Bob, but you seem content with
being a miserable piece of shit...”
You are a fool. You can't see past the wall of pride you've built around yourself. I'd like to help you, Bob, but you seem content with being a miserable piece of shit so I have no choice but to leave you that way. It's your choice, after all.
You won't be hearing from me again.
Dr. Jeff Snodgrass
Now that's the sort of email I'd expect from a Dr. Snodgrass!
Your withdrawal from the discussion answers all my questions.
I'd like to hear your comments on the Snodgrass files. Click here.
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