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The Christian Atheist: Why its important to talk about God, even if you don’t believe in one

Long title, I know. I tried to think of something shorter but I have no patience for such things. I need to get to the nitty gritty. Like I’ve mentioned before, I don’t have a belief in god. With that said, I still engage in conversations about god without trying to dismiss the belief in god. Some people have an awareness of this otherness that I do not have. Some people have a deep unshakable belief in a being greater than ourselves that I don’t have. Some people have had deeply spiritual experiences that I’ve never had. For that reason I feel I am in no place to try to convience someone of my point of view of a god existing.

Even though I don’t believe in a god doesn’t mean I don’t think talking about god on an honest level is not important. I think it’s very important. There are god concepts which I embrace as healthy, good, and a positive force for humanity. Some of those concepts would include:

God as a Loving Parent. I put parent because I know some that think of god as a mother rather than a father. It doesn’t matter to me. The loving parent image of god is wonderful. I have two loving parents. Both very supportive of me, loving, understanding, and a joy to be around. The parent notion is good IF all of humanity are children of god.

The incarnation. I like this idea (kinda). I like this idea when one see’s it as god is completely comfortable being human. That god looks like Jesus in the sense that he’s not willing to return violence for violence, and that he would rather die for his enemy than have his enemy destroyed. That’s inspiring. I can get behind a god like that. I don’t like the incarnation when it becomes this dogmatic idea that you need to worship Jesus or burn in hell. When it’s poetic its beautiful. When it’s dogmatic its gross.

Trinitarianism (again, kinda). It depends on the Trinitarian. It’s the idea that god is father, son, and holy spirit engaged in a love dance that we find ourselves in the middle of. If god can be defined as the love a community feels (like father, son, and spirit) then again I think thats an amazing view of god. When people become dogmatic about this idea it puts me off. Michael Hardin has a very healthy and holistic view of the trinity that I find inspiring (even if I don’t believe it literally).

Now that I got the good ideas out of the way, let me tell you concepts of god that I will debate because I feel they are harmful. If someone is going to believe in god, so be it. The god they believe in should be the healthiest and most compassionate version of god possible. There are some god concepts that I feel are harmful to communities and a persons personal well being. It’s important we learn to identify these concepts and help people move forward into a healthier version of god. I wish this is something both atheist and theist would engage in, instead of tearing down those we disagree with.

A god of wrath and violence. This is a pretty broad statement that includes a lot of denominations and religions. If god commands death, commands war, holds grudges, punishes people, and is less compassionate than myself then it’s a god concept not worth it’s weight in shit. If you admit that god condones violence against his enemies then whats to stop us from condoning violence towards our own enemies and calling it righteous? Nothing. If god separates himself from people for eternity for disobeying him then whats to stop a parent from disowning their child because they are gay, lesbian, like rock music, like to dance, choose to live a different life style, or choose their religious outlook? Nothing. What people believe about god affects how they treat people.

A god of miracles. This is just a personal pet peeve of mine. I grew up with a charismatic/pentecostal background where god wants us to be victorious and blessed. If you believe hard enough, god will make a way. I use to hear testimonies on how god is as big as he is small. People prayed to god and he helped them find their car keys. Hallelujah!!! The only problem with that is children starving in third world countries. The only problem with that is the Holocaust. How is it that this miracle god can help you pay bills and find your car keys, but is unable to feed children and save those being burned alive in ovens? I know it makes us feel good that god would come through and find our keys. To those who have experienced loss and prayed until they were white in the knuckles, that kind of theology can seem cold and heartless.

I have more to say. I have more concepts I feel are healthy and others I feel are dangerous. But frankly, I need to go listen to music right now.

Love you deeply.

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The Other Guys: Temple Cleansing

Thaddeus walked into his house and threw himself on his favorite chair. He ran his hands through his hair and gave a heavy sigh.

Sarah called out from the kitchen, “Is that you Thad? You know who I saw today? I saw Mary. You know what she told me…”

Thaddeus wasn’t listening. Her words seemed muted. The weight of the day was just too much for him. Sarah came out of the kitchen carrying on with her conversation. As soon as Sarah laid eyes upon Thaddeus, she knew something was wrong.

“Thad! What’s wrong honey?!?”

Thaddeus rubbed both hands on his face. “Today was the worst day of my life. Complete insanity.”

Sarah sat next to Thaddeus, placing her hand on his. “What happened? Did you not do good at the temple exchange today?”

“I was doing great! A lot of people were in the temple, the money exchanging was going great, then this commotion broke out. The next thing I knew, some preacher was flipping over my table! My money went everywhere. I don’t know what money was mine, what money was Philo’s! It’s a mess.”

Sarah sat there with her mouth open. “Someone flipped your table? Why?”

“Wish to God I knew! To top it off, the guy drove out all the animals. My money is somewhere between my table, the temple entrance, covered in animal shit. So I have no idea what I’m going to do.”

“Did they catch the preacher? What happened to him?”

“I don’t know Sarah. Everyone was scrambling. I should have been a fisherman…”

Contemplations of a Lonley Monk

We’ve been doing some amazing research into the monastic era. We have found some amazing writing from the monks who lived in seclusion. One which was Brother Hairy Palm. His contemplation gives us great insight into what it was like being a monk during those times.

“I can’t help to feel a great ambition inside of me. Something waiting to burst out. All day and night I feel aware. I feel heightened to every experience.

Sister Abigale stopped by today. Me and the brothers always love her hospitality, her vigor, her scent. To be honest, she’s the only women I’ve seen in a few years. I must say that every time I see her the glory that rest upon her shines brighter and brighter.

Abigale’s glory stirs up the ambition deep inside of me. She inspires me even in the dead of night. My awareness awakens me. As uncomfortable as it is, I am moved to act.

I lay my hands to the work. I tirelessly work in the midnight hour. I grow tired, but my ambition grows strong.

When ambition fulfills it’s goal, bliss can be found. I relish in the bliss. All ambition is gone. I can rest.”

Fredrick Goes Back In Time To Meet Jesus

Fredrick stood before a group of men. He thought it would have been easy to spot Jesus his Lord and Savior but all the men looked the same. He knew that Jesus wasn’t going to have blond hair and blue eyes. He didn’t know how brown these first century Jews were going to be. As he stood there he waited for one of them to stand out, to glow, to start floating, to do something miraculous. Nothing happened.

Fredrick could understand the language they were speaking. It must have had something to do with the time displacement procedure. The group of men were speaking about various topics. A few were speaking about the newest Roman conquests, some were speaking on plans during the next festival, and some were just talking.

As Fredrick looked around he noticed he was standing on a countryside road. It must have been a connecting road between two cities. Fredrick approached the men, they seemed to not notice him standing there. Fredrick cleared his throat to get their attention. One of the men who was more listening to a conversation than engaging in one, turned to Fredrick and raised his eyebrow.

“Excuse me. I’m looking for Jesus.”

“He’s preoccupied right now.”

Of course, Fredrick thought. Jesus must be healing someone, casting out a demon, or deep in prayer. Why were these men not with Jesus during these miraculous events? Fredrick concluded it must be because of their little faith. “I would like to see him now. I’ve come a long way and would like to be involved in what he’s doing at this moment.”

The man stared blankly at Fredrick and replied, “He had some bad fish in the last town and is taking a shit… I think he would like his privacy. He can wipe his own ass!”

A few of the men laughed and Fredrick blushed in embarrassment. These men seemed very rough and crass. These couldn’t be the twelve he read about in the gospels. It had to be a joke. Jesus couldn’t have a stomach flu. God can’t get sick.

A man approached the group. He looked a little under the weather. His forehead was dotted with sweat beads. He was holding his stomach with one of his hands. He patted the back of one of his companions and said, “Alright, let’s move!”

The group continued on with their conversations as they began to walk down the road. Fredrick quickly stepped up to the front and started to examine the man he assumed to be Jesus. He was shorter than most of the other men in the group. His clothing was spotted with dirt around the hem and some food stains could be spotted around the collar. His hair was matted. As he watched Jesus speak to one of his disciples he noticed black dots on Jesus’ teeth. It looked like Jesus had some tooth decay.

There was a larger group down the road that Jesus was approaching with his disciples. Finally, he would see some action. There were two groups of people arguing over something about a temple. Fredrick had no idea what they were arguing about. Jesus then spoke up and started asking questions to both groups. He was talking about mercy over sacrifice, then went into something about forgiveness and loving each other. Both groups seemed to be challenged by what he was saying, but it didn’t move Fredrick the way he thought it would. Fredrick had heard better preaching on Christian Television.

This Jesus then approached a lame man in the crowd. Finally some real action! Fredrick knew that a miracle would soon take place. Jesus sat down next to the lame man and opened up a sack that he carried slung around his shoulder. He pulled out some food and some coins and gave it to the man. Jesus then kissed this man and told everyone how the least is the greatest…

This seemed to hush the crowd. This man whom everyone ignored in the heat of the argument, Jesus noticed. It seemed like everyone was ashamed of themselves in a sense, and yet a healing was happening. Fredrick didn’t see this lame man walk, but he did see everyone notice the lame man instead of pretending he wasn’t there.

Fredrick did witness a miracle. Jesus wasn’t anything he thought he was. Jesus disappointed him in appearance, disappointed him in his wonder working, and disappointed him in his preaching. He showed Fredrick a God that was not very impressive at all. He was dirty, surrounded himself with crude people, and has physical weaknesses. But what this Jesus did with that lame man seemed to transcend the moment.

Jesus was a human. Jesus was a common human. Jesus had flaws in Fredrick eyes. This scared Fredrick, but also gave him hope.

Dog Church

Pastor Fluffy was a Great Dane. His fur was well groomed and his posture commanded respect from the other canines at the First Church of Calvary Bone. It always took a while for Pastor Fluffy to make his way up to the podium. Most of the members of the church were not interested in sniffing each other, but when it came to Pastor Fluffy everyone wanted to stick their nose in his ass. It was a common belief in the church that one could receive the blessing on Pastor Fluffy if they sniffed deep and long enough.

Pastor Fluffy took his place at the podium. The Great Dane opened in a spirit filled howl. The rest of the pack joined into the howl, every dog could really feel the presence of God in that place. Pastor Fluffy’s howl went to a soft whimper which lead into a holy hush that fell upon the congregation.

Shhlllllp…. shhhhhhhhhllllllp….. shlp shlp shlp… shhhhhhllllllllp

An old half-blind hound dog named Trooper was sitting in the back of the church cleaning himself. Such actions would quench the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit was easily offended and could be quenched. Lapping ones testicles in the middle of service would be the exact action that would scare away this gentle dove of a spirit. Every dog knew this, but Trooper just wasn’t spiritual enough to understand. His motto was, “If it stinks, lick it!” Pastor Fluffy nodded to the ushers and they went to take Trooper outside until he done with his tongue bath.

Pastor Fluffy cleared his throat. “Today’s message is on the power of bark. Many dogs don’t understand how vital this is in the life of the believer. As we all know, God has selected us to live with the humans we dwell with. This was apart of Gods plan. The devil is seeking whom he may devour and sends many people to my humans house. The most wretched of these people that he sends is the mail man. We all know about the mail man. I bark every time he arrives, and every time he leaves. My family is still alive today because of the power of bark.”

A few of the dogs in the congregation barked in approval.

“There is a popular teaching going around today condoning the peaceful habitation of cats and dogs. Such a teaching is a heresy and false doctrine of the end times. Let me ask you, can a cat bark? If a cat can’t speak the holy language of bark how can they be of God? Let me ask you, when you bark does a cat not flee? We must not be deceived by the world, or even by the humans we live with. Trust on and lean on the power of bark. We are the light on the hill. We must not loose our saltiness…”

Pastor Fluffy was on fire that day. At the end of the message the dogs spoke of the anointing that was on Pastor Fluffy. Some even said they could smell the aroma of road kill during the message (this was one of the manifestations of the spirit).

When the dogs returned home that day they made sure everyone knew that they were true believers in the power of bark. Barking wasn’t something they were ashamed of, and if it annoyed their humans or the cats that lived with them, then they had to learn to get over it. The power of bark was the only thing keeping the devil at bay and one day the humans would understand.

Spiritual Warfare (Part 2)

Spiritual Warfare pt 2.

While deep in meditation the other day, I was taken to the third level of prophetic revelation in the spirit. The Lord laid before me a catalog from Toys-R-Us. An audible voice then spoke to me, “Behold, the doorway of demonic activity into the lives of children.” As I turned the pages the spirit downloaded information into my heart. He showed me the demonic influences on common toys. If you find any of these toys in your home you must deal with them like a witch. Stone the toy, burn it, or drown the toy at the bottom of a lake. DO NOT keep the toy in your home. You have been warned.

Frozen
A very popular movie out right now. However, the themes in this movie are downright evil and demonic. Let’s first point out the obvious: magic. This movie is about a princess who can cast ice magic. When a child see’s this they will want to join a witches covenant to be like their Disney princess idol.

One of the theme songs of the movie is, “Let It Go.” Let what go? It’s very clear once you watch the movie. This movie is instructing our children to let go of their morality, let go of their faith in Christ, and latch onto the occult witchcraft of ice magic. No ice magic is strong enough to protect you from the eternal flames of a devils hell.

Finally, and most disturbing, this movie promotes lesbianism and incest. One of the main characters was informed in this movie that the only thing that could save her was true love. The movie was filled with strong men who would be more than suitable to be her true love. But, it was the love of her sister that broke the spell. Sister love? It makes me sick.

Little Mermaid
Many don’t realize that this movie promotes Mormonism. Let’s look at the facts: every one of King Tridents daughters looked differently. From a blond, to a red head, to a brunette, to a black haired daughter. The reason for so many different looking daughters is because Trident had many wives.

This movie also promotes bestiality. Ariel is not a human, she is a mermaid. Prince Eric is not a merman, he is a human being. These are two different classes of species. When Eric married and kissed Ariel it’s tantamount to a human having intercourse with a horse. They may display human like qualities, but you must never act on your desire to make love to horses. Even though their main and rippling thighs might remind you of a womans, a horse is a horse. Ariel is a mermaid. Eric is a human. End of story.

Walt Disney should be ashamed of himself. Right now his demonic spirit possesses the staff at Disney Studios to continue to promote ungodly ideas and dogmas. All we can do is wait for the return of the Lord when Christ will make all these ungodly people pay for their mistakes with their blood. Grace and peace to you all. Amen.

Live the Life of Impossibility

An excerpt in The Abundant Life of the Overcoming Believer’s Magazine from a sermon by Rob Berkley.

“God has a special calling for every one of your lives. He has called you to do amazing things. Your life should not be natural. It should be SUPER natural. If your life isn’t supernatural, then its superficial. God wants so much recognition in your life that when people look at your life they only thing they can conclude is that there is a God.

God has called you to do the impossible. God has called you to do things that we could never accomplish ourselves. That’s why he has given us his grace. His grace enables us to live a life that is so unique the only thing people can conclude is that there is a God.

We overlook many opportunities to live this impossible life. We overlook so many opportunities to practice being lead in the spirit. We need to practice this life of impossibility, we need to practice being lead by God.

Let me give you a scenario I do every morning. The only kind of clothing I have in my house is woman’s clothing. It’s a miracle that I leave the house every day dressed in expensive suits. Why? Because I don’t own one expensive suit. What you are looking at right now is a creative miracle.

Matter of fact, every morning I refuse to take a step out of bed until the clothes manifest onto my body. I will lay naked on my bed for hours until the manifestation of the spirit takes place. Now, for some of you that seems impossible. O ye of little faith. If God could speak forth the universe in a word, if he could split the red sea, if he could raise Jesus from the dead, then he can manifest clothing on your body.

Live the impossible life. Trust God for everything. According to your faith be it unto you.”