Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Another Christian Blogger loses his Faith

Eight years ago, "Nate", was a Christian.  He started a blog on the internet to share his Faith.  He is now an atheist.  Sound familiar?  Here are his first two posts from eight years ago and his comment today in 2014 about those posts:


Copied from Nate's blogFinding Truth

So today marks 8 years that I’ve been doing this blog. That’s a pretty big milestone! I had two posts on November 14, 2006, and I thought it would be fun to repost them here (along with a little commentary).

Here’s the first:


Well, this is the first official post of my new blog. Don’t expect much, though. I’m hoping to turn this into a weekly thing with posts centering around religion – specifically, “Christianity.”
Wish me luck… :)
 


So that was innocuous enough. Now here’s post number 2:



If you’ve spent much time perusing your Bible, you’ve probably stumbled across passages dealing with the “mystery” (and most likely, these were passages written by Paul).  In Ephesians 3, Paul spends time revealing the mystery to us: that the Gentiles now have access to salvation!  Wrapped up in this mystery is God’s entire plan of salvation – salvation for all!  But why is it called a “mystery?”  And should it still be “mysterious” to us today?

I think 1 Corinthians 1:18-25 best explains the way in which Christ’s gospel was/is a mystery.  As vs 18 says:
18 For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.
We can see from this passage that God’s plan of salvation makes no sense to those who refuse to believe it, but to those of us who accept it, it’s brilliant!  Verse 21 goes on to say:
21 For since, in the wisdom of God, the world through wisdom did not know God, it pleased God through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe.
See, because the world is so “wise,” it views the concept of God as foolishness.  They have been blinded by their own pretensions.  For the Jews and Greeks of the day, it wasn’t that they didn’t believe in the supernatural; it wasn’t that they didn’t believe in deities.  Their problem was that they thought they already knew what God would do.  The Jews already had a fixed idea of what the Messiah would be, so when Christ appeared and didn’t lead them to victory against the Romans, they refused to accept him.  The Greeks didn’t accept Christ because they couldn’t conceive of a god allowing himself to be put to death by his own creation.  And because they already had things “figured out,” they missed their chance.

Today, people do the same thing.  They would rather put faith in scientific theories that have not been proven.  They would rather believe that all of the order we see in our universe (the fragile food chain, vast differences throughout the animal and plant kingdoms, the very specific orbits of planets, etc) was created through a giant explosion (something that, in all practical applications, has only been shown to destroy, not create).  Have they been blinded by their own “wisdom?”

Too often, even those who profess to be religious only listen to their own ideas about what God wants.  Many times they view the Bible as a collection of stories or suggestions, and not the “wisdom of God that leads to salvation” that 1 Corinthians purports it to be.  How is that different from what the Jews and Greeks were condemned for?

Throughout the Bible, passages talk about truth and understanding.  I firmly believe that God gave us understanding and intellect for a reason.  We are supposed to be able to understand God’s message for us.  It’s not supposed to be “mysterious” any longer.  It’s not supposed to be some “better felt than told” experience.  No, God’s word is supposed to be powerful and undeniable.  It’s supposed to move us and touch us in a way that nothing else can.  But for it to do that, we have to read it, study it, know it.

Nate today:  It’s a little painful to read through that. I cringe when I read how badly I understood things about evolution and the Big Bang back then, or when I alluded to non-Christians as just being those who “refuse to believe it”. It’s kind of funny, but I was guilty of the same thing I was accusing others of. I thought I had the answers, but I had never taken time to really examine any other point of view.

The one decent thing from the post that serves as a bit of foreshadowing about where I would eventually wind up is the last paragraph. You can see that while I was firmly ensnared in Christianity, I believed that it was not supposed to be utterly mysterious. It was supposed to be consistent and “undeniable.” It took a while, but I finally realized that Christianity just didn’t deliver in that regard.


Gary's comment left of Nate's blog:

Hi Nate,

Congrats on the anniversary!

It is very interesting to read your second post because this is exactly how I used to think as an orthodox (fundamentalist) Christian less than a year ago:

Non-believers are simply blinded by sin. They think that they know it all, but as the Bible says they are in utter darkness. They are spiritually dead and cannot understand the things of God by their own mental abilities, no matter how intelligent they may think they are. Only the power of God’s Word can break into that darkness and expose them to God’s truth. Once exposed to God’s Word, if they will repent (stop being stubborn) and “call on the name of the Lord”, God will gift them faith and they will the see the Truth and will believe…and they then will be filled with wonderful joy and peace!

What nonsense.

Now, as a non-believer, I run into this same mentality with conservative Christians all the time. Of course, these Christians won’t accept for a second that I was once one of them. I obviously didn’t do it right, I wasn’t really a Christian.

It is really hard to break this “lock on Truth” that conservative Christians have been programmed to believe. I have come to the conclusion that trying to point out the discrepancies and scribe alterations in the Bible to conservative/orthodox Christians is a waste of time. No matter how glaring the discrepancy, they always have a comeback. (Their clergy and apologists have had 2,000 years to come up with one harmonization after another.) I also no longer bother arguing morality with them. To conservative Christians, their god IS morality. His actions cannot be questioned. So I leave out any discussion of morality, immorality, “good" and “evil”.

So this is what I now say to them: Your religion and your god condone Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide. I want nothing to do with any organization or entity that perpetrates, endorses, or justifies the wholesale slaughter of men, women, and children.



"Look, Mommy! It's a Witch Doctor!"

I predict than within 50 years, your reaction to seeing this man walking down the street


the local clergy


will be no different than seeing this man walking down the street.


the local clergy


Monday, November 24, 2014

Local Christian Pastor endorses Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide


Ethnic Cleansing-  the mass expulsion or killing of members
 of an unwanted ethnic or religious group in a society.
 
Genocide-  the deliberate killing of a large group of people,
especially those of a particular ethnic group or nation.

 
 

Preuters News Agency
YourTown, USA
November 24, 2014
 
John Smith, pastor of Resurrection Church, located on Fourth Street here in YourTown, was interviewed today regarding his views on the violence and wars fought in the name of religion occurring around the world.  Pastor Smith expressed his disgust at all violence committed in the name of Religion and Faith, in particular he expressed deep concern and support for the many Christian groups around the world who are being targeted simply for their Christian faith, particularly by Muslim extremists.  "These Muslim fundamentalists have no regard for human life.  They kill men, women, and children without any sense of morality.  Their actions are repulsive, inhumane, and criminal.  There is no justification for this appalling behavior," said the good pastor.
 
When asked about similar Christian behavior in centuries past, Pastor Smith blamed this behavior on an incorrect reading of the Holy Bible.  He condemned this past Christian behavior as equally immoral as that of today's Muslim fundamentalists.
 
The pastor was then asked if he also condemned the ethnic cleansing and genocidal slaughter of thousands, if not millions of people, by the God of the Old Testament.  The pastor seemed perturbed by the question, as if the reporter had pre-planned a "gotch ya" interview.
 
His terse reply was as follows:  God is the essence of Good.  Therefore it is impossible for God to commit evil.  If God commanded the removal of an entire people from their land (ethnic cleansing) and even the wholesale killing of an entire nation, including children and infants (genocide), he had good reasons for doing so.
 
Surprised, our reporter asked for a clarification.  "Pastor Smith.  Are you condoning Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide?"
 
The Pastor retorted, "Yes and no.  Ethnic Cleansing and Genocide are immoral...unless my God commands it."
 
 
Post script:
 
The following day after this article appeared in the local newspaper and in other papers around the state, there was an outpouring of rage against the pastor's comments.  Protests were planned in front of his church.  A number of members of his church resigned their membership.  The pastor became a pariah in the community and state.  National media plan to pick up the story on tonight's evening news.
 
Gary:
 
I have come to believe that this is the best method of presenting the true face of orthodox/conservative Christianity.  Debating a conservative Christian over the morality of the Christian god and his brutal actions in the Old Testament is a waste of time.  It is a waste of time because to these people their god is the essence of Goodness and Morality.  So declaring the God of the Bible as immoral is no different to them than claiming that 2 is not a number.  Two is a number by definition, and the Christian God is moral by definition.
 
"Morality", "immorality", "good", "bad", "evil" are all subjective words.  A devout Hindu may feel justified in killing his daughter as a good act, just for marrying a non-Hindu, whereas I would consider that act as evil.  However, "genocide" and "ethnic cleansing" are not subjective words.  The definition of these words are not culturally based.  These words have very clear, objective definitions.
 
So, no more arguing with orthodox/conservative Christians regarding morality, good and evil.
 
I intend to simply say:  Your religion condones ethnic cleansing and genocide.  I oppose and denounce ethnic cleansing and genocide.  I therefore denounce your religion.
 
No talk about subjective morality or evil vs. good.  Just point out the objective fact that the orthodox/conservative Christian god ordered and committed ethnic cleansing and genocide on a massive scale.  For this reason, I reject and denounce the orthodox/conservative Christian religion.

Witch Doctor declares that there is no Morality apart from his god, Orongo

Imagine that you are on a scientific expedition in the early 1800's to the deepest jungles of a far away continent.  Your party comes upon a people who practice some very bizarre religious practices and hold very different standards of morality than you.

This people considers it moral to annihilate every member of an enemy tribe, including children and infants.  Twice per year, however, two captured enemy children are held in reserve, and are sacrificed upon a high altar to the god, Orongo.  The childrens' throats are slit, and as the blood pours from their convulsing bodies, the priest or witch doctor, raises the body of the dying child skyward and pronounces the pleasure of Orongo.  His righteous anger has been appeased once again by the shedding of "innocent" blood.

The elders of this people sit down with you and your group for a banquet to honor you as their guests.  They ask you what you think of their culture and customs.  You reply that you admire many of the costumes of their nation.  You admire that the morality of the tribe prevents tribe members from stealing from each other, harming each other, and you greatly admire that all tribe members strive to make sure that every member of the tribe is cared for.

However, you say with a little nervousness, that you find their practice of deliberately killing the women and children of enemy tribes as abhorrent and you especially find abhorrent their practice of sacrificing enemy children to their god.  In your belief system, these acts are immoral.

The look on the faces of your hosts is very easy to read.  They are shocked and amazed that you would think this way.

"But Orongo tells us that these acts are good.  Orongo tells us that we must kill all members of enemy tribes, even children, because these peoples are evil in the sight of Orongo.  These enemy children will grow up to be evil and will commit evil acts, so it is much better that they are killed young before they have an opportunity to increase the Evil committed by their people. 

The sacrifices of enemy children is directly ordered by Orongo.  Orongo is good and compassionate.  Orongo can do no evil as he is the essence of Good.  This shedding of blood may appear evil and immoral to you as a mortal, but the sacrifice of these children serves a greater good.  Orongo tells us so."

The tribe's elderly witch doctor concludes the discussion with this sage advice:  "Orongo IS Morality.  Without Orongo the world would be chaos.  Orongo gives order and morality to our world, therefore, we obey Orongo in all things.  He is the Great Creator.  Who are we to question the Creator's motives or his goodness?  How can the Essence of Goodness not be good?"

What is your reaction to this belief system?  Think about it for a few minutes. 

If the worldview of this ignorant, uneducated, primitive tribe is wrong, why then, do you as an educated, 21st century, civilized, orthodox/conservative Christian hold YOUR belief system, which includes the same moralization regarding the slaughter of children, to a different standard?

The local clergy


Sunday, November 23, 2014

My Advice to Celibate, Same-Sex Attracted, Conservative Christians

Find a boyfriend.

 
 
 
Or a girlfriend.
 
 
…me (right) and my love on her birthday which was october 16th!  we were lucky to have the week off and spend it overseas in belfast, northern ireland (we live in toronto)!  an amazing trip with an amazing woman, i adore you mariana! 
 

Life is too short to spend it obeying the sexual morality of superstitious, Bronze Age, Middle-Eastern goat herders.  Find someone to love and be happy. 
 
I sincerely apologize to all same-sex attracted Christians whom I previously encouraged on this blog (when I and this blog were orthodox Christian) to spend the rest of their lives...single, celibate, and alone.  What a terrible demand orthodox and conservative Christianity has placed on same-sex attracted people over the last 2,000 years, asking them to give up the most beautiful experience in life:  to love and to be loved. 

This archaic belief system isn't true, my friend, and I'll give you one very simple piece of evidence to show you why:  A truly loving and good Heavenly Father would care much more about violent, brutal, behavior than he would what you do in bed with another consenting adult.  The God of the Bible seems to have his moral priorities very confused.

If there is a Creator, he/she/or it created you just as you are.   Accept and enjoy it!  Let go of the religious nonsense that has held you back from finding love and happiness.  Be free, friend.  Be free!

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Your God slaughtered millions of Children in the Old Testament. So I have a Question for you:


If God chose to teleport YOU back in time to the day that Saul and the Hebrews slaughtered every man, woman, and child of their  "pagan" neighbors the Amalekites, by God's direct command (although disobeying God and sparing the king and some of the animals), what would you say if an Israelite soldier asked you for advice in the following situation:

This Israelite soldier has just hacked to death an Amalekite man and slashed the throat of the man's eleven year old son. The Amalekite man's wife and his two year old daughter are huddled in the corner of their home, wailing in terror, looking at the soldier and pleading for mercy. The Hebrew soldier turns to you, and asks,

"Dear ______, God has ordered us to kill every Amalekite man, woman, and child. I really don't want to kill this mother and her small child. Should I obey God's command and chop this terrified, defenseless mother and her little girl to pieces with my sword or spare them?

What would you advise this soldier to do? You only have seconds to advise him.   He needs a "yes" or "no"...now.


Gary:  If you advise this soldier to go ahead and hack to pieces this mother and her little girl, what does that say about you?  And if you advise the solider to show compassion and to spare the mother and her child, what does that say about your God who ordered the soldier to slay them?

 
The Massacre of the Innocents - Nicolas Poussin 

Friday, November 21, 2014

Did Moses really write the Pentateuch?

The five books of Moses are a.k.a. The Pentateuch,
the Books of the Law, the Law, and the Torah


Conflicting quotations:

  • "...despite all the arguments made against Mosaic authorship/editorship, the traditional view [that Moses wrote the Pentateuch] is still as critically tenable as any of the others." J.D. Douglas et al. 1
  • "..there is hardly a biblical scholar in the world actively working on the [authorship] problem who would claim that the Five Books of Moses were written by Moses." R.E. Friedman. 2
  • "...it has long been recognized that...[Moses] cannot have been the author, and that the Pentateuch is in fact anonymous." D.J.A. Clines. 3

Biblical Terms:


Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy are sometimes referred to as:
  • the "Five Books of Moses," because the writings themselves identify the author as Moses, or
  • the "Pentateuch," a Greek term meaning "pente (5) teuchos (volumes)," or
  • the "Books of the Law", or
  • the "Torah" (a Hebrew word meaning "instruction")
These books were originally written as a single unbroken scroll. Sometime before the 2nd Century BCE, it was divided into the 5 books that we see today.

What does the Bible itself say about authorship of the Pentateuch?


There are about two dozen verses in the Hebrew Scriptures and one dozen in the Christian Scriptures which state or strongly imply that Moses was the author. Consider the following passages from the New Living Translation (NLT):
  • Passages in the Pentateuch itself:
    • Exodus 17:14 "Then the Lord instructed Moses, 'Write this down as a permanent record...'"
    • Exodus 24:4 "Then Moses carefully wrote down all the Lord's instructions."
    • Exodus 34:27 "And the Lord said to Moses, 'Write down all these instructions, for they represents the terms of my covenant with you and with Israel.'"
    • Leviticus 1:1 "The Lord called to Moses from the Tabernacle and said to him, 'Give the following instructions to the Israelites...'"
    • Leviticus 6:8 "Then the Lord said to Moses, 'Give Aaron and his sons the following instructions...'"
    • Deuteronomy 31:9 "So Moses wrote down this law and gave it to the priests."
    • Deuteronomy 31:24-26 "When Moses had finished writing down this entire body of law in a book..."
  • Passages elsewhere in the Hebrew Scriptures:
    • Joshua 1:7-8 "...Obey all the laws Moses gave you."
    • Joshua 8:31-34 "He followed the instructions that Moses the Lord's servant had written in the Book of the Law..."
    • Joshua 22:5 "...obey all the commands and the laws that Moses gave to you."
    • 2 Chronicles 34:14 "...Hilkiah the high priest...found the book of the Law of the Lord as it had been given through Moses."
  • Passages in the Gospels which show that Jesus and John the Baptizer believed Moses to be the author:
    • Matthew 19:7-8 "...why did Moses say a man could merely write an official letter of divorce and send her away?", they asked. Jesus replied, 'Moses permitted divorce...'"
    • Matthew 22:24 "Moses said, 'If a man dies without children...'"
    • Mark 7:10 "For instance, Moses gave you this law from God..."
    • Mark 12:24 "...haven't you ever read about this in the writings of Moses, in the story of the burning bush..."
    • Luke 24:44 "...I told you that everything written about me by Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must all come true."
    • John 1:17 "For the law was given through Moses..."
    • John 5:46 "But if you had believed Moses, you would have believed me because he wrote about me. And since you don't believe what he wrote, how will you believe what I say?"
    • John 7:23 "...do it, so as not to break the law of Moses..."
  • Passages elsewhere in the Christian Scriptures:
    • Acts 26:22 "...I teach nothing except what the prophets and Moses said would happen..."
    • Romans 10:5 "For Moses wrote..."
But nowhere in the Bible is it specifically stated that Moses wrote the entire Pentateuch. Even if one believes in the inerrancy of the Bible, a case can be made that he authored only parts of the Torah, and that other writers added sections of their own and/or edited the resultant text.

Beliefs of conservative theologians:


Ancient Jewish and Christian writers, such as Ecclesiasticus, Josephus, Philo, and Origen were essentially in full agreement that the Pentateuch was written solely by Moses. The Mishnah and the Talmud also confirm this. Tradition during the first millennium of Christian history agrees with this belief. 4
Many present-day Fundamentalists and other Evangelical Christians continue to believe that Moses wrote the entire Pentateuch:
  • P.N. Benware states that "Moses was the human author of Genesis and the other books of the Pentateuch ...These five 'books of the law' were written by Moses alone, with the exception of Deuteronomy 34, which records the death of Moses... The Pentateuch, therefore, is an inspired, inerrant, authoritative document written by the man Moses." 5
  • The authors of the New Commentary on the Whole Bible state that "The education Moses would have received as the adopted grandson of Pharoh specially qualified him for the task of compiling and writing the Pentateuch." 1
  • Larry Richards states: "Moses wrote or supervised the writing of the bulk of the Pentateuch and ...these books are rightly viewed as both a divine revelation and an accurate, eyewitness account of events described as happening in Moses' lifetime." 6
  • J.W. Hayford writes: "Jewish tradition lists Moses as the author of Genesis and of the next four books....we notice a number of loanwords from Egyptian that are found in Genesis, a fact which suggests that the original author had his roots in Egypt, as did Moses." 7
Since conservative Christians believe in the inerrancy (freedom from error) of the Bible, the matter of authorship is settled and is not open to debate. Moses wrote at least the vast majority of the Pentateuch. Some suggest that he authored all five books, and that the account of his death and burial was a prophecy by Moses. However, some Fundamentalist and other Evangelical Christians have deviated from traditional Christian teachings. They believe that selected passages were written by persons other than Moses. Some of these writings are referred to as "post-Mosaica" (material that was added after Moses' death). Others are called "a-Mosaica" (material that could have been written at the time of Moses but which could not reasonably be attributed to him).

Fundamentalists and other Evangelical Christians generally believe that Moses wrote all or most of the five books after the Israelite's exodus from Egypt, but before they entered Canaan. This would date the writing to the 40 year period when the Israelites were wandering through the desert, circa 1450 BCE.


Beliefs of mainline and liberal theologians:


They generally accept the "Documentary Hypothesis" which asserts that the Pentateuch was written by a group of four authors, from various locations in Palestine, over a period of centuries. 8 Each wrote with the goal of promoting his/her own religious views:
  • J: a writer who used JHWH as the "unpronounceable name of God." It is often translated as Jehovah.
  • E: a writer who used Elohim as the divine name.
  • D: the author of the book of Deuteronomy.
  • P: a writer who added material of major interest to the priesthood.
Finally, a fifth individual was involved :
  • R: a redactor who shaped the contributions of J, E, P and D together into the present Pentateuch.
However, individual clergy in mainline denominations are frequently more traditionally minded than are their theologians. Also, individual members are often much more conservative in their beliefs about the Bible than are their clergy.

Some clues that Moses didn't write the Pentateuch, according to liberal theologians:


As mentioned elsewhere in this website, many Christian and Jewish conservatives believe that Moses is the sole author of the Pentateuch and that he was inspired directly by God to write text that is free of error. Other theologians have claimed that there is some internal evidences in the Bible that these conclusions are invalid:
  • Theologians were prompted to develop the Documentary Hypothesis as a result of observing the presence of doublets in the Pentateuch. These are pairs of stories which occur in two separate locations in the text. The doublets generally do not agree fully; there are usually minor differences between the stories. R.E.  Friedman, in his 1997 book "Who Wrote the Bible?" lists a number of them:
    • Two creation stories in Genesis.
    • Two descriptions of the Abrahamic covenant.
    • Two stories of the naming of Isaac.
    • Two instances where Abraham deceived a king by introducing his wife Sarah as his sister.
    • Two stories of Jacob traveling to Mesopotamia
    • Two stories of a revelation at Beth-el to Jacob.
    • Two accounts of God changing Jacob's name to Israel
    • Two instances where Moses extracted water from two different rocks at two different locations called Meribah.
    It is difficult to account for so many doublets -- most containing slight discrepancies -- if all five books were written over a short interval of time by Moses or by any other single individual. Liberal theologians reasoned that a much more logical explanation is that the books were written by multiple authors who lived long after the events described. That would have allowed the oral tradition to be passed from generation to generation in different areas of the land so that they had a chance to deviate from each other before being written down. In a few cases, triplets have been found in the Pentateuch where the same accounts appears three times. 10
  • Genesis 7:15: In the story of the Flood, these verses have Noah collecting two of each species of animals -- one male and one female . Genesis 7:2-3 specifies 7 pairs of clean animals and birds and 1 pair of unclean animals.
  • Genesis 7:11 describes water coming from the heavens and from below the ground to generate the worldwide flood. However, Genesis 7:4 describes all of the water falling as rain.
  • Genesis 7:11, 7:17, 7:24 and 8:3 specify different intervals for the flood duration which have no apparent resolution. 11
  • Genesis 11:31 This describes Abraham as living in the city Ur, and associates that location with the Chaldeans. Archaeological evidence indicates that the Chaldeans did not exist as a tribe at the time of Abraham; they rose to power much later, during the 1st millennium BCE.
  • Genesis 14:14: This verse refers to Abram pursuing some surviving kings of Sodom and Gomorrah to the city of Dan. However, that place name did not exist until a long time after Moses' death. Other locations are also identified in the Pentateuch by names that were invented long after the death of Moses.
  • Genesis 22:14: The verse states: "And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovahjireh: as it is said to this day..." There are many verses in the Torah that state that something has lasted "to this day". That appears to have been written by a writer who composed the passages long after the events described, and long after Moses' death.
  • Genesis 36 contained a list of Edomite kings which included some monarchs who were in power after Moses' death. R.E. Friedman wrote: "In the eleventh century, Isaac ibn Yashush, a Jewish court physician of a ruler in Muslim Spain, pointed out that a list of Edomite kings that appears in Genesis 36 named kings who lived long after Moses was dead. Ibn Yashush suggested that the list was written by someone who lived after Moses. The response to his conclusion was that he was called "Isaac the blunderer." History has proven him to be correct, at least as viewed by most mainline and liberal theologians. 9
  • Exodus 33:7 describes Moses entering the Tabernacle. Yet, the Tabernacle had not yet been built; its subsequent construction is described in Exodus 35.
  • Numbers 12:3: This verse states "Now the man Moses was very humble, more than all men who were on the face of the earth." (NKJ) If Moses were that humble, it is unlikely that he would have described himself in these glowing terms.
  • Numbers 25:1 which describes the rebellion at Peor referred to Moabite women; Numbers 25:6 14 refers to Midianites.
  • Deuteronomy 34:5-9: These verses describe the death, burial, age at death, physical condition at death, and mourning period for Moses. It is difficult for an individual to describe events at and after his or her death. Some have suggested that this portion of the Pentateuch (and only this portion) was written later by Joshua. However, R.E. Friedman wrote:
"...in the sixteenth century, Carlstadt, a contemporary of Luther, commented that the account of Moses' death is written in the same style as texts that precede it. This makes it difficult to claim that Joshua or anyone else merely added a few lines to an otherwise Mosaic manuscript." 9
  • Deuteronomy 34:10 This states "There has never been another prophet like Moses..." (NLT) This sounds like a passage written long after Moses' death. Enough time would have had to pass for many other prophets to have arisen, to passed from the scene, and to have been evaluated.

Related essays on this web site:


References used:

  1. J.D. Douglas et al, "Old Testament Volume: New Commentary on the Whole Bible," Tyndale, Wheaton, IL, (1990), Page 2
  2. R.E. Friedman, "Who Wrote the Bible?" Harper Collins, San Francisco, CA, (1997), Page 28.
  3. D.J.A. Clines, "Pentateuch," [an essay in B.M. Metzger et al, "The Oxford Companion to the Bible," Oxford University Press, New York, NY (1993), Page 579 to 582].
  4. R.K. Harrison, "Introduction to the Old Testament," Page 497 [cited in R.B. Dillard & T. Longman III, "An Introduction to the Old Testament," Zondervan, Grand Rapids, MI, (1994) Page 39]
  5. P.N. Benware, "Survey of the Old Testament", Moody Press, Chicago IL, (1993)
  6. Larry Richards, "Bible Difficulties Solved," Revell, Grand Rapids, MI, (1993), Pages 13 to 15.
  7. J.W. Hayford, "Hayford's Bible Handbook," Thomas Nelson, Nashville, TN, (1995).
  8. C.M. Laymon, Editor, The Interpreter's One-Volume Commentary on the Bible, Abingdon Press, Nashville TN (1971), P. 122.
  9. Op Cit, Friedman, Page 19.
  10. Op Cit, Friedman, Page 22.
  11. Ethical Atheist, "How Long was Noah's Flood? (Examination of Biblical Accounts of the Great Deluge)," at: http://www.ethicalatheist.com/

Copyright � 1997 to 2014 by Ontario Consultants on Religious Tolerance
Latest update: 2014-FEB-08
Written by: B.A. Robinson

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Fifteen Reasons Why I am no Longer a Christian

1.  There is zero evidence for the claim that tens of thousands, if not millions, of Hebrews were enslaved in Egypt for hundreds of years, wandered the Sinai for 40 years, or launched a massive, bloody conquest of Canaan.  There is also zero evidence for the great kingdoms of David and Solomon as described in the Bible.  No trace of Solomon's temple has ever been found.  The top archaeologists in Israel have confirmed:  these stories are fictional; they never happened; they are Iron Age fabrications.

2.  The god of the Old Testament was vindictive, quick tempered, and ever eager to shed blood.  If he exists, his hands are covered with the blood of millions of men, women, children, and babies.  The barbaric actions of this ancient middle-eastern god are not compatible with the loving, forgiving, compassionate character of Jesus of Nazareth.  They cannot be the same god.

3.  The "Jesus prophecies" in the Old Testament can easily be demonstrated to not be about Jesus but about Jacob, otherwise known as Israel---the Hebrew people.

4.  Writing analysis of the first five books of the Bible, the Pentateuch, decisively shows that Moses could not have written these books.  Jesus thought Moses did.  Jesus was wrong.

5.  There are numerous, irreconcilable discrepancies in details of particular events described in the Pentateuch that are also described in I and II Kings or in I and II Chronicles.

6.  The Creation story described in Genesis chapter 1 is very different from the description of Creation in the following chapters.

7.  Geologic evidence proves without any doubt that there was never a world wide flood.  Evidence shows that the Hebrew story of Noah is a plagiarism of the Babylonia story of Gilgamesh.

8.  Scientific evidence proves that the universe is billions of years older than what the Bible tells us.

9.  The book of Daniel can conclusively be proven to be a fraud.  It was written during the reign of the Greeks, not during the reign of the Babylonians or Persians.  Jesus quoted a book we now know is a fraud.  Therefore Jesus was mistaken.

10.  There is no mention of Hell in the first half to 2/3 of the Old Testament.  In fact, the concept of Hell, does not appear until the very end of the Old Testament (Daniel), which as stated above, was written during the Greek occupation of Palestine.  The Greeks did have a concept of Hell which they called Hades, which they had borrowed from the ancient Egyptians, who called their Hell...the Lake of Fire!  Strange coincidence, isn't it?  Jesus believed in Hell because his Greek translation of the Old Testament, the Septuagint, modified the Hebrew to create this concept of divine eternal punishment.  Jesus mistakenly believed that Hell/Hades was a Hebrew teaching from Yahweh.

11.  Jesus quoted from, and based his teachings on...a Greek translation of the Old Testament.  If he were really God, wouldn't he know that the translators of this Greek translation deliberately modified the Hebrew to create this unheard of concept called Hell/Hades?  Why would the All-Mighty, All-Knowing Creator and Ruler of the Universe preach from a very poor translation of his original Word in Hebrew??

12.  Why didn't Jesus write down his teachings himself?  Why leave the job to four anonymous writers writing decades after his death in a foreign language?  Why would the All-Mighty God of the Universe allow four Greek-speaking foreigners to completely bungle his resurrection story?

13.  Why would Jesus select Paul, a Pharisee, to be his missionary to the Gentiles when he already had the Eleven to do the job?  Why would Jesus give special, new revelations to a man who was not one of the original Eleven?  How do we know that Paul was selected by Jesus and not that Paul selected himself to be the "greatest of the Apostles"?  Why does Paul rarely mention any of the teachings of Jesus?  Why does Paul talk so much about himself?  Why do none of the other apostles refer in their epistles to Paul as an apostle?  Why did all the churches in Asia (that would include Ephesus, Galatia, Tarsus, Colossae, Laodecia, etc.) eventually reject Paul's teachings? Paul doesn't say that these churches rejected Jesus, just him.  The Apostle John mentions Jesus in the Book of Revelation praising these Asian churches for their faithful service to him, and for their rejection of false "apostles".  Put those two statements together and what do we get:  Paul, who claimed to be the greatest and hardest working apostle,  was rejected by the Asian churches.  Jesus praised these same Asian churches for rejecting "false apostles".  Not false prophets.  Not false teachers.  Not false brothers.  FALSE APOSTLES!  Jesus rejected and condemned Paul.  He was not an apostle.

14.  There is no record in the Old Testament or in the sayings of Jesus recorded in the Gospels that list the current books of the New Testament as the inerrant Word of God.  No where, even in the New Testament, do we have a list of which books God himself ordained to be his inspired Word.  The New Testament is simply and only a creation of the Catholic Church, the victors of the early Christian civil wars.

15.  Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.  If I told you that I was abducted by green Martians in a Home Depot parking lot last year, to spend three days and nights on their home planet, I doubt that you would simply accept my word for it...by faith.  No, you would demand extraordinary evidence for this extraordinary claim.  So why do Christians demand that non-believers believe their fantastic, supernatural, 2,000 year old claim, simply by taking their word for it and the word of their ancient, middle-eastern holy book, by faith?

No. 

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence and their isn't ANY evidence for the extraordinary, first century, Christian claim that a dead man walked out of his tomb with the body of Superman, walked through locked doors, and levitated into the clouds, to reign in the farthest reaches of Outer Space, as the Almighty Ruler of the Universe.  None.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Paul (Saul) of Tarsus was a Fraud

Copied, redacted, and edited from:  JustGiveMeTheTruth.com

The Problem with Paul
 
by C.M.
 

Paul was a Pharisee.  One day he had a ‘revelation’.  He changed his name from Saul to Paul, and straightway preached his revelations about the ‘Christ’ in the synagogues.  Paul continued to have new ‘revelations’ that spoke ‘of’ and ‘for’ a Christ, but he was glaringly silent about the actual life of Jesus and his teachings.  In Paul’s epistles we find him using the words ‘Christ, Son of God, grace, redemption, resurrection, etc.’, but we learn little or nothing about Jesus and his actual teachings.  They’re virtually absent from Paul’s epistles.  What we learn about are Paul’s revelations.  Roughly 50% of the New Testament (13 epistles) is from Saul, a man who neither knew Jesus in the flesh, nor was instructed by the apostles.  Rather, he taught by unsubstantiated revelation, Ezekiel 13:2-9.
      
Paul considered himself the ‘apostle’ to the Gentiles, primarily because his doctrine (called ‘that way’, Acts 19:9, 23) was rejected by Jewish Christians and the Asian churches alike; and he was forced to seek converts who knew nothing of Yahudim (Jewish) customs and the Law.  Paul’s doctrine was adverse to the teachings of Jesus; and he was often in conflict with James, Peter, and John; the real apostles.  And by the way, Paul was not an apostle. 
 
Paul spent an inordinate amount of time defending himself and his teachings from accusations of guile, lies, and covetousness.  None of the real apostles were so accused.  Paul’s core philosophy of justification by faith and abolition of Torah Law stands in opposition to Jesus' statements in the gospels.  Paul thought nothing of lying or practicing pagan customs if it meant gaining a new convert to his own brand of salvation, Romans 3:7, I Corinthians 10:14-21, 9:19-22. 
 
Paul’s words speak for themselves.  His use of personal pronouns in his epistles (I, me, my, mine) is three times that of any other writer.  Paul urged his followers to follow him.  He preached by revelation.  Paul preached his doctrine in the ‘name’ of Christ, but his teachings were not in alignment with Jesus' teachings, John 5:43.

Paul claimed to be an apostle by divine intercession, Galatians 1:1, 12.  He claims to be ordained an apostle, I Timothy 2:7, 2 Timothy 1:11.  Ask yourself: By whom?  All the real apostles are documented in scripture.  There is no support for Paul’s claim other than his own word in the epistles that he wrote.  Of the 22 times he is called an apostle, only two come from someone other than himself.  That ‘someone’ was Luke, Paul’s friend, traveling companion, and biographer, Acts 14:4, 14.  The real apostles did not recognize Paul’s apostleship and referred to him as ‘brother’.  The real apostles met these qualifications: They were twelve in number, and all were witness to Jesus' life, teachings, and resurrection; from the beginning to the end, Acts 1:21-22.  Paul meets none of these qualifications.  ZERO.  Jesus verified the number twelve, Matthew 19:28, and verified it again, Revelation 21:14.  There are no scriptural references for thirteen apostles.  Matthias replaced Judas, Acts 1:26.  If the Pharisee Saul/Paul is truly an apostle as many wish to believe, that means one of the twelve is not an apostle.  Who got demoted?

Paul claims in his epistles that he’s an apostle by the will of God.  However, he never knew Jesus in the flesh, and by his own admission, Galatians 1:11-20, he spent little time with the real apostles.  ‘Pauline doctrine’ is the result of unsupported revelation.  Paul teaches Pauline doctrine, John 5:31, 43.
 
Qualification to be one of the twelve apostles is set forth in Acts 1:21-22.  Paul clearly does not qualify.  The idea of adding a 13th apostle is unacceptable because of Revelation 21:14.  In order to overcome this obstacle, it’s been proposed that Matthias was not a divine apostolic selection, based on the casting of lots.  However, Acts 1:24-25 shows that the apostles prayed for Jesus' assistance in the matter.  Also, nowhere do the Scriptures state that Matthias was removed from this number to make room for Paul, which would have been a noteworthy event, as in the case of Judas.  That fact is, Paul does not qualify to be an apostle, was not chosen as an apostle, and is not an apostle.

         Nowhere does Jesus mention, or even hint, that He would give ‘new’ revelations to someone after His resurrection.  One has to question why Jesus would spend 3 ½ years in the flesh teaching the twelve chosen apostles that ‘till heaven and earth pass, not one jot or tittle will pass from the law’, Matthew 5:18; and then, after His resurrection, give new revelations to a Pharisee (Saul/Paul) that make the Law void by His resurrection.  Furthermore, ask yourself why would Jesus bypass the apostles with this ‘new’ revelation; choosing instead to reveal it to a Pharisee, the sect He called ‘vipers’, Matthew 12:34, and sons of the devil, John 8:44?

We have three different accounts of Paul’s unsupported claim of conversion.  Two of them are similar, Acts 9:1-18, 22:1-15 (except the part about him being sent to the Gentiles, 22:21), but not the third account, Acts 26:10-19.  In the first two stories, Paul specifically asked the Lord what he should do and the Lord told him to go to Damascus where he would be told all things.  In the third story, however, Paul received full revelation on the spot.  Which one is it Paul?  Paul is caught in a lie (there will be more).
 
In Acts 22:17-21, Paul ‘claims’ Jesus told him to “get out of Jerusalem, for they (the Jews) will not receive your testimony concerning Me (Yahweh)”.  That indeed is an odd statement, as the Yahudim (Jews) were in fact receiving testimony from the real apostles. In addition, Acts 9:22-25 states that Paul’s persecutors in Damascus were Jews.  Paul contradicts this by naming the governor, under Aretus the king, as (the persecutor) desirous to apprehend him, II Corinthians 11:32-33. In Galatians 1:16-17 Paul tells us that after his revelation he conferred not with flesh and blood, nor went up to Jerusalem to the apostles, but instead went to Arabia (for an unspecified amount of time) and then back to Damascus (coincidentally, these happen to be Essene [sect] locations).  Three years later he spent fifteen days with Peter in Jerusalem, and then moved on to Syria and Cilicia (Tarsus and Antioch) for fourteen years.
 
However, Acts 9:20 contradicts this.  It says that after his revelation, Paul was certain days with the disciples in Damascus, and preached straightway in Damascus.  Then Barnabas took him to the apostles in Jerusalem (Paul assayed to join himself to the disciples; as yet making no claim of apostleship).  Then Paul was sent forth to Tarsus (‘Then had the churches rest…’Acts 9:31, after Paul was sent away.)  There exists a three-year discrepancy between Paul’s conversion and his trip to Jerusalem, and he admits to having little or no tutoring by the apostles (Galatians is the earlier of the two accounts).  Interestingly enough, there’s a document in the Dead Sea Scrolls, Q40266, called ‘The Damascus Document’, written around the time of Saul/Paul’s trip to Arabia (wherein existed the Essene site of Qumran).  It’s an excommunication document condemning an unidentified man; referred to as the ‘Lying Adversary, the Lying Spouter, the Tongue, the Scoffer’ who rejected the law in the midst of the whole congregation.
       
Paul’s doctrine is all about revelation.  He uses the word ‘mystery’ (Greek musthrion) seventeen times in his epistles.  Outside of The Book Of Revelation, the word ‘mystery’ is used only one other time in the New Testament, and not at all in the Hebrew of the Old Testament, Mark 4:11.  Through revelation Paul reveals to us the mysteries of God, Jesus, wisdom, and ‘the faith’, Romans 16:25, Ephesians 3:3-4, 9, 6:19, Colossians 1:26, 2:2, I Timothy 3:9Uh…I believe they’re found in the Tanakh (Old Testament).
 
Paul instructs his followers in all manner of things: Law, circumcision, grace, faith, salvation by faith, the Holy Spirit, spiritual gifts, the armor of God, relationships, humility, worship, church qualifications etc.  His ‘revelations’ must have indeed been inspired, because they certainly are a ‘mystery’.  Jesus is nowhere to be found in most of Paul’s writings other than in phrases such as: Servant of Jesus Christ…through Jesus Christ…in Jesus Christ…by Jesus Christ…Jesus Christ our Lord…by the revelation of Jesus Christ…and so on.   Paul uses these phrases to imply his ‘revelations’ have authority from Yahweh through Jesus, yet his epistles provide no references to Jesus’ actual teachings in the gospels.  Instead, Paul runs afoul of the gospels.  He particularly preaches a reoccurring theme of submitting to earthly authority, i.e. governmental authority, on the basis it shows us approved of God (Jesus did not say to do this, so why does Paul?  Ask yourself: Why does Paul continually stress submission to earthly authority?).
 
Paul more or less makes up his doctrine as he goes, admitting he preaches by ‘revelation’, II Corinthians 12:1, Galatians 1:11-12.  Regardless of the good things he does say, the problem lies in the many ‘not so good’ revelations he promotes in the name of Jesus.  We come to Yahweh by Jesus, not by Paul, John 14:6.     Jesus tells us, “Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them”, Matthew 7:16, 20.  Paul’s fruit is a legacy of dissention.
                 
            Paul is a Pharisee by his own admission, Acts 23:6, 26:5, Philippians 3:5.  He was taught by Gamaliel, Acts 22:3.  (Gamaliel was the grandson of Hillel, a founding father of the Pharisees, who rejected the Torah in favor of the oral Talmud).     Jesus warned of the Pharisees and their leaven (the Talmud), and referred to them as vipers, Matthew 12:24, 34, Mark 8:15, Luke 12:1.  (The Pharisees were scribes, Kenites, the sons of Cain).  It’s also interesting to note that nowhere did Paul repent for his persecution of believers; rather, he boasted of being a Pharisee.)
 
Paul was at odds with the real apostles.  Galatians Chapters 1 & 2 are bold examples of Paul’s (hidden) anti-Torah view that was in conflict with the teachings of Jesus and the apostles.  Paul pooh-poohed the significance of the real apostles, but…(just in case the Galatians cared) he assured them his doctrine had the real apostles’ support. 
 
Paul came to words with Peter once Peter found out what Paul was teaching, Galatians 2:11. 
 
Paul mocked James, Peter (Cephas), and John.  He scolded Barnabas and rebuked Peter, Galatians 2:9, 11-14.  In true contradictory style, he portrayed Peter as a hypocrite to his Galatian audience, and then boasted of himself, displaying a worse behavior to the Corinthians, saying, “I become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some”, I Corinthians 9:19-22.  Note that Paul declares he is the one who gains the more, and that he is the one who is saving some.  Did Jesus become all things to all men?     I think not!
 
Paul was under fire at the council in Jerusalem (he kept silent his anti-Torah viewpoint).  James decreed that the Gentiles must abstain from four points of the law.  This is mentioned twice in the same chapter, Acts 15:20, 29.  Paul then wrote to the Galatian church and told them that they (the apostles) desired “only they would that we should remember the poor”, Galatians 2:10This is not what James said, which is confirmed by Acts 15:20, 29.  Nowhere is there any mention of ‘the poor’ by James.  Paul conveniently left out the four points of law in his letter to the Galatians.  Paul lied.
 
Hold on, it gets worse!  In Galatians 1:20, before Paul’s statement in 2:10, he told the Galatians “Now the things which I write unto you, behold, before God, I lie not”.  Paul is again caught lying, red handed.  Paul had the audacity to preface his lie with an oath of honesty...before God!
 
Read what Jesus had to say about this type of oath (before God), Matthew 5:33-37.  Read what James said too, James 5:12.
  
Paul was in conflict with Barnabas and John Mark (about guess what?), so they left him, Acts 15:37-39. 
 
Paul knew his teachings would again come under fire, Acts 20:22-23, 29, and they did, Acts 21:21-25.  He was required to purify himself and keep the Law, but the Asian Jews did not buy the deception, Acts 21: 27-28.  Paul was arrested and he then appealed to Rome (not Jesus) for rescue.  His (varied) relationship with the apostles ended at this juncture, but the damage was done. John gave warning about doctrine that is not of Jesus, II John 1:10-11.  He mentions ‘those that went out from us (from the apostles) but were not of us; for if they were, they would have continued with us, I John 2:18-19.  Coincidentally, Paul dropped all contact with the real apostles after his chastisement in Jerusalem, Acts 21:18-26. 
 
            Jesus warned that He came in His Father’s name, yet He was not received.  If another shall come in his own name (like Paul), he will be received, John 5:43.
 
Paul ran into trouble with the (Asian) church of Ephesus and they spoke evil of his teachings (that way), Acts 19:8-9, 23.  He complained that ALL they which are in Asia be turned away from ‘me’, II Timothy 1:15.  Paul doesn’t say they turned away from Jesus; he says they turned away from ‘me’.  Whatever their shortcomings, we know from the Book of Revelation that the seven ekklesia in Asia were thriving, and Jesus specifically tells John to write to the angels of the seven Asian churches.  Jesus commended the church of Ephesus for trying false apostles and finding them to be liars, Revelation 2:2 The real apostles were not rejected in Asia.
 
Here’s the big picture: Other than the real twelve apostles, Paul is the only other person on record claiming to be an apostle.  We have a record of Paul stating this to the Asian church of Ephesus, Ephesians 1:1.   The Ephesian church is the only church of the seven that is recorded as trying false apostles “and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars”, Revelation 2:2.  The Ephesian church recognized Paul for what he was and told him to take a hike.  Paul visited the other six Asian churches, as Acts 19:10, II Timothy 1:15 indicate.  In Revelation 2:9, 3:9, we see that Jesus commends the two churches of Smyrna and Philadelphia for recognizing false Jews.  This likely refers to Paul.  But the clincher is Paul’s recorded claim of apostleship, made specifically to the Ephesian church, and Jesus'    specifically praising the Ephesians for trying false apostles.  Add this up and you get you-know-who.  Who else fits the bill?

Then there’s the matter of Yahweh’s Law.  Paul went to great lengths to make void the law.  Jesus and the apostles said otherwise.  Jesus taught obedience to Yahweh’s Law.  Paul taught (in Christ’s name) that the Law passed away.  As you can see, Paul spoke against the teaching of Jesus.  Here are Paul’s teachings of the Law:
 
-Paul said all the Law was fulfilled in one word (a Pharisaic teaching, Romans 13:8-9, Galatians 5:14.  Jesus said otherwise, Matthew 22:27-40, Mark 29-31.
 
-Paul declared ALL things lawful, I Corinthians 6:12-14, Colossians 2:16.     Jesus said otherwise, Matthew 5:18, Luke 16:17, John 14:15.
 
-Paul declared nothing unclean, Romans 14:14, I Timothy 4:1-5.     Jesus and James said otherwise, Acts 15:28-29, Revelation 2:14.
     
-Paul claimed Christ abolished the Law, Romans 6:14, 7:4, Ephesians 2:15-16.  Jesus said otherwise, Matthew 5:17-20, 19:17, 28:20, Luke 16:17.
 
-Paul claimed no one was justified by the Law, Romans 3:20, Galatians 3:11-12, 21The scriptures say otherwise, II Samuel 22:21, Ezekiel 14:14, 20, Job 27: 29:14, Luke 1:5-6, James 2:20-22.
 
-Paul claimed no man was justified by works of the Law, Galatians 2:16, 21.  Jesus and James said otherwise, Matthew 16:27, James 2:20-22.
 
-Paul claimed the Law was ‘veiled’ (too hard to understand), II Corinthians 3:12-16Moses said otherwise, Deuteronomy 30: 10-14.  John tells us the law is not burdensome,       I John 1:53
      
-Paul called Yahweh’s Law a ‘curse’, Galatians 3:13.  (Galatians Chapter 3 and Romans Chapter 3 detail Paul’s attack on the Law).  Jesus instructed us to keep the Law, Matthew 19:17.  He came to fulfill the Law, not destroy it, Matthew 5:17-18.  The Law was a blessing, Deuteronomy 7:11-13, 11:26-27, 30:19-20.
 
-Paul referred to the Law as ‘the ministry of death’, II Corinthians 3:7. Moses said otherwise, Deuteronomy 4:40, 5:29, 6:24-25, 30:15-20.
     
             -Paul declared he sinned because of the Law (this passage is really a piece of work), Romans 7:7-13James told us that’s not so, James 1:13-14. 
 
            - Paul speaks against questions he considers foolish, and genealogies, Titus 3:9.  Since genealogies are immensely important to Adam’s seed and Satan’s seed in the old and renewed covenants, one must wonder why Paul tells Titus to avoid them.
 
            Paul told slaves to be obedient to their masters, Ephesians 6:5.  He re-enslaved Onesimus, Philemon 10-16This is in direct conflict to the law, which provides freedom from slavery, Deuteronomy 23:15-16, Jeremiah 34:13-17.  If Paul had been obedient to the Law, Onesimus would have been free.  But, as we see from Paul’s action, he sent Onesimus back into bondage.  Yahweh’s Law brings freedom; Paul’s freedom brings bondage.
 
-Paul pretends to be humble before Philemon, stating that he has written him with his own hand, and that if Philemon has been wronged, he (Paul) will repay (the debt), Philemon 1:19-20.  He then adds a cheap shot stating that Philemon “owes” him.  In other words, Paul clearly states that he will not say the very backhanded comment he does indeed say.  Paul’s words stand on their head. 
 
            - Paul claimed we should submit to governing authorities because they are established by God.  If we do not submit, we will be evil (this passage is what’s evil).  We’re suppose to give the authorities whatever they demand, Romans 13:1-7, Titus 3:1There is no scriptural basis for this statement (unless it be obedience to Yahweh’s Law).  But, as we have seen, Paul denied the law. 
      
            - Paul claimed he taught from ‘divine revelation’ (not from scripture or instruction from the apostles), Galatians 1:11-12.  In other words, Paul is telling us his revelations supercede scriptural authority.  Think about it.  Are you willing to accept this?  The real questions are:  How good is Paul’s word?  Do his teachings align with scripture and the teachings of Jesus?  You be the judge.
 
-Paul claimed to be blameless (sinless) in the Law, Philippians 3:4-6.    
-Paul devalued the Sabbath, Romans 14:5-6.
 
-Paul drew the church (ekklesia) to himself, not Jesus.  Jesus spoke of this happening, John 21:15-23.  In essence, another [person] would subvert Peter [his word] and he would be led astray [his word would fail] i.e. the church would be led astray.  Jesus expressly told Peter to “follow thou me”.  In contrast, John [his word], however, would not die [will tarry].
 
-Paul claimed to be the ‘apostle’ to the Gentiles, Galatians 2:7Not so.  All the apostles were told to preach the gospel to all the world, Matthew 28:19, Mark 16:15, Luke 24:27.   Jesus did not have a separate gospel for the Gentiles.  Paul lied to the Galatians.  Paul went to the Gentiles because he was rejected by the Law abiding Jewish converts.  The Gentiles didn’t keep the Law nor did they understand the Law.  This made easy converts for Paul’s doctrine, which preached against the Law.
 
-Paul claimed to have laid the foundation of the church, I Corinthians 3:10.  (The Roman Catholic Church?  Is this why his doctrine is in the canon?)  Jesus said those ‘called out’ would be built on Himself (the petra-rock), not Paul (or Peter), Matthew 16:18.  (Greek is ekklesia which means ‘a calling out’.  Jesus did not promote a physical church hierarchy.  Rather, He detested it.)
 
-Paul claimed the title of ‘Father’, I Corinthians 4:15-16.    Jesus said not to do this, Matthew 23:9.  
            - Paul preached his own gospel, Romans 16:25, I Corinthians 15:1, Galatians 1:6-7, I Timothy 2:8, 3:10.
 
-Paul instructs the Corinthians “be ye followers of ME”, I Corinthians 4:16.  To the Thessalonians: ‘ye became followers of US…and of the Lord’, I Thessalonians 1:6.  To the Galatians: (Syria and Cilicia) they glorified God in ME, Galatians 1:24.
 
-Paul refers to his teachings as ‘MY gospel’ and ‘ye are all partakers of MY grace’, Romans 2:16. 16:25, Philippians 1:7, II Timothy 2:8.
 
-Paul says “{I} suffer not a woman to teach, nor usurp authority over the man…”  I Timothy 2:12. 
-Paul ‘cursed’ those who preached any other gospel than his, Galatians 1:8-9.  Therefore he’s cursing James, Peter, and John, whom he mocks in Galatians Chapter 2. 
-Paul (flat out) tells us he doesn’t speak for (pertaining to) Jesus, in prelude to his boasting, II Corinthians 11:17.
 
-Paul said God revealed his Son in him, Galatians 1:15-16What does he mean by this double entendre?    
-Paul declared he was the last to see Jesus, I Corinthians 15:8. 
-Paul bragged about speaking in tongues, I Corinthians 14:18-19.  Take note: Neither Jesus nor the real apostles spoke in tongues.  (Speaking in tongues is only mentioned in Paul’s epistles, and the book of Acts; written by Paul’s biographer Luke).
 
-Paul dispenses Pharisaic teachings, Mithraism, and Kabbalahistic mysticism,        I Corinthians 15:51, II Corinthians 12:2, Ephesians 3:2, 4, 6:19. (The third heaven is Ma’on, well known to Pharisees who practiced the black magic of the Kabbalah.) 
 
-The real apostles never mentioned the word ‘Christian’.  The disciples were first called Christians in Antioch, under the tutelage of Paul and Barnabas, Acts 11:25-26.  Christianity came from Paul’s teachings, not Jesus' and the real apostles'.
 
 Words found only in Paul’s epistles: Bishop, deacon, evangelist, and communion.
 Lies, lies, and more lies.
 
Paul said that when the law was still in force, faith had not yet come, Galatians 3:23.  However, he contradicts this in Romans 4:3, 22Which way is it? 
 
Paul defended a lie because it ‘glorifies God’ and he wondered why he was judged a sinner, Romans 3:7.  He was caught lying and tried to wriggle out of it with a song and dance.  He doesn’t seem to grasp that a lie is a lie, and never does it glorify Yahweh.  Why does Paul keep insisting he’s not deceitful and does not lie Romans 9:1,  II Corinthians 11:31, Galatians 1:20, Philippians 1:18, I Thessalonians 2:1-12, I Timothy 2:7.   Why are the real apostles not accused of lying as Paul is?  Ask yourself this:  Would Jesus lie ‘for the glory of God’ as Paul did?  I think not! 
 
Paul lied before the Sanhedrin, Acts 23:6-7.  He said he was ‘called into question for the hope and resurrection of the dead’.  This was strictly a divide and conquer ploy with no basis in reality.  The truth of the matter is he was called into question on account of his anti-Torah teachings, found in Acts 21:27-28.
 
Paul lied again before Agrippa, about his conversion, Acts 26:12-19. 
Paul claimed Christ preached peace, Ephesians 2:17.     Jesus said otherwise, Matthew 10:34-37, Luke 12:51.
      
Paul set himself equal to or above the apostles: 
Paul boasted he was equal to the chiefest apostles, II Corinthians 11:5, 12:11Not only is he boasting, he’s not even an apostle.  Furthermore, Paul seems to be unaware of Jesus' word that the last will be first, and the first last, Mark 9:34-35.
 
Paul boasted of himself through God, II Corinthians 7:14, 10:8, 13; 11:16-17; 12:9.  (He tells us he ‘could’ boast, but ‘won’t’ because he is the least.  He used a disclaimer to tell us he wouldn’t do what he does.)  James instructed against this, James 4:16.
 
Paul’s boasting and declaration that he does not lie is one twisted piece of work,   II Corinthians Chapters 11 and 12.   It’s impossible to read his words, verse by verse, and not get the creeps.
 
In II Corinthians Chapter 11, verse 2 Paul states he is the one who may present the Corinthians as chaste virgins to Christ.  In verse 8 Paul declares he ‘robbed’ other churches to do service to the Corinthians (Greek is συλαω which does indeed mean “to rob” or “despoil”).  In verse 10 Paul states that no man shall stop him from boasting in Achaia (Greece).  Note that he cleverly omits Asia and Judea, the locations where the real apostles preached (because they would stop him).  In verse 18 Paul glories after the flesh.  He then tells us how great he is (in Christ), more so than other ministers, (verse 23).  So humble is Paul, that if he needs to glorify himself (which he does), he will confine it to his infirmities (verse 30).  Oddly enough, he then feels a need to assure his audience he does not lie (verse 31).  Pay attention to Paul’s own words.
 
II Corinthians 12:5-7, Paul continues in the next chapter by stating that although he would desire glory, he will not glorify himself, but in his infirmities.  He then spews forth self-deprecatory verbiage to soften his boast.  According to humble brother Paul, he was given a thorn in his flesh, lest he should be exalted above measure through the abundance of his revelations.  Now think about that statement for a minute.  A man can’t get any more exalted than ‘above measure’.  It’s beyond measurable.  It doesn’t get any higher than that.  If it weren’t for the thorn he was given, our man Paul’s ‘revelations’ would be cause for the ultimate right to brag.
 
What a great guy!  Isn’t it comforting to know how superior this man was, according to his own words?  I suggest you compare Paul’s posture with Jesus' instruction in the gospels.
 
Paul quoted Christ as saying “It is more blessed to give than to receive”, Acts 20:35.   It appears nowhere else in scripture, and given Paul’s admission that he spent little or no time with the apostles, Galatians Chapter 1, one might question where he came up with such a quote (which sounds more like advice from Dear Abby than a quote from Jesus).
       
In context of Acts Chapter 20, we find Paul preparing to go to Jerusalem, to appear before James and the real apostles, to stand accountable for his anti-Torah views, in Acts 21:18-36.  He’s uses the aforementioned ‘quote’ to defend himself and his teachings to the church of Ephesus (who later rejected him), telling them to take heed for the ‘wolves’ that will lead them away from his doctrine when he leaves (such as the real apostles).  In other words, he knows the real apostles are going to be irate with him and he’s trying to minimize damage before the Ephesians find out they were duped (which they later found out), II Timothy 1:15, Revelation 2:2.
 
It is one of only two times Paul quotes Jesus when the quote is not connected to a personal revelation (the other is I Corinthians 11:24-25, which is not in complete alignment with the gospels).
       
Genesis 49:27 (The sons of Jacob receive their blessings)- Benjamin shall ravin as a wolf: in the morning he shall devour the prey, and at night he shall divide the spoil.  The tribal standard of Benjamin is the wolf. 
Paul claimed to be an Israelite from the tribe of Benjamin, Romans 11:1, Philippians 3:5. 
 
Philippians 3:5 presents an intriguing problem.  Paul claims to be out of the race of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew out of the Hebrews, and a Pharisee according to the law.  He’s telling us he’s the ‘real thing’.  This poses a few problems.
 
The Greek word translated “ touching (according to)” is kata, which primarily means ‘against, opposition to’, especially when used with the accusative case (as it is here).  The word “law” (used here in the accusative case) is nomon.  Normally, the phrase kata nomon farisaious would be translated “a Pharisee against the law”, but in this case it was curiously rendered as “a Pharisee touching (according to) the law”.  After all, it wouldn’t make sense for a Pharisee to be against the law…or would it?
 
Pharisaic law rejects the Torah in favor of the Talmud (rabbinic oral law).  Yes, they certainly would be against Torah Law.  If you accept the translation “a Pharisee according to the law”, by definition the law of a Pharisee is Talmudic, and anti-Torah.  Both translations suggest there is a problem between Paul and Torah Law. Furthermore, we know that the Pharisees were Kenites, the sons of Cain, the scribes who infiltrated Judah, I Chronicles 2:55.  Was Paul really who he said he was?
 
Yahweh changed Abram’s name to ‘Abraham’ and Jacob’s name to ‘Israel’.  Jesus changed Simon’s name to ‘Peter’.  These were all divine name changes meant for a purpose.  Paul changed his own name ‘Saul’ (which means ‘borrowed’) to ‘Paul’ (which means ‘little’ or ‘small’), also for a purpose.  Neither Yahweh nor Jesus changed Paul’s name.  Just like the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees, Matthew 16:6-12, small Paul leavens the church with his teachings. 
 
Paul negates the deity of Jesus, I Timothy 2:5.  Paul tells us there is one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus (Greek is άνθρωποσ, ‘anthropos’).   However, the word άνθρωποσ as used in the New Testament means ‘man’ as carnal man, i.e. man with a sinful nature (in secular use it means a human being, from which we get the word ‘anthropology’).  With the exception of this one verse by Paul, άνθρωποσ is never (not even once) used in connection with Jesus deity (except in His title as ‘Son of man’).  Only unbelievers in the gospels, who do not recognize Jesus' divinity, use this word in reference to Jesus'.
 
It’s quite an insult for Paul to refer to Jesus as a carnal man (άνθρωποσ) who mediates between God and us, for it debases Yahushua’s stature and removes His divinity and authority.  It’s such an overt act of blasphemy that it’s highly unlikely that a Pharisee like Paul would choose this word by mistake.  Given the fact that άνθρωποσ is used 560 times in the New Testament, and 136 times by Paul in his epistles alone, it’s hard to believe that he did not understand what he had written.
 
If we look at the context of I Timothy Chapter 2, it’s typical Pauline instruction.  It begins by telling us to support those in authority and ends by upbraiding women.  In the middle he throws in some vague superlatives about God and Christ, which always sound nice but really say nothing.  The only ‘meat’ we find is in verse 5, wherewith Paul calls Christ Jesus, the mediator, an άνθρωποσ (a carnal man bereft of deity).  It’s a magnum doctrinal gem he slips in amongst the fluff so as to go unnoticed.  He then follows up verse 5 with verse 7, to give himself an air of credibility, whereby he touts his ordination as a preacher (by whom?), his apostleship (according to him), and his truthful speech in ‘Christ’.  Then, as if there is some reason to question Paul’s veracity (as there certainly is), for good measure he assures us he does not lie.  Now why would he think, that we’d think, he was lying? Unless, of course, he was! 
 
Okay, so now you’re aware of the problems with Paul.  It’s undeniable that there is something amiss with his doctrine.  ‘Disturbing’ is a better word.  It clearly does not align with Jesus' teachings.  Furthermore, Paul went to great length to hide what he was teaching from the real apostles, and was twice taken to task for it in Jerusalem.  The overwhelming number of problematic scriptures, and Paul’s troubles with the real apostles are glaring red flags.
 
How long will you ignore the problem?  How hard will you fight to explain away Paul’s own words?  How much longer will you lean back in your pew and listen to some talking head say, “What Paul really means is…”; only to grow weary because it sounds like the opposite of what you thought he said?   Here’s a revelation:  Paul meant what he said.  You don’t need an interpreter.  If Pauline Doctrine seems confusing and twisted, that’s because it is!  If you really want to know what Paul said, read it yourself and look up the vocabulary.  I did.  So can you.  Don’t accept someone else’s word for your salvation.  This article gives you an ample supply of verses to stimulate your gray matter.
 
Prophecy tells us only a few will escape Satan’s deceptions in the latter days.  Conversely, that means the bulk of Christianity will be deceived.  So how will they be deceived if they’re such stalwart followers of Jesus?  Enter Paul.  If the mere thought of questioning Pauline Doctrine or Paul’s truthfulness ruffles your feathers, it’s a sign that Paul’s rotten spiritual fruit has taken root in your life.  His seeds are seeds of oppression and bondage.  Yahweh is the path to freedom, not Paul.
 
Take a look at the big picture: Paul was a Pharisee who freely admitted he taught by revelation.  One more time-He taught by revelation.  He was at odds with the apostles.  They called him ‘brother’, not apostle.   The Asian churches rejected Paul.  The real apostles were not rejected.  Paul is caught lying numerous times in his epistles.  He is the only ‘brother’ who repeatedly has to defend himself from accusations of guile and lying.   None of the twelve real apostles are so accused.  What’s wrong with this picture?
 
Prophecy warns us that believers will be deceived (by the church) in the latter days (now).  They’ll accept false doctrine as truth because their hearts are far from Yahweh.  It’s disturbing to see the church’s reliance on Pauline doctrine today, and it’s even more alarming to see believers defend this position with quotes from Paul (rather than the word of Jesus and the prophets).  This article was written to reveal Paul/Saul’s character through his own words.
 
Jesus warned of false teachers and deception.  The apostles, aware of Paul’s epistles, did the same.  Paul was turned out of the Judean-Christian community in Judea AND the churches of Asia for his teachings.  Ask Yahweh to show you the truth in this matter.  If you haven’t yet read the scripture that accompanies each statement about Paul, DO SO NOW.  Don’t take my word for it; look up the scripture and study.
 
Paul ended up in Rome, and via coincidence, we now have the Roman Catholic Church; which bears a striking resemblance to Paul’s church structure, Ephesians 4:11,  I & II Timothy.  At the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD, this same church chose to include 13 Pauline epistles into their biblical canon; while excluding such books as Enoch.  Coincidence?  Hardly.  Just as Yahweh allowed Satan into the garden of Eden, so He allowed Paul in the Bible.  Satan is the father of lies.  Any guess as to whom Paul serves?  (The answer is not Yahweh). 
  
Paul’s revelations about salvation by faith alone and the abolishment of the Law has been poisoning the church for more than 2000 years.  Again, by his own admission, Paul taught by ‘the revelation of Jesus Christ’, (not from the teachings of Jesus in the flesh, or from the teachings of the real apostles).  Paul must have been quite a saint to receive special instructions that were withheld from the twelve real apostles.   Jesus spent 3 ½ years in the flesh teaching the twelve chosen apostles to keep the Law.  Do you really believe Jesus changed his mind, and suddenly gave ‘new revelations’ to Paul/Saul the Pharisee?  There is no basis for Paul’s doctrine other than Paul’s own word.  They are not the teachings of Jesus, and they are called ‘Pauline Doctrine’ for a reason.
 
If you think this is blasphemy, think about this:  The Catholic Church is the organization that made the decisions about which books would or would not be included in (their) Bible.  The Catholic Church made this decision for you.  And, lo and behold, it’s Pauline Doctrine that supports their existence, not the teachings of Jesus.  This should send shivers up your spine.
 
Paul’s writings are filled with far too many examples that conflict with Jesus' teachings.  More importantly, where is Jesus to be found in Paul’s epistles?  Paul clearly denied Torah Law.  Jesus clearly said the Law does not pass away.  Do you believe Paul or Jesus?  If you have to think about this, you’re in trouble
   
If we (rightly) conclude the Law did not pass away, we see that Paul’s doctrine entirely crumbles.  There’s no reason to follow him (as if there ever was).  Jesus tells us to follow Him.  We’re not to follow Paul, the church, or anyone else.  We’re to seek Jesus and keep His commandments.
 
John tells us the number of the deceived (in the last days) ‘will be as sand of the sea’, Revelation 20:8.  Peter told us judgment must begin with the church, I Peter 4:17.  Jesus said, “Nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall He find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:8.  Paul clearly reveals his corrupt spirit when he says, “I become all things to all men…”, I Corinthians 9:19-22.  Paul’s words speak for themselves.
 
Do you trust the words of Jesus, or the ‘revelations’ of Paul?
 
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