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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 1: Wed Mar 11, 2015 7:23 pm
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What would you say if …

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You have been invited to speak at your former church. They want to seek deeper or more diverse understandings of some such idea.

Do you accept? What would you say? Keep in mind any objectives you might have for talking to them. Remember, just pissing them off is probably not a good objective.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 2: Wed Mar 11, 2015 8:52 pm
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Re: What would you say if …

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McCulloch wrote:

You have been invited to speak at your former church. They want to seek deeper or more diverse understandings of some such idea.


I would be encouraging if this was indeed their motivation.

McCulloch wrote:

Do you accept?


I personally have no desire to give such a talk. I would not be interested at this time. However, if they were really interested in hearing what I have to say, and were asking me passionately to give the talk, I might do it specifically for the reasons they gave above.

Just as a practical note: The Church I used to attend probably has an entirely new congregation by now. I wouldn't know anyone in the congregation. But for the sake of make-believe we can imagine that the old original congregation would still be there. Although in reality most of those people have since died. Wink

McCulloch wrote:

What would you say? Keep in mind any objectives you might have for talking to them.


I would give them insight into why I no longer believe, paying very special emphasis on the fact that I am 100% convinced that the Bible cannot be true as it is written.

I would try to organize the talk into the following sections.

Part 1. Why I feel that the story of the Fall from Grace is absurd and has no merit.

Part 2. The absurdity of a God who uses retribution instead of restitution.

Part 3. I would point out the major failings of this God and several major biblical contradictions.

Part 4. Why I feel that a God having his own son crucified by his own Chief Priests makes no sense at all.


Finally, if time permits:

Part 5. Why it makes far more sense to me that these stories are nothing more than superstitions and rumors potentially sparked by real people and real events.


I think that would pretty much cover it.

McCulloch wrote:

Remember, just pissing them off is probably not a good objective.


That would be the furthest thing from my mind. I definitely would not want to go for that reason.

My presentation would be my honest and sincere "testimony" of why I am 100% convinced that the Bible cannot be true verbatim as written.

And I would be sure to end it with the following personal confession:

"I confess to everyone, including any God that might exist. The Bible has convinced me that it cannot be a correct and true description of any intelligent or wise God. It has convinced me of this precisely because it is so extremely unwise and unintelligent. And this is my honest and sincere assessment and perception of this ancient collection of stories.

All I can say at this point is that I'm being as honest and sincere as I can possibly be. What righteous and just God could have a problem with that? If there exists a righteous God then I would certainly hope that it would appreciate my honesty if nothing else."


And I would then thank the congregation for having invited me for the talk, and that would be the end of it unless they wanted me to answer follow-up questions.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 3: Mon Oct 02, 2017 3:14 pm
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Re: What would you say if …

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McCulloch wrote:

You have been invited to speak at your former church. They want to seek deeper or more diverse understandings of some such idea.

Do you accept? What would you say? Keep in mind any objectives you might have for talking to them. Remember, just pissing them off is probably not a good objective.



Good question. I would revisit my boyhood and present to them the unquestioning faith I was taught to display. I would quote a hymn: Faith of our fathers:

"How sweet would be their children's faith if they, like them, could die for Thee."

And I would show them some recent headlines where some people, of another religion, display a faith even stronger than mine. They die, not sweetly, but in atrocities that kill others - with the words that God is great echoing above the corpses. This, for me, is what religion does. It has good intentions - but there lies hell.

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