The Christian Message - inspired of fear?

by Mandybp 37 Replies latest jw friends

  • gumby
    I would ask you to start with prayer and yes, pour your heart out. Tell God that you are confused and seek to find him.

    Yes, thats right. God is so ignorant and so selfish that he needs us to pour our heart to him and BEG for his mercy to be shown to his children. He has no idea we are confused unless we tell him.

    I'm glad my father wasn't that way to me and my siblings.No father would expect you to plead and beg for something. I think many of you have a sick veiwpoint of God and what he is like.


  • Sentinel

    It's simply a way to control and manipulate people. And the best way is through fear and guilt. That was the purpose when the bible was initially compiled from the various transcripts by the English King James. (And he ended up not even signing off on the finished product.) Before that, only the elite men in religious circles were privy to any of the biblical writings, and they controlled it's usage at their whim. The people wanted more freedom and wanted to have the writings to read themselves, so the King issued a decree for that to be accomplished. (Thus we have stuff added and stuff taken away.) And, just look how many translations have issued forth, and how many various religious denominations as well.

    Eastern philosophy/religion takes spirituallity to a different level. I find it quite intriguing and not nearly as oppressive in nature.

  • Reborn2002

    Excellent topic and replies thusfar.

    Mainstream religion is in itself dependent on fear. Why do you ask? Because by having doctrines containing rewards/punishments based on actions the church does/does not want you to commit (conveniently varies depending on what religion you insert into the equation), Islam/Christianity instill fear in it's members and thereby develop CONTROL over it's constituents.

    Christianity as a whole believes that if you do not put faith in Jesus Christ you will be sentenced to eternal damnation in hellfire. (Catholicism, Protestant, etc)

    Some Christian fringe groups (i.e. Jehovah's Witnesses) preach that if you do not get in line and follow their doctrine you will die and perish forever.

    Islam (found within the surahs of the Koran) instructs faithful followers of Mohammed to destroy the unbelieving infidels (thereby not only encouraging but declaring it righteous to kill) in jihad. In some instances if the Islamic individual does not do this, they are considered worse than the unbeliever, and sentenced to destruction.

    Look throughout history. The worst catastrophes and massacres in the history of mankind have taken place in the name of religion. The Holy Crusades, jihad, the Palestinian intifadeh... even World Wars in which priests on both sides are declaring God is on their side and blessing them...

    I wonder when the ignorant masses will realize what folly it is to follow organized religion which is corrupted by man who seeks power and control over others. Would God truly be interested in what outfit you wear on Sunday? If God is omnipotent and all-powerful.. boy He sure is dependent on money....

    Theoretically God creates mankind and the Koran or Bible (depending on which group you cheerlead for) are his inspired word. Boy for an all powerful being he sure needs a new publisher because he is apparently incapable of providing a clear and concise instruction manual and instead lets his offspring die for thousands of years bickering with one another over who really has "the truth" Even imperfect man is more capable of being proficient and specific.... sigh.

    While I am sure some Bible thumper will follow my post criticizing me.. this is just my 2c for now.

  • Francois

    Serve God. Think about that statement. How on earth do you "serve" God? What do you have that God needs thus creating a situation in which you, a mortal creature of time, can "serve" God, who is complete as viewed from any and all perspectives?

    Of course, as JWs, we were told that serving God consisted in disturbing people on their days off from work peddling cheap magazines from door-to-door. And the message of these magazines? Believe in the God of our conception, and worship him in a way we dictate, including disturbing people on their days off from work peddling cheap magazines from door-to-door, or you will be shunned and in the end the God of our understanding will kill your uncooperative ass really soon at Armageddon. That's serving God the JW way. And of course we here have rejected that entire conceptualization.

    So, how do you serve God?

    I don't claim to have anything other than my own opinion about that question. And I have thought about it quite a bit, as I'm sure you all have as well. I'm convinced that the only way we can serve God is to make a full and unfettered gift of our freewill choosing to do the will of God. In fact, this choosing to do the will of God is the only gift we are capable of making to God. Our freewill is an utterly and completely sovereign phenomena in the universes, and not even God himself violates his declaration that the human will is sovereign. Thus the freewill choice to do the will of God is the only possible gift we can make to Him. So, is that serving God? I think so. And no fear should attach this form of serving God.

    Unfortunately, organized religion - especially on the fundamentalist end of the spectrum - is very fear oriented. And fear-based religions are primitive religions that do not know God. Fear was at the base of all ancient religions: fear of each and everything that savage man did not understand: volcanoes, lightening, high winds, orgasms, & etc. Primitive man has worshipped damn near everything under the sun, including the sun, the moon, trees, rocks, mountains, tornadoes, hurricanes, sandstorms, & you name it. And, stragely enough, each of these things could only be placated by human sacrifice, the offering of human blood to still the angry heart of an offended God (which is where the JW teaching about blood came from in the first place. Interesting that these people who claim to have the truth and to speak for God, still cling to a five thousand year old mistake about the nature and character of God, ain't it?)

    The message of the Master was never one of fear, but of peace and love. It has been left to the fundamentalists to convert the message of the Prince of Peace into one of fear. Given the original message of the Master, and realizing what organized religion has done to it, should make all fundamentalists respond with reactions of utter humility as opposed to their continuing arrogance - Jehovah's Witnesses chief among them.

    Them's my two cents.

  • cowhand

    A book "God: A biography" By Jack Miles is in my opinion, worth a read, and demonstrates convincingly that the God of the O.T. was not unchangeable. This is a book which has nothing to say about the historicity of the O.T. It just describes the development of God in terms which made me reconsider an awful lot of things. Sorry.....where were we again? Oh yes,and it did take a lot of fear away - put a few other things in its place too for better or worse.

  • Mandybp

    Thanks everyone - you've really given me some good stuff to think about. I agree that organised religion in general is guilty of many 'sins' of it's own and the church history is enough to put anyone off, I've been doing a bit of research on the early church and how it was set up. The Catholic church particularly, I've come away with a strong feeling of not wanting anything to do with organised religion. It seems to serves man's purpose more than God's.

    Boy for an all powerful being he sure needs a new publisher because he is apparently incapable of providing a clear and concise instruction manual and instead lets his offspring die for thousands of years bickering with one another over who really has "the truth"

    Yeah I agree, it's so strange how the different religions have different beliefs which are all based on the same book. How can you believe anything when they all contradict each other? I'm lost lol

    Another thing that puts me off is all the pomp and religious ritual that God supposedly requires. Orthodox Christianity and The Catholic Church have long and complicated prayer rituals. It's a wonder how they get anything done during the day! I don't want to worship a God who expects me to pray constantly and put him above all else (after all we do have to get on with the job of living).

    Oh well, I guess I'll find my answers.

  • Brummie
    Well I don't want to argue with my buddy but I am anyway

    Gumby.. no this isnt an argument, its just a freindly debate with the odd fist thrown in for free.

    Yes we all die.....but that's not what Chrisianity teaches is it? The soul continues on whether good or bad according to Chrisianity.... wheras others simply feel your dead.

    You are right, Christianity does teach that the soul continues, I guess they dont have to apologise for that since everyone is entitled to their belief that we are "simply dead". The interpretation of "hell" is the subject thats controversial. Some feel hell is an eternal seperation from God, each is allowed to interpret that how they want too.

    You just said we HAVE to accept Christ. If I had good reason to I would, but I don't, so I won't

    Well I am a firm believer that you dont have to accept Christ, its all down to choice. Will he kill you? or do we just die anyway? I know humans rejected and killed him since that is a past event, but I sure dont know who he is going to "kill". Maybe his love is bigger than ours, when someone loves you enough to die for you I wouldnt want to go assuming he is going to kill us.

    (*makes a parenthasis here to throw in the odd fist*)

    You said what if only one wanted to go. Does that make the others evil for not accepting the offer? Why didn't they WANT to go? Because they are selfish.....or because they do not know the "new people".

    No it doesnt make them selfish or evil, it just means they missed out on the opportunity for a different lifestyle.

    you just lurrrrrrrrv arguing religion en it...(another fist)...


  • gumby

    Hey Brumeister,

    Thanks for not being mad at me

    I want to especially thank you for not being fundie-like, and having a reasonable open mind. You are always willing to admit good logic.

    You said you don't know WHO Jesus will kill, but according to the source .....IN WHICH HE CAME FROM ....he is going to kill all who hear of him and reject him. The N.T. is FULL of quotes from him and his ( supposed ) contemporaries, that support such an idea. It seems if one is to accept he existed, then one must accept the source ( the bible ) in which he came from and what it says about him.

    You can't have one without the other


Share this