Gentiles = “Dogs” To Jesus

An excellent article I found I think every Christian should read.

https://www.facebook.com/diane.fadden?ref=tn_tnmn#!/notes/the-thinking-atheist/lies-damned-lies-and-the-claim-jesus-would-have-loved-you/470499726313342

Page admin and guest blogger Meg put together a perspective on the beloved Christian “savior” that many haven’t yet heard.  This is her article, entitled:

 

Lies, Damned Lies, And The Claim Jesus Would Have Loved You

Jesus did not want you in his club. Unless you were a Jew, Jesus thought you were a filthy animal. Yes, even if you are Christian. It is all in the Bible.

Unless you spend much time on The Thinking Atheist Facebook page where you might have already seen me discuss this topic, the above statement regarding Jesus is likely surprising even to you as a nonbeliever. To put the issues aside, we will first clarify a couple of the obvious questions before examining what the Bible says on the subject, questions such as:  How could Christianity become the dominate faith of the world if Jesus would have detested nearly every one of his followers? And how could it not be common knowledge that Jesus held such views? And why is an atheist interested in what the Bible says, much less making the effort to tell others about it?

Prior to the Reformation when Protestants began translating Bibles and thus undermined the efforts of the Church, for the first 1,550 years or so of the Christian faith, the Church went to extreme lengths to ensure the average person could not read the texts of the Bible themselves and were forced to rely on Church clergy.

It was not only a crime to translate the Bible from Latin into common languages, it was a crime to even possess a translation of the Bible or to print a Bible in Latin without a license granted by Church authorities, and the Church took the matter seriously.

Not satisfied by his death, the Church had the body of a man who dared to translate the Bible into English, John Wycliffe, dug out of his grave 74 years after his initial burial. Church officials then burned what was left of Wycliffe’s body, dumped his ashes in a river, and decreed the same fate for any of his remaining followers. While that sounds petty to us, the Church had Christians convinced they required their physical bodies for the Second Coming, so no body meant no eternal life in the Kingdom of Heaven for you, a fate far worse than death to their minds.

The few people with the means to obtain an education and become functionally literate generally did not speak Latin, but rather their native tongue, so even the educated were prevented from reading the Bible. With the exception of a few members of the French nobility who had partial texts in their own language, those who could both read Latin and had access to the Biblical texts were typically members of the clergy. Obviously, telling followers what the Bible actually said would have put early Christian leaders and their predecessors out of a job — a job that gave the clergy enormous privilege and power over the illiterate masses.

Contemporary Christians, at least those who actually bother to read their Bible, are aware of the verses we are going to review. What they lack is knowledge on Judaism, the traditional views and culture of the Middle East, and the history behind the writing of the New Testament, knowledge that the Biblical authors and early Church leaders would have taken for granted. Reading the Bible through the filter of a modern mind gives a skewed impression of what the texts intend to communicate.

To read the Bible and truly understand it, you have to keep in mind that Jesus was a Jew of the ancient world, not a modern Christian. And you must read the Bible in context. Not only the verses of the Bible, which must be read in their entire chapter to grasp the actual meaning, but also read in the context of the culture and time in which a particular text was written.

Due to the rise of Christianity, in which, as we have just explored, lack of public education played a tremendous role, humanity has suffered through nearly 2,000 years of innocent lives being destroyed and there is still no end in sight.

2,000 years of witch burnings, Crusades, the subjugation of women, the persecution of homosexuals, genocide, families and societies being torn apart, superstition being taught as truth, and hard-won factual knowledge being sacrificed on the altar of the God of tiny minds.

What people believe informs their actions, such as how they vote and how they treat others. Those who long for the end of the world so they can live on a cloud in the sky, who believe women are lesser beings, who believe being homosexual is unnatural, who believe “The Flintstones” was a documentary series, and people who are willing to throw their fellow human beings, even their own family members, under the bus to score points with a nonexistent deity tend to vote differently than those of us who do not believe those things. It matters what others believe; it affects each and every one of us who lives in a democratic society.  

Education is key to the future well-being of humanity. And we know for a fact that education works, because like the overwhelming majority of those in the TTA community including its driving force, TTA Founder Seth Andrews, I am a former Christian.

So, for those of you plagued by friends and family who insist Jesus loves you, we are going to provide information useful in educating those around you, in this case to explain to them how Jesus felt about non-Jews.   The following is written to address Christian believers.

In the culture in which Jesus lived, the ultimate insult was to call someone a dog. One of dozens of disparaging verses in the Bible which mentions dogs is Job 30:1, which says, “But now those younger than I mock me, whose fathers I disdained to have set with the dogs of my flock.”

That verse is described as the following in “Barnes’ Notes on the Bible”:  “To have set with the dogs of my flock – To have associated with my dogs in guarding my flock. That is, they were held in less esteem than his dogs. This was the lowest conceivable point of debasement. The Orientals (a European term for those from the Middle East) had no language that would express greater contempt of anyone than to call him a dog.”  

In Matthew 7:6 Jesus says, “Do not give what is holy to dogs; do not cast your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.”

Jesus is not talking about dogs in the sense of the animal; he is using the term to refer to human beings. In that verse, Jesus is saying to not give what is holy to contemptible, repugnant people.

Of course, that is only one example of Jesus using a particular word or phrase to represent other people or himself. In the Bible, Jesus refers to himself as bread, for example by saying he is the bread of life (John 6:25-59) and to eat bread as his body (Matthew 26:26). And Jesus also used a number of phrases, which he took from the Tanakh (also called the Hebrew Bible or Old Testament) to refer to his fellow Jews, such as the lost sheep of Israel (Matthew 15:24), the children of Israel, etc.

You’re not a Jew? Then you are not a child of Israel.

For the Jesus fans reading this, Gentiles means “white people” and all other non-Jews.  You’re not a Jew? Then you are a Gentile.  So what did Jesus have to say about a Gentile like you?

  • Matthew 10:5 “Go not into the way of the Gentiles”
  • Matthew 15:24 “I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
  • John 4:22 “Salvation is of the Jews.”

In Matthew 15:21-28 (and in Mark 7:25-30) Jesus is in Gentile territory when a distraught mother approaches Jesus and begs him to help her daughter.  Jesus ignores the mother, and his disciples (also all Jews, naturally) complain, “Jesus, that woman is getting on our nerves. Get rid of her.”  

The Gentile woman persists, begging Jesus to heal her sick child. Jesus eventually responds by insulting the woman for being a Gentile. But rather than getting angry, the Gentile woman uses his slur to talk Jesus into healing her daughter.

21 Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon.

22 A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is demon-possessed and suffering terribly.”

23 Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”

24 He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”

25 The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.

26 He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”

27 “Yes it is, Lord,” she said. “Even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.”

28 Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed at that moment.

 Jesus turned his back on this mother’s child while his disciples complained the woman was being a pain in the ass. It is not until the mother begs and grovels at his feet after being called the most rotten term of contempt possible is his language that Jesus finally caves in and helps the woman’s poor daughter.

In neither version of the story, which appears in both the gospels of Mark and of Matthew, does Jesus even touch the daughter. Perhaps the daughter was menstruating and was “dirty” according to the religion of Jesus, Judaism? Or perhaps the fact she was a filthy dog was bad enough?

And amazingly, after all that, Jesus making it clear he and his disciples had nothing to do with the Gentiles and Jesus slinging the most degrading, hateful insult of his culture at us non-Jews, Christians will read that and say, “yeah, but he did heal the child.”

That’s nice. Is that how you would react if you came across a wounded little kitten that needed your help? Refuse to do anything until someone managed to beg and grovel at your feet until you relented? How would you honestly feel if you saw a doctor refuse to render help because a child was outside his ethnic or religious group until the child’s mother fed the doctor’s bigoted superiority complex?

The only reason you’re a Christian as a non-Jew is that Paul and Luke, who were close friends with each other and not part of the disciple gang, took it upon them to spread their own altered version of the message of Jesus. Paul and Luke never even met Jesus. It was Paul and Luke, along with forged letters attributed to Peter [1][2][3], who changed the message of Jesus to include Gentiles for their own benefit.

Writings attributed to Peter contributed to Gentiles being allowed to join the Jesus club as well, though according to the Bible Peter was illiterate (Acts 4:13 describes both Peter and John as agrammatoi, a Greek word that literally means “unlettered” that is “illiterate”) and even Christian Biblical Historians acknowledge Peter didn’t author the books attributed to him.

It was Paul, Luke, and an unknown individual pretending to be Peter who created Christianity, not Jesus. And Jesus clearly did not intend to change his mind either.

In Revelation 3:9 Jesus says, “I will make those who are of the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews though they are not, but are liars—I will make them come and fall down at your feet and acknowledge that I have loved you.”

Jesus makes no mention of Christians or anyone else. According to his own words (see Matthew chapter 5, along with other comments such as those above), Jesus never intended to begin a new faith; he came to further his own religion, Judaism.

If you’re not a Jew, you’re not a member of his club. In the words of Jesus, you’re the lowest, most contemptible sort of person on the planet.

The reason you think you can speak to Jesus and feel his love is the same reason you can have a conversation in your head with President Obama. We build models of other individuals in our brains to predict their behavior. [4]

That’s what happens when you neglect to read the book by which you supposedly live your life, when you fail to learn its history and objectively investigate what you think you believe — you end up having a fantasy relationship with a bigoted, dead Jew.

[1] Ehrman, Bart D. The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings. Oxford University Press, 2000.

[2] Brown, Raymond E. An Introduction to the New Testament. Doubleday, 1997

[3] Harris, Stephen L. Understanding the Bible. Mayfield, 1985

[4] Thomson, J. Anderson; Clare Aukofer. Why We Believe in God(s): A Concise Guide to the Science of Faith. Pitchstone Publishing, 2011.

 

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When Is Abuse Not Wrong?

I really think hell came to be invented by disgruntled people who had to watch abusive people (toward them) get away with abusive behavior.  What is that phrase “only the good die young?”  Sometimes it sure seems so.   And so for some of us who have been on the receiving end of what a user, taker, sociopath, narcissist, sadist, or whatever felt it was perfectly okay to dish out, sometimes all we have is hope in such things as karma, or some kind of day of reckoning after death. 

The trick for those of us who have to watch our lives fall to shambles because of the damage done by such people, is getting past the rage or resentment at the unfairness of it all.  Having to watch the person who directed abuse at us, go his or her merry way unscathed, and even often still liked or friended by people we thought cared for us.

It happens everywhere, I know but…for me it happened in Edmonds WA at a rather popular restaurant across from the Costco on Aurora.  Just head’s up from someone who learned the hard way.  If you are lonely, depressed, sad, scared, have a low self-esteem or whatever, do not stay late at any bar, do not confide in a bartender who says he’s your friend or believe it when they tell you that bartenders never repeat what you tell them in confidence to others, and in the case of this person who targeted me I suspect not wearing white lacy crocheted sweaters would be a good idea too.

I don’t know why sexual harassment or targeting of a customer at a bar is tolerated behavior.  I suppose for some restaurant or restaurant corporations it wouldn’t be, but certainly for the one I had the misfortune of being targeted at, it was.   I don’t know if it falls under the definition of sexual harassment or not, but as a bartender, and especially a head bartender, it’s that person’s job to monitor customers to prevent them from drinking too much.  It’s also important for bartenders to know the physical and mental condition of customers because alcohol can affect people with health or mental problems differently than healthy people.   In my view for a bartender to exploit someone with depression, which is what happened to me, and use his position as bartender to his own advantage to go after a customer, a regular paying customer and therefore someone just as deserving as anyone else of basic safety to their person, this is harmful predatory behavior and funny thing, because there’s no way to prove it, people shrug it off like it’s no big deal.   I reported what happened to the police, the Better Business Bureau (because it did cause me and still does cause me, financial and emotional damage), and The Washington State Human Rights Commission and no one really cared.  This happens all the time, I was told.   And you know what?  It does.

Why isn’t it a crime?  Why are there not surveillance cameras set up at bars for after hours–or even during hours?   Why isn’t there some law that requires two bartenders stay on the floor to close the restaurant, not just one that everyone trusts and assumes would never do harm to a lonely depressed customer?

What’s really frustrating…you can’t even report your horrible experience on places like YELP.   If you try they filter out your comment like ooooh, you can only say nice things about the restaurant that let such harm happen to you.  

Anyway, I just think it’s wrong that anyone could be so hurt and have it be no big deal, and I know it and much worse has happened to many others–it’s that kind of hurtful thing that people look at you and say, “well, that’s what you get for staying late at a bar,” or “that’s what you get for drinking too much.”  Like depressed or emotionally compromised women (or men) for some reason are permitted to be made uncomfortable, coerced or pressured into acts they really don’t want to do, just for trusting that a bartender would not wish them harm for confiding in them.  When really, sometimes, when the conditions are right and that particular bartender might not be happy in his (or her) life, they do.

Human Rights to Equal Treatment vrs….Religion

Or I should say, the Christian religion, since mostly we hear more protests from those of this faith than any other, against gays and their equal right to demonstrate their love for each other, or what would be the ultimate expression of their love: marriage.

Why does Christianity protest so adamantly that homosexuality is an abomination to God and the institution of marriage (and all the privileges it brings with it), be a right restricted to one man and one woman only?   Why is this when so many other verses that very clearly outline for us God’s will in the bible, (which are also supposedly divinely inspired by God), are ignored?

Does it seem that this religion goes through its own holy book and picks and chooses which verses to highlight, emphasize, write sermons and preach about, etc.   Below I have listed some verses in the bible taken from various translations.  Note, if the bible is the untainted, uninfluenced by human wishes, perfect Word of God, why is only one of the verses pasted below,  taken seriously?  Why are we not seeing Christians silencing their women, forcing their women not to teach or have authority over men?  Why do we not have slaves?  Why are we not stoning rape victims who don’t cry out, or our children who are stubbornly insolent?  If this holy book is God inspired, God telling us puny humans his mind, why are we puny humans thinking we have the wisdom to sift through God’s rulebook, per se, and carefully select which rules we want to take seriously and follow, punishing or laying restrictions upon those we disagree with or disapprove of and using these certain verses in the bible as justification, while ignoring completely other rules just as strongly worded, that God also thought important enough to share with us?

Does the church have a very human agenda?  Does it use this book the bible as justification to enforce a certain kind of lifestyle it decides is wholesome and appropriate and acceptable, to then enforce upon society?   Shove down peoples’ throats, even those others who do not follow or believe?  What has Christianity to do with marriage?  If atheists are allowed to marry, why not gays?    Why does the church select what the bible says about homosexuality as relevant, while ignoring what it says about how killing an unborn fetus isn’t murder?

Verses from the bible.  It’s easy to see which one of these verses Christianity recognizes as important and which ones it takes very lightly, or does not recognize at all.   Was God just having a bad day when he commanded these things?

1 Corinthians 14: 34:  Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.  35:  And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.

1 Timothy 2:12:  But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.   (So much for YOU, Sarah Palin!)

 Lev. 20:13, “If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their bloodguiltness is upon them”

 Lev 25: 44-46 NLT:  However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you.  You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land.  You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance.  You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way.  

 Exodus 21:2-6 NLT  If you buy a Hebrew slave, he is to serve for only six years.  Set him free in the seventh year, and he will owe you nothing for his freedom.  If he was single when he became your slave and then married afterward, only he will go free in the seventh year.  But if he was married before he became a slave, then his wife will be freed with him.  If his master gave him a wife while he was a slave, and they had sons or daughters, then the man will be free in the seventh year, but his wife and children will still belong to his master.  But the slave may plainly declare, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children.  I would rather not go free.’  If he does this, his master must present him before God.  Then his master must take him to the door and publicly pierce his ear with an awl.  After that, the slave will belong to his master forever

Exodus 21:20-21 NAB  When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished.  If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. 

Deuteronomy 22:28-29 NLT    If a man is caught in the act of raping a young woman who is not engaged, he must pay fifty pieces of silver to her father.  Then he must marry the young woman because he violated her, and he will never be allowed to divorce her.

(Sorry but um…what sadist would force a rape victim marry her rapist?) 

Deuteronomy 22:23-24 NAB    If within the city a man comes upon a maiden who is betrothed, and has relations with her, you shall bring them both out of the gate of the city and there stone them to death: the girl because she did not cry out for help though she was in the city, and the man because he violated his neighbors wife.

Deuteronomy 21:18-21 If a man have a stubborn and rebellious son, which will not obey the voice of his father, or the voice of his mother, and that, when they have chastened him, will not hearken unto them: Then shall his father and his mother lay hold on him, and bring him out unto the elders of his city, and unto the gate of his place; And they shall say unto the elders of his city, This our son is stubborn and rebellious, he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton, and a drunkard. And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he die: so shalt thou put evil away from among you; and allIsrael shall hear, and fear.

Leviticus 26:29   And ye shall eat the flesh of your sons, and the flesh of your daughters shall ye eat.

Psalm 137:9  Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.

Exodus 21:22 says: “If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.” Interesting to note that Exodus is clear that a murderer receives capital punishment, but killing a fetus is not punished with death.)