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why does the judeo-christian god endorse slavery?

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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 12:55 PM
Original message
why does the judeo-christian god endorse slavery?
in the old testament in particular, god lays down all sorts of laws for his chosen ones- including rules on how to treat your slaves...but wouldn't a truly loving god be pretty much horrified by the idea of human beings putting other human beings into bondage? (the non-sexual kind, that is).
wouldn't a loving god have said that all slaves should be given their freedom?

just another one of those thoughts that led me out of the closed-minded darkness of religious belief, and into the true light of atheism.
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Vexatious Ape Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:07 PM
Response to Original message
1. My answer would be:
Because god doesn't exist, but man does, and he wrote the bible and had no problem with slavery.
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valerief Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:08 PM
Response to Original message
2. God's will? It's a mystery? That's pre 9-11 thinking? nt
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Xeric Donating Member (586 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:11 PM
Response to Original message
3. God is an asshole
That pretty much sums up the old testament God. The new testament God is a nutball that sacrifices himself to himself so you don't have to burn in hell for eternity....which you will do if you don't worship him, because he's kind of vain and needy.
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gWbush is Mabus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:20 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. lol
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:48 PM
Response to Reply #3
13. the new testament has slavery too...
although they mostly changed the word to "servant"...but the servants were slaves, nonetheless.
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 12:53 AM
Response to Reply #13
66. And yet most believers in Judaism or Christianity apparently now ..
.. strongly disapprove of slavery. Perhaps they have learned to read differently ...
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zonmoy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-14-06 05:47 PM
Response to Reply #3
94. since christianity claims they are the same god doesn't that just make
god just plain evil.
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:25 PM
Response to Original message
5. Only if you accept that the Bible is meant to be taken as a rule
book, and not allegory and history. Slavery is mentioned b/c it was a fact of life. Human beings wrote everything in Bible -- perhaps inspired by God, but that doesn't make it God's own rule book.

I understand why you'd think that however; an awful lot of Christians desperately seem to need a rule book, and so have made the Bible that. I think they miss a lot that way, but I doubt they much care.

Literal reading of the Bible is dangerous but easy. The alternative takes work, perhaps.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:57 PM
Response to Reply #5
18. another thing that dangerous but easy...
apparently easy for some at least- belief in a superhuman deity.

i just don't get how so many people could be so universally hood-winked without a single shred of actual evidence of the existence of such.

it's mind-boggling, but it sure does explain how we could end up with the government we've got.
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 09:14 PM
Response to Reply #18
53. Sheesh. Broad brush or what?
Did you intend to be insulting, or was I just collateral damage here?

I can no more prove the existence of God than you can disprove it. That's why it's a matter of faith.

We disagree, and I have no need to persuade you to my way of seeing things. I wish the same courtesy would be extended to me and other believers here.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 01:35 AM
Response to Reply #53
69. personally, i feel that religoids NEED to be persuaded...
to abandon archaic and inane belief structures, to rid the human race of the giant ball-and-chain of religion that has plagued it for too long, so that some actual social progress can be made.
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 08:16 AM
Response to Reply #69
71. Well, you're entitled to your own beliefs, obnoxiously as you
put them.

But a great deal of social progress has been made because of people's faith as well. And I find the idea that someone else should determine what I believe a little unnerving -- whether they're pushing religion or pushing against it. So I'll stick with my own beliefs, evolving as they may always be.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 01:53 PM
Response to Reply #71
79. someone else has already determined what you believe...
religion is not a natural human state, and if you're like the majority of
believers", your belief structure was put in place based on what your parents decided you should know. i'm also willing to bet that whatever god you were raised to believe in has never proven it's existence to you directly in a clear and unambiguous manner(e.g.- materializing in front of you and carrying on a conversation).
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 03:14 PM
Response to Reply #79
82. Doesn't need to, at least for me.
And actually scientists have lately been thinking that some of us *are* hardwired for religious belief. Perhaps you can't blame it all on my mother!
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Goblinmonger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 09:09 AM
Response to Reply #53
76. I can no more prove the existence of magical dragons
than you can disprove it. Are you willing to place my belief in dragons right along side your belief in god or would you, honestly, dismiss me as a nut bag?

How about this Sam Harris quotation (since I am the high priest of his religion):
The president of the United States has claimed, on more than one occasion, to be in dialogue with God. If he said that he was talking to God through his hairdryer, this would precipitate a national emergency. I fail to see how the addition of a hairdryer makes the claim more ridiculous or offensive.
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JerseygirlCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 03:15 PM
Response to Reply #76
83. If magical dragons make you happy, Goblin
go to it! I won't get in your way.

If they help you lead a kinder more loving life, then magical dragons are a good thing, indeed.

As to Harris and his quote: I'm quite cautious about anyone claiming God speaks to them directly, in the way that Bush has seemed to imply God does.
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Beelzebud Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:26 PM
Response to Original message
6. 1000 years from now, it will be interesting to see the religon that spawns
When some dumb ass finds an old copy of Dune.
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noonwitch Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:27 PM
Response to Original message
7. Because the men who wrote the Bible were of a culture that encouraged it
The Old Testament God also allegedly laid down laws for what to eat and not eat, who one can have sex with and can't have sex with, how to deal with menstruating women, how to identify lepers, etc.

God is above and beyond the things written in his name. Bad religion is close-minded and dark, but spirituality is a different matter. I can believe in the deeper truths expressed in the Bible and reject the ancient social commentary and commandments.

The comment one poster made about the New Testament and God destroying himself misses the point, like so many fundamentalist christians also miss the point. Jesus died and was resurrected. Lots of fundamentalists point to the suffering Jesus, dying for our sins and overlook the message of resurrection and hope (or paint it as only applying to those who "accept Jesus Christ as their personal savior"). The point of his dying was so that he could be resurrected, to show us that death is not the end of all, that we have souls that live on, a spark of God within each.

Of course, if one truly believes that all people have a spark of God within their souls, one cannot discriminate against anyone for being gay, or muslim, or whatever, because the grace of God is not limited only to those who are "washed in the blood of the lamb", it's for all people.

As Andrew Lloyld Webber puts it "To conquer death, you only have to die".
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:32 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. delete
Edited on Thu Oct-12-06 01:33 PM by barb162
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:34 PM
Response to Original message
9. Citation for where it is "endorsed" in the bible please
I think most if not all societies at that time practiced slavery
and it was quite common. There still are a few around today. Also other religions around the world, Hindus, Buddhists, etc., had slaves in their cultures. I'd really like to see a bible citation for what you wrote in any case, where this was endorsed.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:46 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. a quick google search gave me this for starters...
http://www.landoverbaptist.org/news0401/answers.html

Answers To "The Bible Slavery Quiz"

1. How did Jesus say a slave should treat his master?

Correct Answer: C. (A slave must completely obey and fear his master, even if his master is cruel and unjust) Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward" (1 Peter 2:18). "Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ" (Ephesians 6:5).


2. What is God's policy on physical punishment of your slave?

Correct Answer: D. A servant will not be corrected by words: for though he understand he will not answer (Proverbs 29:19). And if a man smite the eye of his servant, or the eye of his maid, that it perish; he shall let him go free for his eyes sake. And if he smite out his manservants tooth, or his maidservants tooth; he shall let him go free for his tooths sake (Exodus 21:26-27).


3. Whom did God tell the Israelites they should turn into their slaves?

Correct Answer: B. (The people of other tribes living around them) "Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids (Leviticus 25:44)....
more at the link.

ALSO- in the new testament, all the references, in parables and such, to "servants" should really be "slaves", because that's what they were.
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:50 PM
Response to Reply #11
14. looks like a big joke web site to me (WH Dept of Faith ????)
Edited on Thu Oct-12-06 01:54 PM by barb162
here's one of its connecting links
http://www.landoverbaptist.org/ministries.html (ex-Negro Ministr , for starters)

and the thing (photo) about "Brother Harry" on the lower left, support the NRA, , the woman shouting ,etc.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:51 PM
Response to Reply #14
16. landover baptist is DEFINITELY a parody site...
but the bible references are very real.
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:58 PM
Response to Reply #16
19. which bible? King James version or what?
That web site you linked...the whole thingis a big joke/parody.

I wish you'd admit there is no place that God "endorses" slavery in one of the judeo-christian versions of the bible. If there is a passage in a bible somewhere about treating slaves kindly, that is not an endorsement of slavery
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Goblinmonger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 03:46 PM
Response to Reply #19
32. What about this little diddy?
Exodus 21:1-4: "If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing. If he came in by himself, he shall go out by himself: if he were married, then his wife shall go out with him. If his master have given him a wife, and she have born him sons or daughters; the wife and her children shall be her master's, and he shall go out by himself."


That sounds like a god that has no problem with slavery as long as it follows his rules.

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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 08:48 PM
Response to Reply #32
50. That doesn't sound like an endorsement of slavery
It sounds like an ancient attempt at trying to be fair to those who had no recognized rights of any kind. Did slaves in ancient Persia, Carthage or Sparta or Egypt fare better? Thousands of years ago, people basically had no rights as everything was by force and power of rulers, right? Civil rights is a very recent concept
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Goblinmonger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 09:00 AM
Response to Reply #50
74. "Civil rights is a very recent concept"
So God's goodness is time bound to the feelings of humans at the time? God couldn't just have said, "Hey, dumbasses, you can't own other people. Slavery is an abomination." He felt confident to name shrimp an abomination, but he drew the line at slavery?
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 04:01 PM
Response to Reply #74
84. Great reply
It almost seems that God changes his mind AFTER human beings start changing their minds. Gee..I wonder why.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 05:32 PM
Response to Reply #19
35. how about the referenced passage from leviticus...?
where their god tells them who it is that's o.k. to take into bondage?
that sure sounds like a ringing endorsement to me...

rather than telling the israelites how to treat their slaves, shouldn't he be telling them EXPLICITLY(especially since he had recently supposedly taken them out of slavery in Egypt) that they should NOT have slaves, because it is immoral?
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beyurslf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:47 PM
Response to Reply #9
12. It never says go out and get slaves. But it doesn'tsay not to and if it
gives rules for how to treat them, then that is a soft endorsement. The OT is full of rules about what things you can't do including many that we would find silly today. If god was againast slavery, he should have said it.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:51 PM
Response to Reply #12
15. in leviticus, it says who should be made into slaves...
which is a little more than a "soft" endorsement.

and all the new testament references to "servants", were really about slaves.
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beyurslf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:38 PM
Response to Reply #15
24. Exactly.
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 09:54 PM
Response to Reply #15
55. Do you know of a culture or society back about 4000 yrs ago
on any continent that didn't have slaves? How about 2000 years ago? Slavery was pretty damned common until quite recently. That doesn't mean that the religions necessarily endorsed slavery. Some may have. Think of the Aztecs, Incas, think of so many societies that had slaves in Asia, Europe, Africa, South and North America.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:08 PM
Response to Reply #55
59. the point is...
you'd think that a supposed "supreme" and loving god would have probably told his "children" that slavery is a BIG no-no. ESPECIALLY in a world where slavery was as common as it was in the time period that the bible was set in...

but if you look at the words/laws that this supposed god alledgedly gave his people, his "children" if you will, he seems to be generally o.k. with the idea and practice of human flesh peddling...in other words- of some of his children owning other of his children.

like i said- once i outgrew the childhood indoctrination, and actually looked at the whole "god" scenario with a critical eye and open mind- atheism became the obvious choice.
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:26 PM
Response to Reply #59
61. Yours:"...would have probably told his "children" ..."
Everything written is in context of the societies and cultures at that time they were written. Some people were worshipping the sun, some had multiple gods, some weren't doing that. Trying to inmpose current day thinking or morals about slavery to people of a few thousand years ago makes no sense, any more than you would look down on them for not knowing calculus or that the earth is nor the center of the universe.

I think Buddha and Jesus and some others of some other major religions weren't endorsing slavery. I know of no biblical references where Jesus, for example, endorsed slavery.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 01:25 AM
Response to Reply #61
67. jesus spoke about slaves and slavery too...
but they use the word 'servant'. and he doesn't oppose it.

Everything written is in context of the societies and cultures at that time they were written. Some people were worshipping the sun, some had multiple gods, some weren't doing that. Trying to inmpose current day thinking or morals about slavery to people of a few thousand years ago makes no sense, any more than you would look down on them for not knowing calculus or that the earth is nor the center of the universe.

exactly.
which is proof that the bible is the word of humans, being passed off as the inspired word of god.

if the judeo-christian god actually existed, he would have come down hard on slavery as a practice, especially among the people of israel, whom he alledgedly rescued from bondage in egypt.
the god's morals are not supposed to reflect whatever the current human values and customs are at the time- morality is supposed to come FROM god, not be dictated TO him.

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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 08:48 AM
Response to Reply #55
73. Yes.
I think you may not realize how many cultures there are. Slavery isn't common among the thousands of non-expansionist societies.
www.nativeplanet.org
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:53 PM
Response to Reply #9
17. as far as slavery being very common at the time...
are you saying that the christian god's morality is...conditional?
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:01 PM
Response to Reply #17
20. Of course not. But instead of your worrying about the christian
god, maybe you'd like to also reference Hindus, Taoism and other religions as to their views on slavery. I am wondering why you make these "accusations" about christianity without real references or links, other than that joke religion site
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 05:22 PM
Response to Reply #20
34. one false religion at a time, please...
and that "joke religion site", as i pointed out, gave very REAL bible references.
also- there wasn't an accusation on my part, but rather a question.

which leads to another- why are christians so touchy about people pointing out fallacies andf hypocricy in their belief system(s)?
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 06:20 PM
Response to Reply #34
37.  Why are some people given to making
accusations about the belief system of only one religion. Are all religions false religions? And do you decide that?
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 06:47 PM
Response to Reply #37
38. ALL theist religions are false.
at least in my opinion, given the available data.

and yes, i decided that for myself.
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 08:35 PM
Response to Reply #38
49. Maybe you want to tell a few billion Moslems, Hindus,
Buddhists, Christians, etal, how they worship false gods? Start with Saudi Arabia or Iran.
Data and/or science has nothing to do with most religion; never did.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 09:58 PM
Response to Reply #49
56. i think i already did...
all they need do is read my post.

and i realize that science is anathema to religion and religoids. organized religions are usually all about societal mind control. and the weaker that societal mind, the easier the job is.
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Goldensilence Donating Member (213 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 12:58 PM
Response to Reply #49
78. um wait
buddhists don't believe in ANY god. thanks.
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Evoman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 04:05 PM
Response to Reply #49
85. That almost sounds like a threat.
I will tell any person what I thought to their face...unless they might stab me or burn me. And only about 90% of religious people would do that lol.

Data or science has nothing to do with religion, because religious thinking taints it.
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RethugAssKicker Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 01:41 PM
Response to Original message
10. Simple... It was not written by God.. but by man.
Out of all the religions in the world, why do we think that Christianity is
right. It is only indoctrination which makes one feel that way.

It certainly is not a sane, rational decision.
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 08:55 PM
Response to Reply #10
51. The comment is incorrect. Moslems believe the Koran is
Edited on Thu Oct-12-06 08:57 PM by barb162
directly from god. The Christian bible is written by the apostles for the most part and I think most christians recognise that In a church, the person reading a passage will say, the "gospel or whatever according to MAtthew, John or whoever. Not the "gospel according to God"
Yours: "Out of all the religions in the world, why do we think that Christianity is right." That would apply to Islam, not christianity
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Finder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 02:20 PM
Response to Reply #51
81. Not exactly but close...
The Koran was dictated by Allah through an angel to Mohammed. The NT is said to be inspired by God.
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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:12 PM
Response to Original message
21. It always amuses me to see atheists taking the Bible more literally
than most Christians or Jews do.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:15 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. That's true
Fundies and atheists both tend to pick and choose which verses to believe are literal and which to ignore. I had never noticed that fundies and atheists could be so much alike!
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cyborg_jim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. Wait, and liberal's don't?!?
Pull the other one.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:49 PM
Response to Reply #23
28. I didn't say that, you did. n/t
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cyborg_jim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 07:25 PM
Response to Reply #28
41. Eh?
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 07:34 PM
Response to Reply #41
43. I made no statement about what liberals do.
I compared fundies and atheists. If you wish to include other groups in the comparison, that's OK with me. Present your evidence for consideration. Is that asking too much?
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cyborg_jim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 08:05 PM
Response to Reply #43
46. In the absence of a god to sort this out
Just who ISN'T making some decision about what to accept as true or not in the Bible?

Hmm, wouldn't that make it a disingenous argument merely designed to insult?
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Finder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:41 PM
Response to Reply #22
26. Are you saying verses about slavery are metaphorical? n/t
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:46 PM
Response to Reply #26
27. All I am saying is what I said. n/t
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Goblinmonger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 03:44 PM
Response to Reply #22
31. Untrue
If somebody tells me that something in the bible needs to be followed because it is in the bible, I think it is logically consistant on my part to then say "what about this part?" Because it either is something you follow or something you don't. If it is just a suggestion, then why is it the basis for the largest US religion?

Could you possibly give me an example of when an atheist cherry picked what was literal from the bible other than what I have said above. I can't believe an atheist would ever argue that something in the bible is literal.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 04:25 PM
Response to Reply #31
33. The OP and your own post #32
Are examples of taking bible verses and throwing them in the faces of the Christians to make your point. You are willing to ignore contradictory verses that disagree your chosen verses.

Please don't get me wrong, I am an atheist and I plead guilty to using bible verses as offensive weapons just as you did in post #32. I just never realized that my behavior(and yours) was so similar to the fundies!
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 06:53 PM
Response to Reply #33
39. contradictory verses only discredit the source material all the more...
i have no problem with contradictory verses- but are there any where the deity advises that slavery is just plain morally WRONG?

and it isn't just fundies and/or athiests and/or the bible- anyone who is trying to discuss something usually limits themselves to pertinent information.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 07:15 PM
Response to Reply #39
40. Of course there are.
"are there any where the deity advises that slavery is just plain morally WRONG?"

How about "do unto others as you would have them do unto you" or "love thy neighbor as thyself"

Both of those are contradictory to endorsement of slavery.

But my argument with Goblinmonger was that you take the verse to be literally true because that serves your purpose. If you don't take it to be literally true, then you are postulating an argument that you know to be false. That is not only disingenuous, but it brings into question your credibility. Will you inform us in the future whether you are posting truthful arguments or posting false arguments for self-serving purposes?


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cyborg_jim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 07:32 PM
Response to Reply #40
42. Weak
But my argument with Goblinmonger was that you take the verse to be literally true because that serves your purpose.


I don't think any atheist takes any commandment from a god to be 'literally true'.

Are you familiar with the concept of rhetoric?

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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 07:46 PM
Response to Reply #42
44. Yes, I am.
Edited on Thu Oct-12-06 07:54 PM by cosmik debris
I am also familiar with the concept of disingenuous argument.

If you don't accept the Old Testament to be true, then you have postulated a disingenuous argument. If you do accept the OT to be true, you have proved my point.

Example: Your mother says you wet the bed until you were 16 years old. This means that you were a disturbed child and now you are a disturbed adult.

That is a disingenuous argument because I don't believe the basic premise. I only used that premise and that argument to insult you. And that is exactly what was done in the original post.
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cyborg_jim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 08:02 PM
Response to Reply #44
45. No.
If you don't accept the Old Testament to be true, then you have postulated a disingenuous argument. If you do accept the OT to be true, you have proved my point.


What a lovely false dichonomy you have there.

Besides it's not a case of 'accepting' the OT as 'true' - whatever that means. It's merely a point in case of making an inference:

God -> Bible
Bible -> Slavery
God -> Slavery

I don't have to believe in the reality of, nor truthiness of either the Bible or the god conatined within to present this inference for consideration.

That is a disingenuous argument because I don't believe the basic premise.


Erm no. That argument is disingenous because it's a non-sequitor. If the argument were sound and you didn't believe the initial premise you were probably forming it to show the conclusions based upon accepting the premise as true.

Where's the insult? Just what in the hell is your problem here? Are you saying that non-Christians shouldn't make arguments as to what could be reasonably inferred about the nature of the biblegod because they don't believe in it?
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 08:10 PM
Response to Reply #45
47. You appearently didn't read the OP
I give up. From my point of view you are defending the indefensible.

You are welcome to it.
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cyborg_jim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 08:22 PM
Response to Reply #47
48. Whatever.
You believe what you like - it's entirely common to make an assumtion of truth about an opponent's position in order to demonstrate absurdity or a conclusion they do not want.

But no you're right, you go ahead and sulk about it instead.
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okasha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 09:40 PM
Response to Reply #45
54. So--Is it your position that God wrote the Bible?
Because if it isn't, then your logical progression isn't, uhm, logical.

I suggest the following:

Scribes of King Josiah (7th. cent. BCE)----> Old Testament

Old Testament----> Slavery

Scribes of King Josiah (7th. cent. BCE-----> Slavery
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cyborg_jim Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 07:28 AM
Response to Reply #54
70. My position is that gods are made-up
It is a common claim that biblegod inspired his works, that the Bible as it was formed was sanctioned with the aid of the Holy Spook and so forth.

Liberal Christians - pah, whatever, they just make it up as they go along. No point debating them. Waste of time pointing that out to me.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:12 PM
Response to Reply #40
60. if that's so...
then why did the supposedly supreme being tell the people how to treat their slaves, and whiich populations to pluck them from AFTER alledgedly laying down the 10 commandments?
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okasha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 11:30 PM
Response to Reply #60
62. Non sequitur.
n/t
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 01:31 AM
Response to Reply #62
68. not at all...
the post i was replying to was trying to use the 10 commandments as an example of god addressing the issue of slavery as a bad thing...
BUT-
i was pointing out that chronologically, the 10 commandments come before the bulk of the slave-owning how-to's found in books like leviticus...so if the god used the 10 C's as a platform against slavery, why did he later come out condoning the practice?
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okasha Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 07:25 PM
Response to Reply #68
88. Entirely.
The post you were replying to, #40, does not reference or mention the ten commandments.

Don't you think you should at least brush up a little on a subject before you pontificate on it? Thanks for playing, and do your homework next time.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 11:32 PM
Response to Reply #60
63. I am not an apologist for a god in which I do not believe
My only point is that fundies and atheists both use the literal interpretations of bible verses as offensive weapons against those with whom they disagree.

If you disagree with my opinion, You win, I give up.
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Goblinmonger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 09:04 AM
Response to Reply #33
75. I know you are an atheist
I have seen your posts and have a good deal of respect for your viewpoints.

My #32 is an example of someone saying that there is no place in the bible that condones slavery and me offering a place where there is. Just because there are contradictory verses doesn't mean I am cherry picking. It might mean that the bible is a horrible source for rules, doctrine, dogma, and guidance, but that is a completely different argument. When the claim of another is that there is no occurrence of something in the bible, finding an occurrence of such a thing is just logical refutation.
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 02:09 PM
Response to Reply #75
80. I'm not sure whether to write it off as a misunderstanding
Or a disagreement, but I'm go to let it go. It is just not that important to me. I think that should be agreeable.
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 08:58 PM
Response to Reply #21
52. Instead of figuratively
Edited on Thu Oct-12-06 09:56 PM by barb162
which is the only way to take it unless one is fundamentalist. Too many interpretations are apparent to just look at this document in one way,IMHO. Revelations... interpretations galore
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Igel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 02:38 PM
Response to Original message
25. There are two kinds of slavery in the OT. OK, 3.
Edited on Thu Oct-12-06 02:40 PM by igil
The first is indentured servitude; it could be abused, but isn't chattel slavery as practiced in the US in the 17-18th centuries or pretty much everywhere else before that. In principle, you and your family couldn't be indentured servants for more than 6 years, at which point you and your family were free, and given a 'starter kit', so to speak--sheep, food, whatever. The servant could also decide to stay; then he couldn't be freed, but this was (in principle) voluntary.

Really bad weather, ill health, or incredible incompetence/profligacy could lead to the kinds of debt that could lead to indentured servitude. But debts couldn't pile up for more than 7 years: every 7 years the debt tally was zeroed out by fiat (in principle). The first recourse, of course, to pay debts when they were demanded would be to sell what you have to pay them. In cities, you could sell land, and it was sold; in the countryside, you couldn't sell land. You could lease it for up to 50 years (depending which year in a 50-year-cycle you were in, i.e., when the year of jubilee fell); at the end of the 49th year the land returned to your family/clan. In principle, you'd have to have really screwed up (or be unlucky with finances) to sell yourself into slavery--or have your debts be high enough that the only way of paying them off, with a long time to the year of release, is through servitude. Think of what your family would be doing to you as you head to servitude and take them with you, or deprive your immediate heirs of their birthright.

It's been argued that while enslaved you'd be forced to learn how to work hard and be efficient. Whatever. Certainly unpleasant, on any account, and humiliating. But it could be worse. For example ...

The second is enslaving war captives. It's not endorsed, nor condemned; one rather large set of captives was merely to be executed. But otherwise, this kind of slavery merely is. IT's also outside the Law. The Law regulates things inside the community God set up, with minimal counsel on dealing with outsiders as collective entities(mostly, "don't").

The third kind of slavery is what the first kind devolved into: essentially the same kind practiced elsewhere. Probably the crude and cruel kind of slavery the ground-breaking and compassionate Hammurabi wrote about (which probably represented an improvement at the time). With abandoning the year of release and jubilee, the system wasn't any better. On the other hand, the OT doesn't endorse that, or even merely treat it as a fact. It soundly condemns it.

Nuance is needed here.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 05:37 PM
Response to Reply #25
36. what about children born into slavery?
how is it that the judeo-christian god is cool with that...? children!...

Exodus 21:1-4: "If thou buy an Hebrew servant, six years he shall serve: and in the seventh he shall go out free for nothing. If he came in by himself, he shall go out by himself: if he were married, then his wife shall go out with him. If his master have given him a wife, and she have born him sons or daughters; the wife and her children shall be her master's, and he shall go out by himself."
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Igel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 05:56 PM
Response to Reply #36
87. I've heard a few ideas about what that actually entails.
Edited on Fri Oct-13-06 05:57 PM by igil
The first idea involves filling in the ellipsis: "and her children shall be her master's ..." children. I think that's just wrong.

The other is that the kids stay as slaves. That's probably right.

But this has two variants. The only way that the woman slave wouldn't be freed is if she's not Israelite. All Israelites would be freed, if only in theory. And this entire passage is a version of what should be.

2a is that the kids aren't considered Israelite because descent is through the woman; this gets support from having the kids of Jewish women judged to be Jews, but those of Jewish fathers with non-Jewish women to not (automatically) be considered Jews. I don't like it; descent in the OT is accounted through the father. Ruth. Matrilineal descent is a later thing (although apparently it was fixed by the first century CE).

2b takes this as sort of humanitarian provision: The kids couldn't be more than 7 years old. Do you take a kid from his mother at that age, esp. when the man, single, wasn't able to make a living without falling into severe debt? A subvariant says that the man was essentially stripped of rights, including that of paternity; I don't know if I fully buy that.

The real question is what happens when the kids reach adulthood. Presumably they stayed slaves--then what happens if a young Israelite woman sold into slavery is given to a non-Israelite slave, and has kids? Do they walk with the woman when she's released? There's no evidence to base a judgment on.

A corollary to the entire business of a bondman's offspring involves marriage: If fornication and bastardy are condemned, with divorce being allowed only for a couple of reasons, how is it that the male and female slaves can be "bred"? Notice it doesn't stipulate that the man be single at the time. Presumably some principled solution could be found in practice, but I can't imagine what it would be. Consider it an inconsistency, consider it a lack of explicitness, whatever. It's a problem, and personally the kids' status is less of a problem.

This is rather like Jephtha's vow to sacrifice the first living thing that he saw, which turned out to be his daughter. Much speculation, no records how it was dealt with, and no good solution.

But it is a problem.
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razors edge Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 03:02 PM
Response to Original message
29. We need someone to talk to and
someone to sweep the floors.

Niel Pert
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:01 PM
Response to Reply #29
57. There you go! You do the floors, okay? I 'll eat bon-bons.
LOL!
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jokerman93 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 03:43 PM
Response to Original message
30. The question should be:
Why do all slave religions endorse dominator gods?
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barb162 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Oct-12-06 10:03 PM
Response to Reply #30
58. huh?
Since almost all cultures or societies had slaves until not all that long ago, are the religious then practicing slave religions?
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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 12:28 AM
Response to Reply #58
64. It's not true that almost all cultures have had slaves.
You want it to be true, so that you can then try to make the Bible's endorsement of slavery in both the Old and New Testament seem ok.
It's not ok, was never ok, and the sooner people stop thinking the Bible provides any helpful information whatsoever, the better off the world will be.
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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 08:41 AM
Response to Reply #64
72. a clarification
I'd rather put it in a less extreme way: The Bible provides no novel helpful information whatsoever.

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jokerman93 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 11:59 AM
Response to Reply #58
77. possibly
...if you consider organized religion a form of social programimg.
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 12:32 AM
Response to Original message
65. An atheist friend once told me that the invention of slavery was a great
step forward for humanity: his point was that prior to the invention of slavery, war captives were likely to be eaten, and that making them slaves instead was a humanitarian innovation.

He wasn't a fan of slavery: in fact, he spent just about every waking moment fighting for other people's rights.

I think his was actuallyan excellent remark, whether his anthropological theories were well-supported or not, because his intent was simply this: every bit of progress must be judged against the conditions then prevailing, not against the conditions that would prevail a thousand years later and certainly not against utopian conditions existing only in our imaginations ...
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jokerman93 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-13-06 05:22 PM
Response to Reply #65
86. Yeah I suppose...
People who have to be clever that way always come off a wee bit desperate to me. The logic just seems a little tortured, you know what I mean? I think it's enough to observe that generally speaking, enslaving your enemies is a better idea than eating them.

Going outside the box doesn't always make you a genius.
:hippie:
J

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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-14-06 05:10 PM
Response to Reply #86
92. I doubt if he was "desperate" in any sense when he said that to me,
compared (say) to how desperate he must have been when fleeing pre-war Germany after somebody threatened to turn him in to the Gestapo for handing out anti-Nazi literature.

I don't think I ever considered him a "genius" but he did know quite a lot about practical organizing. And, of course, as good organizers know, a person need not be a "genius" to say things that might be useful to contemplate.
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jokerman93 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Oct-15-06 12:20 PM
Response to Reply #92
95. not a personal slight to your friend
Although I'm not sure its relevant here, his anti-nazi activism certainly gives your friend plenty of real-world street cred. Since I don't know the guy, my comment wasn't meant to diminish the value of his activism -and certainly not to question his commitment or courage. Just making an observation about the kind of statement he made.

My point (not even a very important one) was simply that using relative logic one can put just about anything in a different light. It's an intellectual trick - not a good or bad thing in itself. I just don't find statements like that particularly insightful. That's me. My experience comes from being around people for many years who've used this sort of obvious mental gymnastics, to justify all sorts of nonsense and personal exceptionalism. It can seem quite clever if left unexamined.

There's no conflict here. This just shows it can work both ways for people.

~

"...a person need not be a "genius" to say things that might be useful to contemplate."

This I agree with.

J
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beam me up scottie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-14-06 07:20 AM
Response to Original message
89. This could've been a very interesting discussion if you hadn't pissed off
Edited on Sat Oct-14-06 08:12 AM by beam me up scottie
the christians before it even started.

See, they tend to take offense when they're called "religoids" or have their beliefs described as "close-minded darkness".

Not that I'm above using similar rhetoric when talking to, or about, fundies and dominionists, but the majority of christians who post here are as liberal as they come.


And :wtf: is the "true light of atheism"?

Are you sure you're an atheist? I've never heard anyone describe non-belief as any kind of light, let alone the "true" one.




Your question about biblical references to slavery and why God didn't condemn it is valid and not just a little thought provoking; but your use of derisive terms and claims of superiority caused the christians who responded to feel like they needed to defend their beliefs, and no doubt made others decide to just skip this thread.


Jersey Girl's post #5 is a perfect example of why I have nothing but the utmost respect for christians like her:
Only if you accept that the Bible is meant to be taken as a rule book, and not allegory and history. Slavery is mentioned b/c it was a fact of life. Human beings wrote everything in Bible -- perhaps inspired by God, but that doesn't make it God's own rule book.

I understand why you'd think that however; an awful lot of Christians desperately seem to need a rule book, and so have made the Bible that. I think they miss a lot that way, but I doubt they much care.

Literal reading of the Bible is dangerous but easy. The alternative takes work, perhaps.
See, like most liberal christians, JG reads, listens, learns, and then makes up her own mind. She doesn't deny and certainly doesn't blindly follow the archaic rules, regulations and threats written by ancient misogynists, racists and anti-semites which are commonly found in the bible and also in the diatribes of contemporary fundamentalist preachers.




And these posts (including one of yours) contributed to the discussion without the insults:

Goblinmonger:

74. "Civil rights is a very recent concept"
So God's goodness is time bound to the feelings of humans at the time? God couldn't just have said, "Hey, dumbasses, you can't own other people. Slavery is an abomination." He felt confident to name shrimp an abomination, but he drew the line at slavery?


beyurslf:

12. It never says go out and get slaves. But it doesn't say not to and if it gives rules for how to treat them, then that is a soft endorsement. The OT is full of rules about what things you can't do including many that we would find silly today. If god was againast slavery, he should have said it.



QuestionAll:

59. the point is...
you'd think that a supposed "supreme" and loving god would have probably told his "children" that slavery is a BIG no-no. ESPECIALLY in a world where slavery was as common as common as it was in the time period that the bible was set in...

but if you look at the words/laws that this supposed god alledgedly gave his people, his "children" if you will, he seems to be generally o.k. with the idea and practice of human flesh peddling...in other words- of some of his children owning other of his children.


RethugAssKicker :

10. Simple... It was not written by God.. but by man.
Out of all the religions in the world, why do we think that Christianity is right. It is only indoctrination which makes one feel that way.



Were you even interested in a discussion?
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Phx_Dem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-14-06 12:43 PM
Response to Original message
90. Answers from the Torah
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struggle4progress Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-14-06 05:16 PM
Response to Reply #90
93. "... from a future .. yet to occur .... with the world as it is ..."
Lovely!
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Sam1 Donating Member (136 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Oct-14-06 03:10 PM
Response to Original message
91. Where did you get the idea that there is a
Judeo-Christian God?

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LostInAnomie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-16-06 12:37 AM
Response to Original message
96. God's not a big fan of breaking a sweat.
Or paying people wages.
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The Straight Story Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-20-06 01:26 AM
Response to Original message
97. Let's call it like it was - jews had slaves in the OT and liked it
And god spoke to them based on who they were at the time and in relation to the world at the time.

Simple as that. Right or wrong is a relevant thing, you say slavery is wrong, but that is a BELIEF system. Is your's the one true and right way and all others lead to...well, what would they lead to? On this planet if there is no afterlife then maybe slavery ain't such a bad idea afterall really, to the strongest goes the spoils, etc and so on. Evolution in action, the survival of the fittest and all that.

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Sola Scriptura Donating Member (3 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-23-06 02:50 PM
Response to Original message
98. slavery
There is neither Jew or Greek, Male or Female, Freedman or Slave in Christ Jesus- St. Paul
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cosmik debris Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-23-06 03:07 PM
Response to Reply #98
99. Welcome to DU and welcome to the Arena
Watch your step.
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