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Prior to my deconversion this was still a very difficult concept for me. How could behavior considered evil by humans be considered acceptable if exhibited by God? No amount of rationalization could work this out for me. The extreme result of Craig's philosophy would be for a believer to kill as many infants as possible to spare them from Hell. I wonder how Craig would respond to his spiritual superior telling him that God had instructed him to tell his followers to begin the wholesale slaughter of non believers. After all he believes Israel was instructed to do so , therefore God could issue the same instructions today.


I've had lots of conversations with other atheists about the whole "religion bends the moral compass" thing While this may sound intuitivly true with all the nasty stuff religious people do and say, we still have to examine it.

You're right, Craig's view is indefensiable and the moderate view is as well [the whole I pick what the bible says].

But I like studies to back things up, not matter how true they sound.

I came across this one

The original study is here

where Christians were psychologically manipulated to changed their mind on a moral issue [and hence go against god's command] and they changed god's views with their own moral views.

This is also the reason why Christians cherry pick in the first place.

Craig's view which is morally indefensiable further illustrates that religion isn't a must have for moral decisions.


I had a decent amount of respect for WLC, but this makes it a bit tough.


you write good

Nilou Ataie

These horrid stories are a huge reason why certain parasitic memes are so fecund. Parental and authority figures tell children that death and eternal torture await if they do not maintain and replicate ridiculous ideas that they themselves have been threatened into believing and spreading.

Blake Stacey

"We know nothing in the world more truly sad than the wild arguments used by pious men in struggling with the ugly parts of their holy writ. For ourselves, we find a much more solid comfort as we think of this melancholy story. It is that it rests on the sole unsupported statement of our author. Of corroboration there is not a vestige. Learned Christian scholars have toiled zealously, not, as one might have hoped, to dispel this story, but we regret to say, to substantiate it. We are thankful to add without any success whatever."

-- A Plain Commentary on the First Gospel by an Agnostic (1891)

Jesse Weinstein

The previous post where Greta announced the AlterNet publication of this essay (with 38 comments) is here:

Mcvay Jen

This is precisely what happens when any text considered holy is taken seriously: in the end it's either true or it's not, and if it is, then whatever the deity does must be correct. It simply doesn't matter how horrible.


I would like to speak toward the genocide going on in Iraq because of the use of Depleted Uranium by the US forces.

The deformed babies in Iraq are now at a rate of 25% and in Fallugah it is up to 75%. Women are being warned about having babies!

Rare cancers are on the rise drastically and this can all be blamed upon U-238 and the US refuses to recognize their guilt.


I am an atheist, I think we have strong grounds for believing there is no intelligent being responsible for the universe.
At the same time, I think there is no objective meaning of life and no objective moral values, I think that moral realism is false.
According to one of your posting on uncommon descent, the website of william dumski, you believe the genocide of the canaanites (which historically never happened) was morally wrong.

Now, I have the following question: you are certainly a materialist, and believe that everything which is real can be entirely reduced to the interactions of elementary particles like quarks or perhaps strings. There is no conceptual problem to think the chair I am sitting on can be reduced to a collection of quarks with certain configurations in space and time.
Consider however the following statement: "it was morally wrong for the israelites to slaughter the canaanites".
For you, it is a real fact of the universe.

Now, to which collections of atoms, electrons or quarks would you reduce it ?

I'm looking forward to hearing your responses !

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