Tuesday, November 02, 2010

The Biblical Spin Continues

ACA member and frequent commentator David Tyler went on the campaign trail briefly with Mark Loewe to John Hagee's Cornerstone Church. David's trip report is in our November Austin Atheist Newsletter (p. 2). I'm sorry I couldn't go to this service. I've always wanted to see John Hagee in action. If you missed my 2008 Atheist Experience episode on John Hagee (episode #557), he's a major wackjob with a large following in San Antonio. His main shtick is promoting end-times theology, complete with apocalyptic theology books, a major lobbying effort to bring about the end times, and an insistence that Hitler was inspired by God to bring Jews together (so good Christians can be raptured).

The speaker was co-Christian lunatic and propagandist, David Barton, of "Wall Builders" fame. I'll be talking about Barton on this Sunday's episode, but I wanted to draw attention to his "4 values" that he promoted to get the flock to vote his way:
1. Open display of worship (prayer in schools and government functions).
2. No killing of innocents (abortion, Pro-life).
3. Honor your father and mother (traditional marriage, family only - no gays).
4. Protection of private property (no government eminent domain seizures).
Barton allegedly got these directly from the Ten Commandments. I wanted to point out how self-serving his interpretation is.

1. While proselytization is nothing new to the Christian faith, the 10C in the Exodus fable was directed at the Israelites, God's supposedly chosen people. If you weren't part of that chosen people, advertising wasn't going to help you. For Christian "leaders" like Hagee and Barton, advertising is necessary to sell that lemon of a religion. Who cares if you have to embrace the tactics of the Pharisees condemned in Matt. 6-5.

2. When did "Thou Shalt Not Kill" get turned into something about killing of innocents? Innocent by whose standard? I guess to these Christian leaders, killing hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and Afghans is completely just. The abortion thing is simply made up (bearing false witness). There's no mention of abortion anywhere in either the Old or New Testaments. The penalty for causing a miscarriage is a fine (Ex. 21:22)... paid to the father--the one whose property has been taken. Remember that the wife is property herself and has no real rights under Biblical law.

3. I was amused by the "honoring thy father and mother" turning into a slam against gay rights. That one's new to me. Jesus never said anything about gays, but he did make it very clear in Matt. 10:34-38 that people should disobey their parents, leave their families, and follow him. Jesus should have been killed for his contempt of Jewish law. Too bad there were no serious followers of Jewish law around to extract the penalty of death. But what drama would there be in that?

4. Let's take a look at Biblical property rights, especially in that "coveting" commandment (Ex. 20:17). Wives, slaves, animals, and tangible property are all listed as a man's property. Elsewhere, it's clear that his children are a man's property, as well. It would seem that would make Barton pro slavery, against women owning property, for multiple wives, and against anyone interfering with a man's desire to have his own children aborted, should he so choose. Christians self-servingly never associate the "coveting" commandment mentioned their meddling with others' reproduction--others' property, according to their own Bible.

You'll also never hear Barton associate his pro-Christian twisting of American History with the commandment about bearing false witness. Lying is his livelihood just as peddling Christian snuff porn is Hagee's. So Barton's plug for the 10C is really about promoting the Christian agenda of advertising their crap, the manufacture of future tithers, selling hatred of gays as red meat for rabid followers, and making sure Christian leaders keep their profit$ and tax advantages. They'll both say and do anything to make a buck and their followers are too stupid to know they're being conned.


  1. Don

    You did not miss much of Rev. Hagee's wacky ideas at the "God and Country" services. Hagee was essentially preaching a main stream Christian message and nothing he said, at the service I attended, would have suggested his apocalyptic ideas.

    The main wacky message was that of David Barker. That message was essentially - if you do your Christian duty and vote for candidates that agree with the 4 top principles then God will reward this Christian nation by taking care of all the distracting petty problems like the economy, social welfare, and foreign policy.

    These speakers have a very slick presentation. People do not attend church with the idea of fact checking. They are there to receive the word of God from people they trust and who are given the respect of their communities. It should come as no surprise that people believe what they hear in church and that doubt is so uncommon.

  2. Oh, John Hagee. The first time I was exposed to his apocalyptic theology bullshit was his (as I remember, widely accepted) claim that the world would come to a horrific and fiery end in 1989, bringing about the millennial torture of the "loving god" of Revelations.

    Let me further clarify: I was six years old.

    There aren't enough words for the utter terror I felt for months until, thankfully, 1990 dawned as peacefully and pleasantly as ever.

    It still makes me made as hell. (Ha.) I just can't believe it's 2010 and Hagee's still promoting the same horrendous crap.

  3. Don, if you would have been able to go to the service, what would you have worn?

    Surely you would have stuck out like a sore thumb amongst a crowd of crazies. Not having a glaze over your eyes is like having a neon sign flashing above your head saying "FREE THINKER".

  4. @TroopDawg
    Ha! I picture the scene from "Body Snatchers" where they point at the person not affected and scream that weird scream to alert the others.

  5. Had the service been 2 weeks later, on Halloween, you could have gone as a zombie and bit somebody... THE APOCALYPSE IS HERE!!!!!!!!!!

  6. According to the bible, the world ended within a generation of Jesus' "death" there are many places in the bible where Jesus says the end is very near:

    Matthew 10:23
    Matthew 16:27-28
    Matthew 24:30-35
    Matthew 26:64
    Luke 9:27
    Luke 21:27-28
    Luke 21:32
    Mark 9:1
    Mark 13:33
    Mark 14:62
    Mark 33:36-37
    John 21:22

    There are several more examples if I were to include the apostles repeating this message. So the Bible is very clear that the world ended two thousand years ago and anyone you may meet who was born after this time is clearly just a figment of your imagination.

  7. "Christians self-servingly never associate the 'coveting' commandment mentioned their meddling with others' reproduction--others' property, according to their own Bible."

    You know, that's really interesting. I never thought of it quite like that before. Good stuff, Don. I look forward to Sunday's show.

  8. "Jesus should have been killed for his contempt of Jewish law. Too bad there were no serious followers of Jewish law around to extract the penalty of death. But what drama would there be in that?"

    I might be misunderstanding the Christian story here, but isn't this exactly what supposedly happened? Cross and all that? (Or is my irony meter broken again...?)

  9. Well, now,the OT does mention abortion. It is a punishment meted out by the priest to a wife if her jealous husband suspects she has committed adultery. The priest administers a concoction that will make "her abdomen ... swell and her womb .... miscarry, and she will become a curse." Of course, if she is innocent, "she will be cleared of guilt and will be able to have children." Numbers 5:14-31
    Apparently, for god, the right that a man not be duped into raising someone else's child trumps the right to life.

  10. @ Sir Phobos:

    You know what else is funny? When it's another person's reproduction and health, the argument is "that 'baby' (ie: embryo) is not your property, it's a human being, and you don't get to decide what to do with it, and you need to be FORCED to carry that adorably cuddly-wuddly little babby to term!"

    Of course, when it comes to genuine harm being done to actual human beings, like beating your kids and/or allowing them to die horribly of treatable illnesses, all of a sudden "they're MY kids and I'LL decide what to do with them, and YOU have no right to interfere!" They're precious little people when they're just embryos and totally not property for a "whore" to callously dispose of, but once their born they're their parents' property for their parents to abuse, neglect, or dispose of as they please.

    I know it's been said before, but these people are dangerous sociopaths. Also been said before, but it never fails to amaze me how nonexistent people have infinite rights in their view, while rights are non-existent for people who actually exist. Of course, it's mainly because it's never been for the kiddies anyway. Kids are simply punishments to be inflicted upon whores in their minds, and if the kid is killed in the cross-fire then so be it.

    Words cannot express the contempt I feel for these monsters.

  11. @TroopDawg people like that will always keep promoting the end of the world crap. If one prediction does not come true, they lay quiet for a while and come up with another prediction. I bet devil or god or who ever is supposed to deliver the armageddon are too busy with whatever crap they do. Maybe they are drinking, or maybe they are too busy torturing infidel, who knows? They constantly oversleep the deadline, so they got to make another appointment! Thats how the end of the world predictions never come true, altrough new "deadlines" constantly keep coming up. The recent predictions are i think 2011, 21st of may and for some its 2012, 31st of december. Believe me, after 2012, they say that world will end in 2015 or 2018 or something!


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