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Honest Questions For People of Faith

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The term "people of faith" generally includes all people who believe in God based on faith. The largest portion of these people of faith belong to one of the three Abrahamic "revealed" religions. The big three Abrahamic "revealed" religions are Judaism and its two offshoots of Christianity and Islam.

All three are based on belief in the ancient Hebrew Abraham. They teach that Abraham had a special covenant with God and that Abraham is the patriarch of their particular "revealed" Abrahamic religion.

The Jews claim God revealed his will in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament while Christians claim God's will is revealed in both the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament and in the New Testament. Muslims believe God revealed his will in the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament as well as in the New Testament and that he gave his final revelation in the Koran. Hence, all three are "revealed" religions, that is they all claim to have their religion based on a revelation from God.

The reason people who believe in Judaism, Christianity and Islam are all considered to be people of faith is because there is no logical way for them to believe their scriptures are divine revelations. The American founder and Deist Thomas Paine clarified this fact in his monumental book on God, Deism, religion, etc., The Age of Reason, The Complete Edition (for Kindle version click here). Paine writes, "Revelation, when applied to religion, means something communicated immediately from God to man.

"No one will deny or dispute the power of the Almighty to make such a communication, if he pleases. But admitting, for the sake of a case, that something has been revealed to a certain person, and not revealed to any other person, it is revelation to that person only. When he tells it to a second person, a second to a third, a third to a fourth, and so on, it ceases to be a revelation to all those persons. It is revelation to the first person only, and hearsay to every other, and consequently they are not obliged to believe it.

"It is a contradiction in terms and ideas, to call anything a revelation that comes to us at second-hand, either verbally or in writing. Revelation is necessarily limited to the first communication - after this, it is only an account of something which that person says was a revelation made to him; and though he may find himself obliged to believe it, it cannot be incumbent on me to believe it in the same manner; for it was not a revelation made to me, and I have only his word for it that it was made to him."

Politicians of both the right and left pander to people of faith. For example, when Hillary Clinton was running for the Democratic nomination for President she said, "I think the whole Bible is real." Also, Obama has been busy tearing down the wall of separation of government and religion with his White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. Politicians on the right are very open about their deep belief that the Bible is the word or revelation of God.

Since so many people believe the Bible to be a revelation from God, it is important for them to objectively ask themselves some questions about what they believe in the Bible. Especially people like Hillary Clinton who believes "the whole Bible is real."

Here is a list of some questions which people should ask themselves prior to saying they believe the Bible and that it's the word of God or a revelation from God:

1. Which creation story do you believe, the one starting at Genesis 1:1 and ending at Genesis 1:31 or do you believe the other creation story at Genesis 2:4 through 25? Since they are different from each other, why do you believe the one over the other?

2. Do you believe in talking snakes as is claimed in Genesis 3:1? And how do you think snakes traveled prior to Genesis 3:14 when the Bible god cursed the talking snake so that it had to then travel on its belly?

3. Do you think it was right for Abram, aka Abraham, to pimp his 70 year old wife Sarai, aka Sarah, to the Egyptians as is reported in Genesis 12:11-16? Do you think that it was right for Abraham to pimp his 90 year old wife Sarah to Abimelech king of Gerar as the Bible claims in Genesis 20:2-18? Are these family values we want to teach our children? 

4. Do you really believe God, the Creator and Designer of the entire Universe, would order Abraham to kill his only son just to see if Abraham feared God enough as the Bible claims at Genesis 22:1-12? If so, why?

5. Do you believe in witches and, if so, do you believe we should follow the command allegedly from God found at Exodus 22:18 to kill witches?

6. Do you believe in talking donkeys? Numbers 22:28-30 claims there was a talking donkey.

7. Do you believe homosexuals should be put to death as Leviticus 20:13 orders?

8. Should Exodus 21:17 be followed which demands children who curse their father or mother should be put to death?

9. Should Hebrews/Jews be allowed to keep Gentiles and their children as slaves to be owned and passed on to their children as an inheritance as is taught at Leviticus 25:44-46?

10. Did God chose the Hebrews/Jews "above all people that are upon the face of the earth as Deuteronomy 7:6 teaches?

11. Do you believe God wants Israel to be "on high above all nations of the earth" as is claimed at Deuteronomy 28:1? If so, why?

12. Do you believe Isaiah 60:12 which claims any nation that will not sever Israel "shall be utterly wasted"?

13. Should people who do work on the Jewish sabbath be killed as is ordered and was done at Numbers 15:32-36?

14. Do you think Psalm 137:9 which reads, "Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones" reflects the will of God, or even a healthy mind?

15. Do you think Jesus was wrong when he attacked the Jews for not following Old Testament law requiring them to kill their children if their children curse them as is found at Matthew 15:3-7?

16. Do you believe in the Bible zombie story as told at Matthew 27:52-53 which says that when Jesus died people came out of their graves and hung out in the graveyard for about 36 hours until Jesus got his resurrection at which time the living dead then walked into Jerusalem and "appeared unto many"?

17. Do you believe in Satan, devils and demons? Do you believe Jesus exorcised demons as is claimed at many times in the New Testament?

18. Do you believe Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead as is stated at John 11:1-44?

19. Do you believe Christians can do greater works than what is said Jesus did as Jesus is claimed to had said at John 14:12? If so, that means you believe Christians can bring people back from the dead at a very minimum.

20. Do you believe women should be subservient to men as is taught, among many other places, at 1 Corinthians 11:3?

21. Should we fear God? Do you agree with Hebrews 10:31 which states, "It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God."? Shouldn't we love God and not fear God?

The number of questions all sincere people must ask themselves regarding their religious beliefs are much greater than this mere sampling. However, this is a good solid place to start.

We need to remember that ideas are the birth places of actions. The sick ideas found in the Bible have caused much misery around the globe. Not only wars such as the world has suffered for thousands of years and as we are experiencing right now in the Middle East, but also in the deadly results of believing such ungodly rantings as are found in the Bible. For example the sad case of Deanna Laney and her children. This Christian mother of three little boys murdered two of them by stoning and injured the third so bad he's severely and permanently disabled. She said she committed these horrific crimes because she "wanted to prove her complete and unconditional faith in Him."

In addition to this sad case of Deanna Laney and her children, it is estimated that every month children die in the U.S. alone due to their Christian parents relying on the Bible promise of healing through faith. Add to this the people who die every year due to exorcisms and it becomes painfully clear we need to be honest and objective when it comes to religion. We need to follow the advice of Thomas Paine and bring about a revolution in religion through our God-given reason and Deism.

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Bob Johnson is a paralegal and a freelance writer in Florida. He was raised Roman Catholic, but after reading Thomas Paine's The Age of Reason, he became a Deist. In 1993 he founded the World Union of Deists and in 1996 he launched the first web (more...)
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