The Cat Is Out Of The Bag

I was pointed to a statement made by Matt Oxley (aka Raging Rev..) and it seems that he’s caught on to our Christian secrets…

 

 

“I suspect, and I might be wrong, that History‘s The Bible mini-series might be one of the best things for atheism to happen in a long time. As the Bible is actively read by some 16% of Christians this is giving millions an opportunity to see parts of the cannon that are morally objectionable attributed to their god.

 

 

After all of these years of successfully hiding those parts of the bible that people don’t like, that silly history channel had to go and make a film about it.  I knew we should have voted to push the terrible atrocities further into the middle, but” nooooooo” , they said “they wouldn’t make it that far! Chapter six is just fine!”  This is going to be worse than the watergate scandal. I can’t imagine the amount of damage control we are going to have to do!  Can’t blame Rome for wanting to keep the bible in Latin now, or the KJV-only advocates for keeping it in old english….


16 Comments

Matt Oxley

You presuppers may be inclined to reading the thing, but the majority of Christians are not. The point, essentially, was that the moderate Christians that might find themselves seeing something about one of these stories for the first time might find themselves in objection to the story – for those that are perfectly fine with genocide I suspect that the status quo will remain.

Resequitur

“You presuppers may be inclined to reading the thing, but the majority of Christians are not.”

1) I was taught about this as a kid, as are most people raised in church, whether they are “okay” with the story or not is irrelevant to knowledge of it.

2) Since when do you speak for the “majority of Christians?”

” The point, essentially, was that the moderate Christians that might find themselves seeing something about one of these stories for the first time might find themselves in objection to the story ”

Yes, but this keeps assuming that Christians didn’t know about the flood until the movie. I’m curious as to where you got that from. It is one of the most common themes in the bible. The only thing I can think is that you are really referring to the people who don’t read things they don’t like, and using the term “moderate christians” to describe it.

” for those that are perfectly fine with genocide I suspect that the status quo will remain.”

So first it was uncommon for Christians to believe, and now it’s the status quo?

Matt Oxley

Your parent’s read the genocide of the Amalekites to you as they tucked you in at night? Forgive me if I don’t believe that. I know pretty much everyone has heard of the flood.

And as far as what I’m speaking for – I can only speak to my experience and my experience reflects that few Christians read the bible, especially actively – yours may be different, but you likely surround yourself with like-minded Christians with some devotion to the Book.

So first it was uncommon for Christians to believe, and now it’s the status quo?

The status quo is belief for the people I’m talking about, one can believe (presumably) that the Bible is true without actually knowing what is in it. Belief can remain or belief can wane.

Resequitur

“Your parent’s read the genocide of the Amalekites to you as they tucked you in at night? Forgive me if I don’t believe that.”

Did I say that? We were talking about the flood, why are you switching gears?

And why do you keep saying “genocide”, are you so unfamiliar with what you are arguing against that you don’t know of previous altercations they’ve had? Or are you just leaving it out for convenience to your point? They attacked Israel in their weakness (without water, and without weapons) 400 years previously, and had just engaged with joining other nations in fighting Israel (1 Samuel 14:47-48). Given that these were considered acts of war, why on earth is it surprising or genocide that God commanded them to be cleared out?

” I know pretty much everyone has heard of the flood.”

Then why should it be so shocking when people see it on TV that it would cause some sort of atheistic revival? 🙂

“And as far as what I’m speaking for – I can only speak to my experience and my experience reflects that few Christians read the bible, especially actively”

Well you are backing off from your previous claim, namely,

“You presuppers may be inclined to reading the thing, but the majority of Christians are not.

As we can see, it did not have those nuances.

yours may be different, but you likely surround yourself with like-minded Christians with some devotion to the Book.”

It’s a mixed group. I have friends inside and outside the church. I always enjoy conversations with like-minded people, but I also enjoy conversations with those who strongly disagree with my views.

Matt Oxley

Did I say that? We were talking about the flood, why are you switching gears?

No, you were specifically addressing the flood – while atrocious I know it is quite well known as a story. I was specifically addressing the entire OP – which you only partially quoted (without giving a link back, bad form.)

And why do you keep saying “genocide”, are you so unfamiliar with what you are arguing against that you don’t know of previous altercations they’ve had? Or are you just leaving it out for convenience to your point? They attacked Israel in their weakness (without water, and without weapons) 400 years previously, and had just engaged with joining other nations in fighting Israel (1 Samuel 14:47-48). Given that these were considered acts of war, why on earth is it surprising or genocide that God commanded them to be cleared out?

IF you really think something that happened 400 years ago justifies genocide then I hope you don’t live near any Indian reservations. If you think the children of men that do bad things should bear the punishment for the sins of their fathers I hope your father never wronged anyone because you might be held responsible for it. The fact that you are able to justify the death of infants and children by decree of a prophet might indicate a much deeper issue.

Then why should it be so shocking when people see it on TV that it would cause some sort of atheistic revival?

Sometimes making something seem more real brings a certain perspective to that thing. When it’s just some story in an old book vs when it’s the broadcast of suffering and massacre bring about very different ways of thinking about the scenes.

As we can see, it did not have those nuances

Are we sure?
“As the Bible is actively read by some 16% of Christians…”

Resequitur

“No, you were specifically addressing the flood – while atrocious I know it is quite well known as a story. I was specifically addressing the entire OP – which you only partially quoted (without giving a link back, bad form.)”

Yes, because it was an example of where your characterization failed. If people know about it generally, then how are they finding out about the acts?

” which you only partially quoted (without giving a link back, bad form.)”

You partially alluded an act of God out of convenience to your misotheism, without quoting it at all, and then your turn around and complain when you are partially quoted without reference.

“IF you really think something that happened 400 years ago justifies genocide then I hope you don’t live near any Indian reservations.”

did you miss the part where they were going to do it again, or did you conveniently leave it out?

“If you think the children of men that do bad things should bear the punishment for the sins of their fathers I hope your father never wronged anyone because you might be held responsible for it.”

Perhaps you live in a dreamland where no one pays for the consequences of another.

You also keep boneheadedly assuming the innocence of everyone involved.

“The fact that you are able to justify the death of infants and children by decree of a prophet might indicate a much deeper issue.”

The fact that you are able to ignore previous rebuttals to that line of reasoning might indicate a much deeper issue.

You complain about the God of the bible for doing this, and then turn around and attribute the decree to the prophet. Which one is it?

One might even wonder how one such as yourself could provide a moral basis for even decrying such an act.

“Sometimes making something seem more real brings a certain perspective to that thing. When it’s just some story in an old book vs when it’s the broadcast of suffering and massacre bring about very different ways of thinking about the scenes.”

But in either case, according to you it still remains “just some story in an old book”. If the suffering and massacre didn’t happen, why are you complaining about it again?

“Are we sure?
“As the Bible is actively read by some 16% of Christians…”

Since when do you experience a statistic? You alluded to a statistic (that you failed to cite) as some sort of absolute say on the matter, and then backed up to say that you are only speaking from experience.

RazorsKiss

I sure heard those stories. My name is Joshua 😉 What seems to be flying right past you is that we don’t think it’s either possible or remotely righteous to presume to judge the creator on the basis of your subjectivistic moral determinations. When God judges it right to wipe out His own creations for their sins and abominations against His law, as objects of His wrath and justice – are we supposed to be somehow *ashamed* of God’s sovereign will when it comes to His justice, yet accept His mercy toward us unconcernedly, as if they aren’t from the same fountainhead? All men deserve His judgment – the vast majority of the time, His common grace is exercised in the restraint of sinners from the full extension of their desires for evil. At times, he looses those restraints, in order to show that this restraint exists – and to demonstrate His power, justice, and wrath upon certain of those He ordained. Scripture tells us this is the case with the men of Noah’s time – but not only with those, but with Pharoah, the Canaanites (of all stripes), and even the Jews.

All of these all so frequent and superficial objections only show the informed reader that the objector has merely the slightest familiarity with the text himself – while attempting to criticize “Christians”, who if they fit the parameters of their description of “ignorant Christians”, are merely partakers of a “Christianized” culture of moral therapeutic deism. Not the real deal, with any modicum of meaningful, historical, and Biblical definition of the term.

defectivebit

I guess the authors didn’t get the memo (which was supposed to destroy after reading it) to censor those things out. This will be worse than watergate! It will be a foiled version of the Mormon version of Nicea ( https://choosinghats.org/2010/05/glenn-beck-mormon-historian/ ).

RazorsKiss

Why does this sound like Geisler’s “Moderate Calvinism”? Nothing like redefining Christianity so you can claim “Moderate Christians” don’t read their Bibles. Also, note that “moderate” is a term which defines the position between two extremes. Which extremes are these supposed to be, I wonder? For Geisler, “Extreme Calvinism” (ie: regular ol’ historical Calvinism which he redefines as hypercalvinism, essentially) and “Arminianism” – which he essentially redefines as “Moderate Calvinism,” and never defines Arminianism in any meaningful sense in distinction to his own position.

One wonders whether Matt is defining regular ol’ Christianity (you know, those crazy old coots who historically read their Bibles, believe in Sola Scriptura as the sole infallible rule of faith and all that good stuff) as “extreme Christianity” – while those moderate Christians over here – who are virtually indistinguishable from his current situation, don’t read their Bibles, and have only to exchange one set of traditional (but not TOO traditional – we are modern folks, after all – we have to be progressive!) morality positions for his own traditional moral positions (but not too progressive! We don’t want to scare the pants off the traditional, but Biblically illiterate cultural Christians who wouldn’t know a doctrine if it bit them in the face). Interesting how the parallels work, isn’t it?

We have what seems to be a definition of historical orthodoxy set up against a modern, novel redefinition of “moderate” – which happens to be indistinguishable from the “liberalism” which Machen said was virtually indistinguishable from the world, and we must be on our guard against – 75 years ago. In the same sort of denomination (PCUSA) which typically couldn’t, as Matt points out, tell you half of what the Bible says – about anything – and don’t care.

Maybe, just maybe, the real problem is defining as “moderate” folks who are actually… unorthodox, at the most possibly charitable… and heretical false brethren, at the other side of the spectrum. But hey, what does a Christian know about how Christian is defined, anyway? It isn’t like Matt, as an apostate, has an axe to grind about how the term is defined, given that his self-identity and online work is wrapped up in his ability to term himself an “ex-Christian”… right?

Pseudo Augustine

I wonder if Mr. Oxley would be against the killing of infants under all circumstances, and what justification he can give for this principle on secularism. It seems to me that he fails to understand: 1) God created life, and thereby has the right to take life. If he doesn’t like that, then it may show some deeper issues he has about authority. 2) It is notoriously difficult on secularism to develop a consistent ethic that doesn’t lead to atrocious conclusions. A good example of this was an interview with a secular philosopher on NPR. She was discussing the attempt to justify human rights with humanity as the ultimate authority, but she broke down into making blithering subjectivist claims, and it doesn’t seem like there are “human rights” if the “rights” are not universal and absolute, but she rejected the absolute part, and redefined the “universal” bit to mean something along the lines of subjective desire. We could rehearse the problems with the various secular ethical theories for Mr. Oxley, but something tells me he will put his fingers in his ears. I suggest he read Alasdair Macintyre”s “Short History of Ethics”.

brig

Ah-ha! 16% is a number cited somewhere about something.

CBE cites an uncited Gallup poll that indicates 16% of Americans read the Bible daily.
http://bit.ly/Qm85wY

I suppose if you change “Americans” to “Christians” and “daily” to “actively” (I guess that’s an intentionally vague word) there’s some truth to the accusation.

But let’s cut Matt some slack. I’m sure not *every* abridged and illustrated children’s Bible synopsis has *all* the “morally objectionable” events mentioned. And you’d have to show up to the preschool Sunday school for a whole year to hear them all.

And maybe they don’t have Sunday school for kids at every church. Before you know it, an atheist from one of those (liberal — if I may qualify it) churches will “out” the doctrine of Hell and paint a scandalous picture of its censorship.

The Bible is full of violence and bloodshed, so much that you’d think its somehow connected with a major theme or something … but to get the big picture ideas, someone somewhere would have to read the Bible.

Matt Oxley

Thank you for the citation correction. It’s been a while since I looked at the survey.

Logan

I have been using the website for a few weeks now and have been enjoying what I’ve been learning about Presuppostionalism (I’m a Christian), however, I find this post and the comment thread in general to be unbecoming of Christian apologists.

I don’t think Mr. Oxley’s statement warranted the level of sarcasm seen in the OP. Keeping Colossians 4:6 in mind, and the fact that this website is intended for educational use, I don’t understand the reason for the hostility towards Mr. Oxley. Why not just (graciously) point out the misquoted statistic and provide some arguments for why you disagree without the sarcasm?

C.L. Bolt

Hi Logan,

I understand the thrill of piously riding one’s high horse across the comboxes of various apologetics websites, but frankly the practice gets on my nerves.

Let’s remember that the same Apostle Paul who wrote Colossians 4.6 also wrote Galatians 5.12 wherein he stated, for the sake of the church in South Galatia, that he wished troublesome men would cut their genitalia off. And I am sure you could find more than a few examples of sarcasm in other letters written, again, by the Apostle Paul.

The truth can be beautifully and poignantly revealed to others through sarcasm. It is not something to use all the time. It is not something to use with everyone. It is not something for everyone to use. But it has its place. This article may be of interest to you – http://www.bpnews.net/BPFirstPerson.asp?ID=36071

Resequitur did a great job at addressing a foolish comment from an atheist we know and have been interacting with for well over a year now. Resequitur is one of the most gracious young men I know. He actually cares about the people with whom he interacts. I do not think this instance was any different in that regard. But he also is not going to lie down.

Your rebuke was not specific, was quite subjective, and therefore was generally unhelpful.

Logan

“I find this post and the comment thread in general to be unbecoming of Christian apologists.”

After looking again at my own comment, I see that it could sound kind of pompous. I’m sorry for that.

“I understand the thrill of piously riding one’s high horse across the comboxes of various apologetics websites, but frankly the practice gets on my nerves.”

I don’t know what a combox is, but I do feel very articulately insulted, so there’s that. This is the only apologetics website that I have visited.

Resequitur

“I don’t know what a combox is, but I do feel very articulately insulted, so there’s that. This is the only apologetics website that I have visited.

“Combox” is short for “comment box”. It’s a common term to describe the square that holds our comments.

Sorry, we’re very used to having people come out of nowhere and bash us for sarcasm when we use it.


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