I like big Bibles…

Perhaps the finest rapping to come out of the Christian Right since the Gospel Gangstaz… If that means anything to you heathens!

Comments (20)

  • avatar

    Aaron

    Classy.

    P.S. I like the new layout :)

  • avatar

    Freyja

    Hmmm – gutted I’m one of those Atheist chics? – not particularly…
    Nice one :D

  • avatar

    Ben

    Like the new layout, just wish I could see the comments section along w/ a few more of the older articles… any chance of getting those?

  • avatar

    Jacob Fortin

    It’s in the works. But for now, I’m just working on the podcast and other fun projects.

  • avatar

    Swedish guy

    Saw this one the other day, freaky… by the way, I actually found it through perezhilton.com — strange, huh?

  • avatar

    Swedish guy

    WHICH MY FIANCÈ WAS SURFING, i forgot to mention.

  • avatar

    Ben

    And what’s the deal with “Sectarian violence and fundamentalism are a natural phenomenon in religion”? Don’t you think you’re painting with a broad brush there?

  • avatar

    Jacob Fortin

    It is a phenomenon in religion, specifically because although religion may help in-group cohesiveness, out-group cohesiveness is impossible. The often incompatible and violently dichotomous claims leads to sectarian violence, and has now given rise to intense religious fundamentalism. The statement may be broad, but it is nevertheless an inevitable consequence of religion. The only reason we’ve seen a decline of sectarian conflict in the west is due to both the Enlightenment, and the general secularization of our institutions.

  • avatar

    Ben

    I disagree, at least from a Christian perspective. Anyone who’s read up on new testament christianity would see that it actually promotes out-group cohesiveness. Verses like “Love your enemies” and “If your enemy is thirsty give him a drink of water” seem to me to promote a loving attitude towards those who don’t share your beliefs.

    Does that mean that’s true of everyone who claims to be a Christian? No. There’s always an exception, someone who takes a verse out of context or something. But I think on the whole more people are ‘getting it’ and that they’re seeing Christianity and most other religious as peace-promoting. Though I do agree with you about the secularization of religion causing people to be more tolerant of other religions, but I don’t think the intolerance should lead to violence, but rather debate and discussion. Ie, just b/c I’m a Christian and you’re an atheist doesn’t mean I should come punch you in the head ;)

  • avatar

    Jacob Fortin

    Historically speaking, the Christian tradition has been perhaps one of the worst at promoting out-group cohesiveness. The Crusades and the Inquisition are two very prime example of just how divisive it can be. You are a religious moderate. Your beliefs, and interpretation of the bible is, historically speaking, only a very recent phenomenon. The clear condemnation of all those who deny the validity of Jesus, particularly with their banishment to Hell, and to an eternity of torment, is proof positive that this is not a religion meant to create an environment of peace.

    As for the exception, you must realize that again, these exceptions come from individuals living in the west. In the Balkans, in Africa, in Lebanon; the actions of these Christians is a clear demonstration that without proper secularization, the violent rhetoric of the Judeo-Christian tradition can lead to violent bloodshed.

    Obviously, since we live in a stable society with laws, and with respect for human life. But this tradition is based on modern ethics, not religious doctrine. Besides, my point in the introduction is simple: that the exceptions you speak of are the natural phenomenon of these religious traditions. Their interpretation cannot be refuted from a religious standpoint, since all religious text can be taken in a variety of context, each one believing itself to be the correct one. It is the inability of the religious moderates that convinces me that the problem of religious fundamentalism cannot be handled from within. Religion is incapable of being self critical, and the very concept of dogma, and particularly faith, prevents the necessary introspection to occur.

  • avatar

    Ben

    “The clear condemnation of all those who deny the validity of Jesus, particularly with their banishment to Hell, and to an eternity of torment, is proof positive that this is not a religion meant to create an environment of peace.”

    I disagree with that. Now, I believe that people who don’t accept Jesus will indeed be banished to Hell. However, that doesn’t mean I’m going to try to send them there myself, nor should I! :) Quite the opposite. Paul writes in Romans “As much as it is up to you, live at peace with all men.” You cite the Crusades and the Inquisitions. These are not representative of Christianity, only people doing bad things in its name. If I were to go out and kill a man and said “I DO THIS IN THE NAME OF THE REPUBLICANS!” does that mean the Republicans promote murder? Certainly not! Does Stalin killing millions of people mean that atheists promote violence? Certainly not either!

    Their interpretation of, in this case, old testament law, can certainly be refuted. You have to look at scripture as a whole, not just focus in on one verse, ignoring all others. I believe that if you do that, you would see that Christianity promotes an attitude of love and peace towards not just other Christians, but non-Christians as well. The command to “Love one another” is repeated over and over again. How can you love someone you persecute?

    I would offer to you that a person who commits such voilence claiming their Christian beliefs told them to do so is not a Christian at all. Prove me wrong.

  • avatar

    Jacob Fortin

    Prove you wrong Ben? As you may be aware, you can only change someone’s mind if they WANT it to be changed. In all honesty, it’s unlikely that even my most convincing argument would chink your faith armor.

    I would rather concentrate on your rather convoluted idea of “loving your neighbor”. You already admitted that you do believe that those who do not accept Jesus Christ are doomed to hell. As you might be already aware, that represents the Majority of human being currently living on this planet. To profess love for your fellow, but to so callously and thoughtlessly accept their tormented eternal fate does not, to me, sound very neighborly. Your God has condemned these individuals to forever burn in the fiery pits of hell. For me personally, when I hear this, I feel that the Christian moderate’s “peace and loving message” rings hollow. I would deny any God that could so effortlessly cast those aside to damnation for the “crime” of not believing that his rather tame magic tricks were tantamount to divinity.

    As for your violent Christian counterparts, I’ve already mentioned that even if you feel their behavior is “UnChristian-like”, they could give you countless theological justification for their actions. These same justifications would be taken DIRECTLY from the very Bible you read. If you deny their interpretation, it is only out of your personal take on them.

    BTW, to say that the Crusades were a few “bad Christian apples” demonstrates your severe lack of understanding of these events. The Church itself commanded all the Christian nations to “liberate” the holy land from the Muslim threat. the tens of thousands of soldiers, as well as the millions who provided financial support would have considered your brand of Christianity admittedly weak. Yet these same individuals possessed the exact same “manual” for how to live their lives. The only difference, of course, was that they lacked our modern concept of ethics and morality. This alone, should clearly demonstrate to you the fact that it is not morality that is inherent to Christianity, but rather that our moral imperatives exists today in SPITE of it.

  • avatar

    Ben

    “To profess love for your fellow, but to so callously and thoughtlessly accept their tormented eternal fate does not, to me, sound very neighborly.”
    – I’m not callous or thoughtless at all. I pray for them, I talk to them, I try to spend time with them. We don’t know who is ‘doomed to hell’ in the here and now. Until death, everyone has a chance to accept or reject Christ. To say that we just accept it is shortsighted as to what biblical Christianity is.

    “Go, therefore, and make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, teaching them all I have commanded you” Matt 28:19

    How can you disciple someone if you don’t care for them?

    “countless theological justification for their actions”
    – Countless? Can you name a few then that would support that in light of verses about loving your neighbor?

    “The Church itself commanded all the Christian nations to “liberate” the holy land from the Muslim threat.”
    – Who’s church? Maybe you’re lacking understanding about what the Chruch was in the middle ages. “The Chruch” was VERY corrupt back then, and did not by any means represent the type of religion that Christ himself taught. All the “indulgences”, paying to have your relatives get into heaven, just aren’t supported in biblical teaching. Thus the whole Protestant Reformation and whatnot. “The Chruch” from back then certainly isn’t my church, nor could you say it was Christian.

  • avatar

    Ben

    I have another thought on this. :)

    We both have our beliefs, I would say that neither of us would agree that our view promotes violence. Yet, people having both our views have done violent things. You cite the Crusades and Inquisitions, I cite Nazi Germany, Stalin, and Mao. But there is a common factor in both situations: man.

    Wouldn’t it be more apt to say that man is the promoter of violence, given that both, and I’d say all, religions/dogmas have their violent episodes? If it’s not religion sparking violence, it’s culture. If not culture, territory. If not territory, wealth, and on and on. It seems to me, that no matter what the difference, man is always reacting in violence. I’d submit that man is evil, rather than religion or dogmas he chooses to follow.

  • avatar

    Jacob Fortin

    Ben,

    I’ll be dealing with this issue next podcast, so stay tuned next week for my complete rebuttle!

  • avatar

    Ben

    Looking forward to it Jacob

    Hope all is well,
    Ben

  • avatar

    Joe Botelho

    Gospel Gangsta has single handley brought me back to God!
    i wish this was played in my catholic school growing up.
    sunday mass would have rocked harder then the pews.

  • avatar

    CharlesP

    I’d like to jump in on the earliest part of this the “Sectarian violence and fundamentalism are natural phenomenon in religion” and point out that sectarian violence and fundamentalism are natural phenomenon in humanity. From an evolutionary standpoint couldn’t it be said that the sectarian violence and fundamentalism are both things that helped us get to being humans? Aren’t those things that promote “in group cohesiveness” the very things that we bred into humanity over the millennia because those groups survived better when it was “us” against “them”? If we work together better, we get more resources, we survive more, we produce (and reproduce) more. So I would be tempted to say that it was not a broad brush being painted with, but one too narrow.

    Of course the concept of stepping outside of current religious institutions to get beyond it is probably a good thin (I think Ben’s arguements aren’t that the Christian institutions are so great, but that the philosophy is good, so if a more open and inclusive variety of Christianity were to allow for peace and prosperity…). For my two bits I’d rather we be “good people” than “good Christians”, but if being a “good Christian/Muslim/Hindu” gives you a framework to be a good person, I’m not going to worry about how you got there.

  • avatar

    Jacob Fortin

    Be sure to listen to Saturday’s podcast then. I’ll try to deal with some of those questions.

  • avatar

    Ben

    Totally agree with you Charles. I think Ghandi once said to a Christian missionary, “I like your Christ; it’s your christians I have a problem with.”

    And the same can be said with all other religions. The philosophy of most religions/dogmas often IS good, it’s the people who resort to violence.

    Again, looking forward to the podcast.

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