Dennis Prager’s latest Worldnutdaily column, though written by a Jew, could easily have been written by a fundamentalist Christian like David Barton. It’s full of the same kind of ahistorical nonsense that Barton spews regularly. He begins with this bit of chauvinism:
I say this because there is nothing – not any religious or secular body of work – that comes close to the Bible in forming the moral basis of Western civilization and therefore of nearly all moral progress in the world.
Of course. That’s why it formed the “moral basis” of slavery for centuries, and the denial of women’s rights, and the justification for segregation and pretty much every other social injustice.
It was this book that guided every one of the Founding Fathers of the United States, including those described as “deists.”
Really? Even Thomas Jefferson, who called the God of the Old Testament “cruel, capricious, vindictive and unjust, the gospel writers a “band of dupes and imposters” and Paul the “first great corruptor of the doctrines of Jesus”? Even Thomas Paine, who wrote an entire book dissecting the Bible as a book full of myths and barbarisms? Were they “guided” by the Bible too?
It gave humanity the great moral rule, “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Which no one, especially those who claim to believe it most vociferously, actually follows or possibly could even if they wanted to. I find it especially ironic that those who declare their love for Christ the loudest and most often are often the first ones to beat the drum of war. I guess they define “neighbor” literally — unless their neighbor is gay, of course.
It taught humanity the unprecedented and unparalleled concept that all human beings are created equal because all human beings – of every race, ethnicity, nationality and both male and female – are created in God’s image.
This is the book that alone launched humanity on the long road to abolishing slavery. It was not only Bible-believers (what we would today call “religious fundamentalists”) who led the only crusade in the world against slavery, it was the Bible itself, thousands of years before, that taught that God abhors slavery. It legislated that one cannot return a slave to his owner and banned kidnapping for slaves in the Ten Commandments. Stealing people, kidnapping, was the most widespread source of slavery, and “Thou shall not steal” was first a ban on stealing humans and then on stealing property.
Holy shit. Is he reading the same Bible I am? He can’t possibly be. Or he’s just lying. Take your pick. If the Bible is the word of God, then he spoke quite bluntly about the things he abhored, the things he thought were “abominations.” Like gay people and women who aren’t virgins on their wedding day. If he thought slavery was an abomination, why didn’t he say, “Thou shalt not own slaves, it is an abomination. Anyone who owns slaves shall be stoned to death”? That’s what he did with far lesser “crimes.” Instead, he actually commands slavery multiple times in the Bible. This is simply deluded.