When Bible-Reading Includes Everything…

A note to Bible tutors: Remember to include all the stories in the Bible, not just the cherry-picked ones.

The kids will undoubtedly thank you for it:

(via Atheist Media Blog)

  • Rich Wilson
  • http://www.bluefrogdesignstudios.com/thebluefrogsays/ The Big Blue Frog

    Very clever. The production quality was pretty good too, which is refreshing. I’m so tired of atheist videos with bad production, especially when the tools to put together really quality vids are on just about every out-of-the-box computer on the market.

  • DocShinobi

    Brilliant!
    Just goes to show how out of touch Xianity is

  • Remus

    I especially like when the townspeople preferred the angels over the virgins.
    We just don’t have enough good angel vs. virgin debates anymore

  • jose

    This is the tired old trick by atheists of using the outdated Old Testament we dont believe in anymore! Typical. She should tell stories about the compassionate, loving New Testament. Yeah, like that one in Revelation 6 in which God destroys the universe. Oh I love that one, it’s so peaceful.

  • http://www.unmails.com Tyler

    Funny, and attractive.

  • NotYou007

    Damn those are a nice set of legs. She could tutor me anytime.

  • OverlapingMagsteria

    Damn those are a nice set of legs. She could tutor me anytime.

    Seriously? Someone makes a hilarious thoughtful movie and all you see is legs?

    Thanks, Hemant, for posting this great movie! This is something that should be done more often in Bible School!

  • berniemk

    The 9th Circuit Court overturned Prop 8 in California on just such issues as whether or not the children of same-sex parents are harmed by it. They aren’t. The Prop 8 experts, when they were cross examined pre-trial could not document that the children were any different than those raised by homosexual parents. Not in sexual preference, academics, drug and alcohol usage, etc. etc. etc. Several of the experts for Prop 8 dropped out and only 3-4 of the original 8 were willing to testify. The case is great to read, if you cut through some of the legalise, but the judges review of the scientific evidence substantiating the lack of evidence is worth the look.

    http://www.aclu.org/lgbt-rights/perry-v-schwartzenegger-decision

    http://documents.nytimes.com/us-district-court-decision-perry-v-schwarzenegger

  • Randy

    Damn those are a nice set of legs

    Whew! Glad I’m not the only one thinking that. Was she talking?

  • Blacksheep

    If Hemant has kids, does he “cherry pick” what he teaches them based on their age / ability to understand? If there is a story about a serial killer on the news and a 2nd grader is in the room, I turn it off – and so does every other thinking person.

    Is the idea being put forth here (albeit in a humorous way) that we should tell our little kids every horrifying thing about the world, just because it’s true?

  • Ben

    I don’t think you need to tell children every horrifying thing – I think their age was partly satirical. The problem is this whitewashing continues long into adulthood.

  • NotYou007

    OverlapingMagsteria Says: Seriously? Someone makes a hilarious thoughtful movie and all you see is legs?

    Nope, I saw a pretty cute woman too.

  • Drew M.

    @OverlapingMagsteria

    Seriously? Someone makes a hilarious thoughtful movie and all you see is legs?

    In my statistically-insignificant experience, guys are hardwired to do this. I confess my initial thought when the actress appeared was something along the lines of, “Holy shit! She’s gorgeous.”

    I try not to comment on attractiveness alone, but sometimes it does slip out.

    This was, indeed, a brilliant skit.

  • Blacksheep

    I don’t think you need to tell children every horrifying thing – I think their age was partly satirical. The problem is this whitewashing continues long into adulthood.

    In my experience at many churches that is indeed the case – so I must agree with you.

  • http://religiouscomics.net Jeff P

    Clever and witty

  • Candide

    I approve.

    If more kids were taught these stories from the Bible in this manner then there might be a lot fewer Christians around.

  • http://www.twitter.com/WCLPeter WCLPeter

    Blacksheep said:

    Is the idea being put forth here (albeit in a humorous way) that we should tell our little kids every horrifying thing about the world, just because it’s true?

    No, I think the video is trying to point out the hypocrisy and lack of knowledge most people have when it comes to just what exactly is in the Bible.

    Or said in another way, even though the Bible is filled with many horrors and atrocities committed with God’s blessing, or by God himself, most parents would have no problems letting a young child read the Bible quietly in their room but would be incredibly upset to find a hardcore Huslter magazine stashed under their bed.

  • Pureone

    “Is the idea being put forth here (albeit in a humorous way) that we should tell our little kids every horrifying thing about the world, just because it’s true?”

    Not the world, just the bible. Never have seen news about two she-bears ripping into some skater punks or the like.

    Nor are these stories ever discussed in their completeness at adult bible-”studies”. Always glossing over/ignoring the true morality of these tales…

    Must be why we hear of Abraham and his son and not Jehpthtah and his daughter…

  • Blacksheep

    Or said in another way, even though the Bible is filled with many horrors and atrocities committed with God’s blessing, or by God himself, most parents would have no problems letting a young child read the Bible quietly in their room but would be incredibly upset to find a hardcore Huslter magazine stashed under their bed.

    Really WCL? Obviously you don’t have kids. Even if the Bible is mythology, as you believe, I would rather my kids read something akin to a Greek myth than read a “hardcore Hustler magazine…”
    Wow!

  • Blacksheep

    Not the world, just the bible. Never have seen news about two she-bears ripping into some skater punks or the like.

    Horrible stories are JUST in the Bible? Seriously?? Silly counterpoint, and totally false. I have cried at news stories about parents throwing babies out windows, men throwing acid in women’s faces… no need to go on, but it would fill volumes.

    Nor are these stories ever discussed in their completeness at adult bible-”studies”. Always glossing over/ignoring the true morality of these tales…

    Again, totally false. The best Bible studies are the ones that deal with the hard questions of the Bible, otherwise it gets boring! How many Bible studies have you been to?

  • ACN

    What do you find to be the “hard questions” of the bible?

  • Blacksheep

    What do you find to be the “hard questions” of the bible?

    Things exactly like this story – (Lot, and before him Abraham and Sarah, etc.), the trinity, the concept of hell, to name a few.

    dealing with “the hard questions” doesn’t lessen my faith, (In fact it often strengthens it) but I still feel an obligation to wrestle with uncomfortable things.

  • sven

    @Blacksheep

    Even if the Bible is mythology, as you believe, I would rather my kids read something akin to a Greek myth than read a “hardcore Hustler magazine…”
    Wow!

    As long as nobody is forcing them to read or tell them it is any other then a myth.
    But that is not what happens. Parents tell their kids the stories in their particular bible are true. That, to me, is worse than kids choosing to read Hustler magazine.

  • Blacksheep

    Parents tell their kids the stories in their particular bible are true. That, to me, is worse than kids choosing to read Hustler magazine.

    Sorry, No response to that comes to mind.

  • ACN

    I guess my follow up is then, why do you feel compelled to wrestle with the hard questions of this book? All sorts of books raise hard questions, why is this book particularly worthy of your study?

    For example, the works attributed to Socrates raises a number of hard questions about morality and ethics but have the advantage of not requiring me to believe (or tell stories about to illustrate!) that a deity, who is said to be benevolent and loving, is so delightfully (and repeatedly!) complicit in mass genocide.

  • Sven

    @Blacksheep

    Sorry, No response to that comes to mind.

    Maybe it will, if you think about it for a while.

  • Blacksheep

    I guess my follow up is then, why do you feel compelled to wrestle with the hard questions of this book? All sorts of books raise hard questions, why is this book particularly worthy of your study?

    So you’re shifting away from my surprise that you would rather your child read hard core Hustler magazine than be told the Bible is true to a new conversation which questions my Christian faith?

    OK, but you already know the answer to your follow up question. (and you know we would get into a long, circular debate if we pursued it):

    Christians feel that this book is so worthy of stydy because we believe it to be the word of God. I’m sure you must also realize that if God is real, the second part of your question is a moot point because we don’t believe it based on how much we “like” the stories. You will never be able to convince a Christian that there is no God simply because the things his God does are sometimes beyond comprehension.

    I can assure you though, (and I’m not being sarcastic) that if i personally had invented Christianity 2000 years ago, I would have created a much “kinder” God!

  • ACN

    I didn’t start the conversation about Bible vs. Hustler, and I didn’t pursue it. You made a remark that I thought we could engage on, so I took the opportunity to look at a different issue.

    You raised a few interesting points in your reply, but first permit me another question, what is it about this book that makes you think it is the word of god? You’ll note that this claim is made by a number of other mutually incompatible religions about their holy book. Why is your holy book the word of god and their book is not?

    With regards to the other points you made:

    I’m sure you must also realize that if God is real, the second part of your question is a moot point because we don’t believe it based on how much we “like” the stories.

    I don’t think that this is a requirement. You could accept the stories as the, no pun intended, gospel truth but simultaneously reject the god they describe. It may or may not be prudent to do so, but that is a separate issue. To paraphrase Hitch, we may be living in a celestial North Korea, but that does not mean I have to bow to the dictator.

    I understand that you don’t think a christian can be convinced that their god does not exist by examining their alleged actions, but I don’t think you’re correct. This was one of the first things that sewed doubt in my mind about god’s existence and properties ascribed to him. I don’t understand why you give god the out “what he did here was beyond comprehension”, why can’t an omnipotent god be comprehensible and why can’t it be judged by the actions that it takes?

  • Steve

    The answer of course is that his followers themselves put god behind comprehension, reason and scientific inquiry. Because not doing so would open many avenues of attack and increase disbelieve.

    This way – no matter how much we learn – they can always say that god isn’t really knowable…you just need to have faith. It’s really dishonest. If their god were so great and nice, more than enough people would believe anyways.

  • Blacksheep

    ACN,

    Thanks for the dialogue. I’ll respond later. This is far more interesting to me but I’m rallying for a presentation… Oh to be independently wealthy!

  • Pureone

    Yeah, I see what you mean, Blacksheep,-

    children are faced with the real world. They see horrible things all the time. Why not tell them the horrible things?
    Ever read the original Grimm folk tales-Stories meant for children, but some absolutely grisly.

    So my point was a) the Bible isn’t the real world. You said it was the real world and I was illustrating that none of these fantastical things ever happen currently.

    b. Grimms tales: grisly,bloody, scary, meant for children. Bible: God’s word, bloody grisly, scary. not meant for children.

    I have been to bible study. I had never heard of the horrible stories until I stopped going. Bible study isn’t for the most part.

  • ACN

    Thanks for the dialogue. I’ll respond later. This is far more interesting to me but I’m rallying for a presentation… Oh to be independently wealthy!

    If it is not considered mocking, and rather in good natured humor:

    I’ll say an “Amen” to that desire :)

  • Blacksheep

    Pureone,

    I hear what you’re saying, too.

    You and I have kind of a reverse way of looking at it – I probably would read Grimm’s to my kids (I have in fact) and I’m OK with it because It’s make believe.

    The reason I don’t show them real things that are bad (like the news stories) is precisely because they are real, and therefore more scary.

    Since I believe that the stories in the Bible are essentially true, I put them in the same category as ugly news stories.

    And I would agree that fantastical stories like that don’t happen as much anymore. But history is full of true but insane stories of human madness – slavery, blinding of whole armies, the crusades, on and on.

    As far as Bible studies go, I’m very fortunate to have been exposed to Christians who are not only very loving and non-judgemental of others, but who also don’t shy away from the whole Bible. they may even not like parts of it, but instead of rejecting it they wrestle with it.

  • ACN

    Since I believe that the stories in the Bible are essentially true

    Do you think that all of the stories in the bible are essentially true? To clarify, what exactly does essentially true mean? Do you draw a distinction within the bible of stories which are “just stories” and stories which are “essentially true”?

  • Blacksheep

    I do believe that the stories in the Bible are true. What I mean by “essentially” is that there is room for interpretation. For example does “7 days” mean 7 24 hour periods? Maybe, but I’m also fine with the idea that day can be translated as “age,” and could mean millions of years. The Bible says that God created the animals, but did he use evolution as the tool to do so? Maybe, I’m fine with that.

    None of those things have bearing on the Gospel story and Christ’s message.

    I do believe that there are passages that are “just stories” but as far as I can tell they are called out as such, like with the parables.

    • newenglandsun

      Well then in that case she won’t be able to come back for quite a while! :)

  • Blacksheep

    You raised a few interesting points in your reply, but first permit me another question, what is it about this book that makes you think it is the word of god? You’ll note that this claim is made by a number of other mutually incompatible religions about their holy book. Why is your holy book the word of god and their book is not?

    That’s not a simple question to answer, but I’ll try, with short answers. And it’s a combination of these reasons, together, that make me feel that the Bible is the word of God.

    1. Emotionally: So much of what I read in it feels immediately true. I experience a profound sense of “knowing” that the Bible is the word of God.

    2. Intellectually: Every Religion that I know of demands some sort of sacrifice or perfection in order to be with God. Even in eastern religions, transcendence can only happen when one achieves a sort of perfection (enlightenment). It never made sense to me that God would condemn us based on our deeds, because we endlessly screw things up, big and small. Therefore the gospel story of salvation rings true to me – the idea that salvation is freely given through faith.

    3. By comparison: Spending time in india, for example, I saw how the doctrine of reincarnation allowed people to walk past the destitute who were lying in the street. When I asked about it, I was told that their state is the result of a bad previous life, perhaps, or karma for bad deeds. Then I saw Christians caring for those same people because they were instructed to do so in the Bible. (care for the poor, etc.) I have read some of the koran and the book of mormon; I don’t believe that they are the word of God for many reasons.

    4. Radical kindness: The type of morality that Christ taught in the Bible, is, I believe, is a superior and more beautiful morality than had been expressed before by anyone. “turn the other cheek.” “If a man asks for your shirt, give him your coat also.” “Don’t judge others lest you be judged…” “Love your neighbor as yourself.” and better yet, “Love your enemies…” I believe that God loves us, and I believe that this is evidence of that.

    5. Fulfilled Prophecy: There are extensive prophecies dealing with individual nations and cities and with the course of history in general, all of which have been literally fulfilled. More than 300 prophecies were fulfilled by Christ Himself at His first coming.

    6. Archeology: Lots of archeological confirmations of the Biblical record adds to my faith that the Bible is the word of God.

    7. changed lives: I have had so many experiences with people who have had their lives changed for the better through faith in Christ, and so many others who experience peace and joy from their faith. Seeing that has made me feel that this faith is real, and comes from God.

    why can’t an omnipotent god be comprehensible and why can’t it be judged by the actions that it takes?

    I don’t know why God can’t be more comprehensive. It would be nice!

    I suppose one could judge God, but it wouldn’t have any bearing on whether or not he existed. (Not sure of your point totally).

  • Andy_G

    I do not see a problem cherry picking the good stories from the Bible. We are always raising and rejecting stories we hear.

    However I do have a problem when someone uses the Bible as a reference for “all” of their daily activities.
    For instance, using the Bible against gays or any colored person in the time of slavery. With blatant anti-human views like these it reinforces the Bible was most not likely written by God.

  • guard

    There are a few posts going back and forth as to what people should show their kids and at what level can you hold a meaningful discussion with them.
    I remember stories about the child abductor of my day “The Blue van” in my neighborhood and my parents warning me not to approach any cars nor allow my little sister/brother to do the same. I probably wasn’t much older than those kids.
    But I believe that discussion is off topic.
    I commend this video for showing the vastly differing opinions/universal truths that appear in the Bible. I believe the point of this video is a response to the sign-waiving nut jobs who refuse to listen to any form of criticism, constructive or otherwise, and who pilfer the same tired lines on their placards and soundbites.
    To me this video says it is okay to believe fully in the bible, but you can not call it a paragon of truth and morality if you just pick the stories that suit your argument. It also points that most people of faith will censor anyone trying to give perspective to children on what is contained in the bible.
    Keep the discussion coming, as it promotes more tolerance and understanding. I am very glad this has not degenerated into pointless personal insults.

  • Laura

    I invoked Godwin’s Law: Hitler.

    There. Argument over.

  • Tooth Fairy

    Godwin’s law merely posits that a long enough discussion will eventually include a comparison to Hitler or Nazis. While you mentioned Hitler, there was no comparison. Also, the law contains no requirement to halt discussion at that point.

    Regardless: Hustler vs. Bible (if thought to be true)

    Hustler: Porn. Not even bad for you.

    Bible: Leads to debilitating lifelong mental illness.

    My choice: Porn

  • Uncle Tim

    Without mystery, there can be no faith. Without faith, there can be no hope. Without hope, there can be no happiness. Without happiness, what’s the point?