Ricky Gervais’ Easter Message

The Wall Street Journal knows exactly what to do when there’s a religious holiday coming up: Have Ricky Gervais write an article about it. It worked incredibly well last Christmas, and now he’s back for Easter.

This time, he’s talking about why he’s a better Christian than… well… most Christians.

Because he actually follows the Ten Commandments:

ONE

‘You shall have no other gods before Me.’

I definitely do not. Excellent. I get one point.

TWO

‘You shall not make for yourself a carved image – any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.’

This basically means don’t make or worship a religious statue or bow to it thinking that it’s holy. Tick. Another point to me.

Besides the jokes, though, he actually has a decent message. A message we’ve all heard before, sure, but one that carries a little more weight since it comes from a celebrity and that’s the way our society works:

Jesus was a man. (And if you forget all that rubbish about being half God, and believe the non-supernatural acts accredited to him, he was a man whose wise words many other men would still follow.) His message was usually one of forgiveness and kindness.

These are wonderful virtues but I have seen them discarded by many so-called God-fearers when it suits them. They cherry pick from their “rulebook” basically. I have seen such cruelty and prejudice performed in the name of Christianity (and many other religions for that matter) that it makes me wonder if there has been a bit too much selective reading and reinterpretation of the doctrines.

God or not, if I could change one thing for a better world, it would be for all mankind to adhere to this little gem: “Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.” I assure you, no more stones would ever be thrown.

I can’t wait to read what he writes for Ramadan.

  • Kahomono

    Which pastor is going to have the balls to preach this today?

  • Meredith

    Does anyone else think that he is just taking advantage of anyone who wants to take photos of him with his shirt off?

    (I love him, don’t get me wrong!)

  • Cindy

    Seriously, he has never coveted?

  • Wendy

    Good freaking FSM….I’ll covet him.

    /be in my bunk
    //oh the hotness

  • Lynn

    Thing is,.. I don’t even believe there was a “Jesus” that existed. Too much evidence for me to believe anything else.

  • Rich Wilson

    He was on The Daily Show last week.

    http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/thu-april-14-2011/exclusive—ricky-gervais-extended-interview-pt–1?xrs=share_copy

    I loved “Some people have told me that as an atheist I shouldn’t even say ‘Christmas’. Well, I say ‘Thursday’ and that has ‘Thor’ in it!”

  • L.Long

    Yes but we out christian xtians because he changed the definitions of the commands a small amount, but still I like his list because the xtians do get so full of themselves when talking about how good they are with g0d, and we are so evil.

  • http://hauntedtimber.wordpress.com/ timberwraith

    Yup, I’m feeling a bit covetous about now, too. God that man is beautiful.

  • http://hoverfrog.wordpress.com hoverfrog

    I saw this the other day: “As an atheist who doesn’t think it’s a good idea to crash a plane in a sky-scraper, blow myself up in a shopping mall, tell people in a country where AIDS is a huge problem that condoms are a sin, and preaching that all homosexuals are sick and morally evil, hearing that there would be no ethics without religion is quite offensive to me.”

    It seems apt. I’m not at all certain that Christians have any claim to be claiming that their faith is a mark of a good person. All too often it really isn’t, sometimes the exact opposite is the case. Are we to believe that they aren’t True (TM) Christians? No, I don’t believe so.

  • Peterson, C.

    There’s a link to a follow up article at end of Gervais’ piece. It’s written by someone who was once an atheist, but became a Christian after researching the resurrection. He claims his belief is based on facts, not faith, though he seems to have a rather strange idea of what constitutes a fact. It’s good for a laugh, though, and works as a guide on how not to do logic.

  • TFM

    Lee Strobel blogged a response to Gervais over at wsj.com, entitled How Easter Killed My Faith in Atheism. It’s nothing new if you’re familiar with Strobel, with the usual claims of evidence and consensus among historians accepting it as valid, with “evidence” like the bible (500 eyewitnesses to the resurrection!) and “experts” like William Lane Craig. For most of the piece, though, he doesn’t even bother with token citations – just claims the evidence is obvious and undisputed and that’s why he believes.

  • TFM

    Sorry, I didn’t refresh comments and see Perterson’s comment before posting mine, but we’re talking about the same reply to Gervais.

  • http://www.hopeanimation.com David

    Hello, came to your website by accident… just a thought: the opposite of Christianity is not Atheism, it’s idolatory. You (and Ricky Gervais) might say you don’t serve a God, but in reality we all are worshiping something in our lives. For most people it’s money, power and fame, for you it might be your website, blog or the cause of “atheism”. You plan your life around whatever is most important in your life and that becomes your God. So really Atheism is a paradox and you should rename your blog to “the Friendly Paradox”. :)

    You might want to check out this… http://www.marshillchurch.org/media/in-the-news/pastor-mark-on-nightline-10-05-09

  • Kamran

    I’m sorry David, but that was completely incorrect. Having things in your life that are important to you: family, love, fulfillment etc. doesn’t make those things gods.

  • Dan W

    “Jesus was a man.” Hold on a minute, there’s no historically accurate evidence that Jesus actually existed. So I have to disagree with Gervais on this little section, but other than that I think it was a pretty good article.

  • Sven

    just a thought: the opposite of Christianity is not Atheism, it’s idolatory.

    No, the opposite of Christianity is reality.

  • Enlightenment777

    Atheism is a religion, like “OFF” is a TV channel.

  • elricthemad

    Can we make Lee Strobel head of the x-files division of the FBI? Intelligent extra-terrestrial life could be ‘proven’ because people have seen them. All sorts of wishful thinking could be confirmed as fact. The truth is out there, but scripture is the wrong place to look.

  • ACN

    David,

    “those things are your god” does not follow from the premise of “you plan your life around what you find to be important”.

    The premise “we are all worshiping something in our lives” is unfounded unless you define worship in a truly bizarre and non-standard way.

    Most of us are atheists. Many of us used to be christians or theists of other flavors. Most folks here are quite amicable, and if you want to talk about things, feel free. If you want to fulfill some desire to minister to “the lost” or whatever, we probably aren’t interested.

  • http://www.atheistevolution.blogspot.com AtheistEvo

    @David Your post is full of assumptions and straight out dishonest lies. The opposite of belief, is NOT believing. That means that the opposite of theism is Atheism. Sorry, you don’t get to redefine words because they better fit into your ideology. To come on here and say that unless we worship as you do that we are worshipping material goods is asinine, smug, and judgemental.
    In REALITY we don’t all worship anything. Worship is blind, purposeful and unthinking. Sorry, that just doesn’t apply to many people here. Your understanding of what “atheism” is, is sadly wanting. There is no cause of atheism. Atheism is merely the lack of believing. There are secular causes, and some of them are opposed to religion. But that is not worship either. That is protecting the world from harm that religion inflicts on us all.
    I DO plan my life around what is most important, but to say that becomes my god is redifining words again. God is a divine artificer. Plain and simple. Money can’t fit within those parameters, so your sermon falls on deaf ears here.

    Atheism is only a paradox if you redefine words so that they don’t really resemble their actual meanings any longer. You try to create a straw man to debunk atheism, and only end up making yourself look the fool in the process.

    Peace

  • SWare

    Thank you, Sven. I think you nailed it!

  • Sven

    @SWare
    Thanks!

  • http://edtechspecialties.blogspot.com jacob

    I’m a Christian and I like it. It attacks ideals and dogma, and I love that. Except it makes it hard to make your point to the intended offended when you miss the two basics of the religion:

    We don’t believe we’re judged on works, and the 10 Commandments have little more to do with the religion than being a nice barometer.

    Also, Jesus wasn’t half and half. He was fully both. (which makes the fairy tale part of it SO much more credible for you now doesn’t it? lol)

  • http://edtechspecialties.blogspot.com jacob

    @AtheistEvo – actually, I’m thinking you misjudged David’s tone.

    But in terms of what the 10 commandments are saying, what you do every day, is your idol. Because it was a commandment to put God in front of anything earthly.

    Also, I totally got what you were saying about the lack of belief, but the “a” prefix does mean “not”. So in terms of word meanings, Atheism and Theisms are opposites (but as in belief system, I understand you)


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