Sunday, September 12, 2010

Reverend Idiots

I have known many Christian pastors in my life and an awful lot of them are idiots – pure and simple!
by Charlie Leck

One reason many people have soured on religion is the collection of villains, thieves, scoundrels, and morons whose actions and comments demonstrate a perverted sense of its meaning and purpose, whether it's Sharron Angle claiming in a recent anti-abortion statement that "rape and incest are part of God's plan," or Franklin Graham, son of Billy Graham, asserting his belief that "President Obama is a Muslim because he was, in fact, born into that religion due to the 'seed of Islam' being passed to him through his father." [Ivan Gurvitz, Huffinton Post, 12 Sept 2010]

Terry Jones
Somehow, in some way, Terry Jones, of Gainesville (FL), got some kind of degree that allows him to refer to himself as the Reverend Terry Jones. In fact, this guy is an idiot. That’s nothing new. I’ve known lots of idiotic clergyman over the years.

Jones is the guy who threatened to burn a copy, or several copies, of the Koran(Quran) to commemorate 9-11. It caused a firestorm of controversy.

Have you heard this nut talk? Let’s understand this. Jesus would be ashamed of him. Jones bellows that “Islam is of the Devil!” Jones should understand that the sort of Christianity he espouses is of the devil – whatever the hell that means!

Jones often refers to his flock in the Dove World Outreach Center. It amounts to about two dozen. Jones and another pastor in the congregation are armed while they are in their church. Jones is often seen with a pistol sheathed in a holster on his hip. When you listen to him talk he is nothing more than a babbler with very poor grammar. He says he’s a former hotel manager who served as a Christian missionary in Europe for 30 years. The Gainesville Sun reported that Alachua County revoked the tax-exempt status of Dove World Outreach because portions of their property and facility are used as for-profit businesses. A number of the employees in the for-profit side of the Jones operation say they are forced to go to church and listen to the idiot or lose their jobs. [Here’s a story in the Orlando News about some of the followers of Jones.]

Gurvitz, quoted above, calls Jones “a clown.” Gurvitz then goes on to ask: “Why should anyone care about the actions of a dope? Even a religious dope?”

The problem is that Jones is now famous and has been given some sense of legitimacy, I suppose. He is certainly given a world stage where he generally exposes himself for the idiot he is. The only problem is that there are quite a few other idiots who are quite taken by him and think he is a hero.

Gurvitz gets even better in his 12 September blog when he very succinctly says of religious idiots…

The world is stuck in this cesspool of stupidity when it comes to religion, extending not just to the dumber individuals in various traditions, but to the media and government as well, where we're subjected to politicians who claim their candidacies are divinely sanctioned, goofball ministers who think they're striking a blow for God by burning books, and adherents ready to strike back with violence if their cherished book is burned.

Franklin Graham
This Franklin Graham character, son of the late Billy Graham, is another clergyman I’d put in the idiot asylum if it was up to me. Man, is he a whacked-out nut case. He’s running around saying that President Obama is a Muslim because his father was and "the seed of Islam" was passed to him and is a part of him. Now, do you see what I mean about stupid?

Muslims, Reverend Graham, says are bound for hell because salvation can only come through Jesus Christ.

“The Bible tells me so,” Mr. Graham exclaims.

He points to a Bible and proudly smiles because it says so right there.

This is what I mean by stupidity. Graham doesn’t even understand what the Bible is; that it is a product of man – pure and simple. The extraordinary scholar and missionary, Albert Schweitzer, years ago published a spectacular study called The Quest for the Historical Jesus. Schweitzer showed us what we can trust in the New Testament as an historical accounting of Jesus and his disciples. There was very little indeed, and the quotation to which Graham points is not part of that historical material, but was, in fact, an addition put into the mouth of Jesus by the early Church in order to establish its authority. Schweitzer was right. You can bank on it. And, it did not lower or weaken Schweitzer’s deep faith or his devotion to Jesus as a disciple. You can bank on it!

What makes Franklin Graham any kind of authority on scripture? Because his father was a famous evangelist? The world should stop being nice to these members of the clergy who are nothing but scoundrels and idiots. Religion has led too many people down foolish and harmful paths; and Christianity is included among those religions that do that.

I’m furious about this Franklin Graham character. I'm also angry that there are foolish people out there who buy into him – hook, line and sinker!

My god!


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  1. Hey Charles, I guess being ticked off at everybody and having a web site gives you freedom to invent your own facts. You just plain and simple flipped Franklin Graham's statement inside out and backwards for your own purposes. You wrote: "He’s running around saying that President Obama is a Muslim because his father was." Graham never said any such thing -- look it up. He said that many people think that Obama is Muslim because his father was. Then he went on to say that Obama says he is a Christian, and that we should take his word for it.

  2. If you are still relying on that century-old book by Albert Schweitzer, you are indeed three generations behind in research on the Historical Jesus.

  3. Schweitzer is still the standard. The question was what about Jesus and the gospels is historically verifiable. Are you questioning the notion that the early Church did NOT manipulate the gospels? You're dead wrong if you are. What you read in the gospels is not what was originally written.

  4. I am questioning your unhesitating reliance on a century old book, without regard to all the advanced research on the subject done over the 105 years since then.

  5. Edenbridger is simply wrong here. I've read a number of studies both older than Schweitzer's and some others that are quite contemporary. The solid scholars I've read also find the quotation from Jesus about exclusive salvation through him to be a fabrication of the early church (which needed to establish it sole authority). I'm pressed for time now, but I'll blog as soon as I can about some of these scholarly studies (including Marcus Borg; and Earl Doherty; and J.D. Crossan, who is somewhat sympatheic to views Edenbridger would like, but doesn't prove to be too scholarly). Few of these scholars, with the exception of Crossan, really believe that Jesus would have proclaimed himself to be the exclusive source of salvation. Amazingly, Schweitzer's bold study is generally substantiated by most of these scholars. It was Schweitzer's work on this topic that inspired the Jesus Seminars, a group that specifically examines the historicity of the actions, deeds and sayings of Jesus. I have attended two of its seminars. More later.