From the Archives

Bruce, the Atheist Talks to James, the Pastor About the Bible

bible made me an atheist

Comic by my friend Mike Stanfill.

Recently, a fundamentalist Christian by the name of James commented on several of my posts on this site and on Facebook. James, a seminary trained Baptist, is convinced I hate God, hate Christians, hate the Bible, and live for the opportunity to mock and ridicule Christianity.

James describes himself this way:

I am a man “of the book.” I am a man of faith. My entire life is governed by my faith in an unseen God. Hebrews 11: 6 says “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” My entire life falls under the authority of the Word of God. No surprise there! And because my life is governed by God’s Word, I live a holy and godly life.

According to James, his entire life is under the authority of the inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God. God said it, and that settles it and the real problem with atheists like me is that we refuse to bow before the power and authority of the Bible. One day, James warned, “there will be a day of reckoning and judgment by that man whom God hath appointed to be judge. And on that day, you WILL bow the knee and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord!”

I’m sure James really believes what he is saying. However, does James really govern his life by the word of God? Does he really believe every word in the Bible is pure and true? I’m sure if James reads this post he will shout from the roof tops, I BELIEVE EVERY WORD IN THE BIBLE…STRAIGHT FROM GOD’S MOUTH TO MY EAR  AND HEART!!!

What follows is how a conversation between Bruce, the atheist and James, the pastor might have gone….

Bruce: Every book, every chapter, every verse, every word?

James: Yes, all 66 books, 1,189 chapters, 31,102 verse, and 788, 258 words. (King James Bible Statistics)

Bruce: Do you think homosexuality is a sin?

James: Yes, the Bible says in Leviticus 18:22 that homosexuality is an abomination.

Bruce: So, you support the execution of homosexuals? Leviticus 20:14 says homosexuals should be put to death. And Leviticus 20:10 says adulterers should be put to death. Do you support the execution of homosexuals and adulterers?

James: Well, you see…that’s in the Old Testament, so those verses are under the Old Covenant. We are under the New Covenant now. Praise God for his grace and mercy!

Bruce: What about the Ten Commandments?

James: Yes, I think the Ten Commandments are the inviolable law of God and are valid today!

Bruce: But, they are in the Old Testament.

James: Well, you see, the Ten Commandments are the moral law of God and God’s moral law is in force today.

Bruce: All ten commandments?

James: Well, you see, the command to remember the sabbath day and keep it holy is no longer in force.

Bruce: Where does the Bible say it is no longer in force?

James: Well, you see, it doesn’t, but if you take this verse, that verse, and put them together with these verses, and then interpret it though the proper theological grid…viola! the command to remember the sabbath day and keep it holy is no longer in force.

Bruce: Hmm. I thought the Bible says, I am the Lord thy God and I change not. Doesn’t the Bible says that Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever? If God is unchanging, why do his laws change?

James: Well, you see…

Bruce: Didn’t Jesus say in Matthew 5: 17, 18 – Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. It seems to me that Jesus is saying the law of God is in force (valid, authoritative) until heaven and earth pass away. I just went outside and checked…heaven and earth are still here.

James: Well, you see, the Scripture must be rightly interpreted. You are interpreting it incorrectly and that’s why your beliefs are wrong. I interpret it correctly and that’s why my beliefs are right.

Bruce: I thought you were a man of the book, that you stand upon the B-I-B-L-E!

James: I do.

Bruce: Not really. If you were a man of the book, why would you need to interpret it? Aren’t you really saying that you are a man of a certain interpretation and that your interpretation of the Bible is the authority?

James: Pfft. You are putting words in my mouth.

Bruce: Let’s move on to the New Testament.

James: (under breath) Thank you, Jesus!

Bruce: So, you consider all the commands in the New Testament to be true and authoritative?

James: Absolutely!

Bruce: According to the Christian Assemblies International website, there are 1,050 commands in the 27 books of the New Testament. According to what you said previously, do you consider all 1,050 commands and authoritative?

James: Yes, they are the Word of God.

Bruce: Do the women in the church you attend speak during the service?

James: That’s a silly question. Of course they do.

Bruce: I Corinthians 14:34 says, Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. This verse says women are not permitted to speak in the church.

James: Well, you see, you need to understand the historical and cultural context to properly interpret this verse.

Bruce: So, we are back to interpreting again. I thought you were a man of the book? Shouldn’t someone be able to pick up the Bible, read it, and understand it? If people wanted to be saved, could they just pick up the Bible, read it and understand what they need to do to be saved?

James: Absolutely! I hand out tracts with Bible verses on them. If a person reads these verses they will know all they need to know about being saved.

Bruce: Hmm…OK. Does a person need to be baptized to be saved?

James: Absolutely not! That’s works salvation. Salvation is by faith through grace, not of works, lest any man should boast. Praise Jesus!

Bruce: Doesn’t Mark 16 say he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved?

James: Well, you see…

Bruce: Does a person receive the Holy Spirit when they are saved?

James: Yes, they do. The Holy Spirit lives in every Christian. He is their teacher and guide! He is the third part of the Godhead.

Bruce: So there are three G…(stop, Bruce, stay on point) Sorry about that. If someone is saved but not baptized, do they have the Holy Spirit living inside of them?

James: Yes, but they should be baptized as soon as possible. Baptism is an outward sign of what God has done on the inside.

Bruce: Doesn’t Acts 2:38 say: Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost? This seems to say a person must be baptized before they receive the Holy Spirit.

James: Well, you see, the word “for” in the Greek is “eis” and it means “because of.” In other words, a person is baptized because their sins have been remitted, not in order to have their sins remitted.

Bruce: So, to understand the Bible you need to know Greek?

James: (silence)

Bruce: I thought a person could just read the English Bible and understand how to be saved? Now you are saying they need to understand Greek?

James: Well Greek is the original language of the New Testament.

Bruce: Wait a minute. There’s a Greek New Testament that came before the English New Testament?

James: Yes, and the Old Testament was originally written in Hebrew.

Bruce: So, which words are the pure and perfect Word of God? The English or the Hebrew and Greek?

James: (launches into long explanation about the original languages and translations)

Bruce: OK, where I can I read these original manuscripts?

James: They don’t exist.

Bruce: What do you mean they don’t exist? Doesn’t this mean your faith is in a translation written by men and not the inspired, inerrant, infallible Word of God?

James: Absolutely not! We can KNOW that the English Bible is the pure and perfect Word of God. God preserves his Word down through the ages.

Bruce: And you know this HOW?

James: The Bible says…

I could go on and on and on in endless directions with this fictitious dialog between James and me. As I have easily shown, James’ belief in the Bible requires him  to interpret the text, so what is really pure and perfect is not the Bible but his interpretation. Whatever translation James uses has the fingerprints of man all over it. Since the original manuscripts no longer exist, James can’t be certain that the extant manuscripts contain the exact words of God, and he can’t be certain the translation he uses contains in perfect form the exact words of God. Instead of saying THUS SAITH THE LORD, James should say, THUS SAITH THE IMPERFECT BIBLE, AS INTERPRETED BY JAMES, THE PASTOR.


The Disconnect Between what Christians Say and How They Live


christian hypocrisy

Several months back, I asked readers to submit questions they would like me to answer. If you would like to ask a question, please leave your question here.

Chikerin asked:

Jesus said that if someone asks for your coat, to give them your cloak as well. Shouldn’t Christians therefore not only cater gay weddings, but cater gay birthdays as well? Why are Christians so stinting and stingy when Jesus said to give without thought of reward? Why are Christians always outraged when they are supposed to have peace and meekness?

The short version of this question is, why are many Christians hypocrites?

Evangelicals frequently demand that everyone live according to the teaching of the Bible (note recent battle over homosexuality and same-sex marriage). They think morality is derived from the Bible, that it is God’s standard for behavior. Pastors spend a significant amount of time preaching sermons on living the Christian life, reminding parishioners of what God expects of them. Despite all the preaching, videos, books, and conferences on living the Christian life, most Evangelicals are unable to live according to the teachings of the Bible.

In Galatians 5:22,23, the Bible says:

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

How many professing Christians do you know whose lives demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit? Supposedly, Evangelicals have the mind of Christ, and the Holy Spirit lives inside of them, teaching them everything necessary for life and godliness. Yet, there is no difference between how the Evangelical and the atheist live their lives. Why is this?

Christian apologists will likely say that many “Christians” are not true Christians; that they have a cultural form of Christianity. When pressed to give a clear statement of what a true Christian life looks like, most apologists quickly appeal to grace or suggest that every Christian is a work in progress. Sometimes, apologists say the non-believer is the hypocrite for demanding that Christians live according to the teachings of the Bible when they themselves are not willing to do so. However, it is the Christians who claim the high moral ground, and in doing so, they shouldn’t be surprised when non-Christians expect them to practice what they preach.

How many Christians do you know who live according to Galatians 5:22,23 and Matthew 5-7, the sermon on the mount? I suspect you’ll have a hard time coming up with anyone who actually lives their life according to these two passages of Scripture.

How about pastors? In 1 Timothy 3, Paul gives the qualifications for being a pastor. Note that he says a pastor (bishop/elder) then MUST be, not hope or aspire to be:

This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. A bishop then must be

  • blameless,
  • the husband of one wife,
  • vigilant,
  • sober,
  • of good behavior,
  • given to hospitality,
  • apt to teach;
  • not given to wine,
  • no striker,
  • not greedy of filthy lucre;
  • but patient,
  • not a brawler,
  • not covetous;
  • one that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;  (for if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
  • Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.
  • Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.

Do you know of ONE pastor who meets these qualifications? I certainly didn’t when I was a pastor, and neither did any of my fellow pastors.

Now, to answer Chikirin’s question. Christians are human like the rest of us. They are capable of doing good and bad, and on most days their lives are an admixture of good, bad, and indifferent behavior. They are not morally/ethically superior, regardless of what their pastor, church, and Bible tell them. They are, in every way, h-u-m-a-n. When the news reports stories of Christian malfeasance, infidelity and criminal behavior, we should not be surprised. Humans can, and do, fail morally and ethically. None of us is without fault and failure.

Christianity would be better served if believers dismounted the moral high horse, returned it to the barn, and joined the human race. As long as they continue to think they are morally superior and demand others live according to the moral teachings of the Bible, they should expect to be mocked and ridiculed when they fall off the horse.


John Piper and Satan: Equating Homosexuality with Enslaving and Raping Girls


The supernatural monster who orchestrates the kidnapping, enslaving, and thousand-fold drugging, selling, raping, and killing of girls around the globe, is the same one who has masterminded the murderous cultural delusion — from the highest court to the lowest porn-flick — that the practice of sodomy is delightful, not deadly. John Piper, August 3, 2015

Charismatic Calvinist and Christian hedonist John Piper recently said Satan, a fictional being from the Christian Bible, is out to deceive and destroy the masses. But praise be to Jesus, we have John Piper, former pastor of Bethlehem Baptist Church, watching out for us and ever ready to let us know what this fictional Satan is up to.

Like many fundamentalists, Piper is enraged over the recent U.S Supreme Court decision legalizing same-sex marriage. What this decision has done is flush out the homophobes and bigots. Unable to contain their outrage, preachers such as Piper expose for all the world to see the hate that lies underneath their theological beliefs:

Lie: “. . . the practice of sodomy is delightful, not deadly.” Behind all the relational descriptions of so-called same-sex marriage is the unspoken fact of “anal or oral copulation,” and in particular, “copulation with a member of the same sex.” That’s the definition of sodomy.

Someone will say: Choosing that word signifies your belligerence toward people with same-sex attraction. No, it signifies my hatred for what can destroy people with same-sex attraction. What destroys people is not same-sex attraction, but the lie that same-sex copulation is delightful, and not deadly.

What is truly belligerent is the promotion of shameful acts as beautiful acts. Belligerent is the right word, because the Bible says that you should “abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul” (1 Peter 2:11). So those who encourage the indulgence of these passions (whatever they are) are making war on souls — they are literally belligerent.

The word sodomy has two advantages: it refers to the act of same-sex copulation, not same-sex orientation; and it still carries the stigma of shamefulness. Those who love people with same-sex attraction should want to preserve the stigma of shameful practices which destroy them — just as we should try to preserve the stigma of stealing and perjury and kidnapping, and fornication, and adultery. It is a gracious thing when a culture puts signs in front of destructive behaviors that read: Don’t go there; it is shameful.

…Lie: “. . . the practice of sodomy is delightful, not deadly.” The second word in this sentence that may be twisted is “practice.” When the Bible links “men who practice homosexuality” with “thieves,” and says that neither will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9–10), it is important to note two crucial things.

One is that the warning is not sounded against those who are tempted to steal, but who practice stealing — thieves. Similarly the warning is sounded not against those who are tempted to practice homosexuality, but against those who actually do practice it. To be sure, there are all kinds of inward heart-lusts that are sinful, but the focus here is on the practice…

…Lie: “. . . the practice of sodomy is delightful, not deadly.” The third word in this sentence that may be twisted is “deadly.” I am not referring to AIDS or to hate-crimes against people with same-sex attraction. I hate hate-crimes, and I would love to see a cure for AIDS. I am not talking about the painful fallout of sodomy in this world — as real as that is (Romans 1:27).

I am talking about “the second death.” All unforgiven and unforsaken sin is deadly in this sense. It leads to the second death. “As for the cowardly, the faithless, the detestable, as for murderers, the sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their portion will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death” (Revelation 21:8)…

While Piper would like to be thought of as a man who desires to love homosexuals all the way to Jesus, his insistence on using the word sodomy reveals what he really thinks about homosexuals. He knows this word  is patently offensive, yet he uses it anyway. How then is John Piper any different from the Phelps clan and Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas? Just because Piper doesn’t stand of a street corner with a sign that says God Hates Fags doesn’t mean he disagrees with the sentiment.

Piper, like the Phelps clan and Al Mohler, is a Calvinist. The Calvinist God has the world divided into two categories, elect and non-elect, saved and lost. Since Romans 1 intimates that homosexual behavior is a sign of a reprobate mind, why not just come out and say God Hates Fags? Instead, Piper pretends to have love for the sodomites’ souls, deeply desiring to see them come to Jesus:

…In other words, not all practice of sin excludes from the kingdom of God. “All sins will be forgiven the children of man” (Mark 3:28). The sins that exclude from heaven are the sins we keep on pursuing without regarding them as God-dishonoring, and without seeking forgiveness through Jesus, and without making war on them as the enemies of our souls….

…For all those who trust in Christ, Satan is disarmed (Colossians 2:15), because the only thing that condemns us in God’s court is unforgiven sin. And in Christ, sins are forgiven (Acts 10:43). Satan’s accusations against Christians come to nothing. “Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect?” (Romans 8:33).

Therefore, we have the happiest and most horrible news in the world. In Christ there is light and freedom and life. Outside there is darkness and bondage and death. Failure to name the beauty of the light and the dreadfulness of the darkness is an abdication of truth and love…

According to Piper, there will be no homosexuals in heaven. Since our eternal destiny is predestined by God and no homosexual shall inherit the kingdom of God, doesn’t this mean God predetermined that the homosexual would have same-sex attraction?

Piper may say he loves the sodomite, but his theology tells a different story. Surely Piper would agree that the Christian should love what God loves and hate what God hates. Does God hate homosexuals? Does God hate same-sex anal sex but not heterosexual anal sex? Does God hate same-sex oral sex but not heterosexual oral sex? Why does God hate the one and not the other?

Here’s what I think. John Piper is a 69-year-old man who can’t wrap his fundamentalist mind around two men loving each other and desiring to have sex. Like many men of his generation, the very thought of homosexual sex repulses him, and since it does this means God also must be repulsed by it. The Bible gives Piper cover for hating what he can not or will not understand.

Like others of his ilk, Piper thinks “sodomy” is akin to “kidnapping, enslaving, and thousand-fold drugging, selling, raping, and killing of girls.” Here’s an educated man who can’t qualitatively tell the difference between two people of the same-sex loving each other and enslaving and raping girls. I am at a loss as to how to respond to such stupidity.


The Sounds of Fundamentalism: Premarital Sex Will Kill You by Pam Stancil


This is the one hundred and thirtieth installment in The Sounds of Fundamentalism series. This is a series that I would like readers to help me with. If you know of a video clip that shows the crazy, cantankerous, or contradictory side of Evangelical Christianity, please send me an email with the name or link to the video. Please do not leave suggestions in the comment section.  Let’s have some fun!

Today’s Sound of Fundamentalism is video clip of Pam Stancil trying to scare the sex out of a group of teenagers.

Video Link

Christians Say The Darnedest Things: Do You Have Holy Spirit DNA? by Matt Sorger


We’ve heard it preached our entire Christian lives, “You are a new creation! Old things have passed away and all things have become new!” But do we really understand what this means?


Recently God gave me a vision of what happens to us at salvation and it radically altered the way I see myself. I saw the moment God encountered Mary in Luke 1:31-35 telling her she would bear the Christ Child. I saw the person of the Holy Spirit overshadow her. I saw Mary’s DNA and the Holy Spirit’s DNA. I saw them intertwine and become one, creating Jesus in her womb, fully God and fully man.

Then the vision shifted to me. I saw myself at salvation. I saw the Holy Spirit overshadow me and fill me. My body became the temple of the Holy Spirit. I also saw my spirit man’s DNA and the Holy Spirit’s DNA. I saw them intertwine and become one.

I saw the Holy Spirit wrap around my human spirit like two DNA strands coming together as one, just like when the DNA from a father and mother mix together to form a new baby. It looked like the Double Helix. As the Holy Spirit wrapped around my human spirit, they fused together, becoming one and forming a brand new creation. This fusion of Holy Spirit and my human spirit formed Christ in me!


When you receive Christ as your Savior and the Holy Spirit takes up residence inside of you, He actually fuses Himself together with your spirit. You become one with God! You have His divine nature inside of you. You are a brand new creation, with new desires and a new life. Your core identity is completely transformed. Christ’s very nature and identity is now completely formed in your spirit. It’s a glorious transformation! This is why you are holy, righteous and clean!

I have so much more to teach you on this amazing subject. I have just put together a teaching series called Divine DNA—New Creation Reality. I think it’s one of the most important teachings I have ever done. Having divine DNA in your spirit has so many effects on your life as you become transformed in your spirit, soul and body.

Matt Sorger, Charisma News, What Happens to Your DNA When Holy Spirit and Your Human Spirit Merge, October 1, 2016

Quote of the Day: Revisiting My Apostasy by Mike D

bible made me an atheist

Want to rattle your faith? Read the Bible.

Perhaps I should have been prepared for the fact that answers to my many-religions questions were not forthcoming in the Bible. It was, to say the least, disheartening. Instead, I turned to the theology of the faith itself, particularly the book of Hebrews. Hebrews explains how the death of Christ is wed to the Old Testament covenants that involved ritual animal sacrifice. The Jewish people sacrificed animals to appease the wrath of God brought upon them by their sins; Christ was a perfect sacrifice that allowed the old covenant to be discarded and a new one, based on faith, was forged.

Except, none of this made any sense to me at all. Why did God want ritual animal sacrifice in the first place? What does that have to do with forgiveness? Perhaps, I thought, God wanted people to make a sacrifice — farm animals, in those days, were precious resources. But that explanation evaporates with Christ, since he took the sacrifice upon himself. What was so special about the “blood of Christ”? What did that have to do with God’s willingness to forgive people? And why did God spend centuries on ineffectual covenants in the first place? How does an omnipotent deity “sacrifice” anything at all — Jesus could have, conceivably, poofed himself right back into existence or simply refused to die in the first place. Generally when we mortals talk about “sacrifice”, it means something quite different. We don’t get to come back a few days later and float into the clouds.

Worse, Christianity holds that Christ is God. How can God sacrifice himself to himself to fulfill his own covenant? A covenant whose terms were, as far as I could tell, completely arbitrary! Adding insult to injury is the fact that modern Christianity (generally) holds that humans are “fallen”, and born into sin. Even those few who reject Original Sin still accept the Biblical decree that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”. In other words, the system is rigged. You’re a sinner, and there’s nothing you can do to change that. But God can save you, as long as you assent to the belief that he created a convoluted system of arbitrary covenants and “sacrificed” himself to himself to appease himself of the terms he created so he could forgive you for being what you had no choice to be — a flawed human being. I should point out that it’s utterly irrelevant whether someone believes it’s all literal, as in the “penal substitution theory of atonement”, or they believe it’s either all or in part metaphorical. Either way, it doesn’t make an iota of sense.

Confused and frustrated, I sought out some church leaders to discuss these matters. One chaplain, in particular, was particularly patient with me as I probed for answers about the blood of Christ, ritual sacrifice, and atonement. But he couldn’t offer anything more than trite platitudes about having faith, that there are some thing we just don’t understand. Maybe that was good enough for him, but I couldn’t assent to beliefs that were, on their face, ridiculous. Frankly, I didn’t think it was too much to ask that a logically coherent explanation of basic Christian theology was forthcoming. These aren’t tertiary issues of theology, after all — they’re the fundamentals of what Christianity is in the first place.

— Mike D, The A-Unicornist, Revisiting My Apostasy, October 23, 2016

Kindred Spirits in a Pathless Land — Part Eleven


Guest post by Kindred Spirits

Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, Part Five, Part Six, Part Seven, Part Eight, Part Nine, Part Ten

So you think science is the antidote to sloppy emotional thinking as shown in the last few posts? Alas, scientists and scientific funding are subject to our non-rational brains too. Richard Feynman was a Nobel Prize-winning physicist who worked on the Manhattan Project creating the atomic bomb in World War II. In the essay below, Feynman discusses some of the many challenges that scientists face which are examples of the “…first principle is that you must not fool yourself — and you are the easiest person to fool.”

Cargo Cult Science, by Richard Feynman:

We have learned a lot from experience about how to handle some of the ways we fool ourselves. One example: Millikan measured the charge on an electron by an experiment with falling oil drops and got an answer which we now know not to be quite right. It’s a little bit off, because he had the incorrect value for the viscosity of air. It’s interesting to look at the history of measurements of the charge of the electron, after Millikan. If you plot them as a function of time, you find that one is a little bigger than Millikan’s, and the next one’s a little bit bigger than that, and the next one’s a little bit bigger than that, until finally they settle down to a number which is higher.

Why didn’t they discover that the new number was higher right away? It’s a thing that scientists are ashamed of—this history—because it’s apparent that people did things like this: When they got a number that was too high above Millikan’s, they thought something must be wrong—and they would look for and find a reason why something might be wrong. When they got a number closer to Millikan’s value they didn’t look so hard. And so they eliminated the numbers that were too far off, and did other things like that. We’ve learned those tricks nowadays, and now we don’t have that kind of a disease.

But this long history of learning how to not fool ourselves—of having utter scientific integrity—is, I’m sorry to say, something that we haven’t specifically included in any particular course that I know of. We just hope you’ve caught on by osmosis.

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself—and you are the easiest person to fool. So you have to be very careful about that.

In another essay, Feynman argues that religion has a role in ethics, despite the metaphysics of religions being doubtful. He also investigated various mystical and alternative mental states (e.g., from sensory deprivation chambers), and seemingly decided that while the phenomena existed, it didn’t prove that any of the religious metaphysics was true.  You can read more of his thoughts in: The Relation of Science and Religion, by Richard Feynman.

Lastly, Feynman worked on creating the atomic bomb. Originally, he joined knowing that the Germans were also working an atomic bomb. However, after the Germans surrendered, the target was switched from the Germans to the Japanese who were not developing an atomic bomb, and he didn’t even question that change of the target at the time. (In an interview I saw, he seemed to think it was an ethical failure on his part. Alas, I could not find the video clip.)

So the question is, did science help Feynman make this ethical judgment? Did he make the correct ethical judgment?

Suspension of Disbelief and Gaslighting in the Bible (Expanded)


Guest post by Melody

Author’s note: This guest post is the same one as before, except that I have added some examples at Bruce’s and his editor’s request. At times, the post is a bit snarky. I have to say that I’ve used so many Biblical examples in it that it felt like preparing a Bible study. However, you might say that it’s more of an anti-Bible Bible study.

Suspension of disbelief and gaslighting

Some of the stories in the Bible depend heavily on the suspension of disbelief and/or on gaslighting. These tools are quite useful, as they give more credence to the stories, which is pretty important for a book that claims to be the whole truth and nothing but the truth. Suspension of disbelief is important when it comes to storytelling, as it is needed sometimes. If we all didn’t suspended our disbelief, why would we ever watch or read fantasy or sci-fi? Why would we be interested in mythology or superhero movies? The characters, animals, and events in these stories are not real, as we well know, and loads of impossible things happen. Suspension of disbelief is what keeps us going. Superman doesn’t exist, but we’ll still give him the benefit of the doubt because we’re interested in the story and the character.

But — and there is a “but” to this — if the suspension of disbelief stretches a little too far for a little too long — the tolerance varies from person to person — we stop believing in the story and instead get irritated and scornful. We stop reading or watching and feel a little cheated somehow. The promises are not fulfilled and the bubble is broken. There are many ways this can happen; I’ll mention two.

Deux Ex Machina and the plot hole

These are two of the pitfalls of some biblical stories. Deux Ex Machina literally means “the god from the machine.” It’s a plot device that comes out of nowhere and saves the day. It can be used for any kind of new event, character or development that fixes whatever was the problem. The audience feels cheated when this happens: it seems unfair because it’s too good to be true and not very believable. Deux Ex Machina tends to break the suspension of disbelief and creates an eye-roll moment instead. The plot hole has a similar effect. A plot hole is an error or gap in the story that cannot be fixed without ruining the story’s own internal logic. A situation where events clash with earlier information is an example of a plot hole. Plot holes are irritating to the reader and make a story weaker. If something doesn’t fit well in the story, once again the suspension of disbelief is much more easily broken, which will in turn lessen the enjoyment of the story. Other examples of this are characters who act out of character or, for instance, historical characters whose dialogue is far too modern. It becomes harder to enjoy a story when these things happen.

A few examples of Deux Ex Machina in Biblical stories

The story of Adam and Eve and the fall has an element of Deux Ex Machina in it. God threatens the first couple and informs them they will die if they break his laws, but when push comes to shove, they only get expelled out of paradise. God changes the rules of the story—because He can—as there wouldn’t be much of a story left if the only two protagonists are dead. So the ‘promise’ of death is not fulfilled and another solution is found: exile. This way the couple stays alive to live another day and it also means their story may continue. To stay with Genesis, I could mention another example. Cain, for instance, is responsible for the first murder but in order for him to stay alive, God protects him with a mark, gives him a wife and a city to flee to. None of these are mentioned beforehand, but they appear out of nowhere in order for Cain to have a somewhat happy ending.

Such a surprise happy ending happens quite often in the Bible. The story of Jesus breaking the bread where the food suddenly multiplies could fall in this category. It serves as a miracle but is also a bit convenient. Many of the miracles of Jesus rather follow this pattern. Think of it like this: when you first get to know Superman, you quickly learn that he can fly and cannot suffer to be near Kryptonite. You learn these things about him at the beginning of the story and if he later manages to escape by flying, say from a burning building, you don’t feel cheated because you already knew he could fly.

With the Jesus stories, it is different. We know he is the Son of God, but we don’t know what that entails. That means that any kind of miracle can occur, any kind of rabbit from the hat. If Jesus has a problem, he’ll solve it, with a flick of his fingers. He can heal the sick; he can raise the dead; he can walk on water; he can multiply food; he can battle the Devil in reciting Scripture; he can heal someone’s ear; he can foresee the future; he can control nature; he can…. The possibilities are endless. Because the story offers virtually no limits to Jesus’ powers, they can easily feel like a Deux Ex Machina. Easy solutions coming out of nowhere.

When you consider the stories of Jesus as a living body of work that has been shaped over years with various authors, this makes sense. There are many versions of Jesus as there are many versions of King Arthur’s tales and, indeed, many different versions of Superman or other comic book heroes too. Different authors think up different background stories, add to them, or eliminate elements. The enemies may differ, the powers may vary, the character itself often changes along with the story. With various authors, the internal consistency of stories can easily get muddled. This often happens when there’s a large body of work on a single character.

But even with only one author this might become a problem. Readers have, for instance, pointed this out in some of the Sherlock Holmes stories of Arthur Conan Doyle. It is hard to remember every little bit of detail of a character’s life if you write many stories about the same character. And so Holmes has hardly any interest in literature in one story, whereas he quotes Goethe in actual German in the next. (1) The same can be said for Watson’s war wound, which might be located either in the shoulder, the leg, or one of his limbs. (2) A popular explanation—one might be inclined to call this Holmes canon apologia —is that Watson was bending over and was, therefore, shot in the leg and the shoulder both with the bullet first hitting his leg and then his shoulder or the other way around. (3) However, it is just as easily conceivable that the author simply did not remember where he’d decided to give Watson his wound.

Plot holes in Biblical stories

In the Bible there are a few stories that have different endings. You could consider this a plot hole, or if you want to be kind, see it as a parallel universe instead. Both Judas and King Saul die differently in different versions of their life story. In 1 Samuel 31:4, Saul commands his armor-bearer to kill him. The man doesn’t obey and so Saul kills himself instead. However, in 2 Samuel 1:8-10, King David hears the tale of Saul’s demise told by the Amalekite that killed him. In this version, King Saul also asked to be killed and his command is obeyed. Both stories cannot be true, unless they truly did happen in parallel universes. Judas’ death has a similar pattern to it: it remains somewhat of a mystery. In one of the gospels, Matthew 27:5, Judas hangs himself, yet in the book of Acts 1:18-19, Judas falls, presumably onto a rock, and dies. It is not entirely clear if this is a deliberate act and, therefore, also a suicide or simply an unfortunate fall. Either way the deaths differ significantly and cannot be both true. The reader may think of it as an alternative ending, much in the way that some movies offer when they come out on DVD. Except, of course, that this is supposed to be read as history—if you are a literalist—and history does not have alternative endings. (On a fun note, historians sometimes do contemplate the “what if” question where history is concerned. This is called counterfactual history and a big source of new stories and ideas. The man in the high castle is a well-known example of a story that poses such a question.)

The two differing creation stories present a similar problem. They do not add up. Man and woman are created differently at different moments in the story. In the one story, Adam is alone for a while and Eve is created from his rib; in the other one, they are created together, apparently simultaneously. Again, they cannot both be true.

A short internet search brings you a world of Biblical plot holes. There are far too many to mention them all, but this Reddit thread alone, brings up quite a few. (4) If God is so powerful, why does he punish the people with the Babylonian confusion? He could have gone much further, and as the original poster suggested, these different languages that are created become pretty irritating when you get to the point where evangelizing becomes really important. However, that’s where speaking in tongues comes into play.

God’s power itself poses an interesting question as well. Satan is a created being; God isn’t, yet at times they seem equally powerful. Satan is able to enter heaven at will and makes a devious bet with God to get Job to lose his faith. A similar attempt is made by Satan to deceive Jesus as well. When Daniel receives news of an angel, the angel tells him he was held up for days and could only visit him, after an arch angel had assisted him. Where was God, you may wonder? (Daniel 10:13)

When Abraham is visited by the angels, they tell him that God has heard cries coming from Sodom and they have been sent to investigate what’s going on there. (Genesis 18:21) This seems to suggest that God is not omniscient and needs his helpers to find out instead. In Judges 1:19 God supports Judah and provides victories, however, chariots of iron are stronger than God somehow. Imagine that: the tribe in possession of more advanced weaponry wins!

These stories make some sense from the perspective of a world with various gods in constant battle where the winning tribe also represents the victorious god. They make no sense at all if the God in these stories is supposedly omnipotent and omniscient: because, in that case, demons and chariots fitted with iron shouldn’t matter one bit, let alone be on the winning hand.

Another one I find quite compelling myself is this one: if Genesis is meant to be metaphorical, as many people claim, consider the following, posed on another thread, by a former Catholic:

“[W]hen you finally break down all the inconsistencies and questionable passages in Genesis, many Christians come to the conclusion that Genesis is simply metaphorical. But Jesus sacrificing himself for a metaphor seems like a major plot hole all on its own.” (5)


Gaslighting is a subject which has recently received more attention. It is a form of manipulation where the person who is being gaslighted will begin to doubt his or her own memories or reasoning. It’s seen as an abusive tool as the subjects will become doubtful and distrustful of, ultimately, themselves. Gaslighting is about being dismissive of someone’s arguments and about invalidating people’s feelings. “Are you sure it happened that way?” might be an example. It’s a way of discrediting someone before they’ve even begun to speak.

The term gaslighting is based on the play, and movie, Gas Light. In the story a woman is deceived by her husband. He spends time in the attic searching for hidden treasure and as he lights the gas lights up there, the lights in the rest of the house dim. His wife notices this but in order for him to keep his secret, he convinces her she is mistaken instead. He tells her not to trust her own perceptions but to believe him instead. Every time he goes up into the attic, she notices the dimming gas lights in the rest of the house, but he continues to make her doubt her own senses. She is simply imagining things. His manipulation of her: making his wife doubt herself, her own memories, and her own perception, is what became known as gaslighting.

You could say it’s what Job’s friends do to him as they invalidate his words and talk over his arguments. Job’s friends insist that has must have done wrong, for God to harm him so. Job is adamant that he did not. In fact, in the story, God himself agrees with Job on this. It doesn’t matter what Job brings forth in arguments, his friends will not have it. In Job 4:7-8 Eliphaz says “Think now, who that was innocent ever perished? Or where were the upright cut off? As I have seen, those who plow iniquity and sow trouble reap the same.” His other friend, Bildad, makes a similar argument in Job 8:20. “See, God will not reject a blameless person nor take the hand of evildoers.” They cannot unify their beliefs about a just God and Job’s suffering, therefore, Job must have done something to provoke God’s wrath in their opinion. The friends do not succeed in making Job doubt his own account and point of view; they go to a great deal of trouble to make him see their point, but ultimately fail to gaslight him.

Another example of gaslighting is a story that is often brought as very poignant. Jesus accepting Peter back into the fold. Jesus asks Peter if he loves him as he has just betrayed him. In the story, this question is repeated three times —the number being symbolically significant in itself as the number of completeness, hence the Trinity, three days in the grave and I’m sure there are others — until Peter gets pretty frustrated. “You know I love you,” he finally exclaims, exhausted. And yes, it is a kind of punishment for his betrayal: can he be trusted after all? But there’s another side here as well. As part of the Trinity, as God, Jesus knows what Peter thinks and believes; he can see right through him. (John 21:15-17) Why does he need to ask him three times? Why else other than to make Peter doubt himself all over again (as punishment)? Peter becomes frustrated and desperate as his exclamations are unable to prove his fealty. He has nothing but his word and his word is not believed. This story is often portrayed as Jesus’ endless love for Peter —considering what happens to Judas, as a response to his betrayal of Jesus, one is inclined to see the story in that way— yet it also shows the more testily side of Jesus. He makes Peter grovel, makes him doubt himself all over again, and only after he has toyed with him, does he receive forgiveness. Perhaps Jesus forgot his own teachings? I seem to remember something about seventy times seven…. (Matthew 18:21-22)

When you take this further, it might be that God is gaslighting us. The Bible constantly warns us that as sinful people, we should not to trust ourselves, nor our sinful hearts. This is precisely what the term entails: making people doubt their own perceptions, their own lived experience, belittling their feelings or memories. The question is: who gains from this and what does the gaslighter have to gain? In a relationship the gaslighter will try to get the power, the reins of the relationship, by manipulating the other party in the relationship. If this is what God does to his own people, what does that say about Him? Why does God have to manipulate his followers in getting the power in the first place? Doesn’t He already have it?

“Trust in the Lord with all you heart and lean not on your own understanding.” (Proverbs 3:5) The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” (Jeremiah 17:9) “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all who follow his precepts have good understanding.” (Psalm 111:10) What these texts have in common is that God is to be trusted and humanity is not. But it goes even further than that: God is to be trusted and you should not trust yourself. You cannot believe in yourself, rely on your skills, stand for your opinions, trust your sense, but you have to rely on God instead. God will guide you; God will keep you; and so on. This means ultimately that God wins every battle you will have with him. You might not like the existence of hell, for instance, but God has the final say. Perhaps you want to have an egalitarian marriage but God, and probably your preacher too, point you towards the headship of men. But it can get worse. You might feel pressured into forgiving someone because the Bible tells you to do so. You might stay in an abusive relationship because you believe God does not allow divorce.

It ends in you not being allowed to be yourself. You are considered a sinner by God. You have been saved by his Son and as a result you have to give up yourself. Your personhood. The Bible is quite clear about this. The price you pay is to no longer belong to yourself. You have been bought and paid for. It also means that you may end up in an identity crisis. You are no longer allowed to think for yourself and make your own decisions. Instead you are supposed to ask for and follow God’s will. Your opinion doesn’t matter. What your senses or instinct tells you is null and void, because the will of God will always win. You do not matter and what you think or believe doesn’t matter either. After all, you can’t trust your sinful heart. You cannot trust your sinning mind. Paul explains it like this in Romans 7:15: “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do, I do not do. But what I hate, I do.” He is torn and struggles in this chapter with his own mind. The things he does, he sees as sinful; the things he wants to do, but doesn’t do, he considers to be good. The following link gives 23 Bible verses about the death to self. (6) Twenty-three times where you are told that you are not allowed to be yourself. That your self is bad and untrustworthy. As, for instance, Ephesians 4:22-24 “[T]hat, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and put on the new self.” Or the often repeated phrase about crucifying your old flesh or taking up your cross. Galatians 5:24 says the following: “Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” John 3:30 talks about: “He must increase, but I must decrease.” These are only three of the twenty three verses and they all mention not trusting your own judgement.

Gaslighting is a specific tactic designed to make people doubt themselves and thus grooming them to believe the other person’s views and perceptions. It is something that leaders of any kind might use to their advantage to control (a group of) people. If people can’t trust themselves, they will be far more likely to start trusting their leader, which is the intended goal. Cults probably use this as well. Messages to the members to not trust themselves, nor the outside world, make it easier to keep them in the fold. Finally, the Bible itself has countless verses telling you not to trust yourself, to abandon common sense and your own judgement and to give your life with all its decisions over to another. You are told to die symbolically, by baptism, and to rise as a new person – an empty person who is the marionette to God’s strings. This is the ultimate goal of gaslighting.


One could say that when you de-convert, the suspension of disbelief for the Bible has been broken. You’ve been kind, and perhaps resilient, enough to hang on to its truths for a long time but you simply can’t anymore. The spell has been broken and suddenly the Bible is riddled with plot holes. Broken promises and prophecies abound. The story no longer captivates you as it did before. You become aware of numerous problems in the storylines. You can’t un-see them anymore. On top of that, the authors (or God) try to gaslight you into not trusting yourself and your own judgement. Once you realize that, you’ll have a hard time going back to Biblical bliss.


(1)Some inconsistenties of Sherlock Holmes;

(2) Canonical cruxes;

(3) Ibid.

(4) Major Bible Plotholes;

(5) What are the biggest plot holes in the Bible;

(6) Death to self;

Republican Candidates for Defiance County Sheriff Vow to Militantly Uphold Second Amendment


Cartoon by David Horsey

Last Thursday, Republican candidates for Defiance County sheriff attended a forum at the Defiance County Fish and Game Club and shared their thoughts about the importance of the Second Amendment. Long-time Sheriff David Westrick is not seeking a ninth term, so Deputy Doug Engel and write-in candidate Steve Flory are battling one another, hoping to claim Westrick’s empty seat.

Both candidates think that protecting gun rights is very important. Both candidates said they would take a militant stand against attempts by liberals to take away guns or restrict their use. Todd Helberg, reporting for the Defiance Crescent-News, had this to say about the candidates (behind paywall):

A former sheriff’s deputy, Flory opened, quoting founding fathers George Washington and John Adams in defending the Second Amendment and its provision for allowing the citizenry to bear arms. Specifically, he noted Adams’ remark that the amendment assures the “private self-defense” of citizens.

“How often do we run into someone who doesn’t think private self-defense is part of (the Second Amendment)?, asked Flory. “Baloney. That’s exactly what it’s there for — for you and I to protect ourselves.”

While pledging “to stand with you guys,” on the Second Amendment, Flory mentioned the passage of a conceal carry law in Ohio some years ago, saying he’d like it to be a little less restrictive. And, he noted the misperceptions some apparently have with conceal carry laws across the country.

Flory explained that approximately 33,000 people are killed annually in traffic crashes nationally, then asked the audience how many have been killed by conceal carry permit holders during the past 10 years. According to a “very leftist” Internet website, he said the figure is 885, including suicides.

“We’re more dangerous to ourselves and others when we are just driving down the road everyday,” Flory said, adding that the conceal carry holder is there to protect himself, his family “and you.”

“… I think a lot of Second Amendment naysayers just are not educated enough to realize a good upstanding citizen … is doing (conceal carry) for their own purposes,” Flory said.

Engel, who is Westrick’s chief deputy, said “we in the sheriff’s office will always protect your Second Amendment rights.” …. “I will guarantee you … nobody — absolutely nobody — is going to enter your house and remove our firearms,” Engel said. “The only exception is if you have committed a crime with that firearm.”

In stating this, Engel suggested a militant stance if Second Amendment rights were changed by the U.S. Supreme Court. At present, he noted the court has been friendly to these rights with rulings in 2008 and 2010, but cautioned that this could change after the next presidential election.

“Our next president is going to have the ability to appoint three (Supreme Court) justices, maybe five,” Engel said. “… We need to get smart here. … The Supreme Court has been very protective, but if we make a mistake and don’t elect the right person, we’re in trouble — all of us.”
During a brief question period….another person asked what would happen if the Supreme Court made a decision that changed Second Amendment rights.

“No one’s going to take my guns, period,” said Engel. “They’re not going to take our guns. As sheriff I’m not going to get your guns … .”

“I’m telling you the same thing,” added Flory.

On one hand, the statements by both candidates are typical NRA-driven, the-liberals-are-coming-to-take-away-our-guns hysteria. Defiance County is awash in right-wing religious and political ideology. Making these statement played well with their target audience — white, right-wing, lock-and-load, Christian Republicans. Both Flory and Engel know that they don’t need votes from people such as myself. True liberals — those of us who want universal background checks, universal gun registration, banning of assault weapons and large capacity magazines, and the abolition of concealed carry permits — are as rare as the ivory-billed woodpecker. As a voting demographic, we don’t matter.

What troubles me is that both candidates advocate lawlessness. I thought the sheriff is the chief county law ENFORCEMENT officer? Yet both men said they would break the law IF the federal government or the U.S. Supreme Court attempted to alter the Second Amendment or restrict gun ownership.

Both candidates seem to want a wild, wild west of gun ownership. Both men fail to understand the difference between personal gun ownership and a well-regulated militia. What will future Sheriff Flory or Sheriff Engel do when tasked with enforcing laws that run contrary to their personal opinions? The sheriff doesn’t make law, neither is he tasked with interpreting the Constitution. His sole duty is to enforce the law, even those laws he personally disagrees with. What if the Ohio legislature and the U.S. Congress finally realize that the only way to put an end to mass shootings and gun violence is to limit gun ownership and use? What if these laws are upheld by the Supreme Court? Will future Sheriff Flory or Sheriff Engel enforce the law? Based on the aforementioned comments, I suspect both men would refuse to enforce the law. This fact should trouble Republicans and Democrats alike.

The Sounds of Fundamentalism: Christians Who Don’t Vote For Trump Guilty of Murder by Kenneth Copeland

kenneth copeland jesse duplantis

This is the one hundred and twenty-ninth installment in The Sounds of Fundamentalism series. This is a series that I would like readers to help me with. If you know of a video clip that shows the crazy, cantankerous, or contradictory side of Evangelical Christianity, please send me an email with the name or link to the video. Please do not leave suggestions in the comment section.  Let’s have some fun!

Today’s Sound of Fundamentalism is video clip of Kenneth Copeland telling Christians why they MUST vote for Donald Trump. This video clearly shows that Copeland is endorsing Trump. In doing so, Copeland is in violation of Federal law. The IRS should, but won’t, strip Copeland’s “ministry” of its tax exempt status.

Video Link

Annual PSA Concerning Halloween and its Satanic Origins


Please read last year’s PSA announcement, Halloween is a Satanic Holiday.

Listen up, readers. Halloween is pure Satanic evil. If you let your children participate in Halloween you are opening them up to demonic influence. What’s next, letting them use an Ouija board?

Ben Godwin, pastor of Goodsprings Full Gospel Church in Jasper, Alabama warns:

Darkness is used in Scripture as a metaphor for evil to represent all that is sinful and satanic.

In contrast, light is a biblical metaphor for good to represent truth and all that is of God.

The apostle Paul instructed, “Therefore do not be partakers with them. For you were formerly darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light—for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth … And do not have fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness; instead, expose them” (Eph. 5:7-9, 11).

It’s a tricky balance for Christians to be in the world without conforming to it.

Jesus prayed, “I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one” (John 17:15).

If we imitate the world, we lose our distinction; if we isolate from the world, we lose our influence. Christians need to engage the culture if we expect to make an impact.

It’s perfectly fine for a boat to be in the water, but if too much water gets in the boat, now that’s a problem. This brings up the question, “How should Christians treat Halloween?”

The origin of Halloween incorporated a mixture of Christian and pagan practices.


Some of what happens on Halloween is harmless fun, but anyone with any spiritual discernment cannot deny that there is a sinister side.

“Abstain from all appearances of evil” (1 Thess. 5:22). Sin, like art, starts by drawing a line somewhere! It’s an odd contradiction for Christians to dress their kids up as creepy characters they try to teach them not emulate.

At this time of year there is a tsunami of horror movies flooding the airwaves featuring vampires, witches, zombies, monsters, cannibals and savage serial killers. Hollywood and viewers, it seems, have an obscene obsession with and an insatiable appetite for gory violence.

You can’t avoid being bombarded by the commercials even if you just watch news or sports. These shows glamorize evil and open the door to demonic influences. Some say it’s all just fantasy or harmless entertainment, but, if what people watch doesn’t affect behavior, then why do companies spend billions of dollars to advertise to them?

In Greek Mythology, Zeus gave Pandora a box and a key as a wedding gift with a note “Do Not Open.” Curiosity overcame her and she lifted the lid releasing all the forces of evil into the world.

The point is there are some doors you really don’t want to open.

“Leave no [such] room or foothold for the devil [give no opportunity to him]” (Eph. 4:27, AMP).

Don’t open the door to sin’s destructive influence. Slam the door shut in Satan’s face!

Halloween is a showcase for witchcraft which the Bible clearly condemns (Ex. 22:18; Lev. 19:31, 20:6, 27; Deut. 18:10-14; Gal. 5:19-21), calling it an “abomination”—morally disgusting, detestable, despicable and abhorrent.

Contrary to popular belief, books and movies, there is no such thing as a “good witch.” That is an oxymoron. How can someone controlled by evil forces be good?

Paul asked the Corinthians, “For what fellowship has righteousness with unrighteousness? What communion has light with darkness?” (2 Cor. 6:14, MEV).

Christians have no business dabbling in any form of witchcraft: horoscopes, crystal balls, séances, Ouija boards, Dungeons & Dragons, pentagrams, tarot cards, palm reading, spells, fortune telling, mediums, channeling, divination, sorcery, black magic and so forth.

There are only two sources of supernatural power—God and Satan. If something is not of God, where does it originate?

If you are involved in any of these practices, I urge you to repent of it, renounce it and ask God to remove it from your life. Don’t gamble with your soul. Satan uses these and other ploys to deceive the masses.

The AV 1611 website warns:

While many deem Halloween as harmless fun and fantasy, Halloween subtlety disarms our (and especially our children) discernment of witches and the occult. Halloween’s magic potion of “fun and frolic” transformed witches, demons, devils and evil incarnate into “fine folks.” Over 1.2 million practicing and proud witches live in America. Witchcraft currently is the fastest growing religion in America. At some time, nearly every little girl becomes a witch on Halloween. Witch RavenWolf delights when a vulnerable little girl dresses as a witch on Halloween:

Today, just about every little girl in our society, at one time or another, has chosen to costume herself as a Witch. . . If you choose a Witch’s costume this Halloween . . . Hold your head up and wear your Witch’s garb proudly in their honor. (RavenWolf, Silver. Halloween: Customs, Recipes & Spells, p. 64)

Occult historian Jean Markale discloses Halloween bids more than childish dress-up. It is a pagan “initiatory journey” guided by someone [Satan] “hidden in the shadows,” and none “return from Halloween innocent”:

The passage into the world of Halloween is truly an initiatory journey. One does not return from it an innocent. But making the journey alone does not mean there was no guide, no initiator, someone who prompted the quest and who, sometimes hidden in the shadows, watches over the comings and goings of the neophyte through this labyrinth that is the Other World. (Markale, Jean. The Pagan Mysteries of Halloween, p. 127)

Dr. David Enoch, former senior consultant psychiatrist at the Royal Liverpool Hospital and the University of Liverpool, states:

Halloween practices open the door to the occult and can introduce forces into people’s lives that they do not understand and often cannot combat. . . (Parker, Russ. Battling the Occult, p. 35)

Ex-witch Beth says she was repeatedly abused in Satanic rituals as a child:

Two years ago, as a brand new Christian, I came to the realization I had to let go of Halloween. As a non-Christian I absolutely loved Halloween. Obsessed really. I loved all things horror and gore, as a matter of fact. Zombies, witches, vampires, you name it. I was fascinated by all of it. We had quite the collection of Halloween decorations sitting in our garage that we had been working on for years. Costumes, skull lights, a severed head, tombstones, body parts, etc. All to make our yard look nice and festive for the Halloween season.


Walking away from my old life meant leaving behind all of my associations with witchcraft and the occult. That meant my books on witchcraft, gods and goddesses, my Buddha statues, crystals, tarot cards, and much more. I knew that witchcraft was not something to trifle with, because it was dangerous. It was allowing darkness into my life and my home, and I was done with the darkness. Done. The darkness had done nothing good for me ever, but Jesus had given me life and hope.


The next year on Halloween, I began to speak out about my testimony of how I broke free from witchcraft and that Halloween ia actually a pagan celebration. I was so passionate about sharing the truth with the world, because I didn’t want to see people getting sucked into the lies of the devil. So many people, Christians and non Christians alike, love Halloween. They get caught up in the season of Halloween, which is full of dressing up, parties, goodies, and other fun things. Little do they know that they are actually being a party to witchcraft in the process.

I remember last year speaking to a woman who was a satanic ritual abuse survivor and being so worried for her as she told me how difficult October is for her every year. I couldn’t quite understand why, but I knew that the increase of witchcraft activity must have a part to play in it. I learned more about the Satanic aspect of Halloween and the sacrificial murders that happen on this night. Yet it still seemed so far away from my own reality.


It was just about that time last year that I began to have my own memories of being abused and tortured in satanic rituals as a child. I was barely coming to terms with it even being real for me as the memories slowly came in every week. It has taken me an entire year to process and understand and come to grips with some pretty intense truths about myself and this world we live in. One of those being that Halloween is far more than just a pagan holiday where witchcraft is prevalent.

It was only recently that God took me into a memory of being in a satanic ritual on Halloween. I cannot even say how many Halloweens I was forced to be involved in rituals on Halloween, as I am taking my time going through as the Holy Spirit wills. What the Holy Spirit has shown me was being taken into a satanic ritual at the tender age of 3. I don’t think any person can truly fathom the reality and the evil of a satanic ritual, and I do not intend to ever go into great detail about them, but I am going to explain enough so that you can have a better understanding.

I wonder, if my grandkids give me some of their trick-or-treat candy, does that mean Halloween is okay? Damn right, Skippy. Bring on the candy, Satan be damned!

Of course, I am being a smart ass. Halloween is a fun, harmless holiday. Enjoy, watch out for cars, and bring Grandpa lots and lots of candy.