God is a Jerk: 3 More Questions To Ask A Believer

About Al Stefanelli
Al Stefanelli is the Georgia State Director for American Atheists, Inc. He is the author of "A Voice Of Reason In An Unreasonable World - The Rise Of Atheism On Planet Earth," and is also a freelance writer and journalist (circa 1985). His work is widely published on the Internet and in print. His blog can be found on Freethought Blogs. Visit his website at www.alstefanelli.com
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god behaving badly std t 1024x768 God is a Jerk: 3 More Questions To Ask A Believer

It would seem that God is behaving like quite the jerk by ignoring all those sick, starving children and allowing entire families to be put out on the street, but chooses to send an apartment manager to unlock the door of an inconvenienced resident.

1) Ask a believer to explain how their God could provide a great parking spot at Wal-Mart; yet allow six million people to die during the Holocaust.

2) Ask a believer how their God could provide a sunny day for a $10,000 outdoor wedding; but ignore the prayers of the woman who is left to die after being raped and tortured.

3) Ask a believer about their God ignoring the prayers of a mother who is watching her kids die of starvation; but providing a… Well, you get the idea…

Depending on which variety of the death cult of Christianity they belong to, answers will vary from accusations of improper praying, that someone involved had a doubt, that someone involved was not a “True Christian,” that it’s all Adam and Eve’s fault or that the real culprit is that old Serpent, the Devil.

Almost every Christian will tell you, however, that we mere mortals should never question the “higher ways” of their God.

The fact remains that it takes twisted logic to explain how their God can answer the prayers of the person locked out of their house, but ignore the prayers of those who are victims of the death, destruction, starvation and deprivation that we see in our world every day.

Coincidences, even remarkable ones, are not unusual. They happen all the time. The dictionary defines the word “coincidence” as a sequence of events that, although accidental, seems to have been planned or arranged.

“Answered prayers” that do not involve the actions of other human beings are always coincidences, nothing more. When a group of people prays about fixing up an old woman’s dilapidated house, it is likewise not an act of their God. It’s just a group of well-meaning people who made a choice to help out someone in need. Nothing wrong with that, except for the whole “God led me to do it” part. Chances are pretty good that if the group were ardent atheists, they’d have done it anyhow.

As Steven Weinberg has so eloquently stated:

“With or without religion, good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil — that takes religion.”

Of late we have been accused of being a militant Atheist site.  Granted the accuser was a lunatic of the highest order, but we would be remiss if we chose not to live up to that reputation.  So this is an article that was republished from the original June 12, 2012 version.

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 God is a Jerk: 3 More Questions To Ask A Believer
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Posted by on November 28, 2012. Filed under COMMENTARY/OPINION,HERESY. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry
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14 Responses to God is a Jerk: 3 More Questions To Ask A Believer

  1. James Smith Reply

    November 28, 2012 at 7:18 am

    The question I have always like the most is, “How do you know?” That also works well on the evasions and prevarications that so often are given as answers.

    • Michael John Scott Reply

      November 28, 2012 at 9:21 am

      That’s the most common phrase James, along with “It’s God’s will.”

  2. bitcodavid Reply

    November 28, 2012 at 7:51 am

    I like deconstructing the Noah’s Ark story. Spend 5 minutes giving it some thought, and you’ll quickly realize that the whole thing is absolute nonsense. So you can ask a Bible-beater, “How could Noah tell which ants were male and which were female, how did he get to the North Pole for his 2 polar bears and what kept the 2 tigers from eating the 2 gazelles?”

    • James Smith Reply

      November 28, 2012 at 7:56 am

      It will always be the same answer they always give to something for which they have no answer, “God did it.”

      The Noah’s Ark issue is a good place to start. Ricky Gervais did a nice routine deconstructing that, too.

      I have also written a piece about it, pointing out that, for one thing, there isn’t enough water on the earth to flood the entire world. Even if there were, it would require it rain more than 6 inches a minute to do it in 40 days. If it did that, the flood would be unnecessary, all structures would be quickly destroyed and rain that hard would drown anyone exposed to it. That’s just for starters. :D

  3. Joe Hagstrom Reply

    November 28, 2012 at 8:46 am

    People are capable of spectacular stupidity, goodness and evil without God’s or Satan’s help.

    One of the great mysteries of faith.

    • Michael John Scott Reply

      November 28, 2012 at 9:20 am

      Good point Joe, as always. I firmly believe that each and every man is capable of great evil, with or without religion.

  4. bitcodavid Reply

    November 28, 2012 at 10:15 am

    Yeah, but you gotta admit. It makes for some great movies. Constantine, The Matrix, The Exorcist… to name but a few.

    • Michael John Scott Reply

      November 28, 2012 at 10:41 am

      LOL! Very true David. There was a good one about the Stigmata as well. Can’t remember the name of it.

  5. Dale Fisk Reply

    November 28, 2012 at 11:01 am

    I just left a comment on that Trayvon Martin Redux post, but the Bible is a bag of bullshit and nonsense. While there are a few parables that could be beneficial to children much of it is violence and mythical clap trap designed to terrify, and in some cases, titillate. Fuck the bible. Sorry Mike. I just can’t handle that kind of BS and will understand if you have to delete my comment.

  6. Michael John Scott Reply

    November 28, 2012 at 11:57 am

    No worries Dale. Your use of the English language to prove a point is not a violation of the comment policy. Only gratuitous expletives are subject to deletion, or if those expletives are directed at a writer without provocation. Keep commenting man.

  7. Anonymous Reply

    December 12, 2012 at 2:37 pm

    You quoted “…good people can behave well and bad people can do evil; but for good people to do evil — that takes religion.” I’m having a hard time buying that. What does religion have to do with doing evil? Whether a person is religious or not, I think there are times when good people have lapses of good judgment and do things that would normally go against their moral code. They can commit adultery, or not tell a cashier that they got back too much change or withhold profits from a business partner or not stick up for a victim of malicious gossip or cheat on their taxes, etc. Religion and evil intersect when you have fanatical Muslims killing people in the name of allah or when you have Christians trying to convert people through unspeakable acts of violence. As far as prayer goes, I don’t think God has a stake helping me find a parking space or Miguel Cabrera hitting a grand slam or my neighbor winning the Power Ball. I confess I don’t pray much these days but if anyone is listening, I would love me some world peace and good will towards all living beings…even liberals. Sorry about any typos. My cat’s been trying to walk on my keyboard.

  8. James Smith Reply

    December 12, 2012 at 2:50 pm

    You do make a good point. Good people can and do have lapses. If the behavior is consistent, then they are not good people.

    What we see with religion is consistent behavior and I am not referring only to muslims carrying bombs. I can point to “good christians” that consistently threaten people with hell for not believing as they do or for intolerance and hatred of gays, Jews, black, and atheists.

    Ask yourself. When was the last time you saw atheists committing acts of violence against other atheists for being too or not enough militant?

    When was the last time you saw a group of atheists gang up on a theist to threaten him or actually commit acts of physical violence on him for being an a theist?

    Have you ever heard of an otherwise honest atheist deliberately cheating a christian because he was a christian and for no other reason?

    Yes, you make a very good point. I’m sorry for you that it does not prove what you hoped it would prove.

  9. Cathy Reply

    December 12, 2012 at 3:44 pm

    I’m “anonymous” from the previous post(I think I forgot to type my name in!). Maybe I didn’t prove my point but I don’t think you proved yours either. The Reverend Al Sharpton is a black Christian. I remember very well the pogroms we had here in Brooklyn, NY and Harlem back in the 90s. Because of those street riots that many people feel that the Rev. Al incited, some people were killed. You make it sound as if only white Christians are capable of intolerance and bigotry. Intolerance and bigotry exists wherever closed-minded people exist. This is why it’s hard for liberals to accept the fact that there are black Conservatives in America. They would sooner believe in unicorns!

    I guess what it boils down to is people are capable of doing bad things to each other. Some do it in the name of their religion and some do it because they’re just really bad people. No, I’ve never seen an atheist gang up on a theist to threaten him or actually commit acts of physical violence on him for being an a theist. What I don’t like is when we start creating protected groups and classifying some crimes as hate crimes because then it elevates one evil act over another just because one victim happens to be gay or black or a woman or (fill in name of victim group here). Why not just have zero tolerance for violent crimes and not try to get into the hearts and minds of the perpetrators? I may have gotten a bit off topic. My apologies. At least my cat didn’t bother me this time.

  10. James Smith Reply

    December 12, 2012 at 5:18 pm

    Thanks for reminding me who you are, Cathy. When did I ever say that only white christians were capable of intolerance and bigotry. For that matter, when did I say only christians were capable of that. When I say “theists” I include all religious groups. I admit I have never been personally attacked by Shintoists, Muslims, or Native American Shaman, but that might simply be a lack of opportunity.

    It is not hard for me to accept that there are black conservatives in America, there is even one on SCOTUS, remember?

    We agree, some people are simply evil people and their religion, or lack of it has nothing to do with it. That’s why the theist argument that Hitler, Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot were evil men because they were atheists. It doesn’t seem to matter that Hitler was a devout catholic and Stalin’s atheism was in doubt. They were evil men who would eliminate anyone or anything that might be a threat to their power. Their victim’s religion was irrelevant. Hitler actually had the support of the Catholic church and was instrumental in granting the Vatican independent state status.

    I also agree that politicizing crimes against individuals as “hate crimes” is absurd. If it is illegal to assault someone or to threaten them, isn’t that enough? I also agree, treating one group differently than another is part of the problem, not the solution.

    I understand about your cat. I have the same problem with my fingers. Sometimes the decline to press the keys my brain requests. Possibly because they are so far from the brain they are trying to establish their own nation-state. The eyes are much more obedient and try to report all acts of rebellion as caught be the spell checker police. Being close the the brain, they might be more loyal?

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