Class Warfare Blog

September 24, 2013

A Bad Bet

You know the feeling. If you succumb to buying a lottery ticket, for example, you know how making a bad bet feels. No chance of winning that bet. One feels a little stupid, then feels the push back from one’s ego defending itself (Go, confirmation bias, go!).

One of your worst bad bets is causing all kinds of damage and you didn’t make it, fundamentalist Christians did. They had to defend their faith or felt they had to, and since there is only one source for their faith, the bible, they declared it to be absolutely true, every word, every jot, every tittle. This was notwithstanding the facts: that there are thousands of contradictions in bible(s)—I have to say bible(s) because there is not just one. There are thousands of different bibles.

One of the reasons there are thousands, is that authors of bibles have to select the manuscripts from which they will write their version. But the original manuscripts are not available. What is available are fragments of copies of copies of documents. The known fragments have over 100,000 differences between them. So, select away, according to criteria that you create and you, too, can draft a new bible. One comes along every year or so. Search for “bible” on and then step back quickly, don’t know how big that list will get! (Actually I do, I got over 340,000 hits.) Nevertheless, all of these various bibles are “true” according to these evangelicals.

Also, ignored is the fact that it has been known for a century or more and recently admitted by Israeli biblical archeologists, that the Book of Genesis (plus the next four books) is a work of fiction written in the late seventh century BCE.

Next, the law of unintended consequences comes into play. If one insists that everything in the bible(s) is true, one has to defend all of the nonsense in the bible as also being true, which gives us the “end-of-timers,” the creationists, and unintelligent Intelligent Design theorists, the believers in Adam and Eve, Noah’s flood, etc. The effect of insisting on nonsense drives away anyone of intelligence and young people in general in this country are retreating from Christianity in droves.

So what the originators of the doctrine of scriptural infallibility feared (that people would drift away from Christianity unless there was some link to “the truth”) is coming about because of their idea instead of being prevented by it. They substituted faith in a book for faith in a god and they are suffering the consequences now.

For those of us who have neither faith, this is a good thing as it gives multiple routes for people to discover that truth.



  1. In actuality, those who proclaim their faith in the bible and it’s commandments do nothing of the sort, fortunately for them and the rest if us.
    Try reading any random passage of Leviticus and ask yourself if these Jewish or Christian fundies follow the letters if those laws! I doubt it!


    Comment by gfbrandenburg — September 24, 2013 @ 10:01 am | Reply

    • That is the irony. They say it is divinely inspired, it is God’s word (or words) and not only do they not obey those words, many have not even read them. Still, many insist there is no error in scripture, i.e. their faith is in scripture, not in it’s “author.”


      Comment by stephenpruis — September 24, 2013 @ 10:05 am | Reply

  2. I completely agree: the fundies are the best thing to happen for killing religion.


    Comment by john zande — September 24, 2013 @ 12:59 pm | Reply

    • Well, that, and reading the bible. ;o)


      Comment by stephenpruis — September 24, 2013 @ 1:05 pm | Reply

      • Properly read, the Bible is the most potent force for atheism ever conceived [Isaac Asimov]


        Comment by john zande — September 24, 2013 @ 1:11 pm | Reply

        • And he wasn’t the only one who has made that comment. I believe Mark Twain said something similar.


          Comment by stephenpruis — September 24, 2013 @ 1:20 pm | Reply

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