Uncommon Sense

June 21, 2022

Ridiculing Jesus? I Would Never . . .

Filed under: History,Reason,Religion — Steve Ruis @ 9:38 pm

I was reading a book last night (Ten Tough Problems in Christian Thought and Belief: A Minister-Turned-Atheist Shows Why You Should Ditch the Faith by David Madison) which I will report on later but here reflect upon a rather disturbing statement. Here it is:

I can’t agree with strident atheists who ridicule Jesus for not knowing that the Earth orbits the sun, that demons can’t be transferred into pigs or that blindness can’t be cured by smearing diseased eyes with mud and spit. Truly, Jesus was a citizen of his time and participated fully in the superstitions of the day.

The author is a recovering minister and he seems to be taking comments by other atheists personally. This is a common attitude: people claim that as atheists we “hate God,” that “we just want to sin,” and other nonsense. They ignore the fact that since we are not convinced that their god exists, it hardly can whip up strong emotions in us. If I am disappointed in the behavior of a character in a book, a movie, or a play, I don’t get mad at the character, I get mad at the author. And, as to wanting to sin, sin is a violation of god’s laws. If we do not believe that this god exists, how restricted by “its laws” do you think we are?

And to casually call atheists who criticize what has been written about the character “Jesus,” as being strident, that is, well, hurtful. We have feelings, you know.

My good buddy, Merriam-Webster says “Some common synonyms of strident are blatant, boisterous, clamorous, obstreperous, and vociferous. While all these words mean ‘so loud or insistent as to compel attention,’ strident suggests harsh and discordant noise.” This sounds as if the author’s Christian sensibilities are still tender.

As I will report later, this is a book very much worth reading if you are an atheist. But this paragraph shows why we are leery of Christian privilege, the fact that if we gainsay them, we are “attacking” them, waging war on them, e.g. the War on Christianity, etc.

As to the meat of the quote, we aren’t criticizing Jesus for his lack of knowledge, because we don’t accept that Jesus was or is a god, so why would he know such things? We are ridiculing perfectly modern “believers” who believe that kind of thing rather than their lying eyes. Plus you cannot hold the idea that Jesus is part of the Trinity, being omniscient and omnipotent, and “Truly, Jesus was a citizen of his time and participated fully in the superstitions of the day” at the same time. Such cognitive dissonance is quite worthy of ridicule, although I prefer reasoned discourse over ad hominem slurs.



  1. I remember back when there was so much hoopla over the release of “Life of Brian” and the pompous CoE churchmen were protesting that people were “making fun of god”. But they weren’t upset by the movie “making fun of god” because it didn’t, they were actually upset that it was making fun of them.

    And so it is with modern christians. We’re not laughing at Jesus, we’re laughing at them for believing in Jesus. Or we’re laughing at some of the versions of Jesus that christians have invented for themselves. At how seriously they take themselves and their religion.

    Liked by 4 people

    Comment by Ubi Dubium — June 22, 2022 @ 9:21 am | Reply

  2. atheists who ridicule Jesus for not knowing that the Earth orbits the sun

    Ridicule? No. Not at all. Simply pointing out that the CREATOR of the bloody universe should have *known* such things. It’s evidence of non-divinity. Nothing else.


    Comment by john zande — June 22, 2022 @ 6:55 pm | Reply

    • I have to believe that they are deliberately misunderstanding criticisms. Some still claim that our “unbelieve” or “unconvinced” state is a sign that we hate their god. I don’t know whether to put such comments more on the side of honest misunderstanding or more on the side of willful misunderstanding. Many I just put in the moron category.

      Liked by 2 people

      Comment by Steve Ruis — June 23, 2022 @ 12:28 pm | Reply

  3. Truly Jesus participated, until he was accused of blasphemy and found guilty. And we’re still deliberating today.


    Comment by Arnold — June 26, 2022 @ 5:17 am | Reply

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