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Showing posts from June, 2008

The True Christian

By billybee

According to recent statistics, there exists approximately 4,684 different denominations, groups or sects of Christianity in America.

I think it fair to assume that most -- if not all -- of these different and distinct faith-based groups possess what they believe to be a substantially clear understanding of the book they present as an authentic message from the single most powerful being in the universe.

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Jesus shows up in another ultrasound

Is it a blessing from above?

A Lorain, Ohio, woman got an ultrasound in preparation for her first baby, but instead of seeing the image of an infant, Monet Sledge saw something else (video: MyFoxCleveland).

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God loves America best

I confess. I have a degree of loyalty to the my homeland that is probably typical to that of any U.S. veteran after 20 years of active duty military service. However, when I attend veteran's organizational events, am asked to stand for prayer, and forced to hear people prattle on about how God loves and blesses America, well...

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Frustrated with Christian in-laws

Sent in by JP

I grew up Lutheran and never really had any problems with Christianity until I met my in-laws.

My wife's family is a very staunch,conservative and fundamental bunch. They are anti-homosexual, pro-life, anti-Santa, and very Republican. My family on the other hand is the exact opposite. I was taught to accept others for their differences and to do my best to love others unconditionally (which is a very difficult thing to do, I might add).

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I was lost, and now I'm found

Sent in by Travis

I wasn't exactly raised in a strict Christian household, but we were Episcopalian and went to church regularly from when I was in the 4th grade on through to High School.

I was baptized at first and when I reached my teens I was confirmed and began taking communion. At the time I was told that when I took communion for the first time I would 'feel' the Holy Spirit come into me. Of course that never happened since there's no such thing, but my child mind was disappointed and felt let down.

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That was the Old Testament...

By DocMike

leader said, yesterday, that was "distorting the " when he made the following statements in a speech earlier this month:

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Successful pastor of a Texas mega-church makes an interesting career move.

By webmdave.
William Vanderbloemen, Senior Pastor of First Presbyterian Church of Houston, Texas, is well known for leading churches to experience phenomenal growth through innovative change. His evangelical “ancient future” approach in a mainline denomination has built him a reputation as one who has a deep respect for the past and desires to apply it to the future in a dynamic way.
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Grow up, already!

By Astreja

One of the odder things about Christianity is its tendency to exalt the child at the expense of the adult. In fact, the "Ye must be born again" meme lies at the heart of the evangelical form of the religion.

But is this desirable? Well, it all depends on what the "keepers" of that faith are actually trying to accomplish.

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The Cambridge Companion to Atheism

The concept of atheism was developed historically in the context of Western monotheistic religions, and it still has its clearest application in this area. Applied, for example, to premodern non-Western contexts, the concept may be misleading. Moreover, even in the modern Western context “atheism” has meant different things depending on changing conceptions of God. Nevertheless, it will be assumed in this volume that, if applied cautiously outside its clearest historical context, the concept of atheism can be illuminating for contemporary Western readers.

If you look up “atheism” in a dictionary, you will find it defined as the belief that there is no God. Certainly, many people understand “atheism” in this way. Yet this is not what the term means if one considers it from the point of view of its Greek roots. In Greek “a” means “without” or “not,” and “theos” means “god.” From this standpoint, an atheist is someone without a belief in God; he or she need not be
someone who believes that…

One less god

"I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours" - Stephen Roberts

"We are all atheists about most of the gods that humanity has ever believed in. Some of us just go one god further." - Richard Dawkins

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There were many questions that crossed my mind, but what bothered me most was his silence.

By Maria R.

My greatest disappointment at the silence of God was on an afternoon when I received the phone call that my younger sister was in serious condition in the hospital. She was diabetic. She lived her short life waiting for a miracle that never arrived.

Her pastor had told her that God could give her a new pancreas and kidney -- both had already been damaged by diabetes. In a healing campaign, that pastor prophesied that God had healed her. The illusion that she had been healed lasted only a few hours,

Note: This article is in Spanish.

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A tribute to George Carlin

On June 22, 2008, American comedian George Carlin was admitted to St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica, California complaining of chest pain. He died later that day at 5:55 p.m. PDT of heart failure at the age of 71. He had a history of cardiovascular issues, including several heart attacks.

"Frisbeetarianism is the belief that when you die, your soul goes up on the roof and gets stuck."
-- George Carlin Raised in the Roman Catholic faith, Carlin often denounced the idea of God in interviews and performances. He invented the parody religion Frisbeetarianism, defining it as the belief that when a person dies "his soul gets flung onto a roof, and just stays there" and cannot be retrieved.

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Why I Deny the Virgin Birth of Jesus

By Daniel Florien of UnreasonableFaith.ComThe test read positive. Ayesha’s face flushed; tears formed in her eyes. She was trapped. She would be killed. She was a stain on her family’s honor. Amir, her soon-to-be husband, would turn her in as soon as he found out. She knew she deserved death. The shame was unbearable.That night she had a vision. The brightness blinded her at first, but gradually she saw an angelic face and it said, “Ayesha! You are favored indeed by Allah! For God himself is the Father of your child. Do not be afraid. He will be great and be called the Son of the Most High.”
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Restoration, renewal, and big bucks

By webmdave

For those who remember the scandal a few years ago surrounding Tom Tewell, the pastor of the Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church in New York City, and who also remember the nearly worshipful devotion in so many of the comments posted here, and who have developed a decided cynicism toward all things Christian, the following information will come as no surprise.
Salary and Benefits
Salary - $145,000
Housing Allowance - $50,000
Benefits including Pension, Medical and Continuing Education - $80,775
Total - $275,775
The Presbyterian Church has created a job for him, one that pays him over a quarter of a million dollars a year. What is this job? He is the executive director over a new pilot program aimed at "renewing Presbyterian ministers."

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Try to be more respectful

A letter from Ken

Im all for free speech and creativity, and i enjoy coming to this site as i am in a transition mode spiritually...but i would just suggest to try and remain as respectul as possible with the content you can control. The gallery with the artwork and the shirt and key chains leave a bad taste in my mouth.

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Science teacher dissed evolution

He taught creationism and burned crosses into students' arms

A Mount Vernon, Ohio, teacher undermined science instruction in the public school district by discrediting evolution in his classroom and focusing on creationism and intelligent design, an investigation has found.

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Pastor arrested on child sex charge

FORT WORTH, Texas — A pastor has been arrested on accusations that he sexually assaulted a teen girl who attends his church.

James "Jay" Virtue Robinson IV, pastor of Southwood Baptist Church, surrendered at the Tarrant County Jail on Wednesday evening in response to an arrest warrant accusing him of sexual assault of a child, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported. He was released after posting $20,000 bail.

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Bruises, cuts cover dead child

TARBORO NC – The 13-year-old boy who died while tied to a tree last week sustained multiple injuries while bound, according to arrest warrants released Monday.

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Deity Comparison Test

Sponsored by

Tim Simmons, CEO

How does your god stack up? With so many gods on the table, how can you be sure you're worshiping the very best god?

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Man officially changes name to In God We Trust

Steve Kreuscher is no more.

A Lake County judge granted permission to the Zion man Friday to officially change his name to "In God We Trust." That's "In God" as a first name and "We Trust" as a last name.

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The cult of church leadership

Sent in by JSH

I used to attend church multiple times per week. I now no longer attend at all. My story:

I was raised Presbyterian Church in the United States of America (PCUSA). I went to a PCUSA church in Southeast Texas. I won't name the church; let's just say its name implies there weren't any other Presbyterian churches in the immediate area when it was founded.

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Does a belief in God give us morality?


Two of the most common arguments in favor of the existence of God—or against atheism— are: 1. God gives us morality, 2. without religion people would be immoral. These arguments, which are essentially one in the same, are illogical and ill-informed on several counts. Nonetheless, this type of thinking permeates so much of our culture. We can approach, and subsequently debunk, this argument somewhat scientifically:

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Believing the Unbelievable: The Clash Between Faith and Reason in the Modern World

Sam Harris speaking at the 2007 Aspen Ideas Conference.

Sam Harris is the author of two best-selling books, The End of Faith and Letter to a Christian Nation. He speaks regularly on television and radio about the danger he believes religion poses to modern societies. His essays have appeared in Newsweek, The Los Angeles Times, The Times of London, The Boston Globe, and numerous other publications. A graduate in philosophy of Stanford University, for 20 years he has studied both Eastern and Western religious traditions, along with a variety of contemplative disciplines. He is also currently completing a doctorate in neuroscience.

This video is approximately 70 minutes in length.

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If God hates homosexuals, then...

By Brother Jeff
I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ. -- Mohandas Gandhi
I find myself in agreement with Gandhi. Though I don’t believe that he was god, I have nothing in particular against Christ. I do, however, have something against Christians, and it is this -- I hate their willful ignorance and I hate their bigotry and intolerance. I am referring specifically to homosexuality.

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…participé de la misma (Santa Cena) muchísimas veces sin imaginarme que era una práctica de religiones paganas antiguas.

Cuando era Católica e iba a misa participaba de la “comunión” (la galleta redonda que el sacerdote te pone en la boca y que supuestamente es el cuerpo de Cristo). Cuando me convertí al cristianismo también participaba de la “santa cena” (un pedazo de pan y jugo de uva que representaban el cuerpo y la sangre de Cristo). Para mí ese era un momento muy solemne, e incluso creía que al comerme el cuerpo de Cristo y tomarme su sangre yo rejuvenecía y todas mis dolencias—si tenía alguna—y mis problemas desaparecían. Eso fue lo que me enseñaron desde pequeña y así lo creí hasta mi último día en el cristianismo. Obviamente, lo que estaba viviendo era una ilusión, pues ni rejuvenecía ni mis problemas se resolvían; pero yo continuaba creyendo que algo mágico tenía que ocurrir durante la comunión.

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How to be a Bible Apologist

An Eight-Step Guide to Bible Literalism through Christian Apologetics

Step One

Accept the divine, absolute, and literal truth of the Bible.

This is by far the most important step: If the Bible isn't the literal and absolute truth, we might as well just give up the whole game right now.

Step Two

Redefine "literal" when needed...

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Former Regent assistant dean faces sexual assault charges

A former Regent University law school assistant dean has been indicted on 13 felony sexual assault charges involving two girls, according to court records.

The allegations against Stephen L. McPherson, 39, of Chesapeake include object sexual penetration, forcible sodomy, and taking indecent liberties with a child by a custodian.

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I am not blindly following anymore -- I know why I believe what I believe

Sent in by S.H.

It's hard to tell this story. The fact that one day my parents or church friends might come upon this testimonial and identify it as mine, despite the anonymity, scares me. But, as soon as I saw this site, I knew that I wanted to share.

I was "born Christian," meaning that both my parents were Christains and I was essentially raised in church. They were then, and still are, extremely active members of the Vineyard organization, a non-denominational national church group...

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RELIGION vs. SCIENCE -- a familiar story?

By Tom C

I really love this website! - many thanks to everyone here for not suffering in silence and reminding me how un-alone I am as an ex-Xtian. Having eagerly digested lots of the juicy philosophical debate on, I feel compelled to contribute some thoughts that may be relevant for some to a couple of the more popular topics here on site...

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Jesús no me cambió ni me hizo feliz

by Lorena

Crecí en un hogar donde mi padre murió cuando yo tenía seis. Mi madre, una mujer neurótica y abusiva, pertenecía a la Iglesia de Dios del Séptimo Día. Una secta que prohibía mucho a las mujeres y poco a los hombres.

Las mujeres no podían usar sandalias, pantalones, vestidos arriba de la rodilla, ni maquillaje. Tampoco debían cortarse el pelo.

A los hombres se les prohibía lo obvio: fumar y beber. También era incorrecto usar jeans.

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Who wrote the Bible?

In 2004, Robert Beckford hosted a documentary called Who Wrote the Bible? in the UK. Beckford begins this documentary with this question and pursues the assertion that the Bible's history involves multiple revisions, exclusion and political imperative.

The documentary is NOT meant to be inflammatory, but informative.

Length: approximately 100 minutes long.

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Why I am no longer a Christian

By Brother Jeff of

A survey that I took the other day has had me thinking about why I walked away from the Christian faith. I didn’t walk away because I rebelled against God or because I was angry with God or because I was treated badly or hurt in the church. In fact, my church life was very good. I had good friends. I had a good relationship with church leadership. I even frequently sang solos during church services and sang in the praise and worship choir. I had a great time in church and I still miss the sense of belonging and the sense of fellowship with other believers that I enjoyed during my Christian days...

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La gente inventa religiones nuevas copiando o añadiendo a lo que ya otros han inventado. O sea, “que NO hay nada nuevo bajo el sol”.

Por Maria R.
Translation into other languages available on the article page.

Es increíble la cantidad de personas que siguen alguna religión y nunca se han preguntado el origen de sus creencias o prácticas religiosas. Cuando estaba en el cristianismo, era muy rara la vez que cuestionara las creencias, costumbres o rituales que la iglesia enseñaba como mandato de su dios a los feligreses. Si en alguna clase bíblica alguien preguntaba por qué se creía en ciertos dogmas, la respuesta siempre era la misma, “Porque así lo dice la biblia”.

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Minister caught in sex sting resigns

PLANO – A Prestonwood Baptist Church minister arrested on charges of soliciting a minor online resigned from the church.

Pastor Jack Graham told his congregation. "We've taken a hit from the enemy this week, but we will rise above and respond to the challenge ... ," he said, as church members applauded. "We are confident and certain that in the days ahead that God is preparing us for something magnificent and wonderful in the ministry of this church. ...We want to put this in our rearview mirror."

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Tell me about that hell part again?

By David J.

I accepted Christ at the age of five and since that time I have taken my journey very seriously. I read the Bible and prayed regularly. I graduated from a Christian school, then a Christian university and also from a Bible School. An underlying theme for the last 30 years of my life since my conversion was the concept of hell. Most Christians read a verse or two of Romans, say a prayer, and never worry about it again. I would have done the same if we were talking about getting a prize at the end. As it was explained to me we were actually dealing with whether I would be tortured around the clock for millions of years...

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No sense of loss, only a feeling of relief

By Bob Patterson

While at our community of reason bible study (Sunday), I became aware that many ex-Christians, having become atheists, felt a loss in the process. Some even said they almost wanted to return to their previous beliefs for the comfort it provided. I thought this very interesting and different from my experience with religion.

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Ex-Catholic from Franciscan University

Sent in by Michelle R

I was born and raised a Roman Catholic. My parents were pretty devout Catholics and I totally absorbed their faith. During my teen years, I was exposed to charismatic Catholics and burned all my evil rock music records and began listening to Christian rock. I also began realizing that I might be a lesbian and began praying daily that I stop having these evil thoughts and began hating myself that I could not control them.

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Encouraging de-converting and former Christians

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