Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
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24-10-2013, 01:55 PM (This post was last modified: 24-10-2013 02:48 PM by J_M_Green.)
Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
Hi everyone.
I am a pastor's son, and my parents are retired missionaries. I was indoctrinated starting at about the age of 6, attended Bible college, and served as a youth pastor, Bible teacher and worship songwriter.

Just over 3 years ago, while preparing to teach a class on having a biblical world view, a couple of thoughts occurred to me:

1. To be fair, if I am going to teach against evolution and atheism, I should probably actually read some books written by people who hold those views.

2. I have never applied the same tests to the Bible, as what I used to reject the Book of Mormon.

Maybe it was a midlife crisis, but I gave myself permission to read opposing views, books on evolution, critics of Christianity. I also decided to try and read the Bible as if I were an outsider, who was trying to determine if it showed signs of being a communication from God.

I listened to podcasts, debates, and watched youtube videos. I read every spare minute I had. I was confident that my faith would stand up to questioning. What I found was very disturbing. The skeptics, atheists and evolutionists all made a lot of sense. The Bible, read unfiltered, was confusing, contradictory, and horrific. I began to examine doubts that I had suppressed and put up on shelf in the back of my mind. They began spilling out, and uncovering more doubts. I began to talk to my wife about what i was finding, and after she got over the shock, she began to examine all the things which never made sense to her.

7 intense months later, we could no longer believe.

Because we were involved in the church, we had to "come out" and give reasons for our departure. Family denounced us as under the power of Satan. Friends stopped talking to us. It was a bleak and disorienting time, for a while, but the freedom to own our own thoughts and minds, to be honest and not compartmentalize. Being free from the impossible demands of a voyeuristic god was amazing.

Atheist meetups helped, and shows like The Thinking Atheist. The internet provided much encouragement and resources.

That was 3 years ago, and I would never go back! Don't give up hope on Christians seeing the light of reason. I got out after almost 40 years!

I now challenge the claims of theistd when they make their silly accusations about atheists. I refute their empty claims and ask them to back up their rhetoric with logic and evidence. I contribute as a weekly blogger at the Debunking Christianity blog. Life is good.
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24-10-2013, 02:23 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal ChriBiblestian
I think you'll fit in just fine here. Thumbsup

Welcome!

But now I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.

~ Umberto Eco
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24-10-2013, 02:47 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal ChriBiblestian
(24-10-2013 01:55 PM)J_M_Green Wrote:  Hi everyone.
I am a pastor's son, and my parents are retired missionaries. I was indoctrinated starting at about the age of 6, attended Bible college, and served as a youth pastor, Bible teacher and worship songwriter.

Just over 3 years ago, while preparing to teach a class on having a biblical world view, a couple of thoughts occurred to me:

1. To be fair, if I am going to teach against evolution and atheism, I should probably actually read some books written by people who hold those views.

2. I have never applied the same tests to the Bible, as what I used to reject the Book of Mormon.

Maybe it was a midlife crisis, but I gave myself permission to read opposing views, books on evolution, critics of Christianity. I also decided to try and read the Bible as if I were an outsider, who was trying to determine if it showed signs of being a communication from God.

I listened to podcasts, debates, and watched youtube videos. I read every spare minute I had. I was confident that my faith would stand up to questioning. What I found was very disturbing. The skeptics, atheists and evolutionists all made a lot of sense. The Bible, read unfiltered, was confusing, contradictory, and horrific. I began to examine doubts that I had suppressed and put up on shelf in the back of my mind. They began spilling out, and uncovering more doubts. I began to talk to my wife about what i was finding, and after she got over the shock, she began to examine all the things which never made sense to her.

7 intense months later, we could no longer believe.

Because we were involved in the church, we had to "come out" and give reasons for our departure. Family denounced us as under the power of Satan. Friends stopped talking to us. It was a bleak and disorienting time, for a while, but the freedom to own our own thoughts and minds, to be honest and not compartmentalize. Being free from the impossible demands of a voyeuristic god was amazing.

Atheist meetups helped, and shows like The Thinking Atheist. The internet provided much encouragement and resources.

That was 3 years ago, and I would never go back! Don't give up hope on Christians seeing the light of reason. I got out after almost 40 years!

I now challenge the claims of theistd when they make their silly accusations about atheists. I refute their empty claims and ask them to back up their rhetoric with logic and evidence. I contribute as a weekly blogger at the Debunking Christianity blog. Life is good.

Welcome, Mr. Green.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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24-10-2013, 03:07 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
Welcome sir.

I'm not anti-social. I'm pro-solitude. Sleepy
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24-10-2013, 04:36 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
(24-10-2013 01:55 PM)J_M_Green Wrote:  Hi everyone.
I am a pastor's son, and my parents are retired missionaries. I was indoctrinated starting at about the age of 6, attended Bible college, and served as a youth pastor, Bible teacher and worship songwriter.

Just over 3 years ago, while preparing to teach a class on having a biblical world view, a couple of thoughts occurred to me:

1. To be fair, if I am going to teach against evolution and atheism, I should probably actually read some books written by people who hold those views.

2. I have never applied the same tests to the Bible, as what I used to reject the Book of Mormon.

Maybe it was a midlife crisis, but I gave myself permission to read opposing views, books on evolution, critics of Christianity. I also decided to try and read the Bible as if I were an outsider, who was trying to determine if it showed signs of being a communication from God.

I listened to podcasts, debates, and watched youtube videos. I read every spare minute I had. I was confident that my faith would stand up to questioning. What I found was very disturbing. The skeptics, atheists and evolutionists all made a lot of sense. The Bible, read unfiltered, was confusing, contradictory, and horrific. I began to examine doubts that I had suppressed and put up on shelf in the back of my mind. They began spilling out, and uncovering more doubts. I began to talk to my wife about what i was finding, and after she got over the shock, she began to examine all the things which never made sense to her.

7 intense months later, we could no longer believe.

Because we were involved in the church, we had to "come out" and give reasons for our departure. Family denounced us as under the power of Satan. Friends stopped talking to us. It was a bleak and disorienting time, for a while, but the freedom to own our own thoughts and minds, to be honest and not compartmentalize. Being free from the impossible demands of a voyeuristic god was amazing.

Atheist meetups helped, and shows like The Thinking Atheist. The internet provided much encouragement and resources.

That was 3 years ago, and I would never go back! Don't give up hope on Christians seeing the light of reason. I got out after almost 40 years!

I now challenge the claims of theistd when they make their silly accusations about atheists. I refute their empty claims and ask them to back up their rhetoric with logic and evidence. I contribute as a weekly blogger at the Debunking Christianity blog. Life is good.

Welcome to the forum. I really enjoyed your story, though I ain't preaching atheism to anyone. As far as I'm concerned, that ain't my department. If that's how you feel, more power to ya'. Hope to see you around, I think I'll enjoy your posts. Thumbsup

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24-10-2013, 04:41 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
Welcome!! I must say, it truly warms my heart that you and your wife could go through deconversion together.
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24-10-2013, 05:42 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
Your going to love excubitor! He's our resident soul saver. A saint in the making, so he says. Welcome, I can tell you'll enjoy your stay.

"I don't have to have faith, I have experience." Joseph Campbell
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25-10-2013, 12:45 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
(24-10-2013 01:55 PM)J_M_Green Wrote:  Hi everyone.
I am a pastor's son, and my parents are retired missionaries. I was indoctrinated starting at about the age of 6, attended Bible college, and served as a youth pastor, Bible teacher and worship songwriter.

Just over 3 years ago, while preparing to teach a class on having a biblical world view, a couple of thoughts occurred to me:

1. To be fair, if I am going to teach against evolution and atheism, I should probably actually read some books written by people who hold those views.

2. I have never applied the same tests to the Bible, as what I used to reject the Book of Mormon.

Maybe it was a midlife crisis, but I gave myself permission to read opposing views, books on evolution, critics of Christianity. I also decided to try and read the Bible as if I were an outsider, who was trying to determine if it showed signs of being a communication from God.

I listened to podcasts, debates, and watched youtube videos. I read every spare minute I had. I was confident that my faith would stand up to questioning. What I found was very disturbing. The skeptics, atheists and evolutionists all made a lot of sense. The Bible, read unfiltered, was confusing, contradictory, and horrific. I began to examine doubts that I had suppressed and put up on shelf in the back of my mind. They began spilling out, and uncovering more doubts. I began to talk to my wife about what i was finding, and after she got over the shock, she began to examine all the things which never made sense to her.

7 intense months later, we could no longer believe.

Because we were involved in the church, we had to "come out" and give reasons for our departure. Family denounced us as under the power of Satan. Friends stopped talking to us. It was a bleak and disorienting time, for a while, but the freedom to own our own thoughts and minds, to be honest and not compartmentalize. Being free from the impossible demands of a voyeuristic god was amazing.

Atheist meetups helped, and shows like The Thinking Atheist. The internet provided much encouragement and resources.

That was 3 years ago, and I would never go back! Don't give up hope on Christians seeing the light of reason. I got out after almost 40 years!

I now challenge the claims of theistd when they make their silly accusations about atheists. I refute their empty claims and ask them to back up their rhetoric with logic and evidence. I contribute as a weekly blogger at the Debunking Christianity blog. Life is good.

Welcome!

I am enjoying reading your blogs, good work!
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25-10-2013, 04:18 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
I saw he was banned for having a sock puppet account. May be a stupid question,what is that?
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25-10-2013, 04:19 PM
RE: Former fundamentalist/Pentecostal Christian
(25-10-2013 04:18 PM)Smercury44 Wrote:  I saw he was banned for having a sock puppet account. May be a stupid question,what is that?

Multiple accounts at the same time.

(31-07-2014 04:37 PM)Luminon Wrote:  America is full of guns, but they're useless, because nobody has the courage to shoot an IRS agent in self-defense
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