Why don't Christians read their bibles?
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01-10-2015, 04:26 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
In many churches, the Bible is presented as something that requires much study and expertise to understand. Although that's not true, it is true that the Bible leaves a lot of room for interpretation and questioning. So much easier for people to be spoon-fed interpretations rather than working out ideas and implications for themselves--because what if the Bible reader's personal interpretation makes them look for a different church? Every butt out of the pew represents hundreds to thousands of dollars per year of lost income.
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01-10-2015, 04:55 AM (This post was last modified: 01-10-2015 04:59 AM by EvolutionKills.)
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
(01-10-2015 04:26 AM)julep Wrote:  In many churches, the Bible is presented as something that requires much study and expertise to understand. Although that's not true, it is true that the Bible leaves a lot of room for interpretation and questioning. So much easier for people to be spoon-fed interpretations rather than working out ideas and implications for themselves--because what if the Bible reader's personal interpretation makes them look for a different church? Every butt out of the pew represents hundreds to thousands of dollars per year of lost income.

To be fair, having an educated opinion and a nuanced understanding of the context of the Bible is not a bad thing; I'd be inclined as to actually encourage it. There's something surely fucked up with a system when the pastors go to Seminary school and are taught the very human origins of the Bible and it's heavily edited, translated, and modified existence; and then go on to not share that information with their congregations. Their purposeful deceit and lies of omission are very telling indeed.

Any educated or trained pastor coming out of seminary should be well familiar with the current consensus among biblical scholars, on topics such as the Documentary Hypothesis and the almost assured nonexistence of the Jewish patriarchs. Not sharing this information with your congregation is nothing but deceitful, whatever the intentions; and I don't think there is any argument that can be made that sufficiently justifies such deceit.

Sill, it's easy to read Deuteronomy and realize that none of that shit is justified in any context, let alone the threadbare one provided that passed for moral justification among bronze age goat herders thousands of years ago.

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01-10-2015, 05:16 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
(01-10-2015 04:55 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(01-10-2015 04:26 AM)julep Wrote:  In many churches, the Bible is presented as something that requires much study and expertise to understand. Although that's not true, it is true that the Bible leaves a lot of room for interpretation and questioning. So much easier for people to be spoon-fed interpretations rather than working out ideas and implications for themselves--because what if the Bible reader's personal interpretation makes them look for a different church? Every butt out of the pew represents hundreds to thousands of dollars per year of lost income.

To be fair, having an educated opinion and a nuanced understanding of the context of the Bible is not a bad thing; I'd be inclined as to actually encourage it. There's something surely fucked up with a system when the pastors go to Seminary school and are taught the very human origins of the Bible and it's heavily edited, translated, and modified existence; and then go on to not share that information with their congregations. Their purposeful deceit and lies of omission are very telling indeed.

Any educated or trained pastor coming out of seminary should be well familiar with the current consensus among biblical scholars, on topics such as the Documentary Hypothesis and the almost assured nonexistence of the Jewish patriarchs. Not sharing this information with your congregation is nothing but deceitful, whatever the intentions; and I don't think there is any argument that can be made that sufficiently justifies such deceit.

Sill, it's easy to read Deuteronomy and realize that none of that shit is justified in any context, let alone the threadbare one provided that passed for moral justification among bronze age goat herders thousands of years ago.

I agree with you about it being a good thing for anyone interested in Christianity/the Bible to read the Bible through and use commentaries and supplemental information to help in understanding. In a lot of churches, though, that's discouraged in favor of just reading approved commentaries and listening to sermons about the Bible rather than tackling the Bible itself. Possibly because the consequences of an educated reading of the Bible are the kind of questions and doubts you mention.

I remember my mother getting into trouble at her Sunday School class at the Baptist church we attended because she would bring along her Greek New Testament to the class and argue with the teacher about the translation and interpretation. (My parents were fundamentalist nuts, but educated fundamentalist nuts. They used to read the New Testament in Greek to each other on Saturday mornings.) That's the kind of thing that happens, when people read the text for themselves and think about it, they become less willing to accept that what church authority figures tell them is true.
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01-10-2015, 06:07 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
(01-10-2015 03:55 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  Atheism: It's Okay, You're Not Broken.

Love that. Thumbsup

Christians generally don't read the bible because as Mark Twain stated, it's the best cure for Christianity, and their leader know that. Questioning is forbidden and anyone with half a brain that reads the whole bible WILL have questions. They know that it's harder to soothe a mind back into submission once it starts questioning what it is told.

Excuse me, I'm making perfect sense. You're just not keeping up.

"Let me give you some advice, bastard: never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can never be used to hurt you." - Tyrion Lannister
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01-10-2015, 06:37 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
(30-09-2015 08:58 PM)Rkane819 Wrote:  Obviously I don't and never really thought the bible was divinely inspired but if I did I'd be devouring that book. What gives? Why don't most Christians read this thing?

Because it's long, archaic, terribly written, and hard to understand without historical context. It's a long, dry read that will leave many believers scratching their heads while they try to figure out how that last chapter about child murder fits into their beliefs. It's a lot easier to find a denomination that tells you what you want to hear than it is to read that entire book and to try and come up with a coherent world view based on it.

I tried reading the Bible three times when I was Christian. One day, I started at Genesis. I slogged my way through somewhere in Deuteronomy or Joshua. It was brutal, and I often wondered about a lot of the shit I was reading. I put it down for several years. When I tried again, I decided to just skip all of the Old Testament and start with Matthew. The New Testament was certainly more aligned with my beliefs as an American Christian, but it still wasn't a particularly easy read. I gave up somewhere in Acts. My third attempt was during when I was starting my deconversion, and I hoped reading the Bible would help "cure" me of my doubts. I picked up where I left off in Acts and gave up the attempt in fairly short order. At this point in my life, the more of the Bible I read, the less of it I believed.


TL;DR: It's a long, boring book that says things Christians don't actually believe.
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01-10-2015, 06:42 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
I decided to read it cover to cover about ten years ago after only skimming bits and pieces growing up. It was intimidating to start a 1000 page book. I viewed it like running a marathon, started with the NT and hit a wall around 1 Chronicles. Tough to slog through the rest. But at the time I was already well on my way to non belief anyway. I read it because I wanted to see what was in there for myself finally with no interpretations, study guides or apologetics.
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01-10-2015, 06:48 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
Rather than reading the bible, one might do well to eat it instead.

It'll be less painful, time consuming and the next day you'll have something to show for it.

.......................................

The difference between prayer and masturbation - is when a guy is through masturbating - he has something to show for his efforts.
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01-10-2015, 06:52 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
The English used in most bibles might as well be Latin for the average 6th grade reading level person.

'Murican Canadian
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01-10-2015, 07:01 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
I think many Christian don't read the Bible in full for the same reason they don't read very long novels in full. They just don't like to read. Plus, the Bible is so pervasive in Western culture that even without opening it, the average Joe may feel very familiar with most of the stories in there. I didn't read the Bible until a year ago and even then I have skipped quite a few pages here and there. Thought even before that I could resume very accurately the story of Adam and Eve and creation of the universe, David and Goliath, The Exodus, The war against the Canaanites, The story of Isaac, the story of Job and Jonas, the Birth of Jesus, The Sermon on the Mount, several Miracles of both Jesus and previous prophet, Jesus crucifixion and resurrection and the Apocalypse. That was before I even started to read about the Bible and the Bible itself. So it's pretty easy to feel like you don't really need to read that anthology when you are de facto familiar with all the important parts.
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01-10-2015, 07:28 AM
RE: Why don't Christians read their bibles?
Why do most christians not read the bible? Maybe because it would take work and concentration to actually do it and they would rather go to church on Sundays and mindlessly feel good about the one hour of being spoon fed the stuff that reinforces their own biases.
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