Sunday, January 15, 2012

The God of Hate

The soul that cries out for solace is not calling upon the Divine for succor or pity; rather it calls for another being capable of comprehension and understanding to relate and understand. I could never understand the belief in a God that stood on one side of a chasm. The God whose perfection placed him so far beyond the realm of humanity as to make him alien to us. The God who says to his creations, "you are sinful, you are gross, you are pathetic, and you are unworthy of my love but I love you still, " is one impossibly brutish thug that does not deserve worship.

I could never understand the element of attraction that some so-called Christians have of the particular evangelic or fundamentalist persuasion have for that kind of God. I can recall one summer a few years back when I stood with a crowd of hip and unhip casually dressed Christians at a Fourth of July service. Their pastor wore street clothes and a goatee as to make him edgy while still managing to package the same message of unworthiness and cruelty that so many other Christian denominations possess. He stood before this gathered crowd of misfits in the land of Mormons and shouted his message. I will never forget that day. I stood there sweating beneath the setting sun among a crowd of religious people shouting phrases like "amen" and other positive affirmation for Jesus.

The pastor spoke of the perfection of God and proceeded to cite Romans, a letter in the New Testament, to justify his idea that we had sinned before God and deserved death. Yes: death. Our sins made us deserving of death before the eyes of God. The Christian God that had created all under heaven, including heaven, and organized and made the laws of right and wrong, had declared that humans - acting as he had created them to act - deserved death for acting in their nature which he made to be against him so that they should be killed. Free agency was something made by God under Christianity but God made humans full of so many fallacies that they were bound to fail. And God, like some eager disciplinarian, was waiting with a lethal weapon to exterminate us. God did not weep over our death but delighted in watching our flesh rot long after our souls had taken flight to rest in eternal judgment in heaven or hell.

But thankfully the Christian God had allowed for himself to forgive us our sins. He did so through himself. That preacher explained that I, and those like me (nonbelievers), could be saved from our judgment by praying for Jesus to come into our hearts and purify us.

This was my first real exposure to such speech. Never before in my life had I heard someone argue that the Great Tyrant loved justice more than what he created and therefore was willing to casually destroy life. God created so he had the right to destroy. The very notion of a lack of morals left me wanting for a different kind of God. What kind of Creator saw destruction as an equally plausible option to creation? And not just the destruction of old age but the destruction born out of rage, hate, and "righteous indignation."

I knew that day that I could never embrace the notion of a Christian God. He was a total asshole. The biggest asshole I'd ever heard of. He killed infants, entire cities, individuals, and families because he simply could. Life was meaningless to this God.

So I turned my back on the God of the conservative evangelicals.

No comments:

Post a Comment