Thursday, May 29, 2014

Focus on the Story, Not the Excuse

Another week, another story of a disturbed individual who found the inspiration to kill children from the Bible.  Kimberly Lucas claims that after she heard what she called a "touching" sermon covering Genesis 22, her almighty god spoke to her.  Tragically, Lucas' god didn't bother to tell her to stop before she murdered an innocent two year-old.

I'm willing to admit that this murderer appears to be profoundly mentally ill.  But what most religious people that read that news story will ignore is that Genesis 22 literally tells Christians that whatever god says, goes.  That includes taking a child to the nearest altar and lifting a blade to his or her throat.

At what point is Genesis 22 not completely insane?  Is it the point where the, "angel of the Lord" takes the knife away?  Or is it the point where Abraham slaughtered a goat instead of his son?  How could this story still be so popular among Christians, much less defended with such zeal?

In this chapter alone, Abraham shows every sign of being schizophrenic.  However, we're all supposed to believe that Abraham was perfectly healthy, that god was never going to allow him to kill his son, and that this story is some kind of twisted, "teachable moment" between god and Abraham.

Whatever.

I would even bet that religious apologists will come out in droves to try to spin this news story as a problem with recognizing mental illness.  For example, according to the article, Brian Ladd, one of the active members of the congregation of this church, seemed almost shocked that Lucas would even suggest that a sermon inspired her to kill.  Here's what Brian said:

"The sermons that are preached in this church are always about God's love. About forgiveness. About acceptance."

Forgiveness?  Okay, there is a smattering of forgiveness in there.  Acceptance?  Unless you fit their mold, then not a chance.  Maybe Brian should start really reading his Bible.

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