| The Peaceful Message Of The New Testament?
Used by permission, from the Agnostic Review of Christianity website
A typical claim that many Christians are fond of making is that while the Old Testament contains many verses commanding God's followers to smite and slay his enemies, the New Testament doesn't contain anything that advocates this sort of thing.
The New Testament is the "good" news for humanity and serves as a model for how humans should behave toward their fellow man. The New Testament doesn't contain the harsh rhetoric found in the Old Testament.
No person can possibly quote from the words of Jesus or the New Testament and rightly justify doing the same things endorsed in the Old Testament with regard to destroying various groups of people.
The New Testament doesn't say anything that can be construed to mean anything close to the commands given in the Old Testament Book of Deuteronomy or Joshua.
Believers who put forth this nonsense need to take off the sanitized mask of the New Testament that is so often used to deceive children in Bible study classes.
Christianity has carefully cultivated and ingrained the "sweet" Jesus image on society, primarily aiming this form of propaganda at young children through the use of chants, colorful Bible story books, and assorted other gimmicks, as part of its indoctrination procedure.
The New Testament, although well masked, is just as intolerant as the Old Testament, and the dark side of Jesus and the Christian doctrine casts a long shadow throughout the New Testament and history as well.
While the New Testament does contain "love thy neighbor" sayings, it also exhibits the same smite and destroy rhetoric found in the Old Testament.
Peel away the fluffy portions of Jesus and an intolerant religious zealot is exposed.
The Biblical character called Jesus demands complete submission and tolerates no other opinions.
He that is not with me is against me; and he that gathereth not with me scattereth abroad.
Jesus made it quite clear that anyone who offends him would be violently destroyed.
As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world.
The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;
And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.
History has shown that conducting scourges in order to usher in and help the plans of Jesus are easy to justify.
Anyone who displeases the Lord Jesus will and should be destroyed.
The burning of heretics was easy to justify by believers who wanted to help their Lord Jesus with his plans.
Threats were often present in the teachings of Jesus, revealing the intolerant and bullying nature of this "savior".
Anyone who doesn't believe in the new savior called "Jesus" will have the wrath of God on them.
John 3:36 (Jesus speaking)
He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
Anyone who doesn't bow to the Lord Jesus deserves to be slain.
Luke 19:27 (Jesus speaking in a parable)
But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.
Killing unbelievers and heretics was easily justified in history through application of this particular teaching by the Lord Jesus. By killing anyone who disagrees with you, you're helping the Lord Jesus with his work and advancing his kingdom on earth.
Jews who didn't buy into the new religion Jesus was preaching were condemned as being children of the "Devil", the very spawn of evil.
Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
Also, Jesus speaking to the Jewish clerics, defined them as being "evil" vipers.
O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.
This particular view of Jews, or anyone else who doesn't bow to Jesus, is also expressed in the writings of St. Paul.
Anyone who taught anything that opposed Paul's version of the truth was vilified and cursed by God through his holy appointed servant Paul.
As we said before, so say I now again, if any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
Paul depicts the Jews as the killers of Jesus, they displease God, and are contrary to all mankind.
1 Thess 2:14-15
For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus: for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have of the Jews:
Who both killed the Lord Jesus, and their own prophets, and have persecuted us; and they please not God, and are contrary to all men:
Paul's continued vilification of Jews who did not bow down to his gospel follows.
Jews are described as being completely defiled, abominable, and reprobate creatures, unfit to voice their beliefs.
For there are many unruly and vain talkers and deceivers, specially they of the circumcision (Jews):
Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake.
One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, the Cretians are alway liars, evil beasts, slow bellies.
This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;
Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.
Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled.
They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.
Justification for actions against Jews can easily be derived by applying Paul's instructions to stop the mouths of anyone that would disagree with the Christian version of "truth".
The influence of New Testament intolerance are also clearly manifested in the writings of the great Christian leader and reformer, Martin Luther.
The holy inspired father of the Protestant Reformation had no problem urging a direct application of Paul's decrees.
The Jews were to be silenced and punished for the error of their ways.
These actions were part of the duty as a good Christian to honor God and show him the strength of your faith.
As Luther wrote concerning the Jews:
"First to set fire to their synagogues or schools and to bury and cover with dirt whatever will not burn, so that no man will ever again see a stone or cinder of them. This is to be done in honor of our Lord and of Christendom, so that God might see that we are Christians, and do not condone or knowingly tolerate such public lying, cursing, and blaspheming of his Son and of his Christians. For whatever we tolerated in the past unknowingly - and I myself was unaware of it - will be pardoned by God. But if we, now that we are informed, were to protect and shield such a house for the Jews, existing right before our very nose, in which they lie about, blaspheme, curse, vilify, and defame Christ and us (as was heard above), it would be the same as if we were doing all this and even worse ourselves, as we very well know."
"Accordingly, it must and dare not be considered a trifling matter but a most serious one to seek counsel against this and to save our souls from the Jews, that is, from the devil and from eternal death. My advice, as I said earlier, is:
First, that their synagogues be burned down, and that all who are able toss in sulphur and pitch; it would be good if someone could also throw in some hellfire. That would demonstrate to God our serious resolve and be evidence to all the world that it was in ignorance that we tolerated such houses, in which the Jews have reviled God, our dear Creator and Father, and his Son most shamefully up till now but that we have now given them their due reward."
-Martin Luther, excerpts from The Jews And Their Lies (1543)
Adolf Hitler took the words of the great Christian leader Martin Luther seriously.
"Hence today I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator: by defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord."
-Adolf Hitler, from Mein Kampf
For those pious Christians who try to convince skeptics that Hitler wasn't a "true" Christian but simply a false Christian, their accusation would have to apply to St. Paul and Martin Luther as well.
Trying to claim that Martin Luther wasn't really a "true" Christian fails and falls into the classification of the "No True Scotsman" fallacy.
Luther was just as much a Christian as anyone else who claims to be one.
The roots for Hitler's policies against the Jews were laid down by Jesus, Paul, and Martin Luther.
Hitler took their words about Jews seriously and applied their teachings to his social order.
From the Book of Psalms, regarded by Christians as being scriptures containing wisdom about God. According to this revealed wisdom, the saints of God have the honor of executing vengeance and wrath in God's holy name.
They're to use violence and weapons of war on the enemies of their God.
Since many Christians regard Jesus as God, the instructions pertain to Christians who wish to earn honor and praise for their Lord Jesus.
Let the saints be joyful in glory: let them sing aloud upon their beds.
Let the high praises of God be in their mouth, and a two-edged sword in their hand;
To execute vengeance upon the heathen, and punishments upon the people;
To bind their kings with chains, and their nobles with fetters of iron;
To execute upon them the judgment written: this honour have all his saints. Praise ye the LORD.
The followers of this deity are urged to execute judgment and punishments in "his" name.
Such is the glory and honor of being a saint, and these saints have the full endorsement of the scriptures in doing their violent actions to others. Praise the Lord and pass the two-edged sword!
If Christians attempt to dismiss these verses as not applying to believers anymore, or that this "God" changed his mind and no longer endorses violent purges of heathens, then this God endorses and establishes ethics based on situation.
And for those many Christians who think Jesus is God, then the God of the Old Testament is Jesus.
Attempting to distance Jesus from these smite and slay instructions of the Old Testament is a dishonest ploy.
The New Testament also makes it clear that there will be plenty of blood and killing under the rule of Jesus the Lord as part of the new world order that he will impose on earth.
The glorious kingdom of Jesus will be ushered in through violence and death.
In an orgy of death, Jesus himself will smite the nations with a sword and will rule them with a rod of iron.
And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and he(Jesus) that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he doth judge and make war.
His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on his head were many crowns; and he had a name written, that no man knew, but he himself.
And he was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood: and his name is called The Word of God.
And the armies which were in heaven followed him upon white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean.
And out of his mouth goeth a sharp sword, that with it he should smite the nations: and he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God.
And the remnant were slain with the sword of him that sat upon the horse, which sword proceeded out of his mouth: and all the fowls were filled with their flesh.
These destructive actions are part of the great "dinner" party that Jesus will hold.
…Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God
Any violent actions taken by believers against others that help the Lord Jesus implement his plans are easily justified by these gory verses.
The popular Christian assertion that the New Testament doesn't contain the type of smite and slay commands found in the Old Testament is pure hogwash.
The Christian prime directive, which is to expand and dominate, often uses its own God as justification for the aggressive and unsubstantiated theological claims it makes to the world.
Believers will frequently employ the "God orders me to do it" rationalization to explain their behavior.
Jesus did not say to His followers, let everyone do what they want to do.
Jesus commanded His followers to preach the gospel. He said to baptize all the nations.
A Christian is only doing what God demands of us.
This believer doesn't know what Jesus may or may not have said to his followers.
They only know what some writers claim he said, assuming that there was an actual "Jesus".
The various writings in the Bible were selected and deemed canon by various councils of male religious clerics, and none of them ever knew the Biblical Jesus character, if such a character existed.
How very easy it is to take the next step in the rationalization and proclaim that any actions you take against unbelievers are also desired by God. This rationalization has been employed throughout Christian history.
The expand and dominate agenda is present in many aspects of life.
A telemarketer doesn't care about you when they call you during dinner, all they want to do is sell you their product.
A virus doesn't care how it spreads itself and it'll do whatever is necessary in order to accomplish its goal of spreading itself.
Christianity offers to save you from a problem that it can't establish as existing in the first place.
It wants all others to carry around the same spiritual baggage that its followers have had imprinted on them.