SCEPTIC.INFO Free your mind - question!
SCEPTIC.INFO Free your mind - question!
THE EVIL CAUSED BY JESUS' MINISTRY TO THIS DAY SHOWS THAT IF YOU BELIEVE IN MALEVOLENT FORCES THEN YOU MUST ADMIT THEY PLAYED A PART
Jesus stood out at the start over his exorcisms. At that time there was no suggestion from him that he was anybody that special. He did not say he was the Messiah.
Now understand this.
He was giving an example for he was just one of us.
He just decided that people he did not know were possessed.
He did not say that we must be careful to distinguish illness from demonic activity.
We do not know if the persons suffered as the supposed demon was leaving.
He accepted the idea going around at the time that demons were common and attached themselves to sinners. He said that the age belonged to Satan and that if you have demons removed you must not sweep your house, your body, for that invites them back. He meant sin makes a home for them. He did not deal with the dreadful doctrine that the reason God told Moses to stone sinners to death such as homosexuals that it would get demons out and stop contagion. Demons may be able to reproduce and clone and spread.
Paul echoed Jesus' attitude when he spoke of handing a man over to Satan for his body to be destroyed so that his soul might be cleansed from sin in the end. He said that taking bread and the cup without validating the body and blood of Jesus would make you sick or even kill you.
Some thought demons were stupid so if you got a head injury that left you permanently impaired then a demon got in. People were abused on the basis, "This person is no longer my child or father."
Jesus failed to tell us if John is possessed then that does not mean that John is no longer there. He said nothing to stop a person from saying it is okay to kill John for it is not John anyway and the demon must be dealt with that way if exorcism cannot do any good. When he sent demons into pigs knowing the pigs would drown themselves he was validating killing as a legitimate form of dealing with demons.
All of this shows his gross irresponsibility and stupidity. Demons will work quietly and be manipulative. The one under demonic influence if there is such a thing was him. For a psychologist, there are no demons except the ones we make true for us. They can be as bad if not worse than real ones.
Do not excuse Jesus. Most exorcists like fortune-tellers knew exactly what they were doing. And for those who say there were many charlatans but not all, remind them that even the "genuine" cheat at times.
Some say that the demons of the New Testament were just forces and not personal beings because Jesus rebuked the fever that Peter’s mother had and told the wind to be still. But some healers did that and did not believe that what they spoke to could hear them. It was a magic rite. Also, it was obvious that Jesus did not think the fever and the wind could understand him but it is not so obvious with the demons so they could be personal beings. Demons, being evil entities, are attracted to their own kind", Jean Williams, Winning With Witchcraft, page 86. Surely an exorcist like Jesus who is suddenly meeting loads of possessed people is attracting the demons? Why is the demonic contagion just confined to wherever he goes? He was engaging in the occult which makes him more dubious. He was not a good person and in fairness in his early ministry he did not claim to be.
[Christians who call themselves liberal deny the demons were beings but in their hypocrisy they will not admit that Jesus harmed them and did psychological damage for saying they were and treating them as if they were.]
Response, "The demons knew he was the saviour so that is why possessions were so common around him. They were strategising in the war of evil against good."
The New Testament does not say this. It reads as if possessions were normal. And demons quietly manipulating somebody would be more effective. Possessions just target the victim. Incredibly Jesus even obliged when demons asked to be put into pigs! So animals are possessed too and can be. We know possession and exorcism lead to human rights abuses now we have animals to worry about. Jesus could exorcise the whole world if it were possessed in an instant. He only dealt with a possession when there was an audience and that is not a good look. I wonder if the earliest doctrine that Jesus was saviour and saviour of the world only meant he got demons out by using his death as some kind of sacrificial exorcism. That would imply everybody was possessed.
Christian circles hear about this creature, a former angel, who is no the chief architect of evil in the universe. Satan. He may appear as an angel of light as the Bible says. Jesus said it is the heart that counts and we are told Satan is pure malice inside. He has loads of minions. Jesus is reported to have cast demons out in the Bible. Oddly, why does Satan himself not possess any of these people? It is suspicious that Catholic circles claim to have verified exorcisms that put Satan out and the exorcism rite assumes he is possessing the victims. It is very boastful to do what Jesus himself never claimed to do. It looks like possessing people is too much of a distraction so Satan who has to manage chaotic demonic armies does not waste time on it.
The Church says that the miracles of Jesus, magical events that indicate that God worked through him, prove he was the sinless Son of God that he claimed to be and that we should obey him as our king.
This doctrine is astonishing and grossly offensive for there are no accounts of Jesus bandaging people or giving away his dinner. He simply just did a spell to cure them.
Compassion is cheap if you have miracle powers. It is the lazy way to help. Giving Jesus prime honour is an insult to the humanitarians who bled and sacrificed and suffered for others. I see the worship of Jesus as passive aggressive for it wishes to degrade such people, degrade the people who were helped by them and shows that Christians who do good regard it as dirt compared to doing the magic of Jesus. Doing good properly is seen as less than ideal. Human nature does not really love good but it loves whatever can look like it but which has a bad side. Magic is the proper word for Jesus when you consider magic to mean using dodgy forces that nobody can see to get results without doing things the natural way.
Jesus stated that if he testifies to himself then his testimony is false in the Gospel of John. Christians said he meant that if he testifies to himself then his testimony is not necessarily true - see Knox in his book Difficulties page 97. But that is not what Jesus said. Jesus meant that if somebody makes huge claims with no evidence then they are liars. We all know he was right about that. In John 8:14 Jesus states that though he is giving unsupported testimony for himself that his testimony is true. He contradicts what he said. But he indicates that his exorcism were not evidence that he really was the Son of God.
If the miracles of Jesus really happened that still does not mean we should believe in him and worship him. The evidence indicates that if the miracles happened the Devil was to blame. Christians say that convincing psychics get their information from the Devil and use it to deceive. If the gospels are as convincing as Christians say how do they know that the Devil did not guide the evangelists in their deceptions so that persuasive gospels would be made?
Jesus never convincingly demonstrated any ability to tell the future even though he said the Law of Moses was right in all it said for it was ultimately authored by God just like it claimed. The prophecies he made about his crucifixion and the destruction of Jerusalem were written down after the event and the remaining prophecies are for the end of the world. The Law stated that any prophet who gets all his predictions right but who makes one error is a fraud (Deuteronomy 18). This says that anybody who claims to be getting instructions and predictions from God is a liar if he makes a mistake because God does not make mistakes. It also implies that a prophet must make prophecies for there is no other way to be sure. It says that miracles are not enough for to get loads of prophecies right would be a miracle even if a few are inaccurate. So Jesus offered miracles as evidence for his claims to be God’s spokesperson. Jesus’ own scriptures tell us to be wary of Jesus! Anyway we are told by Jesus to look at him to learn about God. But we should be surer that God exists than that Jesus was who he said he was which means it is blasphemy against God and the Holy Spirit which Jesus said was unpardonable to let even Jesus tell you what to think about God. That is really putting Jesus before God even if he is God for we don’t know. The Christians say we must know Jesus to know God which makes it far worse. We don’t know Jesus – we just know what people said about him so the messier it gets. We might believe but that doesn’t justify it for we can be surer God exists than that Jesus was who and what he claimed to be.
Jesus’ preference for miracles than for prophecy shows he was a fraud. He made no provable prophecies that show the marks of being supernatural. He certainly failed the tests spelled out by the Law of Moses which he declared to be his mentor and credential. He mistakenly thought a resurrection from the dead would be enough to mark him out as the son of God and saviour of the world. The Law denies this.
Jesus said in Matthew 5:22 that whoever calls his brother a fool, raca, will go to Hell unless he repents. Jesus called his Jewish brothers, the Pharisees fools in Matthew 23:17. This was a clear case of raca for he did not need to call them that and after saying that the people should respect the teaching of the Pharisees for its Moses and God's teaching. If Jesus wants to go to Hell that is up to him. Calling several brothers fools is sure to get you to Hell better than just calling one a fool.
The Christians have no evidence that Jesus really changed lives to any unusual extent. What lives changed since his time are irrelevant for that could happen accidentally. If Satan makes a person seem like a saint who does miracles that do noticeable harm and the real damage is carefully hidden that person will seem like a saint to future generations. Despite Satan’s purpose, they could end up inspiring conversions and sincerity and goodness. The apostles of Jesus are enigmas to us and we don’t know enough about them to be able to make an exception of them. For example, the stories about them are legends full of absurd miracles and contradictions. The Christians are just guessing and pretending to sound smart.
The Jewish Law as given by God specified a penalty of stoning to death for the following offences only. Consorting with familiar spirits (not necessarily evil spirits - just spirits) Leviticus 20:27. Cursing or blasphemy - Leviticus 24:10-23. False prophets who encourage idolatry - Deuteronomy 13:5-10. Adult son who is incorrigibly out of control - Deuteronomy 18:18-21. Adultery - Deuteronomy 22:21-24. Rape - Leviticus 20:10. In John 8 the Jews pick up stones to kill Jesus because they say he blasphemed. In John 10:33 they do the same thing because they say Jesus is making himself out to be God. But Jesus never claimed to be God. If he did the Jews would not have accused him of blasphemy but of being a false prophet who was trying to seduce people into idolatry. That required stoning - read Deuteronomy 13:5-10. It is most likely that if there is some truth in the reports that Jesus was nearly stoned it is because he was into familiar spirits.
Jesus in teaching the doctrine that demons can possess people did irreparable harm. Throughout the Middle Ages people were put to death and burnt at the stake for they were thought to have had demons in them. The Church performed exorcisms to cast them out but often they got no better and sometimes far worse. In such cases it was thought that it was because the possessed person didn’t want rid of the demons for the Church claims that though it prays over newly baptised that demons will never get them some people want the demons so the prayers can do nothing to keep them out. Such persons were hounded as witches and warlocks and burnt to death. This is quite logical. A person who willingly accepts demonic infestation will have supernatural powers and the only way to stop them murdering or getting others possessed is to kill them. Jesus would have known of people being murdered because they were possessed in his day and why people felt they had to be killed. And still he promoted the belief. He was a dangerous fanatic.
Up to not that long ago, insane people were thought to be possessed and that beating them up in asylums would help them. Many of them were starved. Many exorcisms have made insane people far worse. It made them believe they had a demon and added to their problems. All people who are mentally unwell and who have had a religious background fear that they may have a demon or a demon is influencing them. This only upsets them more and makes them worse. It damages their belief in their treatment and so not only does it make them worse but it makes it harder for them to get better. Jesus was to blame for this evil. The Church knows all this and still refuses to put people before dogma, put what you can touch before what you assume or believe is true. Or was it those who invented him? Those who follow him are no better!
There are two trained priests set aside for exorcising in every diocese of the Roman Catholic Church. They step in when medical treatment of the insane fails and when a possession may be the cause. But first the psychiatrists must declare the patients’ insanity to be inexplicable. One time the apostles came up to Jesus saying they found a man outside the group that went about with Jesus casting out demons and forbade him. But Jesus stood up for the man. So Jesus agreed with people assuming that mental illness was possession in those days. He didn’t use psychiatrists for there were none and medical science then was nearly totally flawed. The message is clear: it is a sin for the Catholic Church to deny that mentally ill people are necessarily possessed. It is a sin to determine if the person is possessed or not. If they are mentally ill they are possessed. This is a terribly dangerous doctrine. The Church simply refuses to explicitly teach what Jesus commanded in this thing because it knows how much harm can be done by making a person with mental illness think they may be possessed and has seen deaths and suicides over such teachings. So it wants to look after its good name by restricting exorcism. But nevertheless, it teaches the evil doctrine by implication every time it says that the gospel Jesus was the infallible Son of God. And besides the Church does not deny that in any case of mental illness possession on some level – perhaps a very weak one - cannot be ruled out.
Exorcism is a feature of magic more than religion. It is obvious that it is a form of magic spell. The Torah or Law of Moses in the Bible condemns magic so obviously when Jesus came along with his exorcisms and the Church they must be in violation of what God decreed when he gave this Torah to Moses. Exorcisms are indeed an attempt to use Satan to cast out Satan!
He accused anybody who says he was using Satan to cast out Satan of an eternal sin - he had something to hide and was using intimidation to make people from seeing that.
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