A friend who participates in a Facebook group called the “Christian Left” shared this image with me the other day. I wonder if my friend has read the Bible lately. Consider the acts of God and the commands by the voice of God in these books of the Bible:
Mass killing. Sexual assault. Mutilation. Infanticide. Torture. Slavery. Prejudice. Callousness. Contempt. Cruelty. Starvation. Disenfranchisement. Plagues. That’s what God inflicts on people and asks people to inflict on other people.
This image meant to be affirming of my friend’s politics. I get that. I understand that this image is meant to be a way for my friend to say that she doesn’t like denying people food, healthcare and basic civil rights, that she doesn’t think it’s nice to people with cruelty, callousness, prejudice and contempt. I just wish she would come out and say that when she says “God,” she means “me.” I wish she would come out and say that when she says “Devil,” she means “people I strongly abhor.” I wish she wouldn’t use an appeal to Biblical authority to justify her otherwise admirable values. The authoritative standard “for the Bible tells me so” has been used so many, many times in our history to justify atrocity. The best defense against this is critical thinking, not more appeals to the same wretched authority.