July 12th, 2008


50 reasons (NOT) to believe in god

#33 Not one single Biblical prediction can be shown to be false, and the Bible contains hundreds.

Can anyone spot the problem here??!!


The answer, Alex, is "What is: it's really easy to claim that if the prediction hasn't come true, then it will be true in the future! And those that happen to be apparently true, then those ones have already happened!"

*We have a winner!!*

The predictions in the bible are vague and imprecise. They need to be "interpreted" to claim that they are true in the first place. It's so easy to fudge the interpretation in such a way that it appears true. But there are no sufficiently precise predictions like, on the third day in the third month after the vernal equinox, in third year after the death of Augustus Ceasar, there will appear a comet in the sky bright enough to see during the daylight. Still a little vague, but precise enough to be possible to determine whether it really happened or not. Or maybe, a man named George will destroy the reputation of the United States worldwide 2010 years after the birth of Jesus Christ who will be the founder of a new religion (remember, the calendar is off by 4-7 years). But the prophecies never state things that the people of the time couldn't know, like the name of the US, or that a guy named Jesus would be the apparent founder of a new religion, or that George would do something specific to this currently non-existent nation, or anything even more impressive like quantum theory. There are no prophecies that are clearly TRUE or FALSE, there is only those that came be claimed to be true, and those that can be claimed not to have happened yet.

Nope, sorry, not convincing.

One could also point out that being clairovoyant need not imply that there is a god. The Jedi can supposedly see the future and they don't have a god in their religion. Still New Agey, but not really a proof for the existence of god. Or even for the veracity of the bible... what if the authors stole those prophecies from someone else? </sarcasm>

I'll pray for you

Religious people don't seem to see it, but there are few things they can say to me that are more patronizing than "I'll pray for you."

There have been a couple things in the news lately that have reminded me of this.

PZ's (pharyngula) problem with Catholics. Read some of the emails he's gotten here. How many people said they'd pray for him?

And today, there was this story on the Pope's take on the Anglican Church's allowing women bishops. You know he disapproves. He's said so.

"I'll pray for you" is an expression of disapproval, cloaked in feeling sorry for someone, that they haven't been shown the 'light' yet. And of course, who knows the right answer? I do! You poor sap.