What you’ve always heard, and why it isn’t true

September 09 2012

Politicians, pundits, and religious figures say the Bible dictates how you should vote on certain issues. Unfortunately, much of it is not true.

Abortion: It’s not murder, and the penalty for causing a miscarriage against the will of the mother can be a simple fine (Exodus 21). Sometimes God calls for pregnant women (and the fetus) to be put to death (Genesis 38).

Contraception and masturbation: The Bible is silent on these issues. God killed Onan for coitus interruptus (“spilling his seed”), as punishment for refusing to impregnate his brother’s widow (Genesis 38).

Homosexuality: The Bible says all sex outside of a marriage is wrong and does not differentiate for homosexual acts. But in the same places it also prohibits eating shellfish, tattoos, divorce, wearing gold, wearing clothes made of two different cloths, and other rules absurd to modern society that the church ignores (e.g. Leviticus 11). Why aren’t they protesting retailers and seafood restaurants?

Marriage: While you may hear that the Bible defines marriage as “one man, one woman” (it doesn’t), it actually has examples of “one man, many women”, “a rapist and his victim”, “a soldier and prisoner of war”.

Wealth: Jesus says it’s hard for the rich to get into heaven, and people should give away all of their possessions. Not tax cuts for the rich.

Bible’s literal truth: Our modern Bible has thousands of changes from the original texts (read any Bart Ehrman book).

Don’t let people cynically manipulate you for their personal gain or prejudice.

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Atlanta, GA (USA)

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