I was sent this and even-though it was all over the place and avoiding the fact that people do bad things DIRECTLY because of their religious affliction, I think it has a few good points, mainly.. people are being 'deceived' into doing bad things because it is not the actual word of god but charlatans that pretend it is and use the bible to do it.
I split it up into easy segments.
*Do you agree at least with me, that a religious doctrine, institutions, leaders and what so ever people understand about "religion" is not neccesarily the same like for example the content of the bible, Gods Word?
-- Im saying this because A LOT of christian leaders, pastors, priests who teach theology ingore what the bible teaches.
-- Theology and the Bible are two different things. Thats what I actually want to say.
-- So if a pastor [Stephen Anderson about Orlando Nightclub] like you quote says something like that, it shows that he doesnt understand what he is representing or he doesnt know what the Holy Scriptures say about a topic like this.
-- Its again what I meaned before: A form of abuse. Because he is abusing his position of a leader without any real understanding about the new testament that "created" Christianity.
-- Also it shows some form of fanatism because there are a lot of verses in the bible who condemn any form of violence against other people.
-- It also condemns any form of fanatism. Someone who is using bad language and behavior against homosexuals should overthink what it means to be a christian.
-- The problems start if they FIRST dont understand and secondly if they start to think they are "better" or more worth then someone else. Do you agree?
-- Do you think people would listen or even agree to a pastor like you mentioned, if they knew what "God" (Bible) teaches?
-- Im not a person who is trying to reform people so they start to believe in God, so please dont missunderstand me.
-- But I also know the bible very good. Thats why I see a lot of differences and A LOT of abuse and missunderstanding. I hope your ok with my answer. *
My answer would still be.. the people who do bad things directly because of their religion are still religiously motivated REGARDLESS if it is the word of God or not, which was my point all along. They would do anything for gods approval and get an eternity of bliss in heaven. They would believe and do anything their pastor tells them. Why? It is the religious mentality to want to be a slave, to have eternal protection and to gain certainty in heaven. Yes Theology and the bible are different and they can overlap.. still doesn't disprove that what people are doing IS because of their religion.
I'm just skeptical of anyone's claims about God or what God wants. Religions disagree, so who's right? Most have to be wrong! It makes more sense to assume that every believer at some point finds it too difficult to remain skeptical about what most people in their immediate culture say is true.
Scripture's have been written and re-written by mortal human beings who claim specific and general revelations from God, including vague prophesies easily applied to events that happen naturally, without special meanining unless one chooses to suspend their doubts. Even if one accepts a prophesy as true, that doesn't mean the rest of the book (written solely by human beings!) must be true, or that everything a prophet says must be true.
So yeah, people act because of what they believe, even when if they justify their decisions on some external power that may not exist, and most certainly does not exist in the way written about and then interpreted by fallible human beings, no matter how faithful they are.
Theology is a politicization of most human's tendency to believe in the supernatural, and, by design, to make them do as they are told.
This is evidenced from witchmen and medicine men who first claimed THEY were your conduit to the spirits/gods, etc.
THEY would then tell the flock what "god/the spirits" wants them to do, often along with the accompanying backstory such as to prevent a volcano from killing them all, to ensure a successful hunt/make it rain, or whatever.
They would then BELIEVE the medicine man/priest, etc, and do the dance, burn the sacrifice, toss the virgin, give the temple money/gifts, support the clergy, and so forth.
Sometimes, it did not rain, etc...even though they did what they were told to do to make it rain. Young ooogy boogy might question if the rain god exists, or if the witchman really talked to him...
Then, the witchman could say the gods are fickle, or, he could fall down and twitch about in convulsions, then say the god told him that young oogy boogy over there didn't dance like he meant it, AND he questioned the rain god, and that angered the rain god....so, he said we must kill oogy boogy,by gagging him, and holding him upside down in the water until he drowned, and it would then appease the rain god, and it would then rain...but, it might take a while before the god is less angry enough....because oogy boogy made him REALLY REALLY angry.
In the thousands of years of religious evolution, the witchmen/priests simply became more and more organized, and better and better at manipulating the flocks...for example making BELIEF itself mandatory to avoid punishment.
So, as religion was DESIGNED to direct the masses to do what the religious leaders wanted them to...it is no surprise that the masses have a tendency TO DO what the religious leaders want them to.
When the leaders wanted the masses to fight, god was a terrible swift sword and vengeance was his and a warrior mind set was pushed.
When the warriors were fighting the hand that fed the leaders, the leaders changed the masses to be meek, mild, turn the other cheek, and pay their taxes, and give unto Rome, etc.
It worked like a charm, even working on the hoards of barbarians attacking, etc.