As a regular on Yahoo Answers, I have seen a plethora of responses to various questions posted on the "Religion and Spirituality" forum, some of which were amusing, some intelligent, and some just plain stupid. In any case, during my time there, I have gained a great deal of insight into the minds of believers and unbelievers alike. I have also had the opportunity to converse with many of them, including one who was known as "Glenn Beck, (By Popular Demand)."
For anyone that is not aware of who Glenn Beck is, he is a regular commentator on the Fox Network, and is famous for his , what I would call, "verbal diarrhea." Now of course, this is the internet, and anyone can pretend to be anyone they want to be, but his style of writing was so eerily similar to the diatribe he is famous for on the air....he had me convinced he was the real deal, but you can judge that for yourself. If nothing else, it certainly was entertaining for me.
It all began about a year ago, with a question that he asked on the forum in which he was tooting his own horn so to speak, and I challenged him to answer a real question on the subject, so I directed him to a question I asked regarding the "wisdom" of Yahweh. In this question, I asserted that the Christian god Yahweh is fickle, pernicious and lofty with regards to wisdom, and I used biblical passages to show how I came to this conclusion. I then asked those on the forum if in fact, this was the case. Glenn disagreed.
I have always found when speaking against Christianity, that it is most effective to use the bible against itself, which is what I did in this case. In the question, I cited passages which shows the contradictory nature of the bible in which Yahweh believes wisdom to be good, and bad, and how fickle and pernicious his nature is:
Passages which indicate Yahweh believes wisdom to be good:
"Wisdom is supreme; therefore get wisdom. Though it cost all you have, get understanding." Prov 4:7 (NIV)
"Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding, for she is moreprofitable than silver and yields better returns than gold." Proverbs 3:13-15 (NIV)
But if god didn't like "wisdom" why is it significant that "three wise men" supposedly traveled from afar to pay homage to jesus?"
Passages which indicateYahweh believes wisdom to be bad:
"For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief." Ecclesiastes 1:18 (NIV)
"For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. For it is written: "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate." Cor 1:18-19
These contradictory passages indicates just how contradictory the bible is, and more importantly, it shows just how fickle and pernicious the christian god is.
To further strengthen my case, I cited these additional passages from 1Corinthians:
"For the foolishness of God is wiser than man's wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man's strength. Brothers, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. He chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things--and the things that are not--to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.” 1Cor 1:25-29
Now keep in mind that the definition of wisdom is :
1. “The quality or state of being wise; knowledge of what is true or right coupled with just judgmentas to action; sagacity, discernment, or insight.
2. scholarly knowledge or learning: the wisdom of the schools.
3. wise sayings or teachings; precepts”
So, according to the bible, the christian god chose the foolish things just to shame the wise and not because those things are good, and he choose the things that are not good to nullify things that are, just so he could be number one—topdog--not because those things are good! Therefore, I conclude that the christian god is fickle and pernicious. This is so bizarre,treacherous, deceitful, and monsterous....perhaps there is no worthy adjective to describe it, but if we look again at the passages in 1Corinthians, it does imply that Yahweh's main concern is being number one, just as he does in various other places in the bible, and that the intelligence of others is a threat to him:
“But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; ...and the things that are not--to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.”
Glenn however, disagreed with me. Below is his reply:
So I finally get to your silly question (with instructions as muddy, murkyand abstract as yours I can only wonder how well your "students"actually comprehend anything you teach them but maybe that's a good thing considering the source). Nonetheless I come here looking for a debate which is usually based on FACTS. And all you want me to debateis an opinion of yours without using bible passages. Fine, none needed.
You are a wannabe. One cannot debate an opinion and here's why. You quote certain passages to show that God is "fickle, pernicious and lofty". I can quote passages that show Him to bethe opposite of all those qualities you picked out of a thesaurus.The first rule of debating is to never make a broad sweeping generalization or claim an absolute. You should have conditioned your statement that according to some verses in the Bible, God would seem to be " fickle, pernicious and lofty". To make a generalized statement shows you do not know the "d" of debating which goes further to suggest your weak grasp over logic and reason.
Lets give you another example my student. One can say that when you are teaching religion despite being an atheist, you are being fickle,pernicious and hypocritical. But there are 2 sides to you. One is the atheist who brandishes her so called credentials here among the featherweights and high school teenagers of RS (clarification by me, "RS" is an acronym for Religion and Spirituality), and the other is when you are a professor teaching a subject she hates to make money and earn a living that clashes with her own convictions. There are at least 2 sides to everything.
Similarly, in some Bible verses,God can come off in the manner you suggest. In others He comes off differently. It all depends on which verses you are referring to and what your interpretation is. If you use certain verses of the Bible to prove that God is evil but choose to ignore the verses in the same bible that prove that God is great, you my friend are now cherrypicking.
As you call yourself a so called professor of religion, let me use a few examples from other religions. The Hindus see God as "neti neti" which means "neither this northat" and their Trinity shows God to be a Creator, Sustain-er and Destroyer all in one. It does not mean the great yogis could notmake up their mind -- it was to show the different sides of one God.The Muslims see God as pretty much unfathomable. The Buddhists believe that everything is empty of an absolute nature in their doctrine of Shunyata. So by even their standards, your argument that God IS definitely "fickle, pernicious and lofty" falls woefully short and seems awkwardly amateur. It is like saying our weather is hot without taking into account that it becomes cold as well. Any "expert" who does not understand the philosophy of 'everything having a shadow' should go back to school and ask for a refund.
In conclusion, on a strictly logical plain I have decimated your argument and I did not have to quote a bunch of verses from the bible as you requested. But I knew this would be easy. For anyone who has to copy and paste her credentials at the end of each answer is truly insecure of her position. She needs constant validation and she needs her credentials to somehow add weight to her flimsy arguments. You will be surprised to know that I am a multiple PHD and so are some of my other friends here in RS and chances are you even quote from some of us in your presentations. But we do not need to brag about our resumes as we come here for fun and to gauge the ignorance meter of the general public. You come here forvalidation like a heavy weight champ who picks on school kids because he cannot step into the ring with a real fighter.
I suggest don't quit your day job. The PHD is too "lofty" for someoneas "fickle" and "pernicious" as you. That's what I call PWNED!!! Ask your students what it means."
And this is where I had some fun with him:
"Mr. Beck—the proverbial mouse has bitten the cheese.
You say: “You quote certain passages to show that God is "fickle, pernicious and lofty". I can quote passages that show Him to be the opposite of all those qualities you picked out of a thesaurus.”
You are obviously a very poor reader, and do not understand logic andarguments very well. My argument is based on showing the bible is against all wisdom, and in favor of wisdom, which I did do under the titles “wisdom is good” and 'wisdom is bad”, so I gave quotes from both sides to show that they were opposite and contradictory. Now, you have agreed with me yourself, giving support to my argument, as you admit yourself that in the bible there are passages which confirm both sides; that is all wisdom is good, and all wisdom is bad. This supports my conclusion that the christian god is fickle, pernicious and lofty, and that the bible is contradictory.
THANK YOU FOR GIVING FURTHER EVIDENCE AND SUPPORT TO MY ARGUMENT AND CONCLUSION THAT THE CHRISTIAN GOD IS FICKLE, PERNICIOUS AND LOFTY, AND THAT THE BIBLE IS CONTRADICTORY.
As usual, you make lofty claims, and show your inflated ego to the world. As you concluded that you DECIMATED my argument, when in fact, you supported my argument and conclusion!! Many people claim to be scholars, when in fact they are frauds. Titles and degrees do not prove that a person is a scholar, only what you know, and how you use it does!"
And then he got nasty. He sent me a threatening email, and then, like a thief in the night, he vanished from the Religion and Spirituality forum. It amused me to no end. This is an excerpt from the email he sent me:
"You are the biggest FRAUD, FAKE, WANNABE AND LOSER I HAVE EVER COME ACROSS IN YA. Your life is a lie and you "teach" religion when you hate it. You are the most dishonorable and disingenuous person I have ever come across on this forum and this forum is full of wannabes and wackos as you know. Your lucky I don't know who you are yet for I would out you for the charlatan that you are among the entire scholastic community. I am already sending emails to some of the top scholars on this forum so that they know what an abject excuse of a human being you are. "
As a side note, I cannot say for sure whether or not this person who called himself Glenn Beck sent any emails to the so-called "top scholars" who frequent the Yahoo forums, but shortly after this occurred, I did have a rather interesting exchange with a Christian scholar who did frequent the Yahoo Answers site for a time. Unlike Glenn's low-brow approach however, ours was pleasant, and interesting. This is one of the differences between a "wannabe" scholar, such as the person who claimed to be "Glenn Beck (By Popular Demand) and someone such as myself (I am going to say "ourselves" as my husband and I write as a team) and the Christian scholar I mentioned--who go by the arguments. To find any real truth, logic, reason, and the dialectical process must be a part of the process--as opposed to the "verbal diarrhea" I encountered in the exchange with Glenn Beck. It would be an entirely different world if those such as Mr. Beck felt the same way.
Further note--The real Glenn Beck has NO credentials in theology, or any other discipline for that matter. I checked. He dropped out of the one theology class he ever took. No, that did not surprise me.
Intelligence has always been a bane to religious dogma, and the men who created the mythical Yahweh knew that, which is part of the reason why being "humble and meek" is encouraged over being "intelligentand prideful." But that is another story........
This is a link to the original question, where I was then known as "Photographer":