What Would Jesus Do? An Atheist Perspective

What Would Jesus Do? Indeed, you should ask that question. This is the moniker of the Evangelicals in getting their kids to think about how they treat others. We all remember seeing these bumper stickers and wrist bands everywhere ten years ago, at least in the US. The basic idea behind it was the Golden Rule, "Treat others as you would be treated." The same group advocates Jesus as the only sinless person. We know little about the life of Jesus, but what we find in the Bible gives me more than I need to know.

Jesus and Theft
The Messiah was prophesied to ride in on a Donkey or Colt in Zechariah 9:9. Jesus didn't have any possessions so he had to "procure" one to fulfill this prophecy. In Luke 19:30 (Mark 11, Matthew 21) Jesus tells his disciples to go get him a colt that is tied up. He notes If anyone see you and asks why you are taking the colt, "Tell them the Lord Hath need of it." He doesn't say, "Go ask the owner." What are the odds that the owner is a follower of Jesus? The man has possessions so clearly he's not a close follower (Matthew 19:21). Imagine seeing someone show up to take your car and they tell you, "Joshua hath need of it." and they take off. I'd define that as theft as theft does not have a time limit. I returned your car, it's a get out of jail free card! You knock on the door and ask, not hope that no one sees you. Maybe if Jesus wasn't living like a hippie in a roving commune he wouldn't need to steal?

A second incident occurs in Mark 5. Jesus is brought to the country of Gadarenes by boat to cure a man of demon possession. After conversing with the demons, they ask to be sent into the herd of pigs, about 2000 of them. The pigs run off a cliff and drown in the sea. The herders get the locals and they all ask Jesus to leave. (Mark 5:17). Jesus could have done anything with the demons, but he ruined the livelihood of the locals as well as a likely food source. You could even say that he followed the will of demons. Talk about giving a man a fish or teaching him to fish... Jesus took the damn river. In the modern world if you were to destroy a herd of cattle, you will be on the hook. Why does Jesus get a pass?

Jesus Mistreats People
Matthew 21:12 (Mark 11:15, john 2:14) find Jesus entering the Temple where people whom have traveled a great distance to sacrifice their first born to Jesus's father are purchasing animals to sacrifice rather than walking with a goat for 100 miles over 5 days. The logistics of water and food considered, it makes sense. You couldn't get a good back pack and water bottle from REI back then. So it was an undertaking to travel with the family and your first born that year. Upon seeing these people exchanging money for their sacrifice, Jesus loses it and start flipping over tables. I would first challenge the validity of the story. You have a temple 7 football fields long where people are making money and one man is going to stop it? Something tells me that Jesus wouldn't have made it to the cross in reality, and rightly so. He would have been attacking hundreds of people. Just? Treating others as he would be treated?

Jesus didn't see all people as equal. Of course Martin Luther King doesn't want to hear that, but he can stick to the teachings of Jianism. Matthew 15:26 shows Jesus calling a Canaanite woman a dog because she's not a child of Israel. Turning the other cheek I see. It's not just Canaanite's. The Greeks get it in Mark 7:27. WWJD when faced with someone of different decent? Yes, he'd call them a dog. Anyone teaching their child that and want to admit it?

Jesus Advocates Murder
Luke 19:27 shows Jesus asking his followers to kill non-believers. There have been many that have chosen to kill those that would not follow a particular line of thought. Are any of those people someone that you tell your children to look up to?

The question you should ask yourself is, do the sinful actions of Jesus prove that he existed and the stories were being told as accurately as possible without regard to his character? Or does it show the immoral nature of the writer as an advocate of this behavior? Either way, is the Bible the book, or did Jesus the act in a way that you would advocate to your children? The authors of the Bible could have written about him as they saw fit. So either they were writing accurately about him and he is not without sin, or the authors are interjecting their own morality and lying about the life of Jesus. Either way, the Bible, and Jesus, are terrible sources for morality and ethics. There is more too. He disobeyed his parents from an early age. Hated his family. Hated his life, Advocated these things. When you teach your children "What Would Jesus Do", you have abdicated your responsibility as a parent. Jesus would be jailed in today's society. Don't advocate that.

Views: 562

Comment by Natasha Kenny on September 29, 2010 at 5:15pm
Jesus especially loved guys.
Comment by Mario Rodgers on September 29, 2010 at 5:44pm
The "I only read the New Testament" defense no longer cuts it. God is a dick in both books, and people don't even know it.
Comment by Malcolm on September 30, 2010 at 12:40am
In Mark 5, Jesus sends the demons into a herd of pigs because they were obviously not the property of Jews, and he clearly didn't give a shit about the problems of gentiles, as you illustrated with the story from Matthew 15 of Jesus calling the Canaanite woman and her daughter dogs.
Comment by Matt Coulthurst on September 30, 2010 at 10:47pm
The "I only read the New Testament" defense no longer cuts it. God is a dick in both books, and people don't even know it.

Now there's a good T-Shirt: "GOD IS A DICK"
Comment by Matt Coulthurst on September 30, 2010 at 10:50pm
And then I found this: http://www.zazzle.co.nz/god_what_a_dick_tshirt-235215850889978157

Even better - I can get it from my own country!
Comment by Eoganacht on September 30, 2010 at 11:08pm
@ Adriana
WWJD? - What would jesus do?
- who would jesus do?


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