Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – us atheists haven’t heard a “clear logical defense of Christianity”??

Heinlein was a little too wanting women barefoot and pregnant, but he did get it right about religion.

As my title says us atheists haven’t heard a “clear logical defense of Christianity”.  At least that’s what good ol’ Ray Comfort says.  He wants Christians, and atheists, to come to his failing Ark and listen to what he claims to be this unicorn, since, no, there isn’t any such thing as a “clear logical defense of Christianity”.  Even Christians can’t convince each other that they have the “right” answer and the “right” Christianity.

Now, this supposedly will be a 5 day conference over Easter weekend “This five-day conference also features a Good Friday service with our President, Emeal (“E.Z.”) Zwayne, and a free Easter sunrise service on Sunday morning, which you can attend even if you can’t make the conference!”  and will have the Answers In Genesis people there too.  I wonder, can we have a fight between old earth Christians and young earth ones?  For this being a “five day conference” you get a total of 14 hours of rehashed stuff, maybe seen Ken Ham for two hours (or pay an extra fee as is likely) and the rest is movies and preaching, or expecting you to get your own food since that’s not covered either.

Now this “priceless” bit of nonsense is:  $500 for a family (only families that are approved of AIG, of course, and only one child gets to eat free per adult who buys food at the museum), or $250 for a couple or $199 for a single person.  This is of course not including lodging, and gee, you get tickets to see something you’ve probably seen before, the failed Ark. Of course, there is an upcharge for “certain events” not defined.  Oh and we mustn’t forget the 20% off of the crap in the souvenir shop.

One of the speakers is Jason Lisle, who actually has a PhD in astrophysics, and not so strangely has not published one paper on how that idiocy happened, but plenty on how the sun actually works. So much for that long promised “evidence” for creation that AIG, and other peddlers of lie claim to have “real soon now”.  They also have one other scientist, Georgia Purdom, who sadly has a PhD in molecular genetics, but has chosen to study “She seeks to understand the original, created, “very good” roles of bacteria in the pre-Fall world and genetic mechanisms that have led to their adaptations and pathogenicity in a post-Fall world.”  It appears she is studying evolution, but well, don’t all it that, and well, hers has to be by magic.  It is no surprise at all that neither publish in peer reviewed journals anymore.  They know that their creationist nonsense won’t pass muster, so they hide in creationist magazines.

So, we have Living Waters charging more money for what they’ve said before, and what has failed before.  I’d be happy to give an education on creationist claims to any one who wants it entirely for free.  For you see, Ray won’t be saying anything new; Ray has published the same stuff for decades, and the last time he wanted to educate atheists, he tried to put a certificate for a Subway sub in his book just to get people to take it, wasn’t allowed and failed miserably (he did give the certificates to the homeless after being shamed into it).  They just want your money for their “megaconference”.  I have run conferences.  If you need more than 15 minutes between topics, then you are just padding things to charge more.

Nothing like TrueChristians(tm) cheating each other.

 

 

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Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – and now for more questionable Christian nonsense

and this is the fellow that some atheists claim is a nice guy
and this is the fellow that some atheists claim is a nice guy

During the run up to the Reason Rally, Ray Comfort was touting his new movie The Atheist Delusion. This was going to be *the* answer to non-Christians, and it was going to be such a surprise. He was also going to give out $25,000 in Subway gift cards to anyone who would take his book.

Well, the reviews are out and thanks to his fellow Christians, we know that yet again Ray has nothing new and charges $19.95 for the pleasure of discovering this. (it’ll be free in a couple weeks on youtube)  The supposed surprise in TAD is the same argument he’s used before, that DNA needs a creator and that creator has to be his version of the Christian god. No evidence for this claim, and a lot of edited interviews that purport to have atheists agreeing with him.

Christians, you have a choice: give Ray more money for a repeat performance in order for him to make more retreads, or perhaps give $20 to an organization that actually does something for someone. Your local food pantry can use that $20, your local animal shelter or human shelter, Oxfam, Doctors without Borders, Smile Train, etc.

Now, what is more beneficial: giving money in an a desperate attempt to shore up ones faith, a faith that supposedly doesn’t need evidence, or giving money to help people who need it?   There are piles of evidence that DNA is less than perfect, which makes the Christian god look a little odd for making something not completely efficient and that won’t cause horrible maladies in the creatures that bear it.  We also have evidence that DNA and therefore genes have evolved, something that many Christians claim isn’t true.  The most recent bit of evidence is the genetic portrait being researched for the last common universal ancestor aka LUCA.  What causes problems for theist claims is that they want to benefit from the same science that shows that their myths are wrong.   The same science that supports the LUCA is the same science that allows them to have modern foodstuffs, modern medicine, GPS, computers, etc.

Update: now two months and still no sign of the charitable donation of the $25K in Subway gift cards that Comfort said he was going to make since he chose not to give them out at the Reason Rally.

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – a month since the Reason Rally, what happened to those gift cards?

a publicity picture of the gift cards
a publicity picture of the gift cards

It’s been about a month since the Reason Rally in DC, and I was wondering what happened to those supposed 5,000 gift cards Ray Comfort had ready and waiting for the rally goers if they took a copy of his book. It was announced that these cards would be going to charity. Some atheists praised him for doing the right thing. And then things went silent on that front.

Writing to the Living Waters church that Ray runs, I inquired the status of the donation. Someone there kindly replied:

“We greatly appreciate you taking the time to email us. I am a member of Ray Comfort’s ministry team. He has entrusted me to answer some of the emails that come into the ministry.

Thank you for your email and in answer to your question, This is still in planning stages. Hope that helps and if you are not already signed up for our Weekly Updates and would like to be, simply enter your email address at the following link.”

Now, this does seem more than a little curious that it would take more than a month to give already existing cards to a charity like a food bank, etc.   I’ve worked in the non-profit arena, and it would take a box full of gift cards and a receipt to donate them. They would have already been accounted for in the bookkeeping for the organization.

facebook screen capture
facebook screen capture

This is a man who chose not to spend a little money to get a permit to give these cards out at the rally, who made the sad little claim “”You can’t tell me that the organizers of the atheist Reason Rally aren’t praying that it won’t rain on Saturday,” on facebook in order to make believe that everyone prays just like him(so much for his claim on how great he gets along with atheists), and now seems to have a curious delay in giving the cards away. Hmmm, since there was no rain, and it was a lovely day for the rally, it seems that either prayers from atheists work and they don’t work for TrueChristians, or that prayers don’t matter at all.

Should he be doubted in his intentions? Perhaps. It is worth keeping the attention on him and Living Waters to make sure that the claim is fulfilled, since it took that attention to get him to make the claim in the first place. It would be a shame that the surprise that Ray promised here “”They are the ones to whom I’m speaking. Same with Atheist Central. So I always keep in mind the silent 2,000 on the page who are thinking about what they hear. Heaven rejoices over one that comes to repentance. Also, I want even the nasty atheists to stay for a while. I have a surprise for them.” Is that he isn’t donating the cards at all.

I’ve signed up for his weekly update and will have a new blog post when I see the details on the donation.

 

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Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – I get more fan mail or “someone sent me a million dollar bill”

poppyFirst, welcome to you new folks who have chosen to follow my blog.   We have a nice mix of Christians, atheists and agnostics. I’m not aware of any other types of theists. If you do use my blog as fodder for your own, please let me know.   Please feel free to comment or ask questions, I have very liberal posting rules here: basically, don’t be pointlessly abusive. That being said, don’t expect to use the commenting area as a soapbox. You will be held accountable for what you said and be challenged if what you claim is questionable.

Now onward…

Sent another letter to the editor lately and it got published. It was a smaller version of my blog post about the ever idiotic Cal Thomas. In the comments were the usual Christian Nationalists, the claims that the bible never says anything about slavery, etc. You know, the usual suspects and as usual, they ran away as soon as they figured out no one was buying their lies. It was entirely pleasant to see how many people joined the discussion and who had no problem in presenting evidence against the TrueChristians.

When I get LOEs published, I almost always get at least one piece of fan mail. This one was the usual cowardly person who managed to use the phone book and was unable to take responsibility for their action. The fan mail they sent me wasn’t a letter, alas, but it was this amusing little tract that they must have got from their purchase of Ray Comfort’s dvd “180”, his rather pathetic anti-abortion propaganda that seems to have been anything but a success. I guess that’s what happens when you lie egregiously. Ray is known to lie and lie again (repeatedly about Einstein’s beliefs among others). I guess it doesn’t count when he does it as long as it’s for his god? Even the bible says no to that little excuse (Romans 3).

The tract is in the form of a million dollar bill. I find it quite funny that “filthy lucre” is used to do, well what exactly? To lie to people? Perhaps raise hopes just for an instant to just dash them when someone sees it’s just one more TrueChristian threat? I’m guessing the worse TrueChristian twits leave these for “tips” rather than really tipping service workers. There was an instance of this tract being taken by the Treasury Department because some person tried to pass it off as legal currency. That indeed would take either a certain amount of ignorance, stupidity and/or malice.

The tract reads as follows: The million-dollar question: Will you go to Heaven when you die? Here’s a quick test. Have you ever told a lie, stolen anything or used God’s name in vain? Jesus said “Whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” Have you looked with lust? Will you be guilty on Judgment Day? If you have done those things, God sees you as a lying, thieving, blasphemous, adulterer at heard. The Bible warns that, if you are guilty, you will end up in Hell. That’s not God’s will. He sent his Son to suffer and die on the cross for you. You broke God’s law, but Jesus paid your fine. That means He can legally dismiss your case. He can commute your death sentence: “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” Then Jesus rose from the dead and defeated death. Please repent (turn from sin) today and trust in Jesus alone, and God will grant you the gift of everlasting life. Then read your Bible daily and obey it.”

Cherry-Picked-BibleSo, we have the usual threats of violence from Ray on how his god will kill us if we don’t obey it just like Ray says to. Ray is a big believer in following the commandments of his god, at least the first ten. Too bad for Ray, they go on far longer than those first ten, and there is nothing that says that the following hundreds are any less important than the first few.   And Ray certainly doesn’t obey those without exception, just like every other Christian; he doesn’t even follow the first ten with his lies about others. So, if this god exists, it must look at Ray as a blasphemer, who will not kill the people who need killing per this god, who dares to wear poly-cotton shirts against god’s will, who does not follow every single one of the laws in Exodus and Leviticus since the bible has JC saying that all of his father’s laws are to be follows until the earth ceases to exist.   And thus, Ray “Banana man” Comfort will be in hell, just like he says, if this nonsense is true.

He of course never says he’ll be in hell. Oh no, it’s everyone else who doesn’t follow what Ray says his god really wants. We also have the usual disagreement by Christians on whether predestination is a valid idea or not. Is it God’s will that no one goes to hell? Or is it? Can we choose? Can’t we? Well, Christians can’t agree. They also can offer the most amusing excuses: “God predestines who will be saved, and we must choose Christ in order to be saved. Both facts are equally true. “Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!”   aka we know this is nonsense and therefore, it’s ever-so mysterious.

Ray’s claims of legality are rather curious. He seems to miss the point that this god is supposedly what determined what was a sin and then determined what it took to get out of it e.g. we have judge, jury and executioner. I am gratified that Ray has decided to admit that this god was what demanded the suffering and death of a being as a sacrifice to itself. But he does miss the point that sacrifice is substitution, a permanent event. To give one’s son only to get him back in a day or two isn’t much of a sacrifice. Indeed, it is no sacrifice at all for an omnipotent, omniscient being and is nothing but a shell game.

Finally, we are told to turn from sin, accept JC, and then read the bible and obey every bit of it.

Or we’ll go to hell.

For doing something, but Ray et al aren’t quite sure what.

Have fun with your sadistic fantasies, Ray. I suppose that’s all you have left when you don’t have any facts. You don’t even have your banana anymore.