If the devil wanted to kill a religion.

goingtochurch

If the devil wanted to kill a religion, he would not be transparent or obvious about it.   If it was Christianity he was trying to destroy, he would not woo people with pentagrams, blood sacrifice, black masses, and upside down crosses, and new commandments telling us to blaspheme God, rape, kill, and steal.   That stuff is from the movies because it’s dramatic and scares most of us.   If the devil exists, he knows being that transparent would drive most people off rather than attract them.

On the contrary, if the devil wanted to kill a religion (say, Christianity), he would package his diabolical agenda in a nice, “Christian” package.   There’s a reason why he’s known as the “Father of Lies.”   He would use crosses and Bibles and images of European Jesus.   He would talk about vague “Christian values” or “the sanctity of the family.”

If the devil wanted to kill a religion, he would pick one or two culture-war issues that many religious people  have glommed onto (in our culture, this means abortion and homosexuality) and weaponize them.  This serves a dial purpose: (1) to deceive conservative Christians into believing his agenda is in fact “good,” and (2) to exert control over people, particularly women.  Because  people’s sex lives are so personal (and because these issues happen to be popular “culture war” issues today), these two things can be easily weaponized to instill shame and guilt, so those so deceived believe they are not being controlled but are in fact promoting “Godly morals.”

If the devil wanted to kill a religion, he would twist and pervert Scripture so it became its opposite.  This would happen gradually, so the change would barely be noticed.   Values once normally accepted as ungodly or evil — greed, money-worship, sexual abuse, child abuse, pedophilia, rape, dishonesty, and treachery, for starters — would be excused, receive “mulligans,” or even be celebrated and encouraged in some situations.  Dominionist types believe the means justify the ends, which means that immoral or abusive behavior is okay as long as they help to bring about “God’s kingdom on Earth.”  At the same time, values espoused by Jesus in the Bible — charity, empathy, unconditional love, and concern for the poorest and most vulnerable — would be dismissed (at best) or even be called sins (the dominionist evangelical God doesn’t favor those who are sick, poor or disabled, so helping them becomes a “sin”).  This bears no resemblance to anything Jesus taught.    Religion is simply being used as a handy vehicle to promote a diabolical agenda.

If the devil wanted to kill a religion, he would cherry pick verses in the Bible to dupe people into thinking his twisted perversion of the original passage is the Word of God.  “See? It says so right here in the Bible!”  Scripture can be — and is — interpreted many different ways, depending on the translation, what we “read” into the passage, and other factors.   Much of the Bible is not as cut and dry as we’d like it to be.   Being able to quote from the Bible doesn’t make you a good person or a good Christian.  Even Satan can roll Bible verses off the tip of his forked tongue.  He could even use some Bible verses to justify evil — and some “Christians” today do just that.

mahatmagandhi

If the devil wanted to kill a religion, he would weaponize the religion against those people who most espouse the true values of that religion.  Good and moral people with kind hearts have been leaving the American evangelical churches in droves lately, because what is being preached is diametrically opposed to what’s in their own God-given conscience.  They deplore the hypocrisy, superstition, denial of science and truth, ignorance, hatred, intolerance, emotional abusiveness, and cruelty of the modern evangelical church.  But the devil wouldn’t miss these good people, because they’d all be replaced by those most like himself — liars, hypocrites, narcissists, sociopaths, abusers, sadists, control freaks, and those without conscience, compassion, or love.

If the devil wanted to kill a religion, he would encourage believers to destroy God’s creation (in the name of God, of course) and take no responsibility for its stewardship.  He would tell them it’s okay to dump toxic, life-destroying substances in the water and air.    He would tell them that laws that protect them against those who would poison them are bad.  He would tell them that to use the earth sustainably is a sin because it shows a lack of faith in God’s ability to replenish it.   How is this different from telling teenagers it’s not only okay to trash their parents’ home during a party but that to clean up their own mess is wrong because it shows a lack of faith in their parents’ ability to do so?

If the devil wanted to kill a religion, he would blaspheme God by attributing his own dark and destructive nature to that God.   Such a “God” would therefore be constantly angry, war-mongering, narcissistic, compassionless, sadistic, rejecting, hate-filled, and authoritarian.   Such a “God” would favor the most powerful and ruthless with riches and material goodies while meting out unspeakable suffering on the most vulnerable, who he hates.  He would tell us to steal from the poorest to give to the richest.  He would “punish homosexuals” by sending hurricanes that destroy entire cities (that kind of twisted reasoning we hear from the likes of Pat Robertson have no basis in logic at all).    He would call social justice and altruistic behavior “socialism” or even “communism” and ruthlessness and cruelty “law and order.”   He would be a God devoid of mercy or grace.   He would be a God who, were he to meet the Jesus of the Bible, would reject, deport, and even kill him because of his dark skin, poverty, and compassion for the “least of these.”  In fact, there would be precious little difference between that “God” and himself.

If the devil wanted to kill a religion, he would tell believers they must vote for and support a certain highly immoral, narcissistic, and cruel person and tell them they will go to hell if they do not.     He would gaslight those who can see through the hypocrisy and lies by attributing that same false idol’s depraved values and actions onto them.

It’s not just Christianity that has been perverted into its opposite.  The same thing is happening to Islam, once known worldwide as a religion of peace.  The Taliban, ISIS and Sharia Law are extremist factions of Islam that twisted this peaceful religion into a cult of war and death.

I don’t know if I believe in a literal devil or not.  But I do believe in evil, and in the idea that evil forces exist in this world.  The modern American evangelical churches are a hotbed of evildoings in these times.   In my opinion, it’s much better to be an atheist.  I know plenty of wonderful atheists who are extremely good people who always try to do the right thing, so it’s a total myth that a belief in God is a requirement to have morals or a conscience.

How does one avoid being duped into worshipping a false God?  Observe what sort of fruit a church or a religion is bearing.  If they bear only rotten fruit, or their teachings and values are authoritarian; or they talk about hell, death and punishment more than they talk about God’s grace or mercy; or if they weaponize their doctrine against the most empathetic or the most vulnerable; or even if you just feel really uncomfortable in that church or with those people, run away!

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About luckyotter

Recovering from BPD and C-PTSD due to narcissistic abuse from childhood. Married to a sociopath for 20 years. Proud INFJ, Enneagram type 4w5. Animal lover, music lover, cat mom, unapologetic geek, fan of the absurd, progressive Catholic, mom to 2, mental illness stigma activist, anti-Trumper. #RESISTANCE
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16 Responses to If the devil wanted to kill a religion.

  1. bobcabkings says:

    Reblogged this on cabbagesandkings524 and commented:
    LuckyOtter asks a question and provides an answer of our time.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. bobcabkings says:

    It has even infected Hinduism (Hindu Nationalism in India) and Buddhism (genocide of the Rohingya in Myanmar), and Judaism (the Occupation). No religion is safe from such perversion.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Alice says:

    Wow! You write like a house on fire! Well said. I’ve always shied away from churches and organized religion, but I have always felt close to God. Since I was small and had no one else to turn to.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. My malignant sociopathic narcissistic mother used to send me letters that said “Dear Linda,” followed by a dozen or more pages that were nothing but handwritten Bible verses, and signed “Love, Mother,” with nothing else written in all those pages, besides Bible verses.

    This is the same mother who told me, when I was 12, that she had every right to gas all 5 of us kids to death, because she had brought us into the world. The same mother who went against my doctor’s advice and put me in a state mental institution when I had a PTSD breakdown at age 14, because I “might become dangerous someday,” even though I had never threatened anyone and my behavior was never out of control in any way.

    The same mother who told me on my 17th birthday that my husband had every right to beat me for being a spoiled brat by asking him if we could celebrate my day with a movie, a hamburger, and a milkshake, the way we had done the whole 2 months we had dated before getting married. Apparently my new husband did not have the vocabulary to say “I am sorry, now that we are married and I have to pay rent and buy groceries, I don’t have the money for movie tickets, hamburgers, and milkshakes.” No, he just started beating me as soon as my question was out of my mouth, and then he ran to cry on my mother’s shoulder, knowing from me confiding in him that she would be on his side against me. “God made the man to be the head of his wife,” my momster shreaked. “You must submit to your husband as unto the Lord! The Bible also says that if you spare the rod, you spoil the child. So, if you are going to behave like a spoiled child, your husband has every right to hit you!”

    This Bible thumping mother of mine is the biggest reason why I was staunchly agnostic, almost an atheist, for many years. Working almost 3 years for a major TV ministry also put me off Christianity, big time. And, last but not least, my dad, a church pastor, had been arrested for trying to murder my mother, a few months before she tried to gas our whole family to death. So I had plenty of reasons to NOT believe in God!

    For all these reasons and more, I spent many years of my life living far from God, shunning everything that was Christian, and doing whatever seemed right in my own eyes. Desperate for love, had affair after affair, looking for love in all the wrong places and finding only a poor substitute.

    Then, 15 years ago, I finally hit rock bottom in my life. Living life my way, sure wasn’t working out for me. But I still wanted nothing to do with Christianity…. until I met a small group of Christians who loved me unconditionally. They did not judge me or my unconventional lifestyle. Instead, they treated me with kindness, compassion, empathy, and even respect!I

    Today, I am a Christ follower. No more do I set my own moral and sexual standards, today I seek after God’s will and guidance, with all of my heart. I no longer hate my mother, I realize that she is badly broken, and spiritually deaf, dumb, and blind. I believe God will deal with her when she leaves this world, which can’t be too far off in the future, as she is now in her 80s. I do not allow my mother or anyone else to abuse me today. I have been completely no contact with my mother, ever since I replied to her vicious 62 page hate letter that she sent me in 2011.

    Today, I believe in the Christian God. He is very real to me. I go to church most Sundays, and I have Christian friends. I do not expect any church or any Christian to be perfect. But, if they become abusive in any way, I will get out of there very fast. Last June, my husband, stepdaughter, and I left a church we had attended for 7 years when the pastor became abusive, and we quickly found another church.

    Like the scripture says, they will know we are Christians by our love. That’s THE test. If genuine caring empathetic respectful love is there, then it’s probably real. Otherwise, it’s like you said, a satanic wolf in sheep’s clothing designed to lead people astray… and doing a very good job of it!

    Liked by 4 people

    • luckyotter says:

      Thank you for sharing your spiritual journey and story here, and I’m glad you found a church that teaches what Christianity is REALLY about, not what the nutjob evangelical preachers, dominionists, grifter televangelists, and prosperity gospel peddlers want you to believe.

      Liked by 2 people

      • dennis says:

        Oh, and ‘witches’ (fictional) too.

        There is a most-definite reason Boermas – the school for preachers – is also the most deeply entrenched ‘bastion of Brimstone’ of all seven ‘higher schools’.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. ashualec says:

    Nice write up lucky.

    Liked by 2 people

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