“What is Your Authority?”

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Question the morality of much of the Bible with a believer, and you’re almost guaranteed to be asked this question. “By what authority do you claim your morality to be valid?” Of course, the person asking the question considers the Bible (or Qur’an) to be the ultimate authority because they believe it is their god’s direct communication to humanity. Since atheists do not rely upon a “holy book” to tell them what’s right and what’s wrong, the question asked is an attempt to “trip up” non-believers by insinuating that their morality is not morality because it does not come from a Supreme Source, but rather from personal opinion. Continue reading

God’s Trap: A Critique of the Garden of Eden Narrative

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I do not believe that the Book of Genesis (or any book or books of the Bible, separately or as a whole) is a divinely-authored historical record. However, for the sake of this discussion, I will argue from the point of view that Genesis – and particularly the Garden of Eden story – is a literal record of an actual event.

A pastor recently tried to explain to me that what transpired in the Garden of Eden was not a test at all, but a moral command. While I disagree that it’s ‘moral’, I will agree that it is a command, but also assert that it is a test. Continue reading