In the beginning, god created the heavens and the earth. Then sky, soil, plants, animals, a man and a woman, and he put us in the Garden of Eden, and said, "Here you go. It's all yours, to have dominion over. Eat it all, name it all, you're in charge. Except. These two trees here, don't touch these."
Adam and Eve (although there are two man & woman stories, too), said, "Cool. Whatever you say." And things were good.
And then this talking snake came by and said to Eve, "Check this out. It's, like, god's private stash." And Eve, being impressed by a talking snake, ate some. Then she said to Adam, "Dude, this is good. Check it out." and he ate some. Then god came by, and they tried to hide, even though he was god, and god asked, "What have you done?" and kicked them out, even though he knew what they had done, because he was god. And he made snakes crawl and Eve bear children, and we were damned to hell forever. Adam and Eve had sons, and one killed the other, and he was banished and made a king, and his brother was still dead. And apparently everyone was having sex with their mother, sister or cousin for the first couple of generations, or god kept making more people.
Then later, god killed everyone, because things got worse than just eating some fruit.
And then later, god killed a guy (who was supposed to be god), so he wouldn't have to kill the rest of us anymore. Except most of us (read all) are still dying, even the ones who believed that this one dead guy was god having us kill him, and doing it so he wouldn't have to kill us and damn us anymore.
He is omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent. He created everything. I assumed he was responsible for everything.
However, he gave us free will. Which means we have the freedom to screw up. And he can't be held responsible for our mistakes. But, being omniscient, he knew that would happen didn't he?
He set up Eden, and knew the talking snake would come around. He knew Eve would eat, and then Adam. And he knew he'd have to kick us out of Eden and damn us all to hell. Then he knew he'd have to kill us all. And he knew he would have to kill a guy so he wouldn't kill the rest of us.
Now, I'm no expert, but these things always bothered me:
- When god set this up, and he knew it was all going to go to shit, and did it anyway, how is that our fault?
- Why should Eve (and all women for the rest of eternity) be punished for being impressed by the talking snake? Unless all snakes talked in the Garden, that's pretty damn cool.
- And if the snake was Satan in disguise, why should snakes be punished 'cause Satan was sneaky?
- Where did Satan come from? Isn't he god's fault, too?
- Why was I being punished because some guy did what his wife told him to?
- After the Garden was screwed, he knew things were going to get worse (probably because everybody was inbred), and so he knew he was going to have to kill everyone. Why bother? Omniscience isn't all it's cracked up to be, apparently.
- Why did he kill everyone if he knew it wasn't ultimately going to help?
- Why did he have to promise us he wasn't going to do it again? How can we believe him, anyway?
- Why did he have to kill a guy? Why couldn't just forgive us? Doesn't he make the rules? Can't he change them? If not, omnipotence isn't all it's cracked up to be, either.
- What makes this guy a loving god? What kind of a sick fuck sets up a game where you can't lose because of some past injustice? Jugsaw in the Saw movies, that's who. God's like Jigsaw. Except I bet Shawnee What'shername is cuter.
The long and the short of it is this: if you know about a problem, and have the ability to fix it, you're responsible when things fuck up. Therefore omniscience and omnipotence mean omniresponsiblity (My word, but feel free to use it. Just give me credit.). Every fuckup in the history of man is his fault. Every fuckup in the history of history is his fault. Hitler: his fault. Stalin: his fault. Iraq: his fault. When I flunked American Lit.: his fault. Katrina: his fault. Every rape, murder, assault, molestation, and oil spill is his fault.
If it's not his fault, then he's not omnipotent, is he? And if he's not omnipotent, then he's not the god they sold to me. And he's not very nice, either.
I demand a refund.
The central contradiction in theology bothered my since I was twelve. Before that, I just bought it, for a while after that, I tried not to think about it. I was told a long time ago that god gave us reason. Then when I used it, he seemed unreasonable.
Juvenile, simple and kinda bitchy. But ultimately compelling. It's either all his fault or he's not as cool as I was led to believe. If he's not cool enough to fix things, then he's not cool enough to start them either.