11 Bible Verses that may turn Christians into Atheists
Reading the Bible has proven to have varying effects on different people. There are known cases where people reform from lives of crime and “sin” after reading the Bible and convert to Christianity, whereas people who have been brought up in Christianity for over two decades can read the Bible in adulthood and convert to atheism.
This conversion to atheism is often attributed to these so called “Atheist Maker Verses.” These are the controversial verses in the Scriptures that tend to shake faith and inspire questioning. A guest post by Jeremy Myers on the Unfundamentalist Christian blog compiled a list of 11 examples of such verses.
See now, I have two daughters who have not known a man; please, let me bring them out to you, and you may do to them as you wish; only do nothing to these men, since this is the reason they have come under the shadow of my roof.
Here offered out his daughters to be raped to protect the strangers he was hosting. Hospitality must have been really valued because it’s unimaginable in today’s world.
And if a man beats his male or female servant with a rod, so that he dies under his hand, he shall surely be punished. Notwithstanding, if he remains alive a day or two, he shall not be punished; for he is his property.
This verse talked about the thorough beating of slaves as they are simply property provided they are not killed in the process. Well, slavery is inhumane, that’s unacceptable today.
For any man who has a defect shall not approach: a man blind or lame, who has a marred face or any limb too long, a man who has a broken foot or broken hand, or is a hunchback or a dwarf, or a man who has a defect in his eye, or eczema or scab, or is a eunuch.
These verses state that any man with any physical deformities is not to go into God’s presence, raising the question, is God only impressed by physical perfection rather than one’s spirituality?
For everyone who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death. He has cursed his father or his mother. His blood shall be upon him.
Here, anyone who disrespects their parents is to be killed. Many find this verse to be a bit too extreme.
And as for your male and female slaves whom you may have — from the nations that are around you, from them you may buy male and female slaves. Moreover you may buy the children of the strangers who dwell among you, and their families who are with you, which they beget in your land; and they shall become your property.
Human trafficking and slavery are addressed here where a go-ahead is given on buying of children as slaves, controversial right?
But if the thing is true, and evidences of virginity are not found for the young woman, then they shall bring out the young woman to the door of her father’s house, and the men of her city shall stone her to death with stones, because she has done a disgraceful thing in Israel, to play the harlot in her father’s house. So you shall put away the evil from among you.
To one of the most contested verses, where a woman found to not be a virgin is to be stoned to death. The book fails to address the punishments to the man in the largely chauvinistic society.
He who is emasculated by crushing or mutilation shall not enter the assembly of the LORD.
Any man who has had his genitals harmed in any way is not to go into God’s presence, again raising the issue of physical perfection.
If two men fight together, and the wife of one draws nears to rescue her husband from the hand the one attacking him, and puts out her hand and seizes him by the genitals, then you shall but off her hand; your eye shall not pity her.
To one of the weirder scriptures, if a wife helps the husband in a fight by grabbing the opponent’s genitals, her hand is to be chopped off with no pity. This is very much to the extreme!
Then he went up from there to Bethel; and as he was going up the road, some youths came from the city and mocked him, and said to him, “Go up, you baldhead! Go up, you baldhead!” So he turned around and looked at them, and pronounced a curse on them in the name of the LORD. And two female bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths.
In this part, when bullied because of his bald head, God’s servant cursed a group of 42 youth in God’s name who were then by two female bears.
Happy the one who takes and dashes your little ones against the rock!
To another majorly contested verse that states that blessed is he who smashes a baby against rocks. This verse raises a lot of questions about ancient culture.
Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh.
Finally, we have this verse that urges the servants to be submissive to their masters, however, good or bad they are. It raises the question whether one should bear abuse from their boss because the Bible says so?
The only ways to react to such verses as a Christian is to classify them as errors, all together ignore them or choose to take the teachings as warnings for actions that should be avoided. It is, however, important to note that the context and time in which the verses were written are very different from the world we live in today and therefore a number of practices that were acceptable then are not acceptable in today’s society. Literal translations, especially of the Old Testament may therefore cause major controversy and confusion.