I came across a fantastic post about the origins of Satan that inspired the thoughts that follow. (The original post is long but very well written, and definitely worth reading.)
As I’ve grown older and (hopefully) wiser, I’ve come to hold a few convictions about Christianity.
- The Bible is its biggest stumbling block. It’s an odd fate that this venerable tome should be both the religion’s foundation as well as its wrecking ball. Written by imperfect men with their own agendas (and re-translated numerous times, also by imperfect men with their own agendas), there can’t be another book on the planet that’s been more misinterpreted. Yet despite this inconvenient truth, some Christians continue to look to its ambiguous passages to justify persecution of anyone who doesn’t believe the way they do. Though they think they’re displaying virtue and righteousness by waging war on Satan’s minions (i.e. gays, pagans, unwed mothers, Muslims, Jews, Democrats, etc. etc.), they’re actually hastening their religion’s demise. (To be fair, there are some amazing Christians who don’t approach their religion this way – a few can be found in my blogroll.)
- Satan (as he’s most commonly understood) was fabricated by the Church to keep the masses afraid so it could gain and retain power. For those who immediately went on the defensive when reading the last sentence, I encourage you to read the post I linked to above. The author offers a plethora of historical evidence, much of which comes directly from the Bible.