I Am Pagan

For the purposes of identification, due to no longer referring to myself as Christian, you may refer to me as a pagan (definition 3.b at Answers.com, if you’re curious as to what I mean by that). I can’t really give you any specifics at the moment because I don’t have them to give. Have a nice day!

34 thoughts on “I Am Pagan”

  1. Your repetitive postings on polygyny despite the fact that it was obviously a stumbling block for many (particularly women) were the first clue for me and many others that you were headed in the wrong direction.
    You seemed to be more concerned with your view of “correctness” of interpretation of Scripture than you were about the big picture – and you were losing the forest for the “trees” of Christianity.
    Any man who exhibited the amount of fascination that you did regarding polygyny is having difficulties with his marital commitment, whether you want to acknowledge it or not. Deny it all you like.
    So where are all your patriarchal polygynous friends during your “dark moment of the soul” ?
    As far as your male “Christian” polygynist friends are concerned, they really don’t care if you believe in Jesus or not – they are more concerned that you believe it is OK for them to have multiple concubines.

  2. Re: polygyny. It’s biblical, I promise you that much. There wasn’t much question of it being biblical either, until the past few hundred years. Polygyny is easily defensible via the Scriptures, yet it’s widespread condemnation is just one of the several evidences I’ve noticed that Christianity doesn’t care much at all what the Bible actually says if it doesn’t support their current traditions.

    I haven’t called upon any friends in this “dark moment,” save for one (oh, you’d love her…), and I only have gotten to know a very few others who defend polygyny (all via the Internet, long range).

    Your last paragraph is a laughable judgment of motives that, I’m reasonably sure, is God’s turf, but hey, there ya go. Nobody in the Scriptures ever judged the motives of Lamech, Moses, David, Solomon, or Abraham for having multiple wives, but you (like most modern Christians) like to think you’ve picked up on something that the biblical writers seem to have completely missed: polygyny is a sin.

    That’d be news to them, I assure you. ;)

  3. A “laughable judgment” – not at all.
    I am looking at the MOTIVATIONS of those like you who choose to justify it – and their MOTIVATION is unsavory, as is yours.
    I will continue to pray for you.

  4. Rick, I have no desire to enter into a debate with you, but I would like to share a few observations with you and I will go on my way.

    Frankly, I just can’t fathom how you can take nine years of your life as a Christian and flush it down the toilet. That is essentially what you have done. Why? Well, you had mentioned three key things: 1. Because you didn’t feel good being a Christian. 2. When you were a Christian, supposedly nobody would listen to you. 3. You don’t think the God of the Bible cares about your creativity.

    Do you notice the pronouns? It’s all about you.

    Now, let’s address a few things. The issue concerning your feelings does not prove Christianity to be false; rather, it simply reveals how you felt as a Christian. Of course, that leads me to think that you weren’t thinking right about the information that you were accessing. In other words, you didn’t have the correct understanding of the gospel; for if you did you wouldn’t have left it. And you did imply that you debated a lot, which leads me to believe that you were not using the Bible for its intended purpose. It is no wonder, then, that you felt the way you did.

    Of course, you can argue that you feel better now than you ever did before, but that still doesn’t prove that you are better off without Jesus. In 1Thessalonians 5:2-3 we can see that there will come a time when people will feel good about not knowing God, but sudden destruction will come upon them because they have rejected Him. Even in Matthew 7:22 we can see that people will feel very strongly that they knew Jesus, but they really don’t know Him. This proves that feelings can’t always be trusted. In fact, if you know much about psychology then you would understand that feelings are not always a reliable source of truth.

    As for words falling on deaf ears, the Bible makes it very clear that there will be a group of people who won’t listen; in many cases they will be people who profess to be Christians (Matthew 7:21-23; 2Timothy 4:3-4).

    It is to be expected, then, that people won’t listen. But just because people don’t accept what we are saying when we say it that doesn’t mean they aren’t listening or that they never will listen. Remember, our part in sharing the gospel is to plant seeds, not to make them grow.

    As for the issue of God not wanting people to be creative, I already addressed that in another post. Genesis 2:19-20 very clearly shows that you are wrong about that.

    Oh, and just because God allowed men of the Bible to have multiple wives that doesn’t mean he approves of the practice of having multiple wives. Deuteronomy 17:17 very clearly shows that God doesn’t want this type of thing to be, and even Paul saying that an elder should be the husband of one wife makes it clear that it is not God’s will for men to have multiple wives (1Timothy 3:2). God’s allowance does not equal God’s approval.

    Rick, I had a dream about you last night and it was revealed to me that you are under the power of a dark influence. In other words, in my dream you were possessed. It is very strong presence, but it can be overcome. I encourage you to contact a pastor who is strong in the Lord to help you deal with it personally.

  5. Chatelaine, it’s a laughable judgment because you have no way of knowing my motivations… or anyone else’s, really, unless you ask them about them. You’ve never asked me my motivations for defending polygyny, and if you were to do so, I would tell you it is because polygyny is a biblical practice, and men like Abraham, Moses, and David do not deserve to have their names besmirched for what the modern Christians believe is a sin… when there really is no sin happening.

  6. Chris, while I appreciate your concern, using the Bible to try to sway me presupposes that I accept the Bible as an authority. At this point, it’s no more authoritative to me than the Book of Mormon or the Left Behind series. While I’ve no doubt whatsoever that there is truth to be found in the Bible, there is truth to be found everywhere for those willing to see it.

    I still disagree with your handling re: polygyny, though. The Law states that kings may not have many wives, but it doesn’t say anything about two, a few, or several. How many is “many” anyway? Do you also affirm that a king may only have one horse (from the same passage)? Does not this law directed toward kings affirm that polygyny was a practice among the “common folk”? And if so, why is the restriction placed only upon kings?

    Likewise, why forbid polygyny for elders… but not for everyone? Also, there is a translational issue with the passage in question for church elders; the passage could just as validly be translated that an elder must be the husband of his first wife.

    … Again, I appreciate the concern, but the only way I’m going to believe is if God reaches down & makes me. I cannot make myself believe unto salvation… The Bible says it is an act of God, separate from the will of man.

    So whatever I choose to believe or do now… if God wants me to be a Christian, he knows where to find me.

  7. “The Law states that kings may not have many wives, but it doesn’t say anything about two, a few, or several. How many is “many” anyway?”

    “Likewise, why forbid polygyny for elders… but not for everyone?”

    Rick, it is important to note that Paul was very familiar with the Law. So, it is not hard to imagine that when he used the expression “the husband of one wife” in reference to what constituted a qualification for an elder, he likely had Deuteronomy 17:17 in mind. Remember, like kings, elders are leaders. Of course, they don’t have the authority of a king, but they are leaders nonetheless.

    Having said that, what do people tend to do in the presence of leaders? They follow their example. So, just because God only spoke of kings in this way that doesn’t mean the rule didn’t apply to the people who were subject to the authority of the king. In other words, it was implied that the rule also applied to the people in general.

    Why would God appoint someone to lead His people if he didn’t want the people to follow the example of their leader? Just as the king was expected to subject himself to the authority of God’s will, so also were the people (those who were subject to the king) expected to do the same. Thus following the example of the king or their leader.

    “Also, there is a translational issue with the passage in question for church elders; the passage could just as validly be translated that an elder must be the husband of his first wife.”

    “first wife” could be seen as an idiomatic expression denoting the idea of commitment to one woman, as in an elder is not one who would divorce a woman for another. Jesus made it very clear that a man should not divorce his wife (Matthew 5:31-32). Hence the expression of “first wife” does not support the idea that it is lawful to have multiple wives, but makes more sense to view it within the context of a man being committed to one woman. So there really is no problem in translation; rather, it is one of interpretation, in which case you would not be interpreting the expression “first wife” correctly.

    “Do you also affirm that a king may only have one horse (from the same passage)?”

    There is a qualifier here: “But he shall not multiply horses to himself, nor cause the people to return to Egypt, to the end that he should multiply horses: forasmuch as the LORD hath said unto you, Ye shall henceforth return no more that way.” – Deuteronomy 17:16 KJV

    If you were in a place where you had all the resources that you needed to do the will of God then why would you desire to go elsewhere? God’s people were under His protection; they didn’t need to look to Egypt for survival. When God led His people out of Egypt, He didn’t do it to give them a vacation, but to keep them out of Egypt permanently. Hence it wasn’t necessary to have many horses.

    1. People “tend to follow the example of their leaders” is your argument? It’s not a very good one… very few Christians live as traveling, unmarried vagabonds, living off of the goodwill of others. You know, like their leader… Jesus. And you’ll rightfully say that Christians aren’t required to follow those particular traits, and so I would point out that nowhere are “lay” Christians required to follow suit regarding the marital guidelines of rulers or elders. Paul requires elders to be married with children, for example, but elsewhere points out how much more intimate a person’s relationship with God may be should they choose to remain single.

  8. Rick, it should not be shocking to you that people would follow those whom they look up to. But you seem to be very bitter right now, and you are not seeing things as clearly as you ought to. It’s not about presenting the best arguments; it’s about being honest with yourself, and more importantly, being honest with God. Frankly, I don’t believe you are being honest with either one.

  9. There you go, taking the route others already have: judging my motives or my heart or my own honesty… without any basis upon which to do so. I can promise you I’m being more honest with myself now than I have been in some time.

    Your arguments are based upon assumptions, when it comes to trying to relegate polygyny to the category of “sin.” But assumptions don’t work so far; the system is supposed to be “sola Scriptura,” is it not? There are no biblical commands against polygyny, but polygyny is in fact simply taken for granted. On that subject, it’s you & the majority of others in the churches who are not seeing clearly.

  10. Rick, how can you say those who are in the Church are not seeing clearly when you have flushed nine years of being a Christian down the toilet? Do you expect us all to follow in your steps? Would that seem reasonable to you?

    And I don’t think it is fair for you to accuse me of judging your heart. My judgment is not my own; it is based on the Word of God. And your actions have very clearly revealed that you oppose the Word of God. And judging by the Word of God, you are not being honest with yourself, nor are you being honest with God.

    You don’t have to accept what I am saying as fact if you don’t want to, but when Jesus returns you will have no choice but to bend your knees in awe of His presence. All of the argumentation against Him will be silenced at that point. Hopefully you will return to Him before that happens.

    By the way, I never said that it is a sin to have multiple wives. Yet, I don’t believe that it is according to God’s will for a man to have more than one wife, and I already gave my reasons for that.

  11. Your reasons don’t hold up, as I’ve already shown. And if it’s against God’s will, that kinda makes it wrong, whether you want to call it a sin or not.

    You’ve still also not explained why I’m being dishonest with myself. Do I have to agree with you to be honest with myself? ‘Cause that doesn’t make any sense to me.

    And if Jesus wants to have words with me regarding my unbelief, at least I’ll be comforted by the fact that I can’t choose to believe; belief is something, according to the Bible, that is pretty much thrust on those who are converted. It’s supposedly a miracle. How can you judge me? I can’t make the miracle. Talk to God about it. If I’m lost, apparently that’s because He made me to show off his wrath.

    That’s if you stick to the Bible, anyway. Emotional calls to repentance aren’t going to get very far with me. I’m kinda numb to that sort of manipulation… have been for half a decade or more, ever since coming out of a very fundamental, conservative church.

  12. Rick, you are being dishonest with yourself in that you deny your need for Jesus, who is the only way to the Father. There is no salvation outside of Him.

    And if we couldn’t choose to believe in Him then there would be no need for that word; that is, the word ‘belief’ wouldn’t make any sense. Your problem is that you have been deceived into believing a false teaching on the doctrine of election. It is no wonder, then, that you feel the way you do; your concept of the gospel is false. It is not one of love, but tyranny.

    Again, I encourage you to watch the videos that I recommended. Here’s the link: http://www.discoveries08.org/schedule

    I hope that you will come to see the truth as it is in Jesus.

  13. Curious… when I did believe in Jesus & teach my understanding of election… where were you then? If it was wrong, then I was just as wrong then as now.

    Also, no, I’m still not being dishonest with myself. That would require me being a believer but convincing myself that I’m not, which is not what’s happening. I’m openly defying the Bible. Just say it. It’s not being dishonest with myself… It’s being honest with myself & the world that I no longer find the Bible to accurately describe reality.

  14. Rick:

    just to add my two cents, I think you’re being very honest right now, which is something, considering there’s I’m sure many hiding in churches today unsaved, and heading for a lost eternity that is living a lie and plan to until the day they die.

    Secondly I’m not sure what you mean by the fact that the Bible isn’t representing reality, becasue from my understanding of scripture, you are living the reality it describes.

    Also you seem to give the indication that there’s something dull about what billions have held to before. I’m interested in you finding something to hold to, that no one has thought up before. The difference is, and you know it, is that Jesus Christ is the only way.

    Keep being honest with yourself though, it’s refreshing to say, I just hope and pray that your honesty will continue to lead you to the realization, that if you never had the Saviour, then now’s a good time to trust Him.

  15. I never said it was dull; it was implied that being “post-modern,” whatever that is, is unoriginal & uncreative. I merely pointed out that there’s not exactly anything creative & original about being a Christian either.

    I could have just as easily pointed out that if creativity & originality were the measure of a valid belief system, then he who worships a sentient notebook wherein the tales of a mighty earthworm are continually written is doing better than all of us. (Although the moment someone actually believes that, the next person will have to be creative & original all over again.)

  16. This whole conversation is just funny to me, because you are being totally and completely honest, which is rare and valuable and something Jesus taught… And you have your own idea about how you want to live your life right now.

    I must congratulate you on your bravery to state your right to be and live however you choose. Wasn’t that God’s plan anyway? :)

    Where ever and how ever you live is your business, and though it does effect those around you, it is ultimatly your life and up to you. I hope you don’t get bullied into someone else’s idea of what your life is supposed to look like. Which is what most of those making comments here were doing. Maybe there is a bigger picture they don’t see, or maybe they do, but we all need to be considerate and respectful of others beliefs. That’s what our country was based on.

    My suspicion is that those who are bullying you here have a deep seated fear that their choice is wrong, or perhaps that you will reject them, or perhaps that you will try to force them to see it your way so they try to get there first. Regardless, kudos for thinking for yourself and following your own path in life. yay!!!! :)

  17. Elena’s right. Fear is a clear undercurrent in the messages of the believers.

    Fear of what? Hard to say for sure, but I suspect it’s a fear of knowing … on some repressed level … they’re wasting their lives believing in and embracing something that simply makes no sense. The doctrines they hold dear to their hearts are the products of ancient (in human, not evolutionary terms) minds that simply had no way to explain the world around them other than to tell the elaborate stories memorialized in religious texts. We know better now. We know thunder isn’t caused by “angels bowling”. We know the world isn’t flat. We know evolution alone gave rise to us and everything else.

    To reject the great body of knowledge we have at our command in the modern world in favor of the retaining, embracing old world beliefs is indeed a precarious position to take.

    I’d be fearful too if I held those beliefs.

  18. The beauty of being a pagan — even a moderately monotheistic pagan — is that one core precept is tolerance… I have no problem if people want to be Christian, or anything else for that matter. I no longer have fear as a motivation of any kind — for belief or for bullying others into belief.

    And that’s a great feeling.

  19. To question modern Christianity is entirely appropriate. I thought myself quite Christian until I began to challenge my views of ‘Christianity’ and found them to be nothing like Christs. Christ was a rebel of sane and main-stream religion and I am sure that Jesus would not approve of how I want Christianity to look and feel. I have been very close to the same place before and am praying for you. Cheers.

  20. Upon re-reading this thread it strikes me a.) how fear is perpetuated as being an element of Christian adherence, and b.) how living outside of ‘fear’ is lauded as being the point of freedom.

    I have been saved a long time, and I am not afraid of God. I have never been held in bondage by a dread of God. In fact, the gospel has delivered me from fear. I was a sinner and I no longer need to dread the righteous judgment of God- and not only do I not have to worry about my sin, but God Himself helps me to be Holy. God is for me, not against me (Romans 8). This is the outcome of justification.

    At the same time, fear for the unbeliever is very appropriate if one believes in a God who is omnipotent, omni-powerful and exceedingly righteous. It is a characteristic of man in his natural sinful state to have no fear of God as Romans 3 clearly teaches that ‘they have no fear of God’. I am not advocating fear-mongering as a tactic for evangelism but as Hebrews teaches it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of a living God, because God is a consuming fire.

  21. Hi Rick,

    Wow! I commend your brave soul.

    Well, hence my two -pence worth:

    I (apparently like you), searched for truth. I was ruthlessly hungry for it. Along the way, I found that I could debate Christians under the table, because they just did not get it. They had not been where I had been. They had not thought things through as I had. They had not faced the real issues as honestly as I had. Etc. Etc.

    I turned my back on my roots; looking for the greater truth, until 20 plus years later, I found myself back at the beginning. The difference being that I realized that it is not about the arguments or debates, but about the reality of genuinely knowing God and His Holy Spirit, without which, the arguments and debates are meaningless. I had to give up my ‘investment’ in my ideas, and my pursuit of them, to find what had been under my nose all along. I hope this helps.

    Stay brave. Stay honest. Keep looking.

  22. Hi Rick,

    “The beauty of being a pagan — even a moderately monotheistic pagan — is that one core precept is tolerance… I have no problem if people want to be Christian, or anything else for that matter. I no longer have fear as a motivation of any kind — for belief or for bullying others into belief….And that’s a great feeling.”

    Not to be intolerant, but that’s a confused and empty philosophy. If there is truth that matters–arguably there is–then we should WANT others to know about it.

    Tolerance is one thing. I tolerate others and their beliefs. But it’s something else altogether to not want to convey truth to others if you have found it, or present their errors to them if those errors pose a danger.

    If you tried to “bully” people into believing Christianity, then you were certainly off the mark. As I mentioned in another message, Calvinism is likely the source of your “bullying” and your despair of Christianity. It’s a wicked counterfeit of the plain reality found in Scripture.

    Fear isn’t a Christian’s motivation, if they know Scripture. Love is. I CARE about what happens to others. I care about what happens to you, Rick.

    Jesus was not intolerant. He never built up armies around Himself to “kill the infidel”. He loved people and taught them, and they learned the truth. God is long-suffering and just.

    I just want to suggest one thing for your consideration: You’ve spent nine years pursuing a false version of Christianity, one that has led you AWAY from God and into a false and empty “pagan” worldview devoid of any realistic hope or content. You never knew God or you would never have turned away. Isn’t it worth considering that you have been DECEIVED out of following the truth, into a paganism with no discernible truthfulness and false happiness? Isn’t it worth exploring the Christianity that you never really knew?

    You are a logical and verbal person. I know you have considered all these things very deeply. Please consider, though, that there may be others that have considered them more fully than you have. You’re still a young guy. I’m not too many years older, but I’ve been a Christian for 35 years, many of which have been spent in intense study of Science, Logic, Philosophy, and Christianity.

    I believe that if you are willing to think and consider things with me, that you will learn many things that you have missed, which have taken you down the wrong path at this time. Your nine years needn’t have been wasted. You have learned many good things and I think it’s possible to show you logically and clearly where your search for truth went off the tracks.

    Let me know if you are willing. I’m not just a sheep that accepts what he’s been taught. Like you, I’m a freethinking individual. But I also believe that there is definite truth out there, based upon the overwhelming evidence. If you would like to just talk freely and discuss things, I’d like to spend the time with you.

  23. Ultimately, if you care about me, then pray to your God to save me. As Jesus said himself, none can come to the Father unless he drags them. Elsewhere, it is said that salvation is of God alone, not of the will of man.

    So if he wants me to believe, I figure he can make me.

    Not to be short, but that’s ultimately what it comes down to. You can’t talk someone into belief. Let your god act. If he’s there and I remain an unbeliever, then clearly I was chosen for wrath as was Pharaoh.

  24. Oh Rick. You’ve been sold a bill of goods and believe what you’ve been told, yet fail to see the failure of it.

    Salvation IS of God alone, but that doesn’t mean that only He brings one to salvation. Accepting salvation is a choice we make, which is also stated frequently throughout Scripture.

    God makes nobody believe. That’s a lie of Calvinism. God gives us the opportunity to believe. He provides the way.

    I’m not saying that He won’t act upon people if we pray for them. He surely does. But He won’t MAKE anyone believe. That would be incompatible both with being in His image and His love.

    Nobody can talk anyone into believing. But it is possible to lower the false barriers that people raise against the truth.

    You believe as you do because you feel that you have reasoned your way to this point–is that not correct?

    You should also recognize that if you have been given bad information, that your chain of reasoning may be incorrect. Can you agree with that too?

    I can’t talk you into belief, but I believe that if you are willing–perhaps you are too tired or too burned out to do it–I can show you where your errors have been, by approaching the subject from the very beginning. I didn’t come to where I am by believing in the Bible first. I learned of God from the evidence of the Universe, then followed the chain of logic to the only place it led–Christianity.

    I’m willing to explore this with you. If you feel you can find errors in my chain of logic, I’m willing to hear it. But we need to be open and honest with each other. That doesn’t mean discarding what we believe to be true, but being willing to reconsider things in the light of better evidence or logic. I’ve constantly done that–and changed many of my beliefs–by being willing to learn and explore.

    I think you are or have been that kind of person–a freethinker. If not, then I’m sorry I’ve bothered you. If so, then let’s talk privately, by e-mail or phone. It could be interesting, at the very least…

  25. As I mentioned, Jesus himself said that nobody comes to the Father unless he himself drags said person. Paul confirms this by saying salvation is not of the will of man and elsewhere that Jesus is the author & finisher of faith.

    Now, if Jesus is the author of my faith, and I have not faith… That is not my fault.

    Now, if the only way I’m coming to the Father is if he drags me to him, and I am not going to the Father… That is not my fault.

    Now, if salvation is God’s choice and is not something I can will, and I choose not to believe… That is not my fault.

    Likewise, if God exists and I was at any point saved, then I await Jesus to show that He is the Good Shepherd by leaving the 99 to come find me.

    Bottom line: The ball’s in God’s court, should he choose to act upon it. I gave him my life for nearly a decade and have nothing to show for it except the ability to out-class most pastors when it comes to theology…

    I’m closing comments on this site. I’m no longer interested in maintaining KingdomGeek and am ready to move on with my life. I’m on Facebook if anyone wishes to continue this conversation.

  26. Rick,

    Continue in your search of truth. I understand your situation. For it has been my road as well. Many christians do not check the source of their information, therfore, they are misinformed and do not know. Start off with the investigation that the Jesus they are referring to is Greek | caucasoid. The true Issa or Yoshua Ben Yosef is of African descent. This man Issa is the one who was challenging the system by telling the Hebrew-Israelites | Jews to go back to ways of their Father, the Supreme, Self existing Creator of life instead of bowing down to the Romans. The Romans in their conquest for power used his cruxifiction as the main idea through Constantine’s vision of how to control the masses. It was sumed up later at the Council of Nicaea in 325. This is where they made “GOD” three in the personas of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Moreover, study your Kemetic (AEgyptian) Sciences and you will find this is similar to Ausar(Osiris) Aset(Isis) and Heru(Horus). In 321, Constantine instructed that Christians and non-Christians should be united in observing the venerable day of the sun, referencing the esoteric eastern sun-worship which Aurelian had helped introduce, and his coinage still carried the symbols of the sun cult until 324. Even after the pagan gods had disappeared from the coinage, Christian symbols appeared only as Constantine’s personal attributes: the chi rho between his hands or on his labarum, but never on the coin itself.[205] Even when Constantine dedicated the new capital of Constantinople, which became the seat of Byzantine Christianity for a millennium, he did so wearing the Apollonian sun-rayed Diadem. Take this for further thought, at the end of many parables, pslams and scriptures including prayers – we all say Amen. Amen is the pseudonym for the “self existing one”, GOD, Heavenly Father, etc. Components of the truth are scattered throughout the Bible and are hidden unless you are trained and skilled in the art of exoteric and esoteric knowledge. On the larer side of LIFE, personally, I will speak up only when it is appropriate. To take another persons hope away is nonetheless a waste of time unless they are using it as a form of oppression on others. We should all act as sovereign individuals and conduct ourselves in acoord with the great side wheel by which time is so commonly reckoned. EACH ONE TEACH ONE – ONE LOVE.

  27. Congratulation to you on your enlightenment. So you see what I see in Catholic/Christian religion. Basically they throw away the rules that exist in their own holy book, and I’m not talking only about polygyny.

    I sincerely hope that you find what you’re looking for, whatever it is. God is with you.

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