sent in by Jason
Well, here it goes!
I really don’t know where to start as it has been such a crazy journey. Since I always started my Christian testimony this way, I guess I will tell you guys that I was not raised in a Christian home or in any religion for that matter. Religion was not talked about and it was not necessary. Life was fine without all the god talk.
However at the age of 21 I got married. We were both young. She was 20. She did have some understanding of Christianity and she shared her beliefs with me, but it was not something that controlled our relationship. During our short lived marriage, we visited several non denominational churches. It was good for us. We would go, listen to the sermons, maybe throw a little money in the plate, and then go home. It made us feel like better people. We just figured, hey people grow up, get married, and go to church..right? So we went evey so often. I wasn’t even sure if I believed in god and the church that we ended up going to the most was one of those seeker sensitive churches. I say that because we never really heard the gospel message of how mankind is a bunch of sinners and if we don’t accept god’s loving sacrifice, then we are all going to burn in hell for eternity. Most of the messages at the Baptist church that we were going to focused on the community, children, and how much Jesus loves everyone. What a joke! Especially when the bible teaches predestination for believers. They failed to remind everyone that the bible does not teach “feel good” Christianity, but in fact teaches fundamentalism. Dying to self, spreading the gospel of Christ, suffering persecution for your faith, ect.
My marriage ended in 2002 after some real bumpy roads. It was a very tough time for me, but I still had my connections with the Baptist church that we had been attending. I still was not sure if I believed in god, but I kept my mind open to the possibility. After being separated for about 3 months, I figured that there had to be something more to life, so I started going to church consistently. I started studying a lot on my own. I started studying evolution and religion. Long story short my study led me to believe that there had to be a god. My study also helped me understand the gospel message of christ’s supposed sacrifice.
It was like math at that point, 2+2=4! God existed, god must be revealed through religion, Christianity is the most logical religion..= I “accepted Christ” at my Baptist church. I had absolutely no knowledge of the bible, so I simply trusted what I was being taught. It made since to me, I had faith, and I was excited about it!
I had been a Christian for 3 months and I sold my house and moved in with a Christian friend from church. He was also very passionate about “his faith” and we hit it off. We became some of the most legalistic people I knew. We wanted to be the smartest and best Christians in our church. We studied and talked about things all the time. I had lots of Christian friends and things were great. I had my suspicions and doubts about certain things, but it still made since to me because I believed in god. I could see god’s hand in creation. I had questions about the bible, but I just figured that I was new to the “faith” and that god was going to reveal it to me over time.
Well, time began to tick away. I was loosing interest in work and wanted to know more about the bible. I felt empty inside and I felt that it was because I did not really know god. I would pray and my prayers would go unanswered, so I figured that I was asking for the wrong things. I continued seeking and trying to find god. Some of my favorite speakers were John Piper & Razi Zacharias. Let me say these guys are very convincing!! I know they believe what they are preaching and that is ok with me. I learned a lot from my roommate, who had grown up around Christianity and was getting ready to start seminary. I also learned a lot from other Christian friends and listening to Piper & Zacharias. I would read my bible and some things would make since to me, but other parts bored me and led me to question if Christianity was really logical. I continued pushing through the doubts because I believed in god and Christianity still made more since to me that any of the other world religions.
I continued to loose interest in my job and I found myself trying to “save” people at work. I was always on the internet trying to learn more and debate with my co-workers. At this point I had my doubts, but I still maintained my passion. In June of 04, I went on a mission trip with the high school kids from my church. We went to Quito, Ecuador! I really felt like god wanted me there. I didn’t even care if the plane crashed on the way, because I just believed that everything was in god’s hands. It was a good trip and we met a lot of really great people.
After I got back form the trip I quit my job and enrolled in Bible college. I needed to know more and thought that God had to be calling me to full ministry. So that fall I started bible college.
Bible college got off to a good start, but the doubts really came flying in. They hit me fast and hard!! God really started feeling far away and prayer really sucked. I was seeking answers from professors, but they had nothing. I was beginning to realize that prayer does not work. My studies brought me to a Bible Survey class, which goes though each book of the bible in one semester. As I started getting into the old testament I began to bring up all the questions that I always had, but this time they were front and center and I wanted answers! One of my problems I had always had was that I felt like god owed mankind the death of Jesus on the cross. Think about it. Adam and Eve sinned and man kind was held responsible even though we had no choice? I was born with the nature I have! I am going to do the things that the bible calls sin simply because I am human. So if mankind is a bunch of dirty sinners like the bible says and “god” created me this way, then god is responsible for my sin and he owes me Christ! (We are not sinners, we are only living the way we were created to live and there is no god of the bible!)
I began to think about all the people in the world and how many have never heard of Christ and never will hear of Christ. The bible has yet to be translated in over 6,000 languages and there are over 10,000 people groups who have never even heard of Christ! The bible teaches that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of god. This puts everyone on the hook. Even the people who are not going to hear about Christ. The bible does not teach that people can be saved because they acknowledge the existence of god, but that they must accept Christ as their savior. Would a loving father really not allow some people to have a chance and send them to hell for eternity? I don’t think so! This is the bottom line I live in a country where Christianity is the most common religion and therefore I became a Christian. Had I lived in the middle east I would have become a muslim, ect.
My doubts continued to flourish as we got into the old testament in my bible survey class. I was learning about how god choose the jewish people. So was the rest of the world going to hell because god had not chosen them? I also learned about god’s love and how he ordered the massacre of so many innocent people in the old testament. This is not the god that I was introduced to in my seeker sensitive Baptist church. I became very entangled in my doubts and started investigating the evidence for Jesus and Christianity.
To my surprise I had a hard time finding any evidence that Jesus even existed, let alone be beaten, whipped, crucified, and rise from the dead. Christians will tell you all day that there is plenty of evidence that Jesus existed and that is a flat out lie!! I looked and there isn’t anything out there to prove to me that he was even a real man. I read Case for Christ by Lee Strobel, Evidence that Demands a Verdict by Josh McDowell and I found nothing that was going to take away my doubts. My evidence was beginning to demand a verdict. The jewish historian Josephus that Christians will talk about all the time does not provide any solid evidence. Scholars know that the comments that Josephus made about Jesus had been added by fundamental Christians well after he had written his work. Tacitus the roman historian does not provide any evidence either. Both of these men were not even born until after Jesus was supposedly crucified anyway. So any thing that they say is not an eyewitness account and therefore is completely useless to me.
Others will say what about the Koran? Well what about it? Mohammed was not born until 632AD! That is 600 years after the supposed savior of the world was crucified. 600 years is a long time and Christianity as a religion was beginning to spread very fast. Mohammed had a lot of influence from Christians and jews and to make his religion more believable, he had to mention something about Jesus. However to mention that Jesus was a muslim, a prophet, and will return to set up islam as the world religion is false. Mohammed and his religion suck just like Christianity.
There is so much I could go into, but I do not feel that all this religious talk is really worthy of our time. Christianity at its foundation is illogical and appeals to the emotion of man. It really sucks for the thinking person. It’s hard to have all the fundamental Christians, who check their brains in at the door of faith to tell you that you are wrong. If god created us with brains then we need to use them! Christianity is illogical and the bible is full of contradictions and it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure that one out!! O but the bible is from god, it is perfect and without error…We can’t understand it because of the fall. We are sinners and imperfect! Please that is a load of crap! If man is smart enough to make it to the moon, then we are also smart enough to read the bible and see what it really teaches. Then they say well that is where faith comes in..ok, if it’s all about faith let me check my brains in at the door and go believe mormanism, Jehovah’s witnesses, islam, buddasim, Hinduism, ect. It’s all about faith right? I do have faith! I have faith in things that make since. I believe I exist! I believe that there is a creator of some sort, but to believe that we are in his image and that we can have a relationship with him is illogical! Christianity is another man made religion that will gain control of your mind until you can gain control of it! If it was as easy as Christians say it is then god would have made it simple. It’s not simple! Does anyone understand the book of revelation? My professors at school can’t even agree on basic doctrine. Why do you think that there are so many denominations? Because we can’t agree… it is not simple. If god is guiding believers why do they all have different beliefs?
Christianity drove me away from my non Christian family members. I felt distant from everyone accept Christians. I am having a hard time letting go of the thoughts that Christianity has put into my mind. My mind has been caged up and it sucks!
I believe that Christians are being brain washed and most of them are carnal Christians anyway, so they don’t even think of the issues that surround Christianity. Others make a huge assumption that the bible is true and therefore everything needs to be tested against the bible, they are blinded.
I can’t tell you how much I have been hurt by this religion. It did some good, but it has divided me from the world and now I don’t know if I can maintain my Christian friendships. I don’t even know if I want to because most of them are the fundamental brand. I am trying to work on building friendships with the people that I was forced to leave behind when I became a Christian. I got my job back and I am trying to get a normal life back! I did the true fundamental Christian thing. I sought god and I ended up empty!! It sucked the life out of me! I know Christianity works for some people, most of whom were raised in a Christian home or at least had some sort of Christian influence, but for those if us who did not have that association it will be a lot harder to accept the basic principals of Christianity. There are so many issues that can be discussed and we could go on for hours talking about these things.
Where is the healing from this stuff, how can I get back into my normal routine in the world after being filled with all this crap? I am interested in dialoguing after I post this testimony. I went through a lot with religion. I let it put me through a lot. I had Christians that told me I can never get married again. I had some that told me I could. SHIT, even Jesus was confused. In 2 places the supposed jesus says that anyone who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery. NO EXCPTIONS!! But in Matthew the supposed Jesus says “anyone who divorces his wife and marries another except on the grounds of sexual immorality commits adultery. Come on Jesus, what is it? One contradiction after another in the bible. Why don’t jews believe in the supposed messiah? Because this supposed messiah broke laws that were given by biblegod in the Book of Deuteronomy. There are many other reasons why jews don’t believe in jesus as the messiah, but the main reason is because all this shit is just a hoax anyway. The writers of the bible did a pretty good job in fooling large masses of people, however all religions do that don’t they?
Religion sucks and will ultimately ruin your life. Go with you heart, believe in yourself! Who knows what will happen after this life. Probably nothing. We will cease to exist and will have no memory of this life. I am going to appreciate this life for what it is and seek my own happiness! I believe that there is a god or creator, but that is it. The only way to understand “IT” is to look at what “IT” has made and apart from creation, there is no other “bible” to live by. I know it sounds kind of hopeless now, but I do believe that over time I will be healed from all the religious bullshit that has been implanted in my mind! Yes I am bitter, very bitter!!!
IF YOU ARE SEEKING TO FIND THE LOVE OF GOD, JUST LOOK AT ALL OF THE PICTURES OF THE TSUNAMI!!
Became a Christian: 22
Ceased being a Christian: 25
Labels before: Baptist / Non Denominational
Labels now: Open Minded / Deist / Creationist
Why I joined: Lack of Knowledge of Religion & Philosophy (Who wouldn’t want to go to heaven?)
Why I left: Human Logic
Email Address: jpepin2001 at yahoo dot com