sent in by Fred Brane
I became a Christian, about a year after the death of my first wife, while on active military duty in Kunsan Korea in 1977. The trek through Christianity went from baptist, pentecostal and non-denominational churches. Some of the churches were independents, not affiliated with any denominational organizations.
I read the bible trying to figure out what was what, finally found a minister who studied a lot and he taught me how to use methods of interpretation and what resources to use to dig out what was in the bible. He also told me I would not agree with any of the sources totally when I got into the deeper study, and he was right.
He made a statement from the pulpit on one occasion, he said "there are four to five thousand errors in the King James version Bible alone." When he made the statement I saw him cringe. He knew what was said was accurate, I found many as I studied myself. I don't think he included the additions, blatant lies and changes that took place over the centuries. These were just plain errors.
By the early eighties I was convinced that Christianity was under a self-imposed curse due to its history of murder etc. I continued in Christianity and later became a minister. My views of several subjects ran contrary to Christian theology. The hypocrisy in churches and in the pulpits was a real sore spot with me.
I found that most ministers did not study, nor did they know how to study. I also found that they did not have any kind of a prayer life. Later I found that they will cover up for and support other ministers in their ministerial associations that are blatant incompetents and sex offenders, this is in the protestant realm not catholic. The catholic record of cover-up is well documented.
The ministerial association I had some knowledge of would also black ball anyone who was a threat to them and their hypocrisy. This was not a painless discovery for me personally.
In 1988 I got a fifteen-minute spot once a week on a radio station that had a Christian format. I paid for the spot myself for the five year span.
After being on the radio for a while I was talking to a technician at the station one day and told him I had expected more open opposition from the local ministers. He told me that they would not do that but they would pray against me.
I was taken aback by his comment but it made sense, I was still very naive. If they openly engage an enemy they have to be able to answer for their own hypocrisy, improper ideas and wrong doctrine. This cannot be done when what they believe is false and is easily disputable. Those who do not study fear those who do. It is easier for ministers to hide behind denominational doctrine than to study for themselves.
I helped a young minister start a church in 1988. We were pretty like minded at the time. That like-mindedness changed as time went along.
My personal home situation was not good. The lady that I was married to became a Christian black magician. Our views were considerably different.
I use the term black magician in the context of using spiritual power to try to control, manipulate or do harm to another person etc. There are many in the church world that fall into this category be it from ignorance or vindictiveness.
No one reading this has to take my word for the concept mentioned in the above paragraph. There will, however, be those who know its truth.
I stayed with the church I helped start for about two years, there were signs that the situation was deteriorating but I mentally tried to over look the problems.
I started a series of messages for the radio broadcast on what happens to the mind of a hypocrite. After three of the series had aired I was called into the basement of the church and charged with preaching the programs with a bad spirit and that I should quit preaching till I got the situation or condition remedied.
Because there was a charge laid and a judgment given this constituted a tribunal.
It was about three days before I could pull the tapes of the programs to check to see if what I was charged with was in fact accurate. I worked a job and some days I was required to put in as much as fourteen hours. I didn't find the charge to be accurate, so I wrote a letter to those involved to make a defense for myself, in accordance with Deuteronomy 19:15-21. I asked for a meeting to be able to present my case. I felt that the charge had been on the witness of one, this is not proper in such a case.
The meeting was granted but I was not allowed to make the defense. I was given a set of papers stating their view as to me personally and I was given an ultimatum to either accept the pastor’s view on a point in Deut.28 or face ex-communication. I opted for ex-communication.
The pastor who instigated my ex-communication was the first person to exhibit pure hatred for me, and what was said on the radio programs. I spent six years in the Far East from 1964 to 1978, was in and out of Viet Nam, Thailand, Okinawa, Japan and Korea. I never experienced the intensity of pure hatred from anyone, even in Viet Nam, than I did from this man.
When a hypocrite is backed into a corner they will attack, you have brought their hypocrisy out to a point of having to defend it. If I would have been given the opportunity to present my case. The young pastor would have been shown to be the hypocrite, a false witness, and therefore would have had to quit preaching till he got his issues straightened out as he had made the judgment against me; according to Deut. 19:15-21.
I was emotionally devastated by the ex-communication. People in the church were told that if they saw me on the street etc they could speak but were not to share a meal with me.
There was only one predominately white church where I was known in which I was still welcome, and it was fifty miles away. I opted to go to a predominately African American church were I was not known. I had taught and preached in African American churches in the past and was always welcome and treated with respect. This church was no exception to that; I was shown kindness and respect.
After about a year or year and a half I helped an African American start a church. I stayed there and worked in that endeavor for about a year before leaving the area.
Tried different churches in the new area, finally pretty much settled in at a small non-denominational church. I was again licensed to minister after some time passed. When the pastor went on vacation I preached two services, which were recorded. After his return I was sent a notice and let to know that I wouldn’t be preaching there anymore.
The morning service was on a wounded spirit and the evening service was on covenant. At the morning service the congregation just sat there when the message was over. Normally they would get up and leave immediately. The message evidently touched people. The evening service was in-depth as to the strength of the covenant relationship. Covenant was a subject that I had spent a significant amount of time studying.
It was the same problem again; when it becomes evident you have studied, you are a threat. Covenant is a subject that few in the Christian church world have little to no in-depth knowledge. I make this statement from observation and from conversations.
Shortly after this last episode with Christianity I knew that I could no longer stay in that kind of an atmosphere. I knew that much of what Christianity propagated was wrong. I stayed for a while not knowing where to go next. Starting my own church didn’t seem like a good option.
I had started taking some astrology classes, and things begin to make some sense. I knew why Christianity did not want people to get involved in any of the metaphysical studies. If people understood their own true natures this would eliminate the churches ability to control people through imposed guilt.
I had known for several years that the church outlook on human sexuality was totally incorrect. They try to put people into a box where their sexuality is concerned and have them fighting the natural sexual energy. The gross sexual crimes committed by church leadership, by others involved in churches and those influenced by their ideas forced on societies is testimony that their doctrines are incorrect.
Religions gross civil rights crimes against women, gays, lesbians, bisexuals and transgendered individuals and any one who thinks differently from their twisted point of view are innumerable
My own detox where Christianity is concerned has taken many years and is still not totally complete, but the process is well underway. It started almost at the time of conversion with questions that did not make sense and continued to question areas I considered incorrect. I have had to reevaluate every thing I thought I knew about religion and spirituality.
The astrology classes were a major stepping stone for me personally. The hypocrisy I had been exposed to within Christianity and having been expunged from its less than hallowed walls were also major points. I continued to study, I studied other religions, forms of spirituality and metaphysical topics. I discovered that religion and spirituality are not synonymous. There is no common ground.
Religion is the greatest dividing force on the face of the earth. Religion has been the biggest murderer on this planet as is well written in the blood of the millions who have died at its hands.
We as people have been brain washed into thinking that because something has been around for a long time it is credible. That is not the case, especially where religion is concerned.
Christianity propagates and thrives on self-hatred. Those who suffer from debilitating emotions such as self-hated are easier controlled. Christianity cannot survive if people cannot be controlled. The brain washing techniques applied in Christianity are self motivating, people are programmed to debilitate themselves through self hatred and trying to restrict natural human energies designed to make us whole.
The self-hatred keeps people off center and they in turn project hatred outward. People who hate are not able to think clearly. Their thought processes are self-restricting. The creative and reasoning processes of the mind are always clouded in such an environment.
It was a long time before I figured out why there has been so much murder and mayhem involved with religions. The old testament of the Christian bible records when another people were conquered, their whole populations had to be murdered and anything that had to do with their spiritual aspects was to be destroyed.
If a religion has to destroy another people just to survive, it is because it has no legitimacy or authenticity. Whatever god it allegedly adheres too is false if it cannot stand the competition.
Through out history anytime that Christianity has gotten a foothold in an area the next move is to destroy any other form of religion or system of spirituality.
Over the years that I have studied I have found the Christian bible to be a twisted compilation of myths and stories of older religions modified to suit the purposes of a controlling few. I find nothing original on its pages or in the religion that claims to adhere to its dictates; both I find to be totally illegitimate. The Christian bible is probably the most grossly flawed document on the face of the earth. As history records in blood the Christian bible has been used as the authority to commit the most horrendous crimes, and is still being used to commit more crimes against humanity.
Those of us in the deprogramming process from Christianity are survivors of its emotional, physical and sexual death warrants. Our wounds and scars are emblems of courage. We are now battle tried soldiers.
Ex-pentecostal preacher, Ex-Christian
Left: about 50
Was: baptist, pentecostal and non-denominational
Now: solitary pagan
Converted because: was a widower of about a year and was looking for something
De-converted because: knowledge, reason and experience
email: fredbrane at direcway dot com
Online Reading List
- An Outline of Intellectual Rubbish by Bertrand Russell (1943)
- Bible Teaching and Religious Practice by Mark Twain
- God is Imaginary
- Is there an Artificial God? by Douglas Adams (1998)
- Skeptics Annotated Bible
- The Age of Reason by Thomas Paine (1795)
- Which Way? by Robert Ingersoll (1884).
- Why I Am Not A Christian by Bertrand Russell (1927)