14 December 2015

Which is more violent, the Bible or the Quran?

(Repost with updated numbers 14 December 2015.)
The LORD is a man of war. Exodus 15:3
Fight in the way of Allah. Quran 2:244

Which is more violent, the Bible or the Quran? Is there a way to objectively answer such a question?

Well, it wouldn't be easy. But it is possible to compare the amount of cruelty and violence in the two books.

Here is a summary of the highlighted verses in the SAB and SAQ.

Number of Cruel or Violent Passages
Bible 1321
Quran 532

So the Bible has more than twice as many cruel or violent passages as does the Quran. But the Bible is a much bigger book. How do they compare when size is taken into account?

Violence and Cruelty Total verses Percent
Bible 1321 31102 4.25
Quran 532 6236 8.53

When expressed as a percentage of cruel or violent verses (at least as marked in the SAB/Q), the Quran has twice that of the Bible. (8.53 vs. 4.25%)

Of course this analysis does not consider the extent of the cruelty in the marked passages. And that is an important consideration. Is Numbers 31:14-18, for example, more cruel than Quran 5:34? That is something that each person must decide.

A good argument could be made that either book is the most violent and cruel book ever written. The award would go to one or the other, for neither has any close competitors.

It is frightening to think that more than half of the world's population believes in one or the other.

12 December 2015

The Misuse of 1 Corinthians 7 by Anti-Gay Christian Apologists

1ColoClerkIn an obvious attempt to discourage same-sex couples from applying for marriage licenses, Dallas Shroeder, a county clerk in Colorado, prominently displayed a poster quoting 1 Corinthians 7:2b: "... each man should have his own wife and each woman should have her own husband."

At least he did until the Freedom From Religion Foundation complained and forced him to stop.

Although the poster has been taken down, Christian apologists often to use 1 Corinthians 7 to oppose same-sex marriage. And yet this chapter is not against same-sex marriage; it is against marriage itself.

Paul begins the chapter by saying in verse 1 that "it is good for man not to touch a woman." Marriage, in Paul's view, is only for weaklings, those who cannot resist the temptation to fornicate. This is evident in the next verse, which says:

Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband. (v.2)
By quoting only the second half of verse 2, Christian apologists make it appear that Paul approved of "traditional marriage," when, in fact, he considered it to be, at best, a necessary evil.

Later in the same chapter, Paul repeatedly discouraged Christians from marrying, saying:

I would that all men were even as I myself. ... I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, It is good for them if they abide even as I. But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn. (vv. 7-9)
Only those who "cannot contain" should marry. Because it's "better to marry than to burn."

Paul summarized his view on marriage this way: If you're not married, don't get married. If you are married, don't have sex. (There's no time for it since "the time is short," i.e., Jesus is coming.)

Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife. ... the time is short: it remaineth, that both they that have wives be as though they had none (vv. 27-29)
Thanks to the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Mr. Shroeder is no longer trying to influence couples seeking marriage licenses. But if he were to do so based on 1 Corinthians 7, his sign should say: "Don't marry unless you can't control yourself; if you do marry, don't have sex."

Or something like that.

09 December 2015

Is that from the Bible or the Quran?

Recently a couple of Dutch comedians covered a Bible with a paper jacket labelled "The Holy Quran" and read passages from it to people on the street. Here's what happened.

And it's not really all that surprising. The Bible and Quran sound a lot alike.

Here are twenty verses from these two holy books. Which are from the Quran and which are from the Bible? (Bible quotations are taken from the King James Version. Quran verses are from The Study Quran.)

  1. He that blasphemeth the name of the LORD, he shall surely be put to death, and all the congregation shall certainly stone him.

  2. As for the male and female thief, cut off their hands as a recompense for what they have earned, as an exemplary punishment from God.

  3. A life for a life, an eye for an eye, a nose for a nose, an ear for an ear, a tooth for a tooth, and for wounds, retribution.

  4. Cursed by he that keepeth back his sword from blood.

  5. Whosoever slays a soul ... it is as though he slew mankind altogether, and whosoever saves the life of one, it is as though he saved the life of mankind altogether.

  6. If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

  7. And I will set my jealousy against thee, and they shall deal furiously with thee: they shall take away thy nose and thine ears. ... Thou shalt even drink it and suck it out, and thou shalt ... pluck off thine own breasts: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD.

  8. As for the adulterer and the adulteress, flog them each one hundred lashes, and let not pity for them overcome you concerning God's judgment.

  9. Through the wrath of the LORD of hosts is the land darkened, and the people shall be as the fuel of the fire: no man shall spare his brother. And he shall snatch on the right hand, and be hungry; and he shall eat on the left hand, and they shall not be satisfied: they shall eat every man the flesh of his own arm.

  10. Those who disbelieve ... We shall surely cause them to burn in a Fire. As often as their skins are consumed, We shall replace them with other skins that they may taste the punishment.

  11. God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned.

  12. And Lot, when he said to his people, "What! Do you commit an indecency such as none in the world committed before you? Verily you come with desire unto men instead of women. Indeed, you a a prodigal people."

  13. If a man have two wives, one beloved, and another hated, and they have born him children, both the beloved and the hated; and if the firstborn son be hers that was hated: Then it shall be, when he maketh his sons to inherit that which he hath, that he may not make the son of the beloved firstborn before the son of the hated...

  14. When Jesus brought clear proofs, he said, "If have come unto you with wisdom and to make clear to you some of that wherein you differ. So reverence God and obey me."

  15. Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God ... who shall be punished with everlasting destruction.

  16. And I will cause them to eat the flesh of their sons and the flesh of their daughters, and they shall eat every one the flesh of his friend.

  17. Let neither your property nor your children divert you from the remembrance of God.

  18. Among your spouses and your children there is indeed an enemy unto you; so be wary of them.

  19. If a thief ... have nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.

  20. On the day you see it, every nursing woman will forget what she nurses, and every pregnant woman will deliver her burden, and you will see mankind drunk, thou drunk they will not be. Rather, the Punishment of God is severe.
See here for the answers.

That's what Hanukkah is all about, Charlie Brown

This year, Hanukkah began Sunday evening and will end Monday, December 14th.

Everyone knows what Christmas is all about (ever since Linus explained it to Charlie Brown), but how many can say the same for Hanukkah?

Well, it's all about the Hanukkah killings in the first book of Maccabees (Killing 145 in Drunk With Blood: God's killings in the Bible).

Here's the story.

A year after God's slaughter of Georga's army, Lysias attacked Judas with army of 60,000.

The year following Lysias gathered together threescore thousand chosen men, and five thousand horsemen. 1 Machabees 4:28
Judas asked God to deliver the Syrians like he did the mighty and the strangers to David and Jonathan.
Judas met them with ten thousand men ... and he prayed, and said: Blessed art thou, O Saviour of Israel, who didst break the violence of the mighty by the hand of thy servant David, and didst deliver up the camp of the strangers into the hands of Jonathan the son of Saul and of his armourbearer. 4:29-30
He asked God to scare the hell out of them.
Strike them with fear ... and let them quake at their own destruction. 4:32
And kill them with the sword of those that love him.
Cast them down with the sword of them that love thee: and let all that know thy name, praise thee with hymns. 4:33
And it worked. God helped Judas kill 5000.
And there fell of the army of Lysias five thousand men. 4:34
After God "discomfited" the Gentiles, Judas and his brethren went to clean up the Temple.
Then Judas, and his brethren said: Behold our enemies are discomfited: let us go up now to cleanse the holy places and to repair them. 4:36
They found the Temple to be a bit of a mess.
And they saw the sanctuary desolate, and the altar profaned, and the gates burnt, and shrubs growing up in the courts as in a forest, or on the mountains, and the chambers joining to the temple thrown down. 4:38
So they did the usual things that Jews do when they get upset: they rent their garments, put ashes on their heads, and fell on their faces.
They rent their garments ... and put ashes on their heads ...And they fell ... on their faces. 4:39-40
Then they cleaned things up at the Temple and killed some animals for God.
They made new holy vessels, and brought in the candlestick, and the altar of incense, and the table into the temple. And they put incense upon the altar, and lighted up the lamps ... And they offered sacrifice. 4:49-53
And everyone fell on their faces once again. (You just can't do that too many times.)
And all the people fell upon their faces . 4:55
When the Gentiles found out that the Jews had cleaned up the temple, they were exceedingly angry.
Now it came to pass, when the nations round about heard that the altar and the sanctuary were built up as before, that they were exceeding angry. 1 Machabees 5:1
So they began to persecute and kill the Jews.
And they thought to destroy the generation of Jacob that were among them, and they began to kill some of the people, and to persecute them. 5:2
Which got Judas (and God) in a killing mood once again. He slaughtered the children of Esau.
Judas fought against the children of Esau in Idumea, and them that were in Acrabathane ... and he made a great slaughter of them. 5:3
Burned to death the children of Bean.
He remembered the malice of the children of Bean ... And they were shut up by him in towers, and he ... burnt their towers with fire, and all that were in them. 5:4-5
And smote the children of Ammon.
Then he passed over to the children of Ammon ... and they were discomfited in their sight, and he smote them. 5:6-7
God helped Judas kill the Gentiles because God likes the Jewish people more than other people, likes the Jewish religion more than other religions, and likes Jews to kill and sacrifice animals to him in the Temple. After the slaughter of the Gentiles and the re-dedication of the Temple, the Jews established the annual eight-day festival, which we know today as Hanukkah.
Judas, and his brethren, and all the church of Israel decreed, that the day of the dedication of the altar should be kept in its season from year to year for eight days, from the five and twentieth day of the month of Casleu. 1 Machabees 4:59
And that's what Hanukkah is all about, Charlie Brown.

26 November 2015

Alma 51: Freemen and Kingmen

We left last chapter with a young Pahoran in the judgement-seat, and peace in the kingdom. The time of peace was fairly short-lived, because there was a group of people who wanted to establish kings in the land, rather than judges. The people who wanted kings were called "Kingmen", and the people who wanted to keep the system the way it was and stick to judges called themselves "Freemen". "Freemen" has a better ring to it, so they were clearly in the catbird seat in terms of spin, much like "Pro-Choice" is in the abortion debate. We'll see how this plays out.

And now it came to pass in the commencement of the twenty and fifth year of the reign of the judges over the people of Nephi, they having established peace between the people of Lehi and the people of Morianton concerning their lands, and having commenced the twenty and fifth year in peace 51:1
Nevertheless, they did not long maintain an entire peace in the land, for there began to be a contention among the people concerning the chief judge Pahoran; for behold, there were a part of the people who desired that a few particular points of the law should be altered. 51:2
But behold, Pahoran would not alter nor suffer the law to be altered; therefore, he did not hearken to those who had sent in their voices with their petitions concerning the altering of the law. 51:3 

Therefore, those who were desirous that the law should be altered were angry with him, and desired that he should no longer be chief judge over the land; therefore there arose a warm dispute concerning the matter, but not unto bloodshed. 51:4
And it came to pass that those who were desirous that Pahoran should be dethroned from the judgment-seat were called king-men, for they were desirous that the law should be altered in a manner to overthrow the free government and to establish a king over the land. 51:5 
And those who were desirous that Pahoran should remain chief judge over the land took upon them the name of freemen; and thus was the division among them, for the freemen had sworn or covenanted to maintain their rights and the privileges of their religion by a free government. 51:6
The Kingmen's referendum failed, and the people sided with the Freemen, and they stuck with the judge system. Pahoran kept the judgement-seat, and all was well.

And it came to pass that this matter of their contention was settled by the voice of the people. And it came to pass that the voice of the people came in favor of the freemen, and Pahoran retained the judgment-seat, which caused much rejoicing among the brethren of Pahoran and also many of the people of liberty, who also put the king-men to silence, that they durst not oppose but were obliged to maintain the cause of freedom. 51:7
But they still had that pesky Amalickiah to deal with. He had sworn to drink the blood of Moroni, and his recent failed campaigns hadn't made him want to give up. He went around raising an army of Lamanites and people from all over the land. He didn't have quite as strong of an army as before, but he put together a "wonderfully great army" that he brought to Zarahemla in the 25th year of the Judges.
But behold, this was a critical time for such contentions to be among the people of Nephi; for behold, Amalickiah had again stirred up the hearts of the people of the Lamanites against the people of the Nephites, and he was gathering together soldiers from all parts of his land, and arming them, and preparing for war with all diligence; for he had sworn to drink the blood of Moroni. 51:9
Now his armies were not so great as they had hitherto been, because of the many thousands who had been slain by the hand of the Nephites; but notwithstanding their great loss, Amalickiah had gathered together a wonderfully great army, insomuch that he feared not to come down to the land of Zarahemla. 51:11 
Yea, even Amalickiah did himself come down, at the head of the Lamanites. And it was in the twenty and fifth year of the reign of the judges; and it was at the same time that they had begun to settle the affairs of their contentions concerning the chief judge, Pahoran. 51:12
When the former "Kingmen" heard that Amalickiah was coming with an army against Pahoran, they refused to defend their country. When Moroni heard this, he issued a petition to give him the right to draft the Kingmen into the army against their will (or to kill them).

And it came to pass that when the men who were called king-men had heard that the Lamanites were coming down to battle against them, they were glad in their hearts; and they refused to take up arms, for they were so wroth with the chief judge, and also with the people of liberty, that they would not take up arms to defend their country. 51:13 
And it came to pass that when Moroni saw this, and also saw that the Lamanites were coming into the borders of the land, he was exceedingly wroth because of the stubbornness of those people whom he had labored with so much diligence to preserve; yea, he was exceedingly wroth; his soul was filled with anger against them. 51:14 
And it came to pass that he sent a petition, with the voice of the people, unto the governor of the land, desiring that he should read it, and give him (Moroni) power to compel those dissenters to defend their country or to put them to death. 51:15
Moroni got his order granted, and he went to town against the king-men. They resisted, and fought the conscription. Moroni's army killed 4,000 of the kingmen, and threw the rest of the survivors in prison. There wasn't time for a trial right then...this was war!

For it was his first care to put an end to such contentions and dissensions among the people; for behold, this had been hitherto a cause of all their destruction. And it came to pass that it was granted according to the voice of the people. 51:16 
And it came to pass that Moroni commanded that his army should go against those king-men, to pull down their pride and their nobility and level them with the earth, or they should take up arms and support the cause of liberty. 51:17 
And it came to pass that the armies did march forth against them; and they did pull down their pride and their nobility, insomuch that as they did lift their weapons of war to fight against the men of Moroni they were hewn down and leveled to the earth. 51:18 
And it came to pass that there were four thousand of those dissenters who were hewn down by the sword; and those of their leaders who were not slain in battle were taken and cast into prison, for there was no time for their trials at this period. 51:19
So Moroni put an end to this little rebellion. And just in time, too, because the Lamanite army was coming up on their land, and they were spoiling for a fight.

And the remainder of those dissenters, rather than be smitten down to the earth by the sword, yielded to the standard of liberty, and were compelled to hoist the title of liberty upon their towers, and in their cities, and to take up arms in defence of their country. 51.20 
And thus Moroni put an end to those king-men, that there were not any known by the appellation of king-men; and thus he put an end to the stubbornness and the pride of those people who professed the blood of nobility; but they were brought down to humble themselves like unto their brethren, and to fight valiantly for their freedom from bondage. 51.21
Behold, it came to pass that while Moroni was thus breaking down the wars and contentions among his own people, and subjecting them to peace and civilization, and making regulations to prepare for war against the Lamanites, behold, the Lamanites had come into the land of Moroni, which was in the borders by the seashore. 51.22
But even with the new conscripted soldiers, the Nephites were not strong enough to resist Amlickiah's forces. They attacked the city of Moroni, and took it, and all of it's fortifications. The Nephites fled to the city of Nephihah, and prepared for battle with the people of the city of Lehi. Meanwhile Amlickiah didn't want to risk open battle, so he kept his men in the cities that he had conquered to defend them.
And it came to pass that the Nephites were not sufficiently strong in the city of Moroni; therefore Amalickiah did drive them, slaying many. And it came to pass that Amalickiah took possession of the city, yea, possession of all their fortifications. 51.23 
And those who fled out of the city of Moroni came to the city of Nephihah; and also the people of the city of Lehi gathered themselves together, and made preparations and were ready to receive the Lamanites to battle. 51.24 
But it came to pass that Amalickiah would not suffer the Lamanites to go against the city of Nephihah to battle, but kept them down by the seashore, leaving men in every city to maintain and defend it. 51.25

Until the next verse, when he's conquering city after city (first on the list was Moroni, which the book said that he was avoiding...)

And thus he went on, taking possession of many cities, the city of Nephihah, and the city of Lehi, and the city of Morianton, and the city of Omner, and the city of Gid, and the city of Mulek, all of which were on the east borders by the seashore. 51:26 
And thus had the Lamanites obtained, by the cunning of Amalickiah, so many cities, by their numberless hosts, all of which were strongly fortified after the manner of the fortifications of Moroni; all of which afforded strongholds for the Lamanites. 51:27
So things aren't looking very good for the Nephites. This Amalickiah guy is really causing trouble. Luckily, his killing spree was about to end. Amalickiah and his men were about to have an unlucky run-in with Teancum.
And it came to pass that they marched to the borders of the land Bountiful, driving the Nephites before them and slaying many. 51:28 But it came to pass that they were met by Teancum, who had slain Morianton and had headed his people in his flight. 51:29
Amalickiah was trying to head to the land Bountiful to attack the people there, but Teancum wouldn't let him. Teancum and his men met up with Amalickiah, and killed them until the sun went down. His men were much stronger than the Lamanite men, and they were also more skilled warriors, so they completely dominated them. Once night fell, both sides stopped fighting and made camp.

And it came to pass that he headed Amalickiah also, as he was marching forth with his numerous army that he might take possession of the land Bountiful, and also the land northward. 51:30 
But behold he met with a disappointment by being repulsed by Teancum and his men, for they were great warriors; for every man of Teancum did exceed the Lamanites in their strength and in their skill of war, insomuch that they did gain advantage over the Lamanites. 51:31  
And it came to pass that they did harass them, insomuch that they did slay them even until it was dark. And it came to pass that Teancum and his men did pitch their tents in the borders of the land Bountiful; and Amalickiah did pitch his tents in the borders on the beach by the seashore, and after this manner were they driven. 51:32
And then things get interesting. Teancum brings his servant on a secret mission: to run over to the enemy camp and to kill Amalickiah. He does this so quickly and quietly that Amalickiah's servants don't even wake up. Teancum thrusts a javelin straight into his heart, and instantly kills Amalickiah.

And it came to pass that when the night had come, Teancum and his servant stole forth and went out by night, and went into the camp of Amalickiah; and behold, sleep had overpowered them because of their much fatigue, which was caused by the labors and heat of the day. 51:33 

And it came to pass that Teancum stole privily into the tent of the king, and put a javelin to his heart; and he did cause the death of the king immediately that he did not awake his servants. Teancum snuck into the king's tent and stuck a javelin into his heart. 51:34

Then Teancum and his servant return to their own camp and tell eveyone what happened. He also prepares them for battle -- who knows how the Lamanites might recact?

And he returned again privily to his own camp, and behold, his men were asleep, and he awoke them and told them all the things that he had done. 51:35 
And he caused that his armies should stand in readiness, lest the Lamanites had awakened and should come upon them. 51:36
And that was the end of the 25th year of the Judges. And it was also the end of Amalickiah.
And thus endeth the twenty and fifth year of the reign of the judges over the people of Nephi; and thus endeth the days of Amalickiah. 51:37

14 November 2015

The Great Controversy: Ben Carson, Ellen G. White, and Seventh-day Adventism

Ben Carson has famously said that a Muslim who wishes to become president of the United States must "reject the tenets of Islam."

But what about members of his own church -- The Seventh-day Adventist church? Must they reject its doctrines in order to become president?

The SDA church was co-founded by Ellen G. White, who was its original leader and prophet. She is to Adventists what Mary Baker Eddy, Joseph Smith, and Muhammad are to Christian Scientists, Mormons, and Muslims, respectively (not respectfully). And her book, The Great Controversy, corresponds to Science and Health, the Book of Mormon, and the Quran. And it fully deserves to be among them, as one of the the worst books ever written.

I wish I had time to do a Skeptic's Annotated Great Controversy. But I don't. So I'll have to be satisfied with a short summary.

Fortunately, it's an easy book to summarize, even though it is nearly 700 pages long.

It turns out that it's mostly about Saturday.

Here's the story.
[The first half of the book is an anti-Catholic "history" of Christianity. The rest is supposed prophecy (beginning with #3 below).]

  1. The evil Catholic Church changed the Sabbath from Saturday (the seventh day) to Sunday.
    The papacy has attempted to change the law of God ... to authorize the observance of the first instead of the seventh day as the Sabbath. ... Here the papal power openly sets itself above God. p. 446
  2. The Protestants went along with the change (and thereby became apostates).
    When the world and the Protestant churches accept a sabbath of her creating, while they reject the Bible Sabbath, they ... bring the whole Protestant world under the banner of Rome. p. 448
  3. The United States (the beast of Revelation with lamb-like horns) will begin to enforce the Sunday Sabbath and make everyone receive the mark of the beast on their hand and forehead.
    The United States is the power represented by the beast with lamblike horns, and that this prophecy will be fulfilled when the United States shall enforce Sunday observance, which Rome claims as the special acknowledgment of her supremacy. p. 579
  4. Those who observe the Sabbath on Saturday will be persecuted and put to death.
    As the Sabbath has become the special point of controversy throughout Christendom, and religious and secular authorities have combined to enforce the observance of the Sunday. ... It will be urged that the few who stand in opposition to an institution of the church and a law of the state ought not to be tolerated ... and a decree will finally be issued against those who hallow the Sabbath of the fourth commandment, denouncing them as deserving of the severest punishment ... to put them to death. Romanism in the Old World and apostate Protestantism in the New will pursue a similar course toward those who honor all the divine precepts. p. 615-616
  5. But before evil Catholics, apostate Protestants, and the United States can kill all of the Seventh-day Adventists, Jesus will return, raise the dead, slaughter everyone who doesn't observe the Saturday Sabbath, and take the SDAers to the City of God.
    Jesus rides forth as a mighty conqueror. p. 641

    All come forth from their graves the same in stature as when they entered the tomb. p. 644

    At the coming of Christ the wicked are blotted from the face of the whole earth--consumed with the spirit of His mouth and destroyed by the brightness of His glory. Christ takes His people to the City of God, and the earth is emptied of its inhabitants. p. 657

  6. The only one to remain is Satan, who will walk to and fro on the desolate earth for 1000 years.
    For a thousand years, Satan will wander to and fro in the desolate earth.... p. 660
  7. After Satan's thousand-year walk, Jesus will return again to the earth and raise the billions of wicked dead people that he killed 1000 years before (in #5).
    At the close of the thousand years, Christ again returns to the earth. ... He bids the wicked dead arise to receive their doom. They come forth, a mighty host, numberless as the sands of the sea. What a contrast to those who were raised at the first resurrection! The righteous were clothed with immortal youth and beauty. The wicked bear the traces of disease and death. p. 662
  8. Satan will try to rally the living dead to attack the City of God.
    Now Satan prepares for a last mighty struggle for the supremacy. ... As the wicked dead are raised and he sees the vast multitudes upon his side, his hopes revive, and he determines not to yield the great controversy. ... He proposes to lead them against the camp of the saints and to take possession of the City of God. With fiendish exultation he points to the unnumbered millions who have been raised from the dead and declares that as their leader he is well able to overthrow the city and regain his throne and his kingdom. ... With military precision the serried ranks advance over the earth's broken and uneven surface to the City of God. p. 663-664
  9. But when Jesus appears, the ugly dead people chicken out.
    Now Christ again appears to the view of His enemies. p. 665

    The time has come for a last desperate struggle against the King of heaven. He rushes into the midst of his subjects and endeavors to inspire them with his own fury and arouse them to instant battle. But of all the countless millions whom he has allured into rebellion, there are none now to acknowledge his supremacy. His power is at an end. The wicked are filled with the same hatred of God that inspires Satan; but they see that their case is hopeless, that they cannot prevail against Jehovah. Their rage is kindled against Satan and those who have been his agents in deception, and with the fury of demons they turn upon them. p. 671-672

  10. God will then burn the living dead. Some will die quickly; others will suffer for many days.
    Fire comes down from God out of heaven. The earth is broken up. The weapons concealed in its depths are drawn forth. Devouring flames burst from every yawning chasm. The very rocks are on fire. ... Some are destroyed as in a moment, while others suffer many days. p. 663-664
  11. After the last resurrected dead person is finally dead, the Seventh-day Adventists live happily forever in the City of God, where no one sleeps and there is neither night nor need for candles.
    While the earth was wrapped in the fire of destruction, the righteous abode safely in the Holy City. ... In the City of God "there shall be no night." None will need or desire repose. ... "And they need no candle." p. 663-994
Okay. So that's it. That's what Seventh-day Adventists believe (along with some dietary restrictions).

Ben Carson believes it as well, or at least he claimed to in an April 5, 2013 interview with the Seventh-day Adventist Church. [For some reason, the interview was removed from the official SDA website, but it's still available (via the wayback machine) here.]

Here's what he said during the interview:

Adventist News Network: Are there ever any times when you feel it’s best to distinguish yourself from the Seventh-day Adventist Church and what it teaches?

Carson: No, I don’t.

In another interview (see the below video), Dr. Carson said,

I don't know what role the Lord has for me in all this. I do know, in looking at prophecy, that the United States will play a big role; that there has to be a return first to a religious awakening; and, more than likely, any persecution, particularly of the Sabbath, will come from the right, not from the left."

Someone should ask Dr. Carson if he believes in Ellen White's prophecy in The Great Controversy with regard to the "big role" that the United States will play. Specifically, is the United States the two-horned beast that speaks like a lion of Revelation 13:11?

If so, he should renounce that belief (along with the rest of White's "prophecy") before anyone should consider voting for him for president.

30 September 2015

The two faces of pope Francis

Well it was fun to imagine, but now we know the truth: Pope Francis is as anti-gay as Kim Davis.

During his visit to the U.S., the pope met secretly with Kim Davis, thanking her for her "courage" and telling her to "be strong."

Then the two hugged and promised to pray for each other.

I hope someone got a picture of that.

28 September 2015

Imagine that: Shakira sings "Imagine" for the pope and Mo Rocca does a reading at his mass

Here are the two things that most surprised me about Papa Pancho's visit.

Shakira introduced him to at the UN by singing John Lennon's "Imagine."

And Mo Rocca did a reading at the pope's mass at Madison Square Garden.

Everyone knows the lyrics to "Imagine", but in case you've forgotten, here are the first two verses:

Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people
Living for today...

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace...

It's one of my favorite songs, of course. But is it also one of the pope's?

But perhaps the pope didn't know what Shakira planned to sing, or couldn't do anything about it if he did.

There is no doubt about Mo Rocca's reading at mass, though. He was selected to do the reading; something that could not have happened without the pope's knowledge and approval.

So what can we conclude about all this?

Does the pope imagine there's no heaven or hell? Does he hope for a world without religion?

And does the pope support gay rights?

Probably not. But it's fun to imagine.

22 September 2015

Ben Carson is right: We should not elect Christians or Muslims (unless they renounce biblical and sharia laws)

Last Sunday on Meet the Press, Ben Carson said that he "absolutely would not" support a Muslim for President.

If you haven't seen it, here it is:

Yesterday, on Fox News he tried to clarify his view by saying:

This is America and we have a constitution. And we do not put people at the leadership of our country whose faith might interfere with them carrying out the duties of the constitution. So if, for instance, you believe in a theocracy -- I don't care if you're a Christian -- if you're a Christian and you're running for president and you want to make us into a theocracy, I'm not going to support you. I'm not going to advocate you being the president.
I don't care what religion or faith someone belongs to, if they're willing to subjugate that to the American way and to our constitution, then I have no problem with that.

And I agree with Dr. Carson on that. We should not elect Christians or Muslims unless they renounce all biblical and sharia laws -- at least those that are contrary to our constitution (which is nearly all of them).

03 September 2015

Kim Davis's marriage to her former husband is an "abomination before the Lord."

As everyone knows by now, Kim Davis is refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples in Rowan County, Kentucky.

It is also well known that she has been married four times and divorced three times, thereby breaking two of Jesus's commandments.

If a woman shall put away her husband, and be married to another, she committeth adultery. Mark 10:12

Whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery. Matthew 5:32

But there is another fact that isn't as well known: Kim Davis's current husband is one of her former husbands, which means that her current marriage is an "abomination before the Lord."
When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house. And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man's wife. And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and giveth it in her hand, and sendeth her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife; Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before the Lord: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which the Lord thy God giveth thee for an inheritance. Deuteronomy 24:1-4

The Bible says nothing about same-sex marriage.* But it clearly says that Kim Davis's current marriage is an abomination to God. Maybe she should rescind her own marriage license, rather than refuse to give them to others.

* It just says that sex between males is an abomination.** I wonder which abomination is worse to the god of the Bible? Kim Davis's marriage or sex between males?
**And that Bible-believers should kill men who have sex with men. (Rather than just refuse to give them marriage licenses.)

12 August 2015

Is Donald Trump "the trump of God"?

For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God. 1 Thessalonians 4:16


Well, he may very well be, at least so say the folks at the WorldNetDaily.

“Is it possible that there is a prophetic link to Donald Trump?” asks Mike Shoesmith during a recent broadcast on the Prophecy News Network.

“Could Donald Trump be a final warning to America to pay attention? To get rid of the liberal cancer which has infested the country? Could Donald Trump and his no-nonsense, anti-political-correctness speech be the final warning from God?”

And they do have a point here. The Donald does sound a lot like God, at least when he talks about women.

Here, for example, is his famous tweet after the republican debate. [His original tweet didn't include the "(NOSE).Just got on w/thought" part.]

And here are some similar-sounding tweets from God.

Thou shalt cast them away as a menstruous cloth. Isaiah 30:22

We are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rag. Isaiah 64:6

Jerusalem hath grievously sinned ... they have seen her nakedness: yea, she sigheth, and turneth backward. Her filthiness is in her skirts. Lamentations 1:8-9

Jerusalem is as a menstruous woman. Lamentations 1:17

I'm not sure which are worse, but they both speak the same language when it comes to women, and neither has time for political correctness.

So if God is looking for someone to serve as the trump of God, Donald Trump is probably the frontrunner.

16 July 2015

Alma 50: The People of Morianton

In the last chapter, the Lamanites unsuccessfully tried break through the city walls in the city of Noah in the land of Noah. Not a single Nephite was killed, and pretty much all of the Lamanites either died or they fled into the wilderness.

You'd think that Moroni would be pretty pleased with himself at this point, but he didn't rest. He continued preparing for war and fortifying his cities. He kept digging trenches and putting barricades on top of the mounds of dirt, and putting towers on top of the barricades, and pickets on top of the barricades. It gets pretty confusing, but it probably looked like this:

Amazing we've never found evidence of one, isn't it? 

And now it came to pass that Moroni did not stop making preparations for war, or to defend his people against the Lamanites; for he caused that his armies should commence in the commencement of the twentieth year of the reign of the judges, that they should commence in digging up heaps of earth round about all the cities, throughout all the land which was possessed by the Nephites. Alma 50:1 
And upon the top of these ridges of earth he caused that there should be timbers, yea, works of timbers built up to the height of a man, round about the cities. 50:2 
And he caused that upon those works of timbers there should be a frame of pickets built upon the timbers round about; and they were strong and high. 50:3 
And he caused towers to be erected that overlooked those works of pickets, and he caused places of security to be built upon those towers, that the stones and the arrows of the Lamanites could not hurt them. 50:4 
And they were prepared that they could cast stones from the top thereof, according to their pleasure and their strength, and slay him who should attempt to approach near the walls of the city. 50:5
Apparently Moroni put these same amazing defensive towers in every city in the land. Nice!
Thus Moroni did prepare strongholds against the coming of their enemies, round about every city in all the land. 50:6
Moroni also then sent his armies out and drove the Lamanites, who were in the wilderness, back to their homeland south of the land of Zarahemla. He then sent the inhabitants of Zarahemla to take over the newly cleared land, and he sent some troops to protect the southern border. He also built the same fortifications around the new land.
And it came to pass that Moroni caused that his armies should go forth into the east wilderness; yea, and they went forth and drove all the Lamanites who were in the east wilderness into their own lands, which were south of the land of Zarahemla. 50:7 
And the land of Nephi did run in a straight course from the east sea to the west. 50:8 
And it came to pass that when Moroni had driven all the Lamanites out of the east wilderness, which was north of the lands of their own possessions, he caused that the inhabitants who were in the land of Zarahemla and in the land round about should go forth into the east wilderness, even to the borders by the seashore, and possess the land. 50:9 
And he also placed armies on the south, in the borders of their possessions, and caused them to erect fortifications that they might secure their armies and their people from the hands of their enemies. 50:10 
Moroni had successfully isolated the Lamanites, and protected his people. His people flourished and his army grew, and they even founded a new city, which they called Moroni.
And thus he cut off all the strongholds of the Lamanites in the east wilderness, yea, and also on the west, fortifying the line between the Nephites and the Lamanites, between the land of Zarahemla and the land of Nephi, from the west sea, running by the head of the river Sidon -- the Nephites possessing all the land northward, yea, even all the land which was northward of the land Bountiful, according to their pleasure. 50:11 
Thus Moroni, with his armies, which did increase daily because of the assurance of protection which his works did bring forth unto them, did seek to cut off the strength and the power of the Lamanites from off the lands of their possessions, that they should have no power upon the lands of their possession. 50:12 
And it came to pass that the Nephites began the foundation of a city, and they called the name of the city Moroni; and it was by the east sea; and it was on the south by the line of the possessions of the Lamanites. 50:13
They also founded another city between the cities of Aaron and Nephi. They called it Nephihah.
And they also began a foundation for a city between the city of Moroni and the city of Aaron, joining the borders of Aaron and Moroni; and they called the name of the city, or the land, Nephihah. 50:14
And, you know, they founded a bunch of other cities in the north. One of them they called "Lehi". But those don't really matter very much. The point is, it was a really good time for the Nephites.
And they also began in that same year to build many cities on the north, one in a particular manner which they called Lehi, which was in the north by the borders of the seashore. 50:15
And in these prosperous circumstances were the people of Nephi in the commencement of the twenty and first year of the reign of the judges over the people of Nephi. 50:17
And they did prosper exceedingly, and they became exceedingly rich; yea, and they did multiply and wax strong in the land. 50:18
And here comes the time when we get to use our favorite phrase: "Dwindling in Unbelief". You see, it was a good time for the Nephites because they were faithful, and they kept the commandments of the Lord. Their wicked brethren, who didn't have faith and/or didn't keep the commandments of the Lord, were either enslaved, killed, 'Dwindled in Unbelief', or mingled with the Lamanites. As you can see, these threats just get progressively worse. What could be worse than mingling with the Lamanites?

And those who were faithful in keeping the commandments of the Lord were delivered at all times, whilst thousands of their wicked brethren have been consigned to bondage, or to perish by the sword, or to dwindle in unbelief, and mingle with the Lamanites. 50:22
There was peace for two more years (the 22nd and 23rd year of the reign of the judges), and there WOULD have been peace in the 24th year, too, but those jerks up in the land of Morianton screwed it up. They started fighting with the people in the land of Lehi over a border dispute.

And it came to pass that the twenty and second year of the reign of the judges also ended in peace; yea, and also the twenty and third year. 50:24 And it came to pass that in the commencement of the twenty and fourth year of the reign of the judges, there would also have been peace among the people of Nephi had it not been for a contention which took place among them concerning the land of Lehi, and the land of Morianton, which joined upon the borders of Lehi; both of which were on the borders by the seashore. 50:25 
For behold, the people who possessed the land of Morianton did claim a part of the land of Lehi; therefore there began to be a warm contention between them, insomuch that the people of Morianton took up arms against their brethren, and they were determined by the sword to slay them. 50:26
The people in the land of Lehi came to Moroni for assistance. When Morianton's leader (Morianton) heard that the people of Lehi went to Moroni, he was scared that Moroni might lend his army to help them. Since Moroni's army was so strong, they would be easily defeated. So he came up with a plan to flee into the north to live in the land 'O lakes. It seems as if a diplomatic solution would have been more reasonable, but for some reason he wanted to run up north.

But behold, the people who possessed the land of Lehi fled to the camp of Moroni, and appealed unto him for assistance; for behold they were not in the wrong. 50:27
And it came to pass that when the people of Morianton, who were led by a man whose name was Morianton, found that the people of Lehi had fled to the camp of Moroni, they were exceedingly fearful lest the army of Moroni should come upon them and destroy them. 50:28 
Therefore, Morianton put it into their hearts that they should flee to the land which was northward, which was covered with large bodies of water, and take possession of the land which was northward. 50:29
Here is where it gets weird. For some reason, it would have been really bad if Morianton and his crew headed up north. The author of Alma thinks it's pretty self evident that that would be a terrible thing, and that somehow a colony up north would inevitably lead to the destruction of the Nephites. It's never really explained, but before Morianton can flee north Moroni sent an army to stop them.

And behold, they would have carried this plan into effect, (which would have been a cause to have been lamented) but behold, Morianton being a man of much passion, therefore he was angry with one of his maid servants, and he fell upon her and beat her much. 50:30 
And it came to pass that she fled, and came over to the camp of Moroni, and told Moroni all things concerning the matter, and also concerning their intentions to flee into the land northward. 50:31 
Now behold, the people who were in the land Bountiful, or rather Moroni, feared that they would hearken to the words of Morianton and unite with his people, and thus he would obtain possession of those parts of the land, which would lay a foundation for serious consequences among the people of Nephi, yea, which consequences would lead to the overthrow of their liberty. 50:32 
Therefore Moroni sent an army, with their camp, to head the people of Morianton, to stop their flight into the land northward. 50:33
Moroni was clever about sending his army, though. He waited until they came to a narrow pass, by the sea, and then they had a furious battle. Pretty much their very own battle of Thermoplae.

Except in this case Leonidas is kills Xerces in hand-to-hand combat, and the Spartans win. Nice! Our hero's name is Teancum, and he killed Morianton and enslaved his army.
And it came to pass that they did not head them until they had come to the borders of the land Desolation; and there they did head them, by the narrow pass which led by the sea into the land northward, yea, by the sea, on the west and on the east. 50:34 
And it came to pass that the army which was sent by Moroni, which was led by a man whose name was Teancum, did meet the people of Morianton; and so stubborn were the people of Morianton, (being inspired by his wickedness and his flattering words) that a battle commenced between them, in the which Teancum did slay Morianton and defeat his army, and took them prisoners, and returned to the camp of Moroni. And thus ended the twenty and fourth year of the reign of the judges over the people of Nephi. 50:35
Then Nephihah, the second chief judge, suddenly dies. The records went to Alma's son, Helaman, and Nephihah's son, Pahoran, filled his seat. Nephihah was a good judge, apparently, so Poharan had some big shoes to fill.
And it came to pass that in the same year that the people of Nephi had peace restored unto them, that Nephihah, the second chief judge, died, having filled the judgment-seat with perfect uprightness before God. 50:37 
Nevertheless, he had refused Alma to take possession of those records and those things which were esteemed by Alma and his fathers to be most sacred; therefore Alma had conferred them upon his son, Helaman. 50:38 
Behold, it came to pass that the son of Nephihah was appointed to fill the judgment-seat, in the stead of his father; yea, he was appointed chief judge and governor over the people, with an oath and sacred ordinance to judge righteously, and to keep the peace and the freedom of the people, and to grant unto them their sacred privileges to worship the Lord their God, yea, to support and maintain the cause of God all his days, and to bring the wicked to justice according to their crime. 50:39 
Now behold, his name was Pahoran. And Pahoran did fill the seat of his father, and did commence his reign in the end of the twenty and fourth year, over the people of Nephi. 50:40
I guess we'll see how he does in the next few chapters!

The Human Life Commandments

  1. If a man causes the death of a fetus, he shall pay the woman's husband whatever the judges decide.
  2. If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman's husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. Exodus 21:22

  3. But if the woman is injured, the man who caused her injury shall be injured in the same way.
  4. And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life, Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe. Exodus 21:23-25

  5. Put a dollar value on human life according to the following table.
  6. The Value of Human Life
    Age Sex In Shekels of Silver In 2014 US Dollars
    less than one month
    (Newborn babies and fetuses)
    male 0 0
    female 0 0
    one month to 5 years male 5 $36.40
    female 3 $21.84
    5 to 20 years male 20 $145.60
    female 10 $72.80
    20 to 60 years male 50 $364.00
    female 30 $218.40
    over 60 years male 15 $109.20
    female 10 $72.80
    Thy estimation shall be of the male from twenty years old even unto sixty years old, even thy estimation shall be fifty shekels of silver, after the shekel of the sanctuary. And if it be a female, then thy estimation shall be thirty shekels. And if it be from five years old even unto twenty years old, then thy estimation shall be of the male twenty shekels, and for the female ten shekels. And if it be from a month old even unto five years old, then thy estimation shall be of the male five shekels of silver, and for the female thy estimation shall be three shekels of silver. And if it be from sixty years old and above; if it be a male, then thy estimation shall be fifteen shekels, and for the female ten shekels. Leviticus 27:3-7
    Every thing that openeth the matrix in all flesh, which they bring unto the LORD, whether it be of men or beasts, shall be thine: nevertheless the firstborn of man shalt thou surely redeem, and the firstling of unclean beasts shalt thou redeem. And those that are to be redeemed from a month old shalt thou redeem, according to thine estimation, for the money of five shekels, after the shekel of the sanctuary, which is twenty gerahs. Numbers 18:15-16

    The value of five shekels for humans above six months old seems to agree with the value given in Leviticus 27. But the other age/gender details are missing in Numbers 18. It's also not clear whether the five shekel value refers to firstborn humans and animals, or to humans only.

    Maimonides #227: To estimate the value of people as determined by the Torah —Lev. 27:2

  7. Humans who are devoted to God cannot be sold or redeemed.
  8. (Every devoted thing is most holy to God.)
    Notwithstanding no devoted thing, that a man shall devote unto the LORD of all that he hath, both of man and beast, and of the field of his possession, shall be sold or redeemed: every devoted thing is most holy unto the LORD. Leviticus 27:28
    Maimonides #231: Carry out the laws of interdicting possessions (cherem) — Lev. 27:28
    Maimonides #232: Not to sell the cherem — Lev. 27:28
    Maimonides #233: Not to redeem the cherem — Lev. 27:28

  9. They must be killed.
  10. None devoted, which shall be devoted of men, shall be redeemed; but shall surely be put to death. Leviticus 27:29

  11. Don't value human life.
  12. Cease ye from man, whose breath is in his nostrils: for wherein is he to be accounted of? Isaiah 2:22

09 July 2015

Has Doug Wilson changed his mind about the "wonderful issue" of slavery?

Doug Wilson has had a rough couple of weeks. Same-sex marriage is legal throughout the U.S., Affordable Health Care has been upheld, and the Confederate battle flag is coming down across the south.

So when he saw Matthew Vines's 40 questions for Christians who oppose marriage equality, he just had to respond.

Here's how he answered question #16:

Do you think supporting same-sex marriage is a more serious problem than supporting slavery?

Yes, far more serious.

This has caused a bit of an uproar, since everyone today (including nearly all Christians) considers slavery intrinsically evil.

But Doug Wilson isn't like most Christians. Here's what he said about slavery back in 2005 (emphasis added):

[N]othing is clearer – the New Testament opposes anything like the abolitionism of our country prior to the War Between the States. The New Testament contains many instructions for Christian slave owners, and requires a respectful submissive demeanor for Christian slaves. See, for example, Eph. 6:5-9, Col. 3:22-4:1, and 1 Tim. 6:1-5. . . .

The reason why many Christians will be tempted to dismiss the arguments presented here is that we have said (out loud) that a godly man could have been a slave owner. But this 'inflammatory' position is the very point upon which the Bible speaks most directly, again and again. In other words, more people will struggle with what we are saying at the point where the Bible speaks most clearly. There is no exegetical vagueness here. Not only is the Bible not politically correct, it was not politically correct one hundred thirty years ago. . . .

This entire issue of slavery is a wonderful issue upon which to practice. Our humanistic and democratic culture regards slavery in itself as a monstrous evil, and acts as though this were self-evidently true. The Bible permits Christians to own slaves, provided they are treated well. You are a Christian. Whom do you believe?

He also wrote two booklets defending slavery in the Pre-Civil War South: "Southern Slavery As it Was" and "Black and Tan." (The latter was a re-write of the former to address plagiarism concerns.)

Here are some excepts:

Slavery as it existed in the South was not an adversarial relationship with pervasive racial animosity. ... There has never been a multi-racial society which has existed with such mutual intimacy and harmony in the history of the world. The credit for this must go to the predominance of Christianity.

Slaves were well-treated and often had a deep loyalty to, and affection for, their masters.

The slaves were not stolen cars; they were human beings — and the many Christians who treated them lawfully were in no way disobedient.

The abolitionists maintained that slave-owning was inherently immoral under any circumstance. But in this matter, the Christians who owned slaves in the South were on firm scriptural ground. ... Provided he owns them in conformity to Christ's laws for such situations, the Bible is clear that Christians may own slaves.

Slave life was to them a life of plenty, of simple pleasures, of food, clothes, and good medical care.

Slavery produced in the South a genuine affection between the races that we believe we can say has never existed in any nation before the War or since.

One could argue that the black family has never been stronger than it was under slavery. It was certainly stronger under the southern slave system that it is today under our modern destructive welfare state.

The issue of slavery was used to provoke a revolution in 1861. That revolution has continued to this day, and slavery has increased in our land as a result. It is time for us to stand and declare the truth about slavery and to expose the failures of the abolitionist worldview.

[I]t has been estimated that (with the possible exception of Cromwell's army) the Confederate Army was the largest body of evangelicals under arms in the history of the world.

But Doug Wilson doesn't talk (out loud) about the wonderful issue of slavery very much anymore. And when he does he says as little as possible. (Like he did when answering Question 16.)

Here, for example, is what he said yesterday on his blog (while defending his beloved Confederate flag and attacking "Sodomites"):

This is not a contrast between those who want slavery and others who don’t. It is a contrast between different reasons for opposing slavery. ... Christian opposition to slavery is quite different.
So I guess Pastor Wilson has changed his mind about slavery. The old Doug said, "The Bible permits Christians to own slaves." But the new Doug is opposed to slavery. (For "quite different" but unspecified reasons.)

I wonder how long it will be before he changes his mind about Leviticus 20:13.

(It looks to me like he already has.)

08 July 2015

The Bible's Dietary Commandments

  1. Be a vegan.
  2. And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat. Genesis 1:29

  3. Be an omnivore.
  4. Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things. Genesis 9:3

  5. Don't eat blood.
  6. But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, shall ye not eat. Genesis 9:4

    It shall be a perpetual statute for your generations throughout all your dwellings, that ye eat neither fat nor blood. Leviticus 3:17

    Ye shall eat no manner of blood, whether it be of fowl or of beast, in any of your dwellings. Leviticus 7:26

    No soul of you shall eat blood, neither shall any stranger that sojourneth among you eat blood. ... Ye shall eat the blood of no manner of flesh: for the life of all flesh is the blood thereof. Leviticus 17:12-14

    Ye shall not eat any thing with the blood. Leviticus 19:26

    Ye shall not eat the blood; ye shall pour it upon the earth as water. Deuteronomy 12:16

    Thou shalt not eat the blood thereof; thou shalt pour it upon the ground as water. Deuteronomy 15:23

    Abstain ... from blood. Acts 15:20

    It seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us ... that ye abstain ... from blood. Acts 15:28-29

    As touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written and concluded that they observe no such thing, save only that they keep themselves ... from blood. Acts 21:25

    Maimonides #192: Not to eat blood —Lev. 3:17

  7. Don't eat any animal (or its fat) that died of natural causes or was killed by other animals.
  8. Neither shall ye eat any flesh that is torn of beasts in the field. Exodus 22:31

    And the fat of the beast that dieth of itself, and the fat of that which is torn with beasts ... ye shall in no wise eat of it. Leviticus 7:24

    That which dieth of itself, or is torn with beasts, he shall not eat to defile himself therewith. Leviticus 22:8

    Maimonides #190: Not to eat meat of an animal that was mortally wounded — Ex. 22:30

  9. If you find an animal that has died of natural causes or was killed by other animals, feed it to the dogs or strangers, or sell it to aliens.
  10. Flesh that is torn of beasts in the field; ye shall cast it to the dogs. Exodus 22:31

    Ye shall not eat of anything that dieth of itself: thou shalt give it unto the stranger that is in thy gates, that he may eat it; or thou mayest sell it unto an alien. Deuteronomy 14:21

  11. Don't eat any fat, not even in your own home.
  12. (All the fat is the Lord's.)
    All the fat is the LORD's. It shall be a perpetual statute for your generations throughout all your dwellings, that ye eat neither fat nor blood. Leviticus 3:16-17

    Ye shall eat no manner of fat, of ox, or of sheep, or of goat. Leviticus 7:23

    Maimonides #193: Not to eat certain fats of clean animals — Lev. 3:17

  13. Don't eat camels, conies, hares, or swine.
  14. These shall ye not eat of them that chew the cud, or of them that divide the hoof: as the camel, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the coney, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the hare, because he cheweth the cud, but divideth not the hoof; he is unclean unto you. And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat. Leviticus 11:4-8

    Nevertheless these ye shall not eat of them that chew the cud, or of them that divide the cloven hoof; as the camel, and the hare, and the coney: for they chew the cud, but divide not the hoof; therefore they are unclean unto you. And the swine, because it divideth the hoof, yet cheweth not the cud, it is unclean unto you: ye shall not eat of their flesh. Deuteronomy 14:7-8

    Maimonides #180: Not to eat non-kosher animals — Lev. 11:4

  15. Eat animals that live in water and have fins and scales.
  16. These shall ye eat of all that are in the waters: whatsoever hath fins and scales in the waters, in the seas, and in the rivers, them shall ye eat. Leviticus 11:9

    These ye shall eat of all that are in the waters: all that have fins and scales shall ye eat. Deuteronomy 14:9

    Maimonides #178: To examine the signs of fish to distinguish between kosher and non-kosher — Lev. 11:9

  17. Don't eat animals that live in the water but don't have fins or scales.
  18. (They are abominations.)
    All that have not fins and scales in the seas, and in the rivers, of all that move in the waters, and of any living thing which is in the waters, they shall be an abomination unto you: They shall be even an abomination unto you; ye shall not eat of their flesh. Ye shall have their carcases in abomination. Whatsoever hath no fins nor scales in the waters, that shall be an abomination unto you. Leviticus 11:10-12

    Whatsoever hath not fins and scales ye may not eat; it is unclean unto you. Deuteronomy 14:10

    Maimonides #182: Not to eat non-kosher fish — Lev. 11:11

  19. The following birds are abominations: eagles, vultures, ospreys, kites, ravens, owls, nighthawks, hawks, cuckoos, cormorants, swans, pelicans, storks, herons, lapwings, and bats. Don't eat them.
  20. And these are they which ye shall have in abomination among the fowls; they shall not be eaten, they are an abomination: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray, And the vulture, and the kite after his kind; Every raven after his kind; And the owl, and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind, And the little owl, and the cormorant, and the great owl, And the swan, and the pelican, and the gier eagle, And the stork, the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat. Leviticus 11:13-19

    But these are they of which ye shall not eat: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray, And the glede, and the kite, and the vulture after his kind, And every raven after his kind, And the owl, and the night hawk, and the cuckow, and the hawk after his kind, The little owl, and the great owl, and the swan, And the pelican, and the gier eagle, and the cormorant, And the stork, and the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat. Deuteronomy 14:12-18

    Maimonides #181: Not to eat non-kosher fowl — Lev. 11:13

  21. Don't eat fowls that creep and walk upon all four.
  22. (They are abominations.)
    All fowls that creep, going upon all four, shall be an abomination unto you. Leviticus 11:20

    Every creeping thing that flieth is unclean unto you: they shall not be eaten. Deuteronomy 14:19

  23. Eat flying creeping things that walk on four with legs above their feet. Among these are locusts, beetles, and grasshoppers.
  24. Yet these may ye eat of every flying creeping thing that goeth upon all four, which have legs above their feet, to leap withal upon the earth; Even these of them ye may eat; the locust after his kind, and the bald locust after his kind, and the beetle after his kind, and the grasshopper after his kind. But all other flying creeping things, which have four feet, shall be an abomination unto you. Leviticus 11:21-23
    Maimonides #179: To examine the signs of locusts to distinguish between kosher and non-kosher — Lev. 11:21

  25. Don't eat creeping things that creep on the earth.
  26. (They are abominations.)
    And every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth shall be an abomination; it shall not be eaten. Leviticus 11:41
    Maimonides #184: Not to eat non-kosher creatures that crawl on land — Lev. 11:41

  27. Don't eat any animal that crawls on its belly, goes on all four, or has lots of feet.
  28. (They are all abominations.)
    Whatsoever goeth upon the belly, and whatsoever goeth upon all four, or whatsoever hath more feet among all creeping things that creep upon the earth, them ye shall not eat; for they are an abomination. Leviticus 11:42
    Maimonides #186: Not to eat worms found in fruit on the ground — Lev. 11:42

  29. Don't eat any abominable thing.
  30. Thou shalt not eat any abominable thing. Deuteronomy 14:3
    Maimonides #392: Not to eat sacrifices which have become unfit or blemished — Deut. 14:3

  31. Eat these animals: oxen, sheep, goats, harts, roebucks, fallow deer, pygargs, and chamois.
  32. These are the beasts which ye shall eat: the ox, the sheep, and the goat, The hart, and the roebuck, and the fallow deer, and the wild goat, and the pygarg, and the wild ox, and the chamois. Deuteronomy 14:4-5

  33. Eat clean birds.
  34. Of all clean birds ye shall eat. Deuteronomy 14:11

    All clean fowls ye may eat. Deuteronomy 14:20

    Maimonides #177: To examine the signs of fowl to distinguish between kosher and non-kosher — Deut. 14:11

  35. Eat your firstborn bulls and sheep in the place where God chooses.
  36. All the firstling males that come of thy herd and of thy flock ... thou shalt eat it before the LORD thy God year by year in the place which the LORD shall choose, thou and thy household. Deuteronomy 15:19-20

  37. Eat honey.
  38. Eat thou honey, because it is good. Proverbs 24:13

  39. Don't eat too much honey.
  40. Hast thou found honey? eat so much as is sufficient for thee, lest thou be filled therewith, and vomit it. Proverbs 25:16

  41. Eat bread with joy.
  42. Go thy way, eat thy bread with joy. Ecclesiastes 9:7

  43. Pay no attention to what you eat or drink.
  44. Take no thought for ... what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink. Matthew 6:25, Luke 12:22

    Take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? Matthew 6:31

    Seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink. Luke 12:29

    Let no man therefore judge you in meat or drink. Colossians 2:16

    Every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving. 1 Timothy 4:4

  45. Eat Jesus's body and drink his blood.
  46. (Or you'll have no life in you.)
    Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you. John 6:53-54

  47. Kill and eat animals.
  48. Peter went up upon the housetop to pray about the sixth hour: And he became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance, And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending upon him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth: Wherein were all manner of fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air. And there came a voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat. Acts 10:9-13

    in a trance I saw a vision, A certain vessel descend, as it had been a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came even to me: Upon the which when I had fastened mine eyes, I considered, and saw fourfooted beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air. And I heard a voice saying unto me, Arise, Peter; slay and eat. Acts 11:5-7

  49. Abstain from meats offered to idols.
  50. (This seemed like a good rule to the Holy Ghost.)
    Abstain from pollutions of idols. Acts 15:20

    It seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us ... that ye abstain from meats offered to idols. Acts 15:28-29

    As touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written and concluded that they observe no such thing, save only that they keep themselves from things offered to idols. Acts 21:25

    But if any man say unto you, This is offered in sacrifice unto idols, eat not for his sake that shewed it, and for conscience sake: for the earth is the Lord's, and the fulness thereof: 1 Corinthians 10:28

  51. Abstain from strangled things.
  52. (This also seemed good to the Holy Ghost.)
    Abstain ... from things strangled. Acts 15:20

    It seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us ... that ye abstain ... from things strangled. Acts 15:28-29

    As touching the Gentiles which believe, we have written and concluded that they observe no such thing, save only that they keep themselves ... from strangled. Acts 25

  53. Don't judge those with different dietary preferences.
  54. Let not him that eateth despise him that eateth not; and let not him which eateth not judge him that eateth. Romans 14:3

  55. Don't destroy a vegetarian by serving meat.
  56. (For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink.)
    If thy brother be grieved with thy meat, now walkest thou not charitably. Destroy not him with thy meat, for whom Christ died. Let not then your good be evil spoken of: For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink. Romans 14:15-17

  57. Eat whatever is sold at the store.
  58. (Don't let your conscience bother you.)
    Whatsoever is sold in the shambles, that eat, asking no question for conscience sake. 1 Corinthians 10:25

  59. If you are invited to dinner at an unbeliever's house, eat whatever is set before you.
  60. (Don't let your conscience bother you.)
    If any of them that believe not bid you to a feast, and ye be disposed to go; whatsoever is set before you, eat, asking no question for conscience sake. 1 Corinthians 10:27