David brought up a good topic looking for the same ideas I'm looking for. What can you say to someone who basically says "Obedience to God *is* right and *is* what makes me moral". I know they're giving you basically nothing to go on here. Where do you start with that one?
Knowledge of God comes from the bible, right? I can't think of any other place where information of God comes from. Everything else refers to the bible, so what about the bible?
Is every single thing in the bible true? Is the Earth really the center of the Universe? If not, why was it written, and what else might not be true?
What things in the old, and especially the new testament are generally avoided by believers because they know are false? Why do they think they can pick and choose what to believe in the bible, and what not to believe?
Reasoning facts doesn't help. I think we need to debunk their only source of knowledge.
Then they shouldn't be allowed to play with the toys we've created, like cellphones, cloth weaving machines, or use fire. Also, they don't get medicine either if they want to play that way.
They can just rub aloe juice on their tumors while chewing on abandoned carcass meat while sitting around a cold rock.
I do like what FinallyFreeFromReligion has to say about debunking the bible.
Joseph P. is correct though. A couple weeks ago I heard someone say something to the effect that he wasn't open minded about religion, and he didn't care what other people said because it keeps him sober.
There's an interesting firestorm going on between the Pharyngula site, and Ken Ham's FaceBook page today. Ken never linked to PZ's blog entry that he's blasting, and even the most mild mannered comments of question get deleted from his page. One person simply put the link up, and his comment was deleted. That, and the comments others have written that haven't been deleted as good examples of what Joseph is talking about in my opinion. Most never even saw the blog entry they're ripping apart.
"the aim is to convince the next generation of potential true believers"
I know a non-believer who joined a church so her kids can "learn to be good" [sigh]
What can you say to someone who basically says "Obedience to God *is* right and *is* what makes me moral".
There are many occasions when God orders his followers to kill people: He asked Abraham to kill Isaac (it didn't happen, but he did ask). He told Moses and the Levites to kill the people worshipping the golden calf - and they killed 3,000 in one day. He told the Israelites to kill an old man for picking up sticks on the sabbath and they went right ahead and killed the poor guy.
So ask the Christian: "If God asked you to kill someone, would you do it? Yes or No?"
If they answer "yes" it is clear that they are not moral.
If they answer "no" they are saying that they live by a moral code that is independent of God.
So they try to avoid the question with, "God would never ask me to kill anyone." But as I have just explained, God DOES ask people to kill for him.
It's amazing the number of Christians who cannot bring themselves to answer with a plain and simple "No".
It is also a little disconcerting to discover that some of them will answer, "Yes".
I like to bring it even closer to reality.
God told Andrea Yates to kill her children. Clearly, God didn't send an angel to tell her that He was just kidding, as He did with Abraham and Isaac, so He really wanted her to go through with it. Was Andrea Yates acting morally?
Some will immediately grasp the comparison, between insanity and talking to God, which I feel explains every bit of God's interaction with the prophets and the others who spoke with God. Others will try some bullshit about how of course Andrea Yates was insane, but Abraham was really speaking to God.
That's when you're allowed to laugh at them. Mockery can sometimes have an effect, and if they're that far gone, there's certainly nothing to lose by using such a harsh tactic.