I have been thinking of the wording for this post for a few days. That isn't to say I will be able to form a
coherent thought, but I'll attempt one. Let's start out with a parallel. Season 1, episode 14 from
Farscape beautifully illustrates what I am trying to say. To those not familiar with the sci-fi masterpiece,
you can skip to the next paragraph. Crichton is stuck on a planet with some colonists that have resorted
to tribal living and religion. The old religious text can only be read by the high priestess. Rigel the 10th,
an ancestor of Rigal the 16th used to be the ruler of the tribes ancestors and once they see Rigel, they
worship him as a god. Rigal maintains that he is not a god and nearly gets burned alive at the prodding
of the high priestess who insists that the ancient Hynerian texts speak of a savior that will raise them
into the sky. Rigal does eventually get his power chair working and fulfills the "prophecy." Happy
ending.

In that same van ride a few days ago, I was listening to the Christian radio station and they said
something about "worshiping the Bible." There was more said, but that was my moment to shut them
down and start thinking. The best place to begin is debatable, so I'll start here: Can God change his
mind? I can find no consensus on this from a quick search, so I'll give a smattering of both sides. On the one, "God is the same yesterday, today, and forever." Sorry, I can not find where this quote comes from. Malachi wrote, "For I, Jehovah, change not....." (3:6). “The Lord has sworn and will not change His mind (Psalm 110:4). These are only a few examples. On the change side, we see Exodus 32:14: "And the LORD repented of the evil which he thought to do unto his people." Psalm 106:45:"And he remembered for them his covenant, and repented according to the multitude of his mercies." I am not writing about contradictions here. The text can be twisted by cunning minds to say anything. Two
contradictory statements can be harmonized on any subject. How many angels were sitting on the rock
at Jesus' tomb? One gospel says 1, another says 2. How do you reconcile this? Well, if there was two
angels, there must have been at least one angel there, right? My opinion, as an atheist, is that if there
was a Christian god, then one of the qualities would have to be omnipotence; all-powerful. A being that
was all powerful could change their mind. If they couldn't, and humans can, then humans have a power that surpasses a god. I know a few people that will disagree with me on this. I only include this long
explanation to lay the groundwork for a premise.

The Bible, as it is written today, is pretty much "set in stone." There are billions of copies around the
world and changing the text would be next to impossible. The Bible is known as the , "word of God."
Most believers make the distinction that it is not God, just the inspired message of God. So far so good?
Let's review: God can change his mind. The Bible is the word of God, it is not actually God.

Next, morality. From Wikipedia, "The
Euthyphro dilemma is found in Plato's dialogue Euthyphro, in which Socrates asks Euthyphro: "Is the
pious loved by the gods because it is pious, or is it pious because it is loved by the gods?" Is something
good because God says it, or does good exist despite God? If God were to ask you to smash children's heads against some rocks, is
it good because He told you to do it? If God asked you to kill someone, would you? Ninety percent of
the time, the answer is, "God would not ask me to do that." The other ten percent would want to look in
the Bible to see if it was consistent with God's word. Now I get to the whole purpose of this writing. As
with the Farscape episode I started with, God, or in the show's case the same thing, was saying one
thing and the people would not listen. If a believer gets a message from God to do something they don't agree with, they will defer to the Bible to verify it. If God can change his mind, then what God wills might not be in the Bible. This means that the Bible becomes, for all intents and purposes, the final
arbiter in what a believer will do. This means, effectively, the Bible becomes, God. A message that
actually came from God would not be followed unless it squared with the recipient's interpretation of
the Bible. A Bible that has been compiled, translated, and piously interpolated for centuries. So, if you
were to receive a message from God, would you find a justification to carry it out, or would you run it
through your own moral filter and decide to act on it?

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Comment by Rosemary LYNDALL WEMM on May 15, 2009 at 12:39pm
I have just written an essay which is related to your thinking. You might like to check it out.

http://www.atheistnexus.org/profiles/blogs/what-if-your-god-is-not-always

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