Do we prevent somebody being hurt by superstition or faith by rejecting and challenging those things? 

Is it mistaken to support organised religion in membership or donations?

If people do good because they are human, not because God prompts them then is it right to risk giving God any credit when they alone own their good?

Patrick H

Why Christianity is Useless
Christianity is useless.

To say that seems too negative and extreme. Let us see.


Mormon founder Joseph Smith said Jesus in a vision did not think so: "My object in going to inquire of the Lord was to know which of all the sects was right, that I might know which to join. No sooner, therefore, did I get possession of myself, so as to be able to speak, than I asked the Personages who stood above me in the light, which of all the sects was right (for at this time it had never entered into my heart that all were wrong)—and which I should join.
I was answered that I must join none of them, for they were all wrong; and the Personage who addressed me said that all their creeds were an abomination in his sight; that those professors were all corrupt; that: “they draw near to me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me, they teach for doctrines the commandments of men, having a form of godliness, but they deny the power thereof.”   He again forbade me to join with any of them; and many other things did he say unto me, which I cannot write at this time."


Jesus in the gospels says, "You unbelieving generation, how long shall I stay with you? How long shall I put up with you?" and "Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.  They worship me in vain; their teachings are merely human rules.  You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions.”  And, "when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?"

Many atheists insist that in the past, the good works and scientific discoveries attributed to Christians were a case of where and people had to say they were Christian to get the chance to make those achievements. Christians state that the atheists are keen to say Christianity has committed many atrocities and has done much harm but they are unwilling to praise its good points. They see this as a double-standard.

It is not.

Christians say when Christians do wrong they are considered to be real Christians and when they do right they are really just fake or nominal Christians. This means that the Christians can deny that Christians ever do wrong for those that do cease to be Christian until they repent! They don't allow for the possibility the atheist doing wrong is not acting as an atheist.
And it does not follow that just because Christians do good that means Christianity has done good. People and their faith are two distinct things.

Christianity teaches that our reason has been distorted and warped since the fall of Adam and Eve which is why we are prone to sin and to refuse the happiness of a relationship with God. The fall need not have effected our reason. God then must have done a miracle to make sure that it would. CS Lewis said that we can't really know anything if our mental faculties and our reason are unreliable. Once you ditch reason you cannot use reason to argue that reason is or can be reliable! The Christians say that if our reason is caused by blind forces and a material process in the atheist Darwinian way then we cannot trust it. But we know by experience that we can. It doesn't matter how it was made or came to be - we can trust in it. Therefore it is irrational to say we need to believe in God in order to trust our reason. Christianity undermines reason. If atheist Darwinism undermines it too then it at least is not as bad. Go for the lesser evil.

Christians like their beliefs because they think it gives them comfort. Many of them take great comfort in the thought that those of different religions or who they consider immoral will go to Hell forever. The fact that the beliefs give them comfort does not automatically mean that they are wrong. Nor does it mean that they necessarily only have the beliefs for the sake of the comfort.
What do people follow Christianity for?

The reasons that most give, that their community does it and their parents did it so they do it, are not reasons. It wouldn’t do to dignify them even as excuses.

The more thoughtful will say one or more of the following,

a) Christianity makes me feel good and is a source of comfort to me.

That is not a reason for following Christianity and any religion can comfort you and some better than others. There are other religions and philosophies if you’d just get up and look into them. Work out what the best and most sensible one is and follow that.
This reason is the main reason people are religious. But curiously it is against your religion to use this reason. The greatest commandment in Christianity is to love God with all your heart and the second greatest to love others. But the reason starts with self-fulfilment. It should start with God. The person is only superficially Christian.
It is usually liberal Christianity that cares about or stresses the feel-good factor. Liberal Christianity is really just a distortion of Christianity. Many believers claim allegiance to Christ and the Church and distort their teaching and it is no surprise if whole denominations do the same. The fact of the matter is that liberal Christianity believes that God should be obeyed whether his dictates make sense to us or not just as much as fundamentalist Christianity does. It is just that the liberals think God has different dictates to what the fundamentalists say he has.


Fundamentalists are regarded as dangerous and a threat to science and truth. But the liberal only seems to be better. The underlying attitudes with all their dangers are still there. A liberal is nothing more than a fundamentalist who believes God isn't too fussy about what people believe and do.
People think it is those who take their Bibles literally who go out and persecute and cause trouble in the world. It is not their taking their Bibles literally at all that is the problem. It is their accepting the Bible as the word of God that is the problem. It is because of that that they may take it literally. A religion that tells the people the Bible is the word of God is saying that if it should be taken literally then take it literally - take the Bible as it was meant.
There are many forms of liberalism and most of them still think there is an everlasting Hell for sinners but choose to believe that few go there. Liberals have a weaker faith than fundamentalists. Fundamentalism is intolerant for it argues that its views are right and can be known to be true. It is actually more malicious for liberals who may admit the feebleness of the evidence for Christianity to teach Hell than for a cocksure fundamentalist to do it for the fundamentalist may think he or she has solid evidence for his or her fundamentalist faith.
Think about Christianity and its being a host of different Churches. The most basic religious idea they have then is, "I belong to my Church or version of the faith not yours." This translates as, "I am different from you." This is the language of division and promoting division. Differences are fine but religious differences just are not needed. If we had a spiritual supermarket style religion that provided a few basics but helped provide people with whatever religious turn-ons they wanted it would be so much better.
There is pride in the Christian. The Christian may read a book refuting the existence of God by a top scientist or philosopher and still follow his Church and not believe the book. So the Christian refuses to listen to the learned.


Why is it so important to religionists to put out their ethics but have little or no concern about how and why most people disobey the moral codes? Is it because they hope for a miraculous change – do they think knowing the moral truth magically increases the odds of living that truth?  They keep hoping that the incorrigible will change even when the evidence is that they don't.  That is a clear example of religion promoting doctrines and sacraments to give useless help.  Grace becomes an excuse for doing something about the problem that may as well amount to nothing. 
Christian leaders deny responsibility for the evils their doctrines do. For example, the pope refuses to contemplate the fact that he may be wrong to forbid contraception under all circumstances and so is responsible for the damage he does. He believes that he can't be wrong but even that if he is it is not his problem for he is sincere. But could Jack the Ripper get off the hook for killing prostitutes when killing them stopped them from spreading life-threatening diseases? If that was his reason and no matter how sincere he was, it would not change a thing. What he did was reprehensible. Believing one can't be wrong when one does grave harm by ones commands and teachings speaks more of the arrogance of the person and how arrogance is put before all else. Such a person would necessarily be responsible for the evil they cause because their beliefs are more about being evil and proud than caring for others. Portraying them as caring is part of what the arrogance is about. If somebody doesn't foresee the evil that results from their actions or teachings and doesn't intend the evil are they still responsible for the evil? Not foreseeing will get nobody off the hook if what is foreseen could or should have been foreseen. And we must always try to do what we hope has the most good in it. If I have to hurt John to save Mary I may not be blamed for doing so but I am still responsible and need to make it up to John. If the pope wants wives to suffer because they believe in his authority he should sell his artworks and give them some compensation. If I go insane and hurt somebody, I still owe them some amends for somebody has to make amends. The vast majority of all people in the world and the vast majority of Catholics pay little attention to the pope's wishes and commands. When something is as irrelevant and unnecessary as the pope is doing harm with its teaching the more evil it is for it to teach doctrines that cause harm.

b) Christianity is good for it tells us how to be good and people don’t know the difference between right and wrong these days.
Jesus himself said that wolves come dressed as lambs to oppose God by seeming to be his friends.

Christianity is not good. It tells God to kill people if he wants "God and Father, thy will not mine be done". This is total fanaticism when we are more sure others exist than that God does. If God appeared and asked you, "It is my will that the babies in the hospital die of a flesh-eating bug. Do you want me to do this?" you would have to say, "Yes Lord. You are always right so your will be done."

Fear is the cause of every single personality defect and psychological disorder. Religion increases fear with its doctrines about a punishing God and unending Hellfire. If you were free from fear you would not need religion so religion is always a sign of a personality/emotional disorder.
Do you need fear? You might think you do when a bus is hurtling along in your path to get out of the way. You need to feel fear but to think quick and react quickly and get out of the way. When fear takes over you could do the wrong thing. Then it is the fear that is in control and not you.
The good Christians do could be natural human goodness. It might be what they would be doing anyway even if they were not Christians. They could be doing it out of superstition. Christianity claims to not be superstition. But it is possible to follow a non-superstitious religion out of superstitious motives. It is also possible to imagine you believe in a religion while you are only assuming it is true. You just can't prove Christianity itself is good. People doing good in the name of religion does not mean that the religion is good for evil is a mixture of good and bad anyway.

The doctrine of everlasting inescapable retribution in Hell doesn’t stop you doing wrong. It only stops you doing it with the intention to separate from God.

There is no evidence in favour of the divine and therefore good origin for this sinister religion of Christ at all so how could it be good or advisable to follow it? What use is it to encourage good behaviour when the wrong reasons are given for being good? That only produces deceit and hypocrisy. To be really good you have to be good for the right reasons. People will find out if goodness is a sham and that will lead to the collapse of civilisation so you have to be right.

You don’t accuse people of murder without very strong proof. Yet Christians are routinely instructed to accuse themselves and others of a worse crime, the crime of deserving endless punishment. Imagine how strong the proof would need to be for that and they cannot give it! That crime is so bad that it cancels out any good the religion would do just like committing murder takes away any right to the comforts you earned before you murdered.

There is no excuse. We condemn mothers who leave their seven year old sons or daughters in the house alone and go out at night even when we are sure they would never harm their child and that they meant no harm and they need to be corrected and exposed by the law. Why should religion get away with what it does? And its sincerity is anything but credible.

It is illogical to point to this good and that good and then to say that Christianity has some use. This good will still happen without it. Christianity is useless for it is human nature that produces the good. We prefer the desire we have to the desired so it is human nature not religion that produces good.

There is no use in religion boasting that it is good for the world when it cannot prove that it or its believers have the right motives. We can prove it for our doctrine that self-love is the root of all good and makes good attractive shows that when a person loves themselves they are good to others for the right reasons for it is nice to love yourself and enjoyable. Christianity offers a God whose most dedicated believers love to disobey for serving him is a chore and so few do it.

Christianity says that we must love the sinner and hate the sin. Jesus said that we should prefer our arm cut off it leads us to sin implying that we should hate it unnaturally. Sins are not made to suffer for being bad but the sinner so we dismiss the allegation that we can hate sin only and not the sinner as a hypocritical farce. The sinner hates people having a bad attitude towards him in case it will lead them to harm him. Their bad attitude towards the sin does the same thing. So there is no practical difference between hating the sin and hating the sinner and therefore between loving the sinner and loving the sin.

The more Christians hate sin the more they hate the sinner. And the idea that God is going to be good to us forever implies that God should receive unlimited service from us which suggests that sin is infinitely bad and should be hated with all our power for the more we love God the more we hate what he hates. We have to prefer a person to drop dead than to for them to sin.
We have a bad enough tendency to focus on a bad thing a person died to the disregard of the good they have done which will be far greater without Christianity trying to make it worse by taking sin with infinite seriousness.
It has been said that the best argument for Christianity is that it works and people are led by it to live holy lives and do good works. If that is true, then merely intellectual arguments for the faith will not have much effect. The bad and lukewarm example of most Christians certainly is to blame for Christianity being in its current moribund state. Christianity has always been mostly a half-dead corpse with most people not living impressive lives. There is nothing remarkable or evidently supernatural about the good lives of Christians. There is nothing to set it apart from natural human goodness.

c) Christianity is true so I have to follow it.
Christianity, like everything that uses the Machiavellian ways of politics, has the appearance of truth if you don’t look too closely. Its apologists use the following tricks. They present the evidence for what they believe and ignore the greater evidences against it. For example, they tell you that Jesus proved he was a supernatural messenger who should be given control of our lives when he rose from the dead. But if Jesus misled us all the resurrections in the world cannot make him right. So we are back where we started. What they don’t tell you is that miracles cannot be signs and only a phoney would do them. Even the Bible at times denies that miracles are signs.  If you believe in miracles, then when you find the smoking gun in Kelly’s hand and a body at her feet you cannot say it proves she shot the person. Miracles threaten evidence and sometimes make it entirely useless so one would have a nerve saying that a miracle is evidence for anything.
They lie that Jesus must have risen from the dead for he couldn’t have been stolen. But they only assume this. Even the Bible doesn’t actually say he couldn’t have been stolen. It just says the tomb was empty. And as for the body being raised it could have risen in the thief’s lair. And there are no first-hand reports of anybody touching the risen Jesus so was it a ghost claiming to be a resurrected man that they saw? They lie for they ignore the discoveries of scholarship except when it suits them.

Another trick is to dismiss something that contradicts their view and give a bad reason for doing that. For example, the Christian says that Jesus was the Son of God for he rose from the dead and that he has the best evidence for his claims. But the fact is that there are scores of people who did better than Jesus. The Catholic saints have done miracles and raised people from the dead and made claims inconsistent with the scriptures. Hindu saints have done miracles too. We can trust these witnesses better rather than the nebulous apostles for we don’t know the apostles as well. The saints are certainly claiming to be gods who are superior to almighty God. They claim that God is influenced by their prayers. But you cannot influence an all good and all-powerful and all intelligent being for he knows what is best already. They did miracles to testify to their divinity as saints. They lied that their miracles were designed to glorify Jesus their God. So the miracles verify the deity of the saints instead of God!
If you tell a Protestant apologist all this he will simply say that Catholic miracles are lacking in credibility and that the uniqueness of the case for Jesus is intact. But that is not good enough and it is obvious to him that it is not. You can’t dismiss something so complicated in a sentence.  That is bias.

Another trick is the straw man approach in which they misstate their opponents’ claims and then ridicule their misrepresentation.

Another trick is to simply tell a good lie. For example, Christians say the gospels not contradicting one another is a miracle and an evidence for Christianity being true. But if you start out with the unwarranted assumption that the gospels or any books agree you will soon get the contradictions to fit. So they lie about their assumption making evidence and then condemn anybody that believes and then falls away!

Another trick is when somebody makes a clear and simple refutation of what they teach they think of as many objections – useless ones and weak ones and stronger ones - as they can in order to stop you from seeing the force of the refutation. Magicians do this with rabbits and hankies and it can be done with facts far more easily. The bulk of the objections makes what they say look possible and gives the impression that they can handle the objection for people are lazy and like to be told what to think a lot.

For example, when you tell them that Jesus erred when he said we should love the Lord with all our hearts which is fanaticism they will say that you have not much to love if you want to love anything else and that you have to put something first so it should be God and that Jesus was proven to be God and so what he said was right and they will go on and on and on and give you many examples of what bad things people did supposedly because they believed that love started with themselves. But the fact is that it is fanatical and they are trying to block you from seeing how obviously fanatical it is by bombarding you with facts and making you unwilling and scared to think.

Another trick is to make you feel terrible about wondering say if God existed or if Jesus were the Son of God. This hypnotises you to be prejudiced when you hear criticism of them and to prevent it from sinking in to be thought about objectively.

Another gimmick is to appeal to the testimony of scholars and renowned theologians as evidence. For example, Josh McDowell’s Evidence that Demands a Verdict is full of testimonies backing up conservative Christian dogma from Bible scholars and philosophers and historians. He speaks of those who said there was a man called Jesus. But an atheist could get as many testimonies from people who said that Jesus never existed. And what use is it for Christians when some saint says that Jesus existed for the saint was not an eyewitness. Different scholars interpret the evidence differently and many are biased. There are many who believe that Jesus did not exist and hold it or unjust reasons just as there are those who believe that he did exist for the wrong reasons and prejudices. The fact is it is not what the scholars say that matters it is what the evidence says. Atheism depends on sound simple principles and is protection against religion and its conjuring tricks.

Another trick is to seem to answer an objection while not doing it at all. For example, if you tell a Muslim or a Christian that it is arrogance to claim that you to have to be a Muslim or a Christian to be saved they will tell you that it was Allah or Jesus that made the claim not them.  So that gets them off the hook! Now suppose I was full of pride and arrogance. If I claimed that God told me I was better than anybody else now would that help? Would that make any difference? Besides Allah or Jesus saying the religions of Islam and Christ respectively are the only way to salvation does not automatically mean that these faiths are not being arrogant!
The claim is also saying that if you come to Islam or Christianity with an open mind you will see that it is the only faith that could be true for Allah and Jesus are supposed to want all to be saved. This discriminates unjustly against people who have different perceptions of evidence and different beliefs and experiences that determine that perception. It tells us we should all think the same way which is fascist for we know that the reason that we are all different from each other is because our perceptions are not the same.

When the Christian or Mormon goes to his religious leaders with a pile of objections to the truth of his religion the leaders will, if stuck, come up with an attempt to prove their religion right by a process of elimination. The Christian for example will be met with arguments that Mormonism is a false religion and a hoax as if that proves that Christianity is true!

Another way is by manipulating the questioners prejudices and preferences to get them to assent to your faith and reject others.
The way this works is if a Mormon presents evidence that Joseph Smith wrote the Book of Mormon despite his claim that he didn’t and that God is its ultimate author, the Mormon Church will present reasons that a book like that was necessary in the Christian Church and that no other book made the claims it made so it must be true or be the only preferable one. The Church would then continue that that proves that the evidence that Smith wrote it is not good enough to warrant disbelief. Another way it can be done is to show that the Mormon Church is better and wiser than any other religion and the wisest religion is most likely to come from God.

Another trick is to turn failures into successes. For example, the Christians say the gospels proved that they were truthful when they presented the apostles as being reluctant to believe in Jesus so Jesus was what the gospels say he was. But being truthful is no guarantee of being right. Perhaps the apostle’s interpretation of Jesus was wrong and there were many things he got up to that they did not know about. Anyway, if the apostles were so reluctant and they knew Jesus it is evidence that they knew fine well he was a fake. That is the thing it indicates the most. You can’t start twisting failures into successes for if you do that with everything you will get nowhere and learn nothing. The failures are more probably just slips rather than evidences of truthfulness for the gospels definitely did not want to state anything that put Jesus in a bad light for the whole point of them being written was to get converts for him.

Another trick is to refute some arguments against some doctrine of Christianity and ignore and not even say that there are piles of others. Nearly all apologetic books for the resurrection tell you that the soldiers, the apostles, the Jews could not have stolen the body of Jesus therefore he rose again in his body. The many other possibilities are just completely ignored. In this case, what cannot be explained is not necessarily indicatory of supernatural involvement and they just illegitimately jump to the conclusion that it is.

Another gimmick is to use arguments like, if Jesus never existed or never rose from the dead then why did nobody say so? Nobody who knew the very popular rival to Jesus, Simon Magus, said that he faked his miracles and does that mean they were real? And if the arguers believe that silence helps their case then why do they argue, “We believe in God. Some philosophers say that God does not exist but they do not matter”? If they really believed that silence was a help they would admit that the existence of atheists threatens their convictions. We know that many in early days of the Church believed in myth-making and would have taken the stories about Jesus as legend. It’s one of the facts that you don’t need proof for.

d) Christianity is the only way to salvation. Jesus is the only way to God.

All it takes is for somebody to write a book making somebody else a saviour perhaps Abel and get a few people to testify on oath that the book came from Heaven. The Christian attitude is opposed to being open to new revelations like that which shows the depth of the bigotry of the Church. The arrogance of claiming that Jesus is the only way is astounding and disturbing and once it is legitimised there is no point in frowning on any other form of bigotry.

The fact that the marks that the defenders of the Christian faith say show the gospels are true, like the alleged fact that the gospels look as if they contradict each other and are reconcilable indicating that the authors were reporting accurately, could be used to forge gospels about some other character say Apollonius of Tyana or Abel that are persuasive for the same reasons. It would not be hard to make the authors more impressive than the gospel writers. They could give their names and their credentials why they should be believed. Yet the Christians would be opposed to them that shows the intrinsic bigotry of saying that Jesus is the only way to God. It is stupid to say that such alternative gospels don’t exist so the Christians are not bigots for that is not the point. The point is that even if they did, the Christians would still say Jesus is the only way to God. They say that because they want him to be that so they are making their desires not God’s dictate how they should approach God and that is blasphemy and shows their faith is not based on selflessness but selfishness. If that’s bad then Jesus only produced bad fruits and was a false prophet by his own standard for he said you know a prophet by his fruits. All cultists believe that the Holy Spirit has testified to them that their version of the gospel is true.
If Jesus is the only way to God then Jesus must have suffered and died for our sins. Christianity teaches that Jesus unnecessarily and without obligation became man to die for the sins of the world. The world deserved to be abandoned. But many Christians say that Jesus could have found another way to say us and others say there was no other way but Jesus had the right to abandon us to the power of sin if he so wished. If Jesus did that for us it shows that we should love until it hurts extremely badly. We should be eager to be imprisoned and tortured and die for the gospel. We owe him more than that after what he did for us. Obviously the more penance and suffering the better. Some salvation!
To say that a system as arrogant as Christianity could do good is like saying that the Nazis should have been tolerated for seeming to do some good.
e) PERSON A, Christianity torments disturbed people by telling them that we can go to Hell to suffer forever when we die. PERSON B, But the nuns were so good to me and that is why I am so devoted to the Church.
In translation, this means I am going to ignore the fact that Christianity is dangerous teaching just because the nuns were kind to me. A religion that cultivates such hypocrisy and self-delusion is to be avoided. Also, the nuns being good is not the same thing as the Church being good. Should we overlook the evil and concentrate on the good? The supporters of the Nazis thought we should and look what happened there! The nuns desecrate any good they do by holding on to the unnecessary evil of bad religion. The more unnecessary the evil the more polluted the good is. Clergy and representatives of the Church are only good and nice in so far as they ignore or don't know their religion.

Christians even when they claim to be fundamentalist are still picking and choosing what they like out of Christ's teaching. They love themselves not him. They consider themselves to be better gods than him for they sit in judgement over what he supposedly taught. The good done by people who call themselves Christians is done in spite of Christianity and not because of it.

The doctrine that failing to love God totally is the greatest sin meaning that even if a sin of theft is small the sin associated with it such as failure to love God certainly is not puts an impossible burden of guilt on people. The Christians only pretend to believe this doctrine.

The doctrine that sin is a disorder but sinners are not disordered is just a lie.

Christianity is a tough love religion for Jesus had a very sharp tongue. Christians are usually sickly sweet.

The New Testament says Christians are to consider themselves to be one body or one vine in Christ meaning that if somebody sins it hurts other people invisibly even if it is a totally secret sin meaning it is everybody's business whatever you do. Christians ignore this teaching.
f) even if Christianity leads to trouble and strife it doesn't always and I am in it because it has a good side for it is not religion that is dangerous but people.

Believers say that the terrible things I write about religion, as does Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens, could one day lead to atheists persecuting Christians.

Many Christians claim that they do not follow a religion but follow Christ. They are spiritual individual - each one is his own religion and spiritual matters are between him and the saviour Jesus Christ. Such Christians have no difficulty in saying that religion is dangerous or a problem.

Churches that practice excommunication say that excommunication is merely an official statement that a person has left the faith. For example, if a Catholic bishop starts preaching that the pope is not the successor of Jesus' apostle Peter he will be excommunicated. The Church says that excommunication is really a declaration that the person has excommunicating herself or himself. It does not cause the expulsion but merely announces it. To say then that the Catholics who tortured victims of the Inquisition are not excommunicated or have not separated from the faith and the Church is to declare that the Church gives some sanction to what they do or does not take it seriously.


g) the good done by Christianity is generally and largely non-humanitarian. By that I mean the religion is for praying and worshipping and teaching doctrine while doing good is a sideline.  Worse, it refuses to apologise for how Jesus condoned and even blessed the evil and murderous violence against children and women commanded by his God in the Old Testament.  This evil is not even considered a serious matter by parents or priests or schools!  They still try to impose the faith on others by manipulation or half-truth.  We all accept that it is not enough to believe certain terrible actions are absolutely necessary and what would fit more in that category than: "God has a good reason for allowing all this evil and temptation and suffering"?  You need to know why.   The doctrine smoothes it for evil people who dress up their schemes as good or serving a good purpose.  When religion says God has a plan it really means the people have this plan whether they realise it or not and it is them who will bring it about.  God's plan is a plan about people so it ends up being about the people.  The notion that evil leads to good or can do is where tyranny starts.  It is safer to reject the concept until you see proof.   How could religion be about helping people when you don't need and don't often use religion for that?  Consider the heroic effort put into saving unborn "babies" which is always done in preference to helping the homeless and the dying.  And any humanitarian acts are done in collaboration with secular governments and systems and religion never helps people on its own.  Something else does the helping and religion has to get involved otherwise its self-promotion will be impossible.  Religion needs to use social systems and faculties in order to solidify its place in society and become part of the fabric.  If you want people to come first then Christianity is not the religion for you.  Religious people use religion and reason as excuses for getting what they want.  Opposition to abortion can be understood as Christianity using religion and people's desire for religious faith as a means for promoting what it wants to believe.  If people use religion as an excuse for violence it can be used as an excuse for other things too.  Take all the religions collectively and see how good they are then.  See the bigger picture and don't be distracted by propaganda about saints and don't let their fan-clubs distract you with noise.  Religion is nothing special and that makes it toxic for acts like it is wonderful and especially good.  Back to abortion.  The Church spends a lot of time battling it but is that because it provides a placebo for evil and thus cannot succeed and does not care?  It is just about self-promotion.  The Church's work becomes a clever substitute for doing good.

The Cambridge Companion to Atheism, edited by Michael Martin, Cambridge, New York, 2007
Is Religion Irrational? Keith Ward, Lion Books, Oxford, 2011