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?

 


DOUBTING THOMAS - THE APOSTLE WHO DID NOT BELIEVE JESUS ROSE

After Jesus had died, a number of people said he was restored to life.

Despite that according to the John Gospel, Jesus' close friend and apostle, Thomas, didn't believe that he rose. So Jesus appeared to him to to show that he ought to believe. Though Jesus asked Thomas to touch his wounds after the resurrection it is not actually stated that Thomas did so. Jesus told Thomas that he believes because he has seen Jesus and those who do not see and who believe are blessed. This implies that Thomas made do with seeing. The New Testament may say that people touched the risen Jesus but it does not have any instances of anything like, "Jesus appeared to me and I touched him." It gives us no direct testimony. The twelve apostles were the twelve official and essential witnesses of Jesus. Not one of them to our knowledge ever claimed to have touched the risen Jesus. Indeed the way the Thomas story is laid out is meant to make people think they read that Thomas did touch him but a careful reading shows that that is not said at all. It shows the gospeller knew as we did that witnesses to a being who says he rose bodily from the dead are not witnesses at all to this resurrection if they have never touched him. It is like saying that you have witnessed a magician produce a live rabbit out of an empty hat when you have not taken a closer look at the rabbit to make sure it really is alive. Your testimony then becomes false and irrelevant and ineffective.

The problems show that the apostles were not as objective as Christians would like you to think! Thomas for example said he did not believe but he wanted to believe when he settled for just looking at the risen Jesus as evidence that Jesus rose. He wouldn't even touch him.