~ suffering is always punishment from God~

Jesus told a man he cured to repent otherwise something worse could happen to him. He was clearly accusing him not of necessarily bringing new evil on himself but risking it. Jesus did say that sickness was not necessarily a judgement but he clearly said it might be. That is appalling.


Catholic Tradition as exemplified by St Augustine says, "And it cannot be argued that then a man is punished without cause, and without sin, unless there is some cause for it. And we can say that there is always a most just cause, though it may not be known to us."


Religion says that God lets us harm one another because he wants us to freely choose whether we will do good or bad. This is the free will defence.  God gives us morality so we are told.  Therefore he authorises punishment as a necessity and must punish evil people so that the injustice of the good and bad being treated alike is avoided.  Oddly some say that sin punishes us not God but if God sets up sin so that we will suffer for it then that is punishment.  Punishment whether indirect or direct is still punishment. Those who say sin punishes us not God are trying to manipulate us and play on our hatred for being punished as if justice is suspended for us.
God could stop us from hurting one another badly by simply putting protective force fields around us. This is not limiting free will for we can still will evil even if we can’t do it and besides we are still free to do other kinds of harm. To reject this argument is to say that a soldier in protective armour is depriving himself of free will not to mention depriving others. It is to condemn whoever forces him to wear the armour for his own good.
Jesus said that the man who chooses to commit adultery but cannot is an adulterer (Matthew 5). He affirmed that free will is not hindered by the inability to act on it. There is so much evil we would do but cannot do. So God must let us commit acts of cold-blooded cruelty for a purpose that justifies it. If God can turn suffering to his advantage, it is hypocritical to condemn the person who mutilates and tortures others so that they may become holier. It is no reply to say that it is wrong for it might not work when you argue it is okay for God to do it. Why? It is because God faces the same problem. Loving God alone breeds cruelty and makes it look like kindness.
God possesses the power to make us subject to illusions, to delude our five senses. Each of us should be put in a world that does not exist with people who are just in the head or imagination. That way, we have free will and cannot harm anybody but perhaps ourselves. When he lets us dream he can do this. If the people we hurt are real then God simply has to be punishing them and it is not a sin to treat them abominably.
Since God alone counts, according to Jesus, the only choice he wants from us is if we will love him or not. You don’t need to be able to harm other people to make that choice at all. You just need to be able to harm yourself and then only in so far as you harden yourself to refuse to love God. It is stupid and/or malignant to suggest that God will enable us to commit murder to see if we will reject him by committing it because when it is only the decision he is interested in, he could do without enabling us to kill to get it. But God acts as if he needs us to hurt others. This has to be about punishment.
All sin offends God infinitely for he hates it that much for he is infinitely good. So it makes no difference if you commit murder or if you just wish ill on somebody. For that reason, it is ridiculous to say we need to be able to hurt others to have free will. This implies that any wrong we do is infinitely bad. It would deserve a Hell of unending despair and torment.
The only reason we must suffer if God is good is because God is punishing us. He is getting his own back because even the free will defence doesn’t explain why he sends so many bad influences to us as if he wants us to break divine law so he can punish us. We are to do all the harm we wish for it is God’s will. And the faster we get down to it the better for it is kindness to get it over with as fast as possible. Through us, God judges the world and delivers retribution. It is only a sin if we hurt people out of malice not a sense of justice. Hurting them to please God is a virtue.
Christianity says that we come into existence deserving the penalty of physical and spiritual death and that our sins deserve endless torment. So whatever harm anybody does to us we deserve it. It is not so much the suggestion that God is punishing you that you find offensive but the suggestion that you deserve it. That this religion has so much power speaks only of how religion pollutes mental health and is so manipulative.
People think it is fine to be told by Christianity that they deserve great suffering as long as the Christians say nobody should hurt them. But if you deserve say torture, it is downright evil to condemn somebody who gives you what you deserve. If you deserve it, then it's an act of hate and injustice to condemn the person who deals out your just deserts to you.
And if God can punish sin, it follows that if you suffer you may assume that it is not because you are being punished. But how do you know? You have to admit it could be punishment even if there is a small chance. If you are humble you will accept this and even say, "I should be punished.". But no believer does and they go berserk if any religious person suggests it. No truly good person would ask you to accept such a possibility because it violates the rule, "Faith should be formulated and practiced in such a way that no harm is done should it prove to be wrong".


The notion of God and his justice needs to be abandoned and condemned.  We need justice on earth but to hold that evil people are punished after death is just vicious for such an existence would have little in common with our earthly existence with all its problems.  We use punitive justice and threats for we have no supernatural power to protect the innocent.  But God has.
If you are to love God and if you see God as a God of justice which means that he cannot treat the bad person and the good person the same then it is more respectful to God to see suffering as divine punishment so that you are not saying, "He allows evil because he respects our free will". Both punishment and allowing a person to hurt themselves through making their own mistakes and going their own way are necessary evils. Not all necessary evils are equal.
One can be a less important necessary evil than another. But to say a person is letting another bring evil on themselves for they need punishment is better than to say they need the evil to learn. Thus we should prefer assuming that when people suffer it is punishment as opposed to saying God is just not interfering and letting them make a choice. After all, without justice there would be no way to evaluate evil and good and distinguish between them. So justice is to be honoured first and foremost.

Belief in a God is anti-human. The doctrine of God has sinister implications which can please the dark side of human nature and encourage punitive violence and war. To preach the dogma is asking for trouble for the risk is unnecessary and ever-present.

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