This list is meant to be a comprehensive collection of all the problems I have with Christianity. These are my problems with Christianity, not necessarily anyone else’s. Therefore, it will contain only things I myself have encountered, and will mostly be addressing positions I myself have held and members of my family still hold. As I have a fundamentalist type background, many things on the list address a fundamentalist form of Christianity, which I know does not address the majority of Christians, although it sure seems like it here in America, where we are still fighting to keep creationism out of public school science classes. However, given the first two items, I think the list does cover every Christian, as Christians either believe in a literal Adam or they do not.
It follows that not everything on this list is a part of every denomination of Christianity, and possibly only part of a few denominations (depending on the item), but I’ve done my best to entirely avoid strawmen and only attack ideas Christians really believe. It will expand as I find more things to put on it (naturally) and I’ll link to posts that discuss the individual items as I write them, if I find that necessary (some items on this list are pretty self-explanatory).
These are perhaps obviously in no particular order (maybe I’ll fix that someday). However, I have listed the 15 problems I find most convincing in showing Christianity false, with extremely brief explanations and no evidence whatsoever. I reserve the right to change my mind, of course, and I may have split more hairs in this list than that one.
- There cannot have been a literal Adam
- Christianity does not make sense with a metaphorical Adam (Romans 5:18-19)
- There are no reasons for Eden to be metaphorical that don’t also apply to Golgotha
- Noah’s Flood cannot be historical
- Racism founded in the Bible
- Abraham is a fictional character
- Exodus is not historical
- Biblical god condones slavery
- Biblical god commands genocide
- Biblical god orders children murdered
- The arguments for the historicity of Jesus are flawed and lack evidence
- The arguments for the existence of god are logically flawed
- There are dozens, if not hundreds, of biblical contradictions
- There are internal inconsistencies within Christianity
- Hell is immoral
- Infanticide is logical
- There are historical inaccuracies in the Bible
- There are scientific inaccuracies in the Bible
- Faith is not valuable
- Christianity creates a false sense of certainty
- If everything “bad” or unscientific in the Bible is meant to be “metaphorical”, how can I trust any of what is left to be literal?
- There is no morality in the bible that cannot be found in other cultures or under different gods, and often pre-dating the Biblical writings
- There is a hypocrisy in Christianity that atheists will never display
- The laws of the Torah were at best average for the time
- The laws of the New Testament were not novel, either
- Morality comes from nature, not God
- abortion needs to be legal
- gay marriage needs to be legal (as long as legal marriage is a thing)
- Christianity is anti-intellectual in many of its forms (truth should be able to withstand scrutiny)
- There is no objective morality in Christianity; Christian morals have changed over time
- The Gospel Jesus promised to return within a generation
- Christianity promotes carrot-and-stick morality
- The Christian god is supposed to be a real person, but nobody can introduce him; it is impossible to meet the Christian god
- By refusing to interfere with child rape, the Christian god actively favors evil
- Christianity causes harm, and more harm than good
- Christianity fails as a hypothesis; it can’t make accurate predictions
- Prayer has never been shown to work in any way indistinguishable from coincidence
- Christ has not risen
- There is no “one true church” among the Christian denominations
- There is no evidence for consciousness without a brain; a soul is impossible even in theory
- Job does not solve the problem of evil
- Accounting for bone cancer in children
- Promotes abusive relationship
- Christianity is not falsifiable
- Christianity glorifies suffering
- hardship compounded by the guilt required to reconcile the idea of a fair god with reality (“why is god punishing me? What have I done wrong? Don’t I have enough faith?”)
- causing some people who have been an atheist for decades to still wakeup from nightmares about hell
- black and white thinking
- faith healing
- extreme arrogance
- taking the absolute truth of their position for granted
- acting like they are being victimized if anyone dares to disagree, especially if they are asked to keep it to themselves
- Christianity basically tells you that you’re worthless.
- there are thousands of denominations of Christianity with many contradictions between them
- refusal to acknowledge things like global warming, or refusal to care because this life is temporary
Current count: 56
Here’s a complete list of every post tagged with this category. There are some duplicates where multiple posts cover or touch on a single issue.
15 thoughts on “Problems with Christianity”
If Christ hasn’t risen, why are people Christians? You have a lot of explaining to do to justify the disciples 180 degree personality changes pre-crucifixion to after. Let’s start there, since Christ rising from the dead is the crux of Christianity.
Actually, no. First, you have to prove that Jesus really existed, and his disciples really went through that change you are claiming.
Even if you could, and I know you can’t because I’ve tried, you still would have to show that the resurrection is the most likely explanation, and it has already been shown that it cannot be.
Oh nooooooooo. You can’t seriously mock Christians for not believing your theories on evolution etc and think Jesus didn’t exist.
Until you present a more likely explanation for the most known historical figure in human existence, I guess resurrection will have to do. Occams Razor and whatnot.
Well, those are some shockingly ignorant comments. So much so that I might have to devote a post to them!
Here’s a list of the most obvious problems:
1. Evolution is a fact. It is not “my” theory; it is a proven, observable fact of life, and anyone who says differently is ignorant or lying.
2. The burden of proof is on those who claim that Jesus did exist. There is insufficient evidence on either side to say definitively, according to the person who wrote the scholarly book about Jesus not being a historical figure.
3. Occam’s Razor does not work that way. It says the simplest explanation is most often correct, and the simplest explanation, assuming the Jesus of the Gospels is more or less historical, is that the disciples lied. Far from pointing to a complete reversal of observed fact around every person who has ever died, Occam’s Razor would point to ANY OTHER EXPLANATION.
4. Any other honest way of looking at the issue shows that the Resurrection is the least likely explanation. The whole point of the Resurrection was that it was impossible and therefore special. If it were just highly improbable, we would have seen more Resurrection events.
5. You clearly didn’t look at the link I posted that shows a historical Jesus figure does not mean a Resurrection is the most likely explanation. This is a really old argument, and has been thoroughly debunked.
Please come up with something I haven’t already debunked to my own satisfaction as a prerequisite for leaving Christianity.
Sure. Hence the wealth of historical evidence to that end. So much that it’s only the rare and uneducated new atheist that would ignore it to pretend he wasn’t real.
You’re claiming that a religion of 2 billion people came from a mythical person OR a person who was killed who’s disciples claimed he rose again [and strangely people hopped on board and were killed for doing so.] Not the simplest explanation. But I’m waiting eagerly for any other good explanations you might have.
It’s hardly improbable that if God came to earth in human form that death would keep him in a grave. Try again.
Well DUH. But you at least need to have the intellectual integrity to believe what 99% of historians do and acknowledge Jesus was a historical figure.
Fixed > “It’s MORE improbable that if God came to earth in human form that death would keep him in a grave. Try again.”
Bah! This format didn’t keep your classy numbers.
Are you going to continue to be a dishonest, ignorant creeper with no willingness to listen while expecting me to listen to you, or are you going to honestly try to explore our differing views and do some research? So far, you have shown no willingness to be anything but a megaphone, and I have little patience for such rude behavior.
I don’t think Islam or Buddism are true and yet manage to acknowledge that Mohammad and Buddha existed. Do you ?
I want to see your thoughts and defense of your arguments, not read links to BOOKS.
Of course C.S Lewis liar, lunatic, Lord argument is great. But you’re still needing to acknowledge Jesus existed before one could move on to those.
Again, I’m willing, for the sake of argument, as I have said now THREE TIMES, to operate under the assumption of Jesus as a historical figure. I keep pointing to that link because it gives arguments that I agree with, OPERATING UNDER THAT ASSUMPTION, better than I could.
You really don’t read anything unless it agrees with you do you?
OK, so communicate with me YOUR thoughts on why people followed Jesus, since he was murdered and they’d just denied his name, since he didn’t rise from the dead.
Perhaps they had visions of Jesus – hallucinations are far more common than most of us realize, and dreams were given more importance in ancient times.
Perhaps one of the disciples started lying and the others, desperate to believe, accepted it.
Perhaps the promise of Heaven for belief and/or threat of Hell for disbelief was just too great to pass up.
Also, it’s an important point that, historically, Christianity was a minority cult for 300 years. People weren’t flocking to it until Constantine. There’s a small percentage of the population now who believe that Elvis isn’t dead. It’s completely believable that a small percentage of people in ancient times, without access to photographs of Jesus in the grave, would be duped by a few people making an outlandish claim.
Another important note is that resurrection claims in ancient times or ancient religions were not really all that uncommon. Here’s a list of ten: http://listverse.com/2013/03/30/10-resurrected-religious-figures/
If you really want to see a good explanation, well expressed, as I’ve said repeatedly, you’ll have to read the book on the matter. I cannot do the subject justice as well as he can, and I don’t want to try in the comments section, especially at this time of my life. You can also look up Bart Ehrman’s works; I have not read it myself, but I hear he has a good book on the subject (I’ve only read a couple of his books).
As you appear unwilling (thus far) to read a book that disagrees with your worldview, here’s just a chapter that gives the nutshell version of why skeptics deny the resurrection: http://infidels.org/library/modern/richard_carrier/resurrection/lecture.html
If you remember nothing else, this is the most important point: it is not up to me to say “here’s how it happened without the resurrection”; it is up to YOU to demonstrate that the resurrection happened. Can you do that? Nobody else has. Appeals to Occam’s Razor are insufficient.
Hallucinations aren’t a compelling reason, are they? Person A hallucinates something he believes is true. He tells person B about what he believes is true. You are arguing that Person B believes simply because Person A told them of the hallucination. But doesn’t that only work if we’re not dealing with sane people? If a bunch of atypical people are hearing about something [that is a hallucination] sure, maybe they buy it. But sane people [I know atheists don’t think this] don’t believe things unless there are sufficient enough reasons.
If it was a lie, WHY did the disciples lie? They’d just denied they even knew Jesus [again, according to the narrative] because they rightly feared further persecution. Romans weren’t kind to those who stood against them, or those who stood with those who stood against them. So they lied to align themselves with a guy who stood against rome and was brutally murdered for it? And people hearing that, would believe it because of desperation to do so?
It’s hard to argue the hell/heaven argument, that theology didn’t develop until the early church was more established [which was growing so rapidly because of the claims that Jesus was alive]
Christianity grew far before Rome. By thousands. Rome heard about it because of Paul at the END of his trip. [Paul was beheaded in Rome]. Rome jumped on an already popular ship for political reasons. You can’t argue Christianity was FOUNDED because of Rome “making it popular” anyway. Still not reasonable to think that sane people would accept a risen Savior without any evidence [people who saw him, interacted for 40 days, as many as 500 ppl at one time in narrative], just because told so.
The Resurrection happened for the following reasons: Synagogue rejects that had returned to family businesses then became the leaders for a religion that spanned the whole world, every culture and people group. They went from hiding in locked rooms and denying they knew Jesus to each and every one of them DYING refusing to stop talking about him. Jesus is the most popular/well known figure in movies, music, literature, his impact literally splitting the way we tell time into a time before his birth and after.
And for over 2000 years, we’ve seen human movements and individual transformation that isn’t explained in any other ways, in the lives of murderers, slave owners, slaves, prostitutes and johns, homosexuals, adulterers, families racked by divorce, people dying of disease, people being beheaded and buried alive, torn apart by lions and killed for sport. And the more atheists try to crush it [with force or with blog posts 😉 ] the more it grows. It’s not human.
Again, please do the research of reading at least the sources I have linked and you will better understand my position.
Side note: Christianity is not growing in developed countries; it is in decline. There have been numerous polls demonstrating this, and Christian sources are aware of it and bemoaning it: http://www.churchleadership.org/apps/articles/default.asp?articleid=42346&columnid=4545
Most of what you’ve just said cannot be backed by historical data. As just one thing, there is no evidence that the disciples were martyred for believing in the resurrection. If you have any interest in furthering a discussion on the resurrection, please at least read or watch this debate between William Lane Craig and Bart Ehrman.
I’m going to focus on one claim you’ve made in particular, because I don’t think you’ve thought through the implications of it, although I could of course be wrong. Maybe you mean exactly what it sounds like you mean. Maybe I’m completely misinterpreting you. If so, please correct me.
“But sane people [I know atheists don’t think this] don’t believe things unless there are sufficient enough reasons.”
By this, do you mean that only insane people believe things without sufficient reasons?
If so, which of the following is true?
A) All those who accept evolution, from the schoolboy in the classroom to the scientist in the National Academy of Sciences, each and every one, are insane.
B) There is sufficient reason to accept evolution.
What about followers of other religions? Is there also sufficient reason to believe the claim of Krishna’s resurrection, which millions of Hindus believe, or are all Hindus insane? Is there sufficient reason to believe that Muhammad is a prophet, or are all Muslims insane? Is there sufficient reason to believe that Osiris resurrected, or were the ancient Egyptians just generally insane? What about all of the other religions out there?
What about people who change their mind on an issue, first believing (just as a for instance) that abortion should be illegal and later believing that it should be legal (or vice versa, doesn’t matter)? Are all such people insane, did two contradicting viewpoints both have sufficient reason for belief, or did they believe something based on insufficient reason?
Is my mother insane or is there actually sufficient reason to believe that wearing black bras cause cancer? Is my sister-in-law insane or is there actually sufficient reason to believe that animals don’t suffer?
There are a multitude of issues on which people disagree. Are you really saying that on each of these issues, one side only has insane people whereas the other has sufficient reason?