Date: Sat, 17 Oct 1998 10:50:44 -0700
From: David Rice

Robert Green Ingersol

"If Christ was in fact God, he knew all the future. Before him like a panorama moved the history yet to be. He knew how his words would be interpreted. He knew what crimes, what horrors, what infamies, would be committed in his name. He knew that the hungry flames of persecution would climb around the limbs of countless martyrs. He knew that; thousands and thousands of brave men and women would languish in dungeons in darkness, filled with pain. He knew that his church would invent and use instruments of torture; that his followers would appeal to whip and fagot, to chain and rack. He saw the horizon of the future lurid with the flames of the auto da fe. He knew what creeds would spring like poisonous fungi from every text. He saw the ignorant sects waging war against each other. He saw thousands of men, under the orders of priests, building prisons for their fellow-men. He saw thousands of scaffolds dripping with the best and bravest blood. He saw his followers using the instruments of pain. He heard the groans -- saw the faces white with agony. He heard the shrieks and sobs and cries of all the moaning, martyred multitudes. He knew that commentaries would be written on his words with swords, to be read by the light of fagots. He knew that the Inquisition would be born of the teachings attributed to him."

--- David Michael Rice
The world's second biggest glutton! (Next to Godzilla)

> From Robert Green Ingersol

At the bottom of religious persecution is the doctrine of self-defence; that is to say, the defence of the soul. If the founder of Christianity had plainly said: "It is not necessary to believe in order to be saved; it is only necessary to do, and he who really loves his fellow-men, who is kind, honest, just and charitable, is to be forever blest" -- if he had only said that, there would probably have been but little persecution.

If he had added to this: "You must not persecute in my name. The religion I teach is the Religion of Love -- not the Religion of Force and Hatred. You must not imprison your fellow-men. You must not stretch them upon racks, or crush their bones in iron boots. You must not flay them alive. You must not cut off their eyelids, or pour molten lead into their ears. You must treat all with absolute kindness. If you cannot convert your neighbor by example, persuasion, argument, that is the end. You must never resort to force, and, whether he believes as you do or not, treat him always with kindness" -- his followers then would not have murdered their fellows in his name.

If Christ was in fact God, he knew the persecutions that would be carried on in his name; he knew the millions that would suffer death through torture; and yet he died without saying one word to prevent what he must have known, if he were God, would happen.

--- David Michael Rice
The world's second biggest glutton! (Next to Godzilla)


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