______________________ LIFE, FAITH, ETCETERA

Bert Gary and the Funny Video May 14, 2010

My wife and I laughed out-loud at this “Jesus Loves You” video.

It takes an awful lot of back-peddling and double-talk to even try to
explain away the holes in a lot of theology.

Watch the video, then read some comments (below) by the ever insightful Bert Gary.


“…many [people] have not thought through the inherent contradictions in modern evangelicalism’s fundamental claims—specifically, Jesus and the Father are different and have a different mind about you, God’s default setting for all people is not love and grace but eternal torture, and Jesus is bound by a rule more powerful than Him that forces him to torture you forever if you don’t knuckle under and say “the magic Jesus words.”

What is ironic is that an atheist, cartoon comedian sees so clearly what is wrong, and most [people] don’t see it or are in various stages of fuzziness about it. It makes me want to start a class, show the cartoon, and then walk through the contradictory theological assumptions in modern evangelicalism’s message, contrasting it with the biblical message:

1. Jesus loves me but I will be tortured forever if I don’t love him back, so there is a “love” that not only allows torture, but requires torture.

2. Jesus has to torture me if I don’t love him though he doesn’t want to, so there is a rule more powerful than Jesus that forces him to do what he doesn’t want to do.

3. Jesus and his Father are very different and are of two different minds about me, so Jesus loves me but his Father’s hate of sin and sinners overrides the Son’s love.

4. Jesus was sent by the Father not to change me, but to try to change the Father’s mind about me and his plan to torture me by threatening me with his Father’s torture-plan, so I must love him in order to stop him from torturing me.

5. Fear then is supposed to make me love, making fear more powerful than love and making love dependent upon fear.

This theology is fundamentally founded on hate. The Father hates sin, so he is required to hate sinners. The hate of sinners requires that the Father punish sinners. But apparently there is another “side” of the Father that wants to offer sinners a loophole. So he sends Jesus, his Son, who is very different from him, to say “I love you, but my Father hates you and plans to torture you forever if you don’t love me back.” This “loving threat” is intended to frighten you into loving him in order to save your own soul.

Modern evangelism by and large begins with this fear of hell. It’s their foundation. But if fear is the opposite of faith, and biblically it is, then how can you lead someone to faith with fear? Fear cannot lead to faith. Fear and faith are mutually exclusive. How can we label religious motivation and manipulation of people using fear as “faith”?

1 John 4:18-19 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because he first loved us.

We love him and have faith in him because he loved us first. Using fear, on the other hand, is a faithless, loveless act. Basing everything on fear of punishment drives out faith! Love, however, both compels faith and is the fruit of faith (Galatians 5:22).”
— Bert Gary


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