Of all the idiotic things taught in Christianity; nothing irritates me more than the constant threat of eternal damnation. When I left the ministry and the church behind, anytime I ran into members of my former congregation on the street they would remind me of the dire consequences I will suffer for turning my back on God. They would bring to mind the stupid tale of Jonah and the whale; which by the way the bible does not specifically mention that it was a whale: Jonah 1:17 Now the LORD had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah. And Jonah was in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. Christians assume that since the Whale is considered the largest sea animal it must have been a whale, That is like saying that if he had been swallowed by a large land creature it must have been an elephant. Correct me if I'm wrong but isn't a whale a mammal? There is a huge difference between a mammal and a fish for example mammals are warm blooded fish are not, they breathe through blow holes and not gills, and finally they give birth to live babies that drink their mothers milk. Just goes to show how faulty Christian reasoning is.
I am warned what a terrible thing it is to have known God and turned away, than to have never known him at all. In reference to back sliders (people who leave the Lord and revert back to the world) whoever wrote 2 Peter 2:21 said: 'For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.' All throughout the bible you are told that the only way to live a fruitful and productive life is through the worship and adherence of God's commandments. Those that refuse to be mentally enslaved by fairy tales are forewarned that nothing they do in this life is going to go well or be good enough without God. Not to mention the terrible fate that awaits them after they depart this life and enter into the next life.
The bible clearly makes a distinction between the "saved" and the unsaved, the world and the church. John 17:14 'I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.' They are the elite, the chosen by God to walk the Earth bringing the word of truth and eternal salvation to mankind. It is because of this that I think Christians in general have an air of arrogance about them, a detestable snootiness to their persona that quite frankly make me sick. This is also where I think the term 'born again' came from, when you are born again according to Christian theology you are no longer a man of the flesh you are born again as a man that lives by the spirit. John 3:5,6 'Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.' This is the significance of baptism by immersion in most protestant churches; the immersion in water signifies the burying of the old man of the flesh, the ascending out of the water signifies the birth of the spiritual man.
Then there is the threat of you being a target for evil spirits and demons to take their abode in your physical body, due to the fact that you are no longer under God's protection and graces. Matthew 12 43-45 states:43.When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none.44.Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.45.Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.
Finally, the threat of hell and eternal torment which I find stupid and completely at odds with a so called forgiving God of mercy and love. It sounds more like this biblical deity is very good at having his poor little feelings hurt and can hold a grudge forever. Revelation 20:13,14 'And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.' According to whoever wrote Revelations under his drug induced haze he composed this wonderful end for those who did not serve God. Notice too that according to this text it seems that death and hell are treated separately. It almost sounds like death is also a place apart from hell "and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them". Could this be the equivalent to what the Catholic church refers to as purgatory, or what others call limbo? Either way the lake of fire seems to be the final place of eternal torment that awaits us who don't believe. I tip my hats off to the church for being able to hold the world through fear and intimidation with such ridiculous beliefs and ideas. You die, you go to hell, and finally after the judgment we are cast into the lake of fire, what utter bullshit!