While Part One and Part Two of Saying Goodbye were devoted to the Old Testament, Part Three is devoted to the New Testament. Although the New Testament certainly seems more benign than the OT, I think it's important to remember that Jesus stated that he and the Father are one (John 10:30). Moreover, he did not come to abolish the Law or the Prophets, but to fulfill them (Matthew 5:17-20). Therefore, Jesus cannot be separated from God, though the two characters seem incompatible at times, nor can the NT be detached from the OT in terms of its outlandish commandments. Having gotten that off my chest, I'll proceed with reasons 8 through 10.
8. Outside of the Bible, there is a complete lack of CONTEMPORARY sources for Jesus. No contemporary Greek or Roman sources make mention of him whatsoever (Bart Ehrman's Jesus, Interrupted page 148). Does that mean that Jesus did not exist? No. Yet, I think it can be understood that no one was taking much notice of him. Now, that's perfectly reasonable if he was just another apocalyptic preacher. However, that is not what Christians believe, nor is it what the Bible teaches us about Jesus. Thus, I find it astounding that (according to the Bible) you have a man that is literally raising the dead, healing the sick, and casting out demons, but no one is writing about it.
9. To make matters worse, scholars generally agree that the Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) were written forty to sixty years after the death of Jesus by anonymous authors. Consequently, they cannot be considered eyewitness or contemporary accounts of Jesus. That leaves us with Paul, the founder of Christianity. Unfortunately, he never met Jesus either. No, visions don't count.
10. I'll wrap things up with another example of the Bible's despicable attitude towards women. As 1 Corinthians 14:34-35 states, "... the women should keep silent in the churches. For they are not permitted to speak, but should be in submission, as the Law also says. If there is anything they desire to learn, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church." I truly believe that equality between the sexes will never occur so long as the Bible is considered a relevant book. That is shameful.
So, there you have it, my friends. The journey of my deconversion has been filled with many hills and valleys, but there was a beautiful light at the end of my tunnel. I finally said goodbye to the friend inside of my head, or rather, I acknowledged that I was the friend inside my head all along. Here's to embracing reality, critical thinking, and being my own free agent!
Stay tuned for a little curriculum talk...