Hitchens posited that organized religion is "violent, irrational, intolerant, allied to racism , tribalism , and bigotry , invested in ignorance and hostile to free inquiry , contemptuous of women and coercive toward children" and sectarian , and that accordingly it "ought to have a great deal on its conscience". He supports his position with a mixture of personal stories, documented historical anecdotes and critical analysis of religious texts.
His commentary focuses mainly on the Abrahamic religions , although it also touches on other religions, such as Hinduism and Buddhism. The book received mixed reviews, but sold well. Hitchens writes that, at the age of nine, he began to question the teachings of his Bible instructor, and began to see critical flaws in apologetic arguments, most notably the argument from design. He asserts that atheists who disagree with each other will eventually side together on whatever the evidence most strongly supports.
He concludes by saying that he would not want to eradicate religion if the faithful would "leave him alone", but ultimately they are incapable of this. Hitchens addresses a hypothetical question that he was asked while on a panel with radio host Dennis Prager : if he were alone in an unfamiliar city at night, and a group of strangers began to approach him, would he feel safer, or less safe, knowing that these men had just come from a prayer meeting? Hitchens answers,. In each case I would feel immediately threatened if I thought that the group of men approaching me in the dusk were coming from a religious observance.
He gives detailed descriptions of the tense social and political situations within these cities, which he personally experienced and attributes to religion. He has thus "not found it a prudent rule to seek help as the prayer meeting breaks up". He discusses the fatwa issued on author and friend Salman Rushdie by the Ayatollah Khomeini because of the contents of Rushdie's book The Satanic Verses. He also writes about the events following the September 11 attacks , describing how religion, particularly major religious figures, allowed matters to "deteriorate in the interval between the removal of the Taliban and the overthrow of Saddam Hussein ".
Hitchens discusses the prohibition on eating pigs "porcophobia" as Hitchens calls it in Judaism , also adopted by Islam. He reports that even today, Muslim zealots demand that the Three Little Pigs , Miss Piggy , Piglet from Winnie-the-Pooh and other traditional pets and characters be "removed from the innocent gaze of their children". Hitchens explains how some religions can be hostile to disease treatment. He writes that many Muslims saw the polio vaccine as a conspiracy , and thus allowed polio to spread.
He criticises the Jewish ritual of circumcision that would have him "take a baby boy's penis in my hand, cut around the prepuce , and complete the action by taking his penis in my mouth, sucking off the foreskin , and spitting out the amputated flap along with a mouthful of blood and saliva ", and denounces the traditional African practice of female genital mutilation. He concludes the chapter writing of the religious "wish for obliteration"—for a death in the form of the day of the Apocalypse.
Hitchens begins by saying that the strong faith that could stand up to any form of reason is long gone. He compares the popular knowledge of the world in Thomas Aquinas 's time to what we now know about the world. He uses the example of Laplace —"It works well enough without that [God] hypothesis"  —to demonstrate that we do not need God to explain things; he claims that religion becomes obsolete as an explanation when it becomes optional or one among many different beliefs.
He concludes that the leap of faith is not just one leap; it is a leap repeatedly made, and a leap that becomes more difficult to take the more it is taken: which is why so many religionists now feel the need to move beyond mere faith and cite evidence for their beliefs. Hitchens says that Abrahamic religions are used to making people feel like lowly sinners, encouraging low self-esteem, while at the same time leading them to believe that their creator genuinely cares for them, thus inflating their sense of self-importance.
He says that superstition to some extent has a "natural advantage", being that it was contrived many centuries before the modern age of human reason and scientific understanding, and discusses a few examples as well as so-called miracles. He discusses the design arguments, using examples such as the human body wearing out in old age as bad design. He writes that if evolution had taken a slightly different course, there would be no guarantee at all that organisms remotely like us would ever have existed. Hitchens lists anachronisms and inconsistencies in the Old Testament , stating that many of the "gruesome, disordered events He notes that Moses "continually makes demented pronouncements 'He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the Lord'.
On the subject of a mythical Jesus and the possibility of a historical Jesus in the Gospels, a number of sources on the Internet attribute the controversial quote "Jesus is Santa Claus for adults"' to Hitchens and God Is Not Great, but those words do not appear in this chapter or this book.
Hitchens does argue that the "multiple authors—none of whom published anything until many decades after the Crucifixion—cannot agree on anything of importance",  "the gospels are most certainly not literal truth",  and there is "little or no evidence for the life of Jesus". Hitchens first connects the Book of Isaiah in the Old Testament with its prediction that "a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son" see Isaiah , pointing out where the stories converge, Old Testament to New.
Comparing the Testaments, he considers the New Testament "also a work of crude carpentry, hammered together long after its purported events, and full of improvised attempts to make things come out right". He points out that, while H. Mencken considered some of the New Testament events to be historically verifiable, Mencken maintained that "most of them Hitchens also outlines the inaccuracy in Luke 's attempt to triangulate three world events of the time with Jesus 's birth: the census ordered by Augustus of the entire Roman world , the reign of King Herod in Judea and that of Quirinius as governor of Syria see the Census of Quirinius.
He says that there is no record by any Roman historian of any Augustan census, and that, although "the Jewish chronicler Josephus mentions one that did occur—without the onerous requirement for people to return to their places of birth", it was undertaken "six years after the birth of Jesus is supposed to have taken place". He also notes that Herod died in 4 BC, and that Quirinius was not governor of Syria during his tenure.
Hitchens refers to The Passion of the Christ as "a soap-opera film about the death of Jesus In Hitchens's view, the film attempts tirelessly to blame the death of Jesus on the Jews.
Have you ever struggled with the idea that God is mad at you? Have you entertained the discouraging thought that He's disappointed with you, disapproving of. Have you ever struggled with the idea that God is mad at you? Have you entertained the discouraging thought that He's disappointed with you.
He claims that Gibson did not realize that the four Gospels were not at all historical records, and that they had multiple authors, all being written many decades after the crucifixion —and, moreover, that they do not agree on anything "of importance" e.
He cites many contradictions in this area. He further contends that the many "contradictions and illiteracies" of the New Testament , while extensively covered by other authors, have never been explained except as " metaphor " and "a Christ of faith". He states that the "feebleness" of the Bible is a result of the fact that until recently, Christians faced with arguments against the logic or factualness of the Bible "could simply burn or silence anybody who asked any inconvenient questions".
Hitchens points out the problematic implications of the scriptural proclamation "he that is without sin among you, let him cast a first stone" with regard to the practical legislation of retributive justice: "if only the non-sinners have the right to punish, then how could an imperfect society ever determine how to prosecute offenders?
Chapter nine assesses the religion of Islam , and examines the origin of its holy book, the Quran. What is acting as a blockage between you and your heavenly father?
Do you feel unworthy to fellowship openly and freely with Him? Do you feel dirty inside or not fit to be in His presence for one reason or another?
Look into those things and get them cleaned up. It is through the Blood of Christ that our sin might be washed away and our conscience cleansed! Here's a blog entry that I posted recently about the power of imagining the truth about God seeing you through the eyes of love, compassion, forgiveness, and acceptance.
Satan and evil spirits are always eager to make a person feel as if God is angry with them. These things, of course, leads to a backsliding relationship in no time. No wonder Satan wants us to feel like God is somehow angry or disappointed in us! It will loosen up the tenseness on your whole system once you begin to see things as God wants you to see them. He's always calling us back to repentance, so that He can restore our relationship with Him. I can't tell you how powerful that imaginations can be when used for God's glory instead of Satan's.
This is a powerful key to freedom and healing for many! Many feel that if they do enough good works, that God will finally love and accept them. This is nothing more than the legalism fruit of a mindset bound in dead religion. I have an eye-opening teaching titled, " Exposing Dead Religion " that I recommend reading. The Bible is clear that Jesus loved us, before we did anything to earn His love and mercy. We were still in rebellion when He reached out, and gave His life so that we could be given right standing with God!
It is clear by the verse below, that we were loved not because of anything we've done to deserve His love, but because of who we were:. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans Those who constantly struggle with guilt and a sense of shame from their past mistakes, are overlooking or underestimating the power of the Blood of Christ.
They somehow have this lurking feeling that they aren't truly forgiven of what they've done; that somehow their sin is greater than the Blood of Christ, although they would never openly say such a thing. One key to freedom is to honestly face the facts: do you really believe that your past failures are greater than the Blood of the Son of God, the creator of heaven and earth?
Do your failures outweigh the Blood of Jesus, or does the Blood outweigh your failures? Just how powerful is the precious Blood of Jesus to you? Is it stronger than all your failures? Is it so strong, that it will wipe away even the sins of a cold-blooded murder, such as the one who hung on the cross next to Jesus? And he said unto Jesus, Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom. And Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.
Could the compassion and mercy of Jesus, be so great that it looked past the terrible sin of adultery which was JUST committed! And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more. Or do you feel as if your sins are too great for the Holy Blood of the Son of God to remove?
How dare we degrade the priceless value of the Blood that the Son of God has shed for us! If we repent of our sins and believe upon the Lord Jesus Christ, but yet still feel guilty and wonder if we are forgiven, then my friend, let me assure you that you are grossly underestimating the Holy Blood of the Son of God! But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.
Isaiah The Israelites would even commit human sacrifice unto demons see Psalms , yet God kept calling out for them to return to Him. God kept crying out to Israel, saying, "Return, ye backsliding children, and I will heal your backslidings I have a powerful teaching on the Blood of Jesus, and how it is enough to forgive our sins all by itself, without anything added or subtracted from it! For a great teaching on the Blood, check out The Blood is Enough. God created us for fellowship with Him, it grieves His heart when one of His sheep go astray.
When a couple are madly in love, and one of them leaves, it can leave a terrible wound in the other person's heart. The same is true when we leave our first love that is, God - Revelations Do you think that God's heart isn't broken when His bride turns her back on Him? Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb?
Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me. God never takes pleasure in punishing or allowing evil to fall upon His people. He is not up there tapping His foot, waiting for us to make a mistake so that He can punish us. Don't tear your clothing in your grief; instead, tear your hearts. He is not easily angered. He is filled with kindness and is eager not to punish you. Joel NLT.
Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage?