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The Bible's Bad Fruits
By Dawn Huxley and Tommy Huxley
Posted on: 4/20/2002
Just like cherry-picked, out-of-context quotes from biologists can be abused so as to paint the Theory of Evolution as evil, so can the same abuse be heaped upon the Bible.
You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? So, every sound tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears evil fruit. A sound tree cannot bear evil fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, you will know them by their fruits.
— Matthew 7:16-20
This photograph was taken during the Skeptic Friend’s field trip to the Creation Science museum at the Institute for Creation Research (ICR) in San Diego, California. This ICR illustration depicts all the “Bad Fruit” which is supposed to bud from the “Evolutionary Tree.” When I examined this photograph, I had two thoughts:
First, I wondered how a mere scientific theory about biological transformations could bring about so much depravity. Do creationists really believe that all these vices sprang into existence only after Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species in 1860? Where is their historical balance? And, I have yet to read a single biology textbook that promotes or encourages any of this conduct. Where is the creationists’ evidence? How do they build such slippery slope links between biological inquiry and human depravity? Do creationists just sit around and make all this up?
And second, as I was examining all the assorted cruelties that are supposed to originate from evolution, I thought, “Wait a minute! All this looks familiar. Doesn’t the Bible condone examples of all these wicked practices? Does the Bible, in fact, bear ‘bad fruit?’”
So, during a break from work one day, I compared the examples of the “Bad Fruit” in the “Evolutionary Tree” to related passages in my leather-bound NIV. I realized that the faculty at the ICR must abhor the comparable practices in the Bible. The “Good Book,” too, bears Bad Fruit!
I found Biblical instances representative of all the categories seen above except for atheism and bestiality. Also, fundamentalists who read the following list will quibble with some of my examples. For instance, my 1988 Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary has multiple, vague definitions for pantheism and behaviorism, so I had to pick the Biblical passages that best represented the approximate categories.
But, that’s not really the point. The point is that the Bible can be subjected to a “pick and choose” format in the same way that creationists proof-text scientific journals, essays, articles and books about evolution. Any quote or quotes can be taken wildly out of context.
Here are some examples of how the ICR’s practice of “pick and choose” can blow up in their faces if this same standard is applied to the Bible:
(The following verses are NIV unless otherwise specified.)
If anyone would take your coat, let him have your shirt as well. Give to him who begs from you, and do not refuse him who would borrow from you.Nazism
— Matthew 5:40-42
Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor.
— 1 Corinthians 10:24
Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy everything that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.Imperialism
— 1 Samuel 15:3
For the LORD your God will bless you [Israel] as he has promised … You will rule over many nations, but none will rule over you.Monopolism
— Deuteronomy 15:6
When the LORD your God brings you into the land he swore to your fathers to give you — a land with large, flourishing cities that you did not build, houses filled with all kinds of good things that you did not provide, wells that you did not dig, and vineyards and olive groves that you did not plant — then when you eat and are satisfied, be careful that you do not forget the LORD…
— Deuteronomy 6:10-12
Do not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.Humanism
— Exodus 34:14
Man’s fate is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both; as one dies, so dies the other. All have the same spirit; man has no advantage over the animals. All go to the same place; all come from dust and to dust all return. Who knows if the spirit of man rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?Amoralism
— Ecclesiastes 3:19-21
So both of Lot’s daughters became pregnant by their father [after they got him drunk and seduced him].Racism
— Genesis 19:36
And if [God] rescued Lot, a righteous(!) man, who was distressed by the filthy lives of lawless men, for that righteous man, living among them day after day, was tormented in his righteous soul by the lawless deeds he saw and heard.
— 2 Peter 2:7-8
The LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “These are the regulations for the Passover: No foreigner is to eat of it.”Pantheism
— Exodus 12:43
At the end of every seven years you must cancel debts. Every creditor shall cancel the loan he has made to his fellow Israelite. He shall not require payment from his fellow Israelite or brother, because the LORD’s time for canceling debts has been proclaimed. You may require payment from a foreigner, but you must cancel any debt your [Israelite] brother owes you.
— Deuteronomy 15:1-3
The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world.Behaviorism
— Psalm 19:1-4
The LORD saw how great man’s wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain. So the LORD said, “I will wipe out mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth — men and animals, and creatures that move along the ground, and birds of the air — for I am grieved that I have made them.”Materialism
— Genesis 6:5-7
The poor are shunned even by their neighbors, but the rich have many friends.Promiscuity
— Proverbs 14:20
The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.
— Proverbs 22:7
Wealth brings many friends, but a poor man’s friends desert him.
— Proverbs 19:4
The LORD said to Hosea, “Go, take for yourself an adulterous wife and unfaithful children…”Pornography
— Hosea 1:2
There she lusted after her lovers, whose genitals were like those of donkeys and whose emission was like that of horses.Genocide
— Ezekiel 23:20
In the cities of the nations the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes. Completely destroy them — the Hittites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites — as the LORD your God has commanded you.Slavery
— Deuteronomy 20:16-17
Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves. You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property. You can will them to your children as inherited property and can make them slaves for life…Abortion
— Leviticus 25:44-46
The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword: their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open.Euthanasia
— Hosea 13:16
You will destroy their descendants from the earth, their posterity from mankind.
— Psalm 21:10
Even from birth the wicked go astray; from the womb they are wayward and speak lies. Like a slug melting away as it moves along, like a stillborn child, may they not see the sun.
— Psalm 58:3, 8
E’phraim’s glory shall fly away like a bird — no birth, no pregnancy, no conception! Even if they bring up children, I will bereave them till none is left. Woe to them when I depart from them!
— Hosea 9:11-12, RSV
Give them, O LORD — what wilt thou give? Give them a miscarrying womb and dry breasts. E’phraim is stricken, their root is dried up, they shall bear no fruit. Even though they bring forth, I will slay their beloved children.
— Hosea 9:14, 16, RSV
Hurriedly he called to his armor-bearer, “Draw your sword and kill me, so they can’t say that a woman killed me.” So his servant ran him through, and he died.Chauvinism
— Judges 9:54
Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church.Infanticide
— 1 Corinthians 14:34-35
A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or have authority over a man; she must be silent. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived, it was the woman who was deceived and became a sinner.
— 1 Timothy 2:11-14
Happy is he who repays you for what you have done to us — he who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks!Homosexuality
— Psalm 137:8-9
The LORD commands: “kill without showing pity or compassion. Slaughter old men, young men and maidens, women and children”
— Ezekiel 9:5-6
And it came to pass, when he had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul … Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.Child Abuse
— 1 Samuel 18:1, 3-4, KJV
I grieve for you, Jonathan my brother; you were very dear to me. Your love for me was wonderful, more wonderful than that of women.
— 2 Samuel 1:26
If anyone curses his father or mother, he must be put to death.Drug Culture
— Leviticus 20:9
If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey his father and mother, and will not listen to them when they discipline him, they shall seize him and bring him before the elders. Then they shall say to the elders, “This son of ours is stubborn and rebellious. He will not obey us. He is immoral and a drunkard.” Then all the men of his town shall stone him to death. You must purge the evil from among you. All Israel will hear of it and be AFRAID.
— Deuteronomy 21:18-21
He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him.
— Proverbs 13:24
Blows and wounds cleanse away evil, and beatings purge the inmost being.
— Proverbs 20:30
Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you punish him with the rod, he will not die. Punish him with the rod and save his soul from death.
— Proverbs 23:13-14
Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him.
— Proverbs 22:15
Give beer to those who are perishing and wine to those who are in anguish; let them drink and forget their poverty and remember their misery no more.
— Proverbs 31:6-7
Then the LORD awoke as from sleep, as a man wakes from the stupor of wine.
— Psalm 78:65
This is what the LORD Almighty, the God of Israel, says: Drink, get drunk and vomit, and fall to rise no more because of the sword I will send among you… But if they refuse to take the cup from your hand and drink, tell them, “This is what the LORD Almighty says: You must drink it!”
— Jeremiah 25:27-28
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