I have been reading religious, non-religious, and anti-religious blogs, websites, books, magazines, web forums, etc. a long time. In so doing, I have ran across what follows, in one form or another, more times than I can count.
The biggest percentage of de-converted religious believers who I have met have told me that the most compelling reason for them to have started the process of de-conversion was reading their holy book in full.
Reading with a focus on comprehension allowed them to recoil in horror at the nonsense and contradictions in those antiquated books with their obsolete ‘wisdom.’
In order to believe a statement like that, wouldn’t a person necessarily have to believe:
1. Christians have not read the Bible.
2. Christians may have read some or all of the Bible but they lack the reading comprehension skills necessary to fully understand what the Bible actually says.
Number two is an absurd and insulting generalization and not worth the time.
I am not sure how number one is even possible unless a non-believer’s version of how church works conflicts with reality.
In my nearly two decades as a Christian, I have never been in a church where the sermons weren’t biblical and full of Bible verses.
I have never been a church where I wasn’t asked to use a Bible to follow along with a sermon, take notes, and do more reading later.
I have never been in a church where there weren’t numerous Bibles in every pew.
I have never been in a church that didn’t include Sunday School and biblically based small group studies where questions and independent study weren’t highly encouraged.
I have never been in a church where pastors, leaders, elders, and seasoned Christians weren’t available to answer any questions a guest or member might have regarding faith or the Bible.
I have never, either directly or subtly, been told not to read my own Bible. In fact, I have always been encouraged to read it daily and think deeply about what it says.