This is a condensed summary of what Fundamentalist Christians BELIEVE.
- There is only one GOD.
- GOD is a Spirit. (That is he has no physical or material existence. [Unless he chooses to have one like when he “… became flesh and dwelt among US.”])
- GOD is omniscient (all knowing [although he sometimes ASKs questions like “… Adam, where are you? Did you eat the fruit of that tree I told you not to eat?” and “Who told you that you were naked?”])
- GOD is omnipotent (all powerful [like when he let Joshua stop the sun, (well really stop the earth from spinning on it’s axis) so he could finish killing all those enemies of GOD in that battle.])
- GOD is omnipresent (present everywhere [even in hell according to one prophet. “… Even if I descend into the depths of hell you are there.”)
- GOD is a triune being. (That is three distinct “Persons” in “one”. [What ever that means.])
- GOD existed before the creation. (GOD has no beginning and no end. [Of course, since time and space are a contiuum and an integral part of the universe, ie the creation, time begins with the creation. Gen 1.1 reads “In the beginning” that is the start of time so there is no “time” before the creation so GOD exist outside of time.])
- GOD created the heavens and the earth and all that are in them.
- The creation took place a little over 5000 years ago.
- The creation took 6 days and the culmination of the creation was the creation of man.
- GOD created man as a single male being.
- GOD created man in his own image. (What that “image” is, is unclear since GOD is not physical.)
- GOD placed him in the Garden of Eden and gave him dominion over the earth and all that is in it.
- GOD later created a female from a rib of the man.
- GOD commanded them to multiply and fill the earth.
- GOD gave them the fruit of all the trees in the garden as food except for one which he commanded them not to eat or they would die.
- They were tempted by Satan in the guise of a snake and chose to yield to the temptation and disobeyed GOD (Original Sin) and ate the fruit of the tree which was forbidden.
- BecaUSe of this disobedience GOD condemed them to spend all of eternity in hell. (The death promised if they disobeyed and eat fruit of the one tree forbidden.)
- Many centuries later GOD revealed to Moses his LAW and dictated to him the first 5 books of the Bible. (Later on he dictated the rest of the Bible to the different prophets and apostles.)
- GOD gave the LAW to Moses so that he could forgive the Original Sin if they would obey this LAW and thUS let them spend eternity in heaven instead of hell.
- No one ever succeeded in obeying all the LAW. Everyone eventually broke at least one of the LAWs at least once. (“…for all have sinned and come short of the glory of GOD.”)
- Eventually GOD himself (one of the beings of the triune GOD .. ie the Son being) became a man and obeyed all the LAWs and then was sacrificed (that is paid the price, Death, required by GOD . [why? becaUSe .., well, jUSt becaUSe] for disobeying, and this [the death of one part of the Trinity] satisfied GOD for all the sins of everyone.
- The Son being, who had “died” came back to life after 3 days and rose up from the earth into heaven. (So did Mohammed about 600 years later. Of course, Mohammed didn’t have to die first.)
- Anyone who BELIEVES this (the JesUS part, not the Mohammed part), is truly SORRY for having disobeyed GOD, and ASK can have all sins forgiven and spend all eternity in heaven.
- Everyone who does not BELIEVE this and is not truly SORRY for having disobeyed GOD and does not ASK will spend eternity in hell.
- Eventually the Son being of GOD will come back to the earth. There will be a great battle against Satan and his followers (which GOD will win of course) and all the dead who have BELIEVEd will come back to life and will spend eternity in heaven (after a 1000 years on earth ruled over by the Son.)
- All those who did not BELIEVE will come back to life and will be judged and condemned to hell for all of eternity.
(I am the son of a fundamentalist BAPTIST Preacher and was raised totally emersed in these beliefs. And my quotes? I did them from memory and at my age that ain’t so good as it once was but I got the ideas right.)
There are variations on some of the points. Some BELIEVE that at least some of the facts in the Bible are symbolic truths not literal truths, for instance some BELIEVE that the days of the creation were actually hundreds, thousands, millions, or maybe even billions of years and not jUSt 24 hours; Some BELIEVE that GOD did not literally dictate the words of the Bible to Moses and the other men who wrote them down but rather INSPIRED them (kind of like Gov. Perry’s “call” to run for president) which none the less makes them the Word of GOD since the omnipotent GOD would not let someone he was INSPIRING write down anything that wasn’t TRUE. (And we know they really were inspired or “called” becaUSe…..Well you jUSt got to accept it on faith!)
Fundamentalist Christianity, Fundamentalist Islam, and all other Fundamentalist belief system share the fact that they are all tautologies: That is the fundamental elements of all are TRUE by necessity becaUSe otherwise the entire system unravels.
Since Fundamentalist Christians (and Moslems) BELIEVE that GOD has no limitations and therefore the impossible is not impossible to GOD. Anything that can not be made to conform to the LAWs of nature can none the less be fully explained since with GOD all things are possible. Any contradictions, anything that seems absurd, anything that can’t be reconciled with known facts are all explained by the omnipotence of GOD.
From the fundamental beliefs elaborations grow. They mUSt. The presence in the ORIGINAL SIN story of Satan cries out for an explanation, an elaboration. This Satan wasn’t mentioned in the details given of the 6 days of creation and before the creation there was only GOD. Who is this Satan? Where did this Satan come from?
And then there are those Angels that start cropping up as you get further into the Bible. Who are they? Where did they come from? They aren’t included in the detailed story of the 6 days of the creation either. And what about “.. the sons of the GODs…” who were coming down from heaven and fathering giants with human females? (Don’t remember them? Go read the Noah story in Genesis.) They were all destroyed by the flood (the giants, that is, nothing more is said about what happened to the sons of GODs, or who or what they were.) All the decedents of Cain were also destroyed in the flood. But somehow a giant shows up in the David and Goliath story, long after the flood. And of course, as any good white supremacist (who are all good Christian Fundamentalist) will tell you, all people with ancestors from Africa are black becaUSe that was the “mark of Cain” and they are his decedents.
So elaboration takes place, explanations of these unexplained things that, although not revealed by GOD, not explained in the Holy Book, none the less need an explanation. And always the explanation is easy when you keep in mind that with GOD all things are possibl and that GOD’s knowledge (GOD’s omniscience) is so far above that of humans that even if we can’t explain something, GOD can, but jUSt hasn’t felt it was necessary for US to know the explanation.
It is therefore USeless to try and USe reason or logic when discUSsing fundamental beliefs with a fundamentalist of any fundamentalist belief system. To the fundamentalist of such a belief system, the beliefs are what they are becaUSe they are what they are. In spite of this the fundamentalist BELIEVEr will try to USe reason, and will claim that reason or logic will lead anyone to accept their fundamental beliefs. If, after they have been explained to the non-BELIEVEr they are still not BELIEVEd it is only becaUSe the non-BELIEVEr refUSes to accept reason or logic and is therefore unreasonable.
To the fundamentalist there is no need to prove anything in their belief system. None the less they develop elaborate proofs for them in an effort to convince non-BELIEVErs (and themselves?) of the truthfulness of their beliefs.
All the BELIEVEr has to do is get the non-BELIEVEr to accept that there is a GOD and that he is omniscient, omnipotent, and omnipresent and therefore that all things are possible if GOD so wills it. Since it is not possible to disprove these assertions anyone who refUSes to accept them is being unreasonable.
They need the proofs becaUSe it is much easier to BELIEVE something if you can prove it than it is to jUSt take it as TRUE on faith. AH FAITH! In the end they all fall back on faith. You jUSt gotta have faith in the truthfulness of the beliefs and BELIEVE them.
It is this jUSt have faith and BELIEVE foundation of all fundamentalist belief systems that all fundamentalist, whether Christian, Moslem, or any other system, have in common that makes them ALL dangeroUS and a threat to the liberties and freedom that are the TRUE foundations of America. That’s why people like Rick Perry (and not jUSt Rick Perry ) and all the other Republican candidates for the Republican Presidential nomination scare the hell out of me.
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