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Monday, October 20, 2008

The People vs Joe the Plumber

Ray Comfort has argued that God has a high standard of righteousness and justice. To support this claim, he points out that lying gets a death sentence, he considers hate to be murder, and lust to be adultery:
He knows that God's standard of righteousness is so high that the crime of lying demands the death sentence, and that He considers hatred of another human being to be murder. [...] If you lust after another human being, God considers you to be an adulterer. That's the height of His moral standard, and that will be the standard of judgment on Judgment Day.
First, allow me to tutor you on your religion, Ray. God's penalty for lying isn't death, it's infinite torture. Further, the mere fact that you were born is punishable by infinite torture, according to original sin.

But how warped is Ray's logic in this post? He points to God considering hate to be murder and lust to be adultery to be markers of his high moral standard. Where, exactly, is the logic in that? Shall I consider someone touching my hand to be rape? That seems to be a pretty high moral standard, then. Or, I could one-up God and consider mere dislike of a person to be murder.

JT-1, God-0.

But there's a second discomforting line of argument Ray appeals to. He takes punishment of lies with infinite torture to be a high standard of justice. By Ray's flawed logic, the greater the punishment, the greater the justice. I can't cite any figures, but for the crime of burglary of some small store I would think a just punishment would be a year or two in prison. If the judge instead sentences the person to 10 years, is that a higher standard of justice? How about life in prison? Or, wait, how about death? Or, better yet, how about unending torture for the rest of that person's life?

Yes, that's a very high standard of justice. If I were a judge, that's what I would adopt for that sort of burglary. In fact, I would adopt it for every case that comes before me.

Stole a car? Unending, life-long torture!
DUI? Unending, life-long torture!
Stole a pumpkin? Unending, life-long torture!
Stole a pencil? Unending, life-long torture!

But wait! Now that I have my high standard of justice like God, I now need a high standard of mercy:
He was manifest in the flesh and suffered for us, so that we could be free from the demands of Eternal Justice. His was a "vicarious" sacrifice. He paid the fine so that God could legally dismiss our case.
I wonder what constitutes "paying the fine"? The punishment is infinite torture, but Jesus was only subjected to temporary torture (and not nearly as bad) and was then put to death. So, he hardly paid the fine.

So, to constitute a high standard of mercy, I need to set up my court so that one person can "pay" a reduced "fine" and then anyone who comes before me can appeal to that. I will have Bob taken out back, tortured for thirty minutes, and then put to death. Now, whenever you come before, all you have to do is invoke Bob's name.

The People vs Joe the Plumber
Me, the Judge: It says here that you raped a child, is that correct?
Joe the Plumber: Yes.
Me, the Judge: Did you do it?
Joe, the Plumber: Yes, along with a lot of other things.
Me, the Judge: Alright, do you have anything else to say before I impose the sentence of unending, life-long torture?
Joe, the Plumber: Yes.
Me, the Judge: Speak and be heard.
Joe, the Plumber: Bob.
Me, the Judge: Case legally dismissed!

The end.

3 comments:

FrodoSaves said...

You know what you're getting for this blasphemous post?

Unending, life-long torture!

Ha!

Brittany said...

"By Ray's flawed logic, the greater the punishment, the greater the justice. I can't cite any figures, but for the crime of burglary of some small store I would think a just punishment would be a year or two in prison."

Yet what you and I would consider "just" is actually loaded with sin. Our standards of judgement are not pure, and are not right. God's justice is righteousness, and He cleanses out ALL sin.

"I wonder what constitutes "paying the fine"? The punishment is infinite torture, but Jesus was only subjected to temporary torture (and not nearly as bad) and was then put to death. "

I wander, even if Jesus was subject to torture/death for a million years would that be enough to satisfy you? It seems that you are missing the main point though...Yes Jesus did die for mankinds sin...yet He rose from the dead and defeated death/sin. That is the main point...Jesus defeated the sin of the world...He saved ALL of mankind from death. He gave all mankind eternal life, all He asked in return is that you and I believe in Him and follow His ways. He never said it would be easy.

Once man recognizes fully their sin/evilness, then and only then, will man finally recognize what Christ has done for him.

I hope and pray that you recognize the sin in your life, and recognize that the only way to free yourself from that sin is in Christ. Accept Him, and not lean on your own understanding, because man's knowledge is nothing compared to Almighty God's knowledge and wisdom.

Have a great day.

In Christian Love,
Brittany

DisComforting Ignorance said...

@frodosaves
+100 banana points for best comment ever :P

@Brittany
You raised interesting questions regarding God's standards, Jesus' payment, and recognition of sin, so I made a full post reply:

http://disco-igno.blogspot.com/2008/10/brittany-how-much-should-jesus-have.html