9 thoughts on “Rev John Bell of the Iona Community

  1. Knowing and telling truth has been problematic throughout human history and the most complicating factor has always been supernatural belief. We have scrambled out of our confusion to some extent by giving the heave-ho to to such things as, for instance Jesus and the theological tatters that surround him, by inventing empirically founded science. John Bell would do well to drop his faith and counsel others of whatever cult they cling to, to do the same and look to evidence as the best route we have to truth telling.

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  2. Reluctantly, I find myself in agreement with one of John Bell’s statements, the one regarding Truth’s liberating effects, Although I”m not sure that it applies generally to all truth, I certainly found myself liberated once I’d realised that there was no evidence to support the idea of his religion (or anyone else’s) being true.

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  3. If I understand christianity correctly it gives one the wiggle room to be an absolute scoundrel, a wife beating thug, a thief, a peadophile, a rapist, a serial self appointed sadomasochistic child beater (like Mary Whitehouse friend and ally John Smyth QC) … wiggle room to commit any kind of crime or sin you want as long as you repent and declare christian belief as you are drawing your last breath. Thats why christianity so horribly immoral. Its beyond my comprehension how anyone can sincerely state that they are really christian. To assert such betrays appalling faith head gulliblity, ignorance of scripture or the gargantuan conceit of a huckster … be that a bishop, a pope, a local vicar or a calculating wrong un.

    At least in islam, if I understand it correctly, god keeps a ledger of ones wrong doings and sins granting access to paradise only if ones good deeds outweigh the bad. So a good muslim tries to do his / her best throughout life whereas christian can have been a lifelong serial sinner or even the worst kind of criminal right up to the point of repentance.

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  4. John Bell can only get away with talking about truth and Christianity in this way because he knows that nobody is going to take him up on it. There is, of course, no right of reply on TftD; but in addition it is difficult to envisage any mainstream broadcaster these days, particularly the Beeb, daring to air any programme that critically examined the truth of Christian beliefs, especially the existence of Jesus. (But it’s fun to imagine…)

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    1. StephenJP, the story of Emperor’s New Clothes comes to mind. When people make claims about their IMF or how they chose one IMF rather than another, we should assume they’re epistemologically naked until they can demonstrate otherwise.

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      1. DD, I couldn’t agree more, and most people on this site would come to the same conclusion; but your average punter listening to John Bell or the rest of them wouldn’t begin to appreciate that other, evidence-based, positions are even available.

        Richard Dawkins did a three-part programme called ‘The Root of All Evil?’ on Channel 4 in 2006, more or less to coincide with the publication of ‘The God Delusion’. As I recall, it was pretty good. I’m afraid I can’t see a similar programme, let alone a Jesus-myth one, being made in the current climate, where the main religious community seems to be the Church of the Perpetually Offended.

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