I thought some of my fellow freethinkers would appreciate this
handy list of Bible quotes that I've just drawn up.
The Bible In Its Own Words
An unbeliever's choice of quotes.
Compiled by Mark Humphrys, July 1993.
Thanks to James Meritt and Loren I.Petrich,
whose compilations I have drawn from.
Foreigners, women, homosexuals and animals are among the groups
threatened and abused by Yahweh and his apologists. Like all primitive
peoples, their morality is only for straight male humans of the
appropriate race and tribe. Everyone else is subject to at best
discrimination, at worst random murder. Morality is based on insults
to imaginary gods and arbitrary codes, rather than on any concept of
suffering, freedom, or human rights.
Having grown up on a diet of normal 20th century writing and thought,
the Bible, remarkably, is perhaps the sickest and most amoral book
I have ever read. But I'll let it speak for itself..
She is to be called Woman, because she was taken from Man.
To the woman he said: 'I shall give you intense pain in childbearing,
you will give birth to your children in pain. Your yearning will be for
your husband, and he will dominate you.'
God said to Noah, 'I have decided that the end has come for all
living things, for the earth is full of lawlessness because of
human beings. So I am now about to destroy them and the earth.'
(And he did! Well, he did in the story anyway.)
They had not gone to bed when the house was surrounded by the
townspeople, the men of Sodom both young and old, all the people
without exception. Calling out to Lot they said, 'Where are the men
who came to you tonight? Send them out to us so that we can have
intercourse with them.'
Lot came out to them at the door and, having shut the door behind him,
said, 'Please, brothers, do not be wicked. Look, I have two daughters
who are virgins. I am ready to send them out to you, for you to treat
as you please, but do nothing to these men since they are now under the
protection of my roof.'
And at midnight Yahweh struck down all the first-born in Egypt
from the first-born of Pharaoh, heir to his throne, to the first-born
of the prisoner in the dungeon, and the first-born of all the livestock.
Pharaoh and all his officials and all the Egyptians got up in the night,
and there was a great wailing in Egypt, for there was not a house without
(If a god like this existed, I would not worship it; I would oppose it.)
If a man seduces a virgin who is not engaged to be married, he will
pay her bride-price and make her his wife. If her father absolutely
refuses to let him have her, he will pay a sum equivalent to the
bride-price of a virgin.
You will not boil a kid in its mother's milk.
When you offer a cereal offering of dough baked in the oven,
the wheaten flour must be prepared either in the form of unleavened
cakes mixed with oil, or in the form of unleavened wafers spread
If your offering is a cereal offering cooked on the griddle,
the wheaten flour mixed with oil must contain no leaven.
You will break it in pieces and pour oil over it.
It is a cereal offering.
If your offering is a cereal offering cooked in the pan,
the wheaten flour must be prepared with oil.
All winged insects moving on four feet you will regard as detestable
for eating. Of all these winged insects you may eat only the following:
those with the sort of legs above their feet which enable them to leap
over the ground.
(etc., endless arbitrary rules with no rhyme or reason.)
Whenever a woman has a discharge and the discharge from her body
is of blood, she will remain in a state of menstrual pollution
for seven days.
Anyone who touches her will be unclean until evening.
Anything she lies on in this polluted state will be unclean;
anything she sits on will be unclean.
If a man goes so far as to sleep with her, he will contract her
menstrual pollution and will be unclean for seven days.
I am Yahweh.
You will not approach and have intercourse with a woman who is in
a state of menstrual pollution.
You will not practise divination or magic.
You will not round off your hair at the edges or trim the edges of
your beard. You will not gash your bodies when someone dies,
and you will not tattoo yourselves. I am Yahweh.
Do not have recourse to the spirits of the dead or to magicians;
they will defile you. I, Yahweh, am your God.
The man who commits adultery with his neighbour's wife will be
put to death, he and the woman.
The man who has intercourse with a man in the same way as with a woman:
they have done a hateful thing together; they will be put to death;
their blood will be on their own heads.
Moses was enraged with the officers of the army, the commanders of the
thousands and commanders of the hundreds, who had come back from this
military expedition. He said, 'Why have you spared the life of all the women?
They were the very ones who, on Balaam's advice, caused the Israelites
to be unfaithful to Yahweh in the affair at Peor: hence the plague
which struck Yahweh's community. So kill all the male children and
kill all the women who have ever slept with a man; but spare the lives of
the young girls who have never slept with a man, and keep them for yourselves.
When Yahweh your God has brought you into the country which you are
going to make your own, many nations will fall before you: Hittites,
Girgashites, Amorites, Canaanites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites,
seven nations greater and stronger than yourselves. Yahweh your God
will put them at your mercy and you will conquer them. You must put them
under the curse of destruction. You must not make any treaty with them
or show them any pity.
Instead, treat them like this: tear down their altars, smash their
standing-stones, cut down their sacred poles and burn their idols.
For you are a people consecrated to Yahweh your God; of all the peoples
on earth, you have been chosen by Yahweh your God to be his own people.
(Similar to Columbus' 'discovery' of America, we are rarely reminded
that the 'Promised Land' was already occupied.
When Yahweh's people arrived, they proceeded to slaughter all the natives
so they could take their land.
According to their own accounts, they killed tens of thousands.
No justification is offered other than 'God says it's ours'.)
(While the story tells us a lot about the Bible's retarded morality,
we can draw comfort from the fact that, like the Flood and the Exodus,
the genocide of Canaan did not happen.)
You must completely destroy all the places where the nations you dispossess
have served their gods, on high mountains, on hills, under any spreading tree;
you must tear down their altars, smash their sacred stones, burn their
sacred poles, hack to bits the statues of their gods and obliterate
their name from that place.
If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you, offering you
some sign or wonder, and the sign or wonder comes about; and if he then
says to you, 'Let us follow other gods (hitherto unknown to you)
and serve them,' you must not listen to that prophet's words or to that
That prophet or that dreamer of dreams must be put to death,
(The Bible speaks sense at last! :)
If there is anyone, man or woman, among you in any of the towns
given to you by Yahweh your God, who does what is wrong in the eyes of
Yahweh your God by violating his covenant, who goes and serves other gods
and worships them, or the sun or the moon or any of heaven's array
- a thing I have forbidden - and this person is denounced to you:
if after careful enquiry it is found true and confirmed that this
hateful thing has been done in Israel, you must take the man or woman
guilty of this evil deed outside your city gates, and there you must stone
that man or woman to death.
When you advance on a town to attack it, first offer it peace-terms.
If it accepts these and opens its gates to you, all the people inside
will owe you forced labour and work for you. But if it refuses peace
and gives battle, you must besiege it. Yahweh your God having handed it
over to you, you will put the whole male population to the sword.
But the women, children, livestock and whatever the town contains
by way of spoil, you may take for yourselves as booty.
If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not listen
to the voice either of his father or of his mother and, even when they
punish him, still will not pay attention to them, his father and mother
must take hold of him and bring him out to the elders of his town
at the gate of that place. To the elders of his town, they will say,
'This son of ours is stubborn and rebellious and will not listen to us;
he is a wastrel and a drunkard.' All his fellow-citizens must then
stone him to death.
You must not wear clothing woven part of wool, part of linen.
You must make tassels for the four corners of the cloak in which you
If a man marries a woman, has sexual intercourse with her and then,
turning against her, taxes her with misconduct and publicly defames her
by saying, 'I married this woman and when I had sexual intercourse with her
I did not find evidence of her virginity,' the girl's father and mother
must take the evidence of her virginity and produce it before the elders
of the town, at the gate.
But if the accusation that the girl cannot show evidence of virginity
is substantiated, she must be taken out, and at the door of her father's
house her fellow-citizens must stone her to death for having committed
an infamy in Israel by bringing disgrace on her father's family.
If a virgin is engaged to a man, and another man encounters her
in the town and has sexual intercourse with her, you will take them
both to the gate of the town in question and stone them to death:
the girl, for not having called for help in the town; the man,
for having exploited his fellow-citizen's wife.
If, when two men are fighting, the wife of one intervenes to protect
her husband from the other's blows by reaching out and seizing the other
by his private parts, you must cut off her hand and show no pity.
And Jephthah made a vow to Yahweh, 'If you deliver the Ammonites into
my grasp, the first thing to come out of the doors of my house to meet me
when I return in triumph from fighting the Ammonites shall belong to Yahweh,
and I shall sacrifice it as a burnt offering.'
As Jephthah returned to his house at Mizpah, his daughter came out to meet
dancing to the sound of tambourines. She was his only child; apart from her,
he had neither son nor daughter. When he saw her, he tore his clothes and
exclaimed, 'Oh my daughter, what misery you have brought upon me! You have
joined those who bring misery into my life! I have made a promise before
Yahweh which I cannot retract.'
When the two months were over she went back to her father, and he treated her
as the vow that he had uttered bound him.
1 Samuel 15
This is what Yahweh Sabaoth says, 'I intend to punish what Amalek did
to Israel - laying a trap for him on the way as he was coming up from Egypt.
Now, go and crush Amalek; put him under the curse of destruction
with all that he possesses. Do not spare him, but kill man and woman,
babe and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and donkey.'
Saul then crushed the Amalekites, beginning at Havilah in the direction
of Shur, which is to the east of Egypt. He took Agag king of the
Amalekites alive and, executing the curse of destruction,
put all the people to the sword. But Saul and the army spared Agag
with the best of the sheep and cattle, the fatlings and lambs
and all that was good. They did not want to consign these to the
curse of destruction; they consigned only what was poor and worthless.
(such as human beings not of their tribe.)
2 Kings 2
From there he (Elisha) went up to Bethel, and while he was on the road,
some small boys came out of the town and jeered at him. 'Hurry up, baldy!'
they shouted. 'Come on up, baldy!' He turned round and looked at them;
and he cursed them in the name of Yahweh. And two bears came out of the
forest and savaged forty-two of the boys. From there he went on to
Mount Carmel and then returned to Samaria.
2 Kings 6
But, as one of them was felling his beam, the iron axehead fell into
the water. 'Alas, my lord,' he exclaimed, 'and it was a borrowed one too!'
'Where did it fall?' the man of God asked; and he showed him the spot.
Then, cutting a stick, Elisha threw it in at that point and made the
iron axehead float. 'Lift it out,' he said; and the man stretched out
his hand and took it.
(etc., much time-wasting on daft miracles like this,
while torture, rape and genocide go, as always, unpunished.)
2 Kings 23
The king ordered Hilkiah with the priest next in rank and the guardians
of the threshold to remove all the cult objects which had been made
for Baal, Asherah and the whole array of heaven; he burnt them outside
Jerusalem in the fields of the Kidron and had the ashes taken to Bethel.
He exterminated the spurious priests whom the kings of Judah had
appointed and who offered sacrifice on the high places, in the towns
of Judah and the neighbourhood of Jerusalem; also those who offered
sacrifice to Baal, to the sun, the moon, the constellations and the
whole array of heaven.
(Well, at least the sun and moon exist.)
By the rivers of Babylon
we sat and wept
at the memory of Zion.
Daughter of Babel, doomed to destruction,
a blessing on anyone
who treats you as you treated us,
a blessing on anyone who seizes your babies
and shatters them against a rock!
(This is what it says! Go read it!)
Who was it measured the water of the sea in the hollow of his hand
and calculated the heavens to the nearest inch,
gauged the dust of the earth to the nearest bushel,
weighed the mountains in scales,
the hills in a balance?
Did you not know,
had you not heard?
Was it not told you from the beginning?
Have you not understood how the earth was set on its foundations?
He who sits enthroned above the circle of the earth,
the inhabitants of which are like grasshoppers,
stretches out the heavens like a cloth,
spreads them out like a tent to live in.
(BEDEMIR: And that, my liege, is how we know the Earth to be
ARTHUR: This new learning amazes me, Sir Bedemir. Explain again
how sheeps' bladders may be employed to prevent earthquakes.
BEDEMIR: Oh, certainly, sir.
- "Monty Python and the Holy Grail")
I, Yahweh, have made all things,
I alone spread out the heavens.
When I hammered the earth into shape, who was with me?
I, who foil the omens of soothsayers
and make fools of diviners,
who confound sages
turning their knowledge into folly
When he (Jesus) reached the territory of the Gadarenes on the other side,
two demoniacs came towards him out of the tombs - they were so
dangerously violent that nobody could use that path. Suddenly they
shouted, 'What do you want with us, Son of God? Have you come here
to torture us before the time?' Now some distance away there was
a large herd of pigs feeding, and the devils pleaded with Jesus,
'If you drive us out, send us into the herd of pigs.' And he said to them,
'Go then,' and they came out and made for the pigs; and at that the whole
herd charged down the cliff into the lake and perished in the water.
The herdsmen ran off and made for the city, where they told the whole story,
including what had happened to the demoniacs.
In truth I tell you, before this generation has passed away,
all these things will have taken place.
(hmm, should be any day now.)
For in those days before the Flood people were eating, drinking,
taking wives, taking husbands, right up to the day Noah went into
the ark, and they suspected nothing till the Flood came and
swept them all away.
(Jesus is not aware that the Flood did not happen.)
Next day as they were leaving Bethany, he (Jesus) felt hungry.
Seeing a fig tree in leaf some distance away, he went to see if
he could find any fruit on it, but when he came up to it he found
nothing but leaves; for it was not the season for figs.
And he addressed the fig tree, 'May no one ever eat fruit
from you again.'
Next morning, as they passed by, they saw the fig tree withered
to the roots. Peter remembered. 'Look, Rabbi,' he said to Jesus,
'the fig tree that you cursed has withered away.'
(What a sad and pathetic story.)
I tell you truly, there are some standing here who will not taste death
before they see the kingdom of God.
Think of the ravens. They do not sow or reap; they have no storehouses
and no barns; yet God feeds them.
(Jesus doesn't know much about biology.
Nature is not a place where each creature is taken care of.
It is a brutal, overpopulated struggle for existence.
But this was not understood until Darwin's time.)
The rich man also died and was buried.
In his torment in Hades he looked up and saw Abraham a long way off
with Lazarus in his embrace. So he cried out, 'Father Abraham, pity me
and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue,
for I am in agony in these flames.' Abraham said, 'My son, remember that
during your life you had your fill of good things, just as Lazarus
his fill of bad. Now he is being comforted here while you are in agony.'
Well then; it was through one man that sin came into the world,
and through sin death, and thus death has spread through the whole
human race because everyone has sinned.
(Paul is not aware that Adam did not exist.
Nor is he aware that we evolved from creatures who had been living and dying
for millions of years.)
Everyone is to obey the governing authorities, because there is no
authority except from God and so whatever authorities exist have been
appointed by God.
(There is no concept of democracy, or authority coming from the people.)
1 Corinthians 6
Keep away from sexual immorality. All other sins that people may commit
are done outside the body; but the sexually immoral person sins against
his own body. Do you not realise that your body is the temple of the
Holy Spirit, who is in you and whom you received from God?
You are not your own property, then; you have been bought at a price.
So use your body for the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 7
To the unmarried and to widows I say: it is good for them to stay
as they are, like me. But if they cannot exercise self-control,
let them marry, since it is better to be married than to be burnt up.
1 Corinthians 7
What I mean, brothers, is that the time has become limited,
and from now on, those who have spouses should live as though
they had none;
Because this world as we know it is passing away.
(passing away rather slowly it seems.)
1 Corinthians 8
On the subject of eating foods dedicated to false gods,
we are well aware that none of the false gods exist in reality
and that there is no God other than the One.
1 Corinthians 11
But I should like you to understand that the head of every man is Christ,
the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God.
But for a man it is not right to have his head covered, since he is
the image of God and reflects God's glory; but woman is the reflection of
man's glory. For man did not come from woman; no, woman came from man;
nor was man created for the sake of woman, but woman for the sake of man:
and this is why it is right for a woman to wear on her head a sign of
the authority over her, because of the angels.
1 Corinthians 14
As in all the churches of God's holy people, women are to remain quiet
in the assemblies, since they have no permission to speak: theirs is a
subordinate part, as the Law itself says. If there is anything they
want to know, they should ask their husbands at home: it is shameful
for a woman to speak in the assembly.
Wives should be subject to their husbands as to the Lord,
since, as Christ is head of the Church and saves the whole body,
so is a husband the head of his wife; and as the Church is subject
to Christ, so should wives be to their husbands, in everything.
Slaves, be obedient to those who are, according to human reckoning,
your masters, with deep respect and sincere loyalty, as you are
obedient to Christ: not only when you are under their eye, as if you
had only to please human beings, but as slaves of Christ who wholeheartedly
do the will of God.
1 Timothy 2
During instruction, a woman should be quiet and respectful.
I give no permission for a woman to teach or to have authority
over a man. A woman ought to be quiet, because Adam was formed first
and Eve afterwards, and it was not Adam who was led astray
but the woman who was led astray and fell into sin. Nevertheless,
she will be saved by child-bearing, provided she lives a sensible life
and is constant in faith and love and holiness.
Similarly, older women should behave as befits religious people,
with no scandal-mongering and no addiction to wine - they must be the
teachers of right behaviour and show younger women how they should
love their husbands and love their children, how they must be sensible
and chaste, and how to work in their homes, and be gentle,
and obey their husbands, so that the message of God is not disgraced.
1 Peter 2
Slaves, you should obey your masters respectfully, not only those
who are kind and reasonable but also those who are difficult to
please. You see, there is merit if, in awareness of God, you put up
with the pains of undeserved punishment; but what glory is there
in putting up with a beating after you have done something wrong?
The merit in the sight of God is in putting up with it patiently
when you are punished for doing your duty.
1 Peter 3
In the same way, husbands must always treat their wives with
consideration in their life together, respecting a woman as one who,
though she may be the weaker partner, is equally an heir to the
generous gift of life.
As soon as the dragon found himself hurled down to the earth,
he sprang in pursuit of the woman, the mother of the male child,
but she was given a pair of the great eagle's wings to fly away
from the serpent into the desert, to the place where she was
to be looked after for a time, two times and half a time.
So the serpent vomited water from his mouth, like a river,
after the woman, to sweep her away in the current, but the earth
came to her rescue; it opened its mouth and swallowed the river
spewed from the dragon's mouth.
The woman was dressed in purple and scarlet and glittered with
gold and jewels and pearls, and she was holding a gold winecup
filled with the disgusting filth of her prostitution;
But the ten horns and the beast will turn against the prostitute,
and tear off her clothes and leave her stark naked; then they will
eat her flesh and burn the remains in the fire.
(The kind of thoughts you find inside the head of
some sick woman-hating rapist or serial killer.)
But the legacy for cowards, for those who break their word, or worship
obscenities, for murderers and the sexually immoral, and for sorcerers,
worshippers of false gods or any other sort of liars, is the second death
in the burning lake of sulphur.