You can easily go to a search engine and look up Bible contradictions, inconsistencies and absurdities, it can be a very confusing book indeed. I ran across this letter (first post) several years ago and got a good laugh but more importantly it made the same point as some other humorous media that has been surfacing around the internet a lot lately:
Like this one which points out that even though Rick Santorum is homophobic because the bible teaches that homosexuality is wrong (Leviticus 18:2222Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination). But only 8 chapters earlier in the same book of the bible it says not to eat pork “And the swine, though he divide the hoof, and be clovenfooted, yet he cheweth not the cud; he is unclean to you. Of their flesh shall ye not eat, and their carcase shall ye not touch; they are unclean to you.’ Leviticus 7-8 yet there he is disobeying the same book which he claims he lives by.
Or this gem:
This picture of a bigot showing off his tattoo made the rounds on the internet and was widely ridiculed. It says “Thou shall not lie with a male as one does with a woman. It is an abomination. Leviticus 18:22” But in the very next chapter, tattoos are forbidden.“Ye shall not make any cuttings in your flesh for the dead, nor print any marks upon you: I am the LORD. Leviticus 19:28″
Just today the Huffington post ran this great article: 13 Things The Bible Forbids Other Than Homosexuality (That You’re Probably Guilty Of Doing)
All of these things begs the question “Does cherry picking the Bible make a person a hypocrite?”
Cherry Picking: Cherry picking is the common term for the fallacy of incomplete or suppressed evidence. This is when someone uses evidence, reasoning…etc. to support their position while ignoring whatever contradicts it. In the case of Christians who use certain passages while ignoring others such as using Leviticus 19:28 to support the homophobia but at the same time disobey one or many other things that the Bible also says is wrong. Sometimes even within the same chapter.
Hypocrite: A hypocrite is a person who engages in the behaviors or attitudes that they say a person should not be. A hypocrite is putting on false appearances of virtue. This is a dishonest and potentially manipulative position and so is therefore unethical and widely considered an unacceptable position.
It stands to reason that someone who claims the moral superiority of a book and the importance of its teachings that they would follow all of its teachings but that is not the case for some Christians, the right wing especially. By and large the cherry picking of the bible is perfectly innocent and represents a slow ethical evolution on their part.
The kind of cherry picking that I take issue with is the kind that uses a 2000+ year old text written by desert dwelling sheep headers to support their hate and political agenda to suppress human rights and trounce on the love and happiness of total strangers. How they can feel good about this is beyond me, although indoctrination comes to mind. It is these kinds of Christians that are rightly called hypocrites.
They are hypocrites because they claim love while hating. They are hypocrites because they claim persecution while persecuting, claim family values while destroying families, they claim peace while on the assault , they claim moral superiority while still morally inferior, they claim to be champions of freedom while trying to suppress the freedoms of others…the list of the hypocrisies of the Christian right is long and, quite frankly, pretty disgusting.
Hate, however, is not put to an end with more hate. I will never hate the Christian right for their hypocrisy but they will never have my respect. Nor is their attitude welcome in a just and civil society. We only ever truly be rid of threats like hate-filled politicians and other role-models by making their attitudes and behaviors socially unacceptable. Don’t have anything to do with these people, don’t accommodate them and certainly never vote for them but never, ever hate them. Hypocrites or not only through peacefully refusing their acceptance in our lives will we ever be free of the hypocrisy of religious fundamentalism.