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Wednesday, April 1, 2015

The Beginner's Guide to Picking and Choosing

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Would you like to call yourself a Christian, even though you don't care about God at all? Do you want to make your own religion, solely for the purpose of making yourself feel good? Are you interested in completely ignoring the most important things God wants you to do?

Well friends, I know exactly what you need to do. It's called Picking and Choosing and I've been doing it for several years now. This has completely changed my life. Before, I actually wanted to obey God, and it was really difficult, but now I've found that by Picking and Choosing, I can just do whatever I want and still tell people I'm a Christian.

This is a convenient and easy-to-use method, great for those of you who sort of like the idea of religion but not really. I use it because I can't be bothered to actually care about what Christianity means. It's just not something I have time to think about and write hundreds of blog posts on.

Picking and Choosing is a method of interpreting the bible. Obviously, the bible gives us a clearly-defined list of commands that God intends for all people to follow at all times. People who actually care about Jesus will of course strive to keep all the commands on this list. But, I mean, really, some of them are hard. It's way easier to be a cafeteria Christian. Hence the Picking and Choosing.

Wait, did you just say something about shellfish? No no no, that's not what I'm talking about when I say the bible gives us clear commands that apply for all time. Yes, God told the ancient Israelites they weren't allowed to eat shellfish. But, I mean, obviously that doesn't apply to us now. Geez. Yes the bible gives a lot of rules, and it is very clear to everyone which ones apply to us and which ones do not. That's why we need to Pick and Choose, to eliminate God's clear biblical commands which we are most definitely supposed to be following. Not the silly ones like about not eating shellfish. Try to keep up.

Anyway, here are the most important principles for Picking and Choosing:

1. Hollywood.

It's important to keep up with recent movie releases and celebrity gossip, so you can know what's popular in Hollywood. You can ignore any biblical commands that Hollywood isn't a fan of.

For example, according to Hollywood, Hugh Jackman is incredibly hot and manly. I mean, wow. But the bible says we shouldn't lust. ... Oh, actually, sorry this is a bad example, women don't lust anyway.

2. Your emotions.

Do you feel like following God's rules, or not? This is a very important question to ask yourself as you Pick and Choose. Because some days we just feel kind of, eh, about the whole religion thing, am I right? No worries, just skip it.

Everyone knows that God doesn't care about emotions; the bible never describes God as having emotions or acting on them. But for us Pickers and Choosers, it's easier to just be selfish and act according to our obviously meaningless emotions.

For example, maybe you feel bad because you did what God said, and it was hurtful to someone. Ah you poor thing. We all know God would want you to stand strong and do the right thing, even when it doesn't feel good, even when your silly little God-given emotions are telling you something is terribly wrong. But don't worry! By Picking and Choosing, you can take the easy way out and avoid that bad feeling entirely.

3. Hell.

If it's about hell, skip it. This one time I went to Arizona and it was too hot. If hell exists, it is definitely hotter than Arizona. I don't believe in that.

4. Political correctness.

Yes, nowadays our culture is moving away from God, in order to promote unbiblical values like accepting all people and showing compassion to minorities. For those of us who don't want to obey God and just want to be accepted by the world, it is very important to be politically correct.

So when you read the bible, try to imagine whether there may be a certain demographic which would be unhappy with a particular verse. It doesn't matter how far-fetched the connection is- you know, political correctness is not about language that actually perpetuates oppression and causes harm to people that God loves- nope, it's just about people being oversensitive and becoming upset for no reason at all!

Genesis 3 tells us that the first woman, Eve, was deceived by a snake, and she and the snake were punished. Now, might this be offensive to people who love snakes? Wait, don't answer that question- it doesn't matter if it actually is offensive or not. Just imagining that someone could be offended is enough. That's how we stay politically correct, and it's a very important value for Pickers and Choosers.

5. It just sounds silly.

You're the boss! If you think this particular bible verse, which unambiguously states a command that God wants you personally to follow, just sounds too weird, skip it!

For example, girls, everyone knows that God is really really concerned about your first kiss. (I can't find the bible verse right now, but it's definitely in there.) But do you really want to tell people, "I'm saving my first kiss for the man I marry?" Naw, they'll think you're wacky. So don't obey God on this one.

6. Anything Jesus said on a Wednesday is suspect.

The prophet Micah foretold that "The Christ will teach you what is from God, except on the fourth day." Wednesday is the fourth day of the week, so just ignore any bible passages that record Jesus' words on Wednesdays. This eliminates the entire "love your enemies" passage and most of the book of John.

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Follow these simple steps, and you'll have a super-easy religion which has nothing to do with actually obeying God. The best kind of religion, am I right?

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