I Pit people who misrepresent Christianity as polytheistic

In this thread various posters opine that they think Christianity is polytheistic. http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/showthread.php?p=11897001#post11897001

They do this with the anonymity of the internet and in my opinion it is nothing but trolling to stir up religious quarrels. Religious quarrels are, as has been pointed out, dangerous and deadly. They should not be instigated simply to amuse oneself, divide one’s enemies or for other reasons.

Christianity is a monotheistic religion. Nobody within the religion contends that there is more than one diety, and the only outsiders who contend otherwise are ignorant, which may be forgiven, or trying to stir up religious quarrels for their own purposes.

Such misrepresentation of a religion is disgusting and the people who do it beneath contempt.

It is not only true but obviously true. What is your problem? The truth hurts because you have been programmed to believe otherwise. I was raised to believe we were monotheistic . When I was about 12, I was amazed at how illogical it was. Face it ,your ass deep in gods.

To a lot of Jews and Muslims, the Trinity is polytheistic no matter how much Christians try to say that it isn’t. It’s certainly fair to say that they’re wrong or don’t understand, but they’re not trolling, it’s what they really believe.

On a more subtle level, Christianity is crawling with deities. It doesn’t call them deities, and the Christian pantheon has a clear Boss God, but for all intents and purposes, Satan is a deity, and so are all the angels, demons, Madonnas and saints.


So you are an atheist? It has nothing to do with logic, it is a religion. If you think you know of a logical religion, that itself is illogical.

You are, in fact, wrong, unless I’m misinterpreting what you mean by “religious quarrels”.

You are most welcome to your opinion. It is not, however, in the best interests of civility and social accord that you not mock people for their beliefs. It is incredibly rude. It wasn’t religion itself that has caused wars and pogroms: those were caused by people whipping up hatreds for their own purposes using religious differences.

You do realize that it’s not just atheists who read the Trinity this way, right? Jews and Muslims, the sister Abrahamic religions alongside Christianity, consider the doctrine of the Trinity to be kind of silly and heretical, as well. They’re just generally more polite than to say so to your face.

That’s what I figured. You are atheists trying to be rude and provocative. I’ve never actually met a Jew or Muslim who insisted like you do, that Christianity is polytheistic. I have met some who are ignorant and stop making such assertions when it is explained to them that we consider ourselves a montheistic religion. Just like atheists want to be respected for their positions. I’ve never met a single Jew or Muslim who actually mocked the concept of the Trinity when it was explained that it is monotheistic, like the God of Moses, God of Abraham, etc. Same God, different aspects.

Yes, the Trinity does not make any sense. It is not logical. But the doctrine within the religion is that there is one God.

Part of civilized society is that non-ignorant people respect the beliefs and/or non-beliefs of others without expecting to make sense of religious beliefs.

I am an atheist now. My youth was spent been indoctrinated and lied to by Catholic priests.
If at Armageddon time God and the devil are supposed to have a great and important battle, how could the devil compete if he is not a god? It would be a snap for a god to whip a non god.

I’m sorry, but you don’t get to define the rules of civilized society on this messageboard with regards to your religious beliefs.

In my own time I’ve seen a lot of religious hatred and cruelty towards homosexuals. It appears you are claiming that religion itself doesn’t hate homosexuals, rather, individuals who hate homosexuals use religion as justification for their own prejudice. Still, this argument always strikes me as odd - if the followers aren’t representative of their religion than what is?

So is Judaism and Islam. Are those also polytheistic religions?
I guess it depends on how you define a god. I kind of miss the old days when the only difference between a god and a not god was immortality.

I’m a cafeteria Protestant. That means I take very seriously the commandments treat other people well and with love. I consider the Armageddon stuff to be of no importance except to keep treating people well in the face of the end of the world.

Fair enough. The next time someone accosts you on the street and rants to you about religion…oh wait.

Huh. I always thought that ‘cafeteria X’ was a demeaning term.

That’s not quite right. Here, take this by way of comparison:

That’s a different kind of religion than, say, a straightforward monotheism; it’s entirely logical, and makes perfect sense, to create a religion which simply postulates a single God without ever having to say “Yes, it does not make any sense and is not logical.”

You may be assuming a bit too much, there.

You say the Jews and/or Muslims you’ve met did make such assertions, but stopped doing so once it was explained that you consider yourself a monotheist. You also say that you believe folks who insist that you’re wrong about your polytheism are trying to be “rude and provocative”. Isn’t it possible that the Jews and/or Muslims who stopped making such assertions were, therefore, merely being polite?

To whatever extent individual schools and sects believe in angels and devils (which not all Jewish schools take literally), yes.

That’s just it. The distiniction is largely semantic. Is Gabriel the messenger of God really all that much different than Mercury the messenger of the gods? How is the Christian Satan not a god in all but name?

Many Orthodox Jews at least follow Maimonides’ thoughts on the matter, who did indeed conclude that Christianity is polytheistic due to its dominant strain of Trinitarianism ( by contrast he considered Judaism and Islam to be monotheistic ). His is not the last word on the topic, but it is very influential. This is not a wholecloth invention, but a very real theological discussion within Judaism at least.

… 3 does not equal 1 …

Neither Judaism nor Islam acknowledges the alleged divinity of Christ. I’m not aware of either Judaism nor Islam acknowledging the Holy Spirit. Moreover, there are unitarian Christians who do not acknowledge the Trinity.

It isn’t a matter of ignorance, but rather a matter of a difference of belief.

This is your idea of defending religion? That’s a lot worse than calling Christianity polytheistic.

Ah, how typical! Blame people for actually following their religion. It’s never the fault of religion when people do awful things in its name; it’s all the fault of those vile, scummy human beings. Of course, when those same people do good things, it’s all due to the influence of religion.

I find it amusing that you are taking umbrage at supposed mockery of a religion, while you try to defend religion by insulting the human race.

As for your complaints; suck it up. Religion is stupid and vile and destructive, and deserves nothing but mockery and loathing. Respecting religion is not “in the best interests of civility and social accord” because religion in itself is the enemy of those things. The first step in progress towards a more civilized world is always - always - to throw out or marginalize religion. The march of progress of civilization has been one long war against the madness and evil of religion.

And besides being my honest opinion, what I just said is an example of what insulting comments towards religion are really like. Not your faux outrage over people pointing out the obvious.