Warning: Christians may be offended by this post. Do not read if you are sensitive about faith. If you read it anyway and get pissed off at me, don't say I didn't warn you.
I enjoy a good, logical debate. I particularly enjoy debating about religion, mostly because it's hard to find somebody who will talk about it openly. But there is one thing that I don't like about debating with Christians. (This is a generalisation, and obviously doesn't apply to every Christian.) They never seem to fully comprehend that they're talking to somebody who does not believe in God, and does not regard the Bible as an adequate source or proof of anything. They use God as his own justification, arguing in circles without saying anything real. They quote the bible to give reasons for their faith. That's like quoting Star Wars to prove that Luke Skywalker exists and has Jedi powers. "The force is strong with this one" and "God loves you" are on equal footing with me. Give me something real.
You see, it's like this: I reckon Jesus of Nazarath probably did exist. Although I'm pretty certain his mum wasn't a virgin in any literal sense. Jesus sounds like a pretty decent guy on the whole, but he obviously stirred up enough trouble to get himself crucified. As did thousands of others in that time and place. In his case, it was probably because he had a mental illness or smoked too much weed and thought he spoke to God. I envisage Jesus as like the leader of a band of hippies (aka apostles), all so doped up they believe everything he says he sees. Then the Romans catch up with him, do the deed on the cross, and suddenly the hippies are missing their visionary leader. Given the human penchant for dramatisation, they begin to tell their friends, relatives, anybody who'll listen, about this awesome dude, totally rad, but the bastards killed him, right?! An outrage, man, it totally sucks. Gradually over time, with hundreds or thousands of re-tellings of the story, people forget the hippies and the pot smoking, and only remember the bits that make them feel good about the shitty life they're leading: heaven, god's love, etc. It'll all be better after we're dead, I'll never have to push out another screaming brat again, or work until my fingers bleed just to feed my family, or see my youngest child freeze to death for lack of a blanket. That sounds great! Sure, I'll believe in a God that'll do that for me, when all I have to do is... what?! No sex outside of marriage?! Oh, fine, I guess it's worth it... Be nice to my neighbour? Sure, in this day and age I'm probably going to need his help, best to keep him on side... and so on. A few more rules thrown in to make living in that time and place a bit easier, and we've turned the whole she-bang into a religion. Several religions, actually. With all the different interpretations and denominations out there, who's to say my flippant little effort isn't just as valid?