I guess one thing that always bothers me about the new, more militant religious conservative Christians, is their complete failure to grasp the message that the person they claim to follow was really trying to teach his followers. Not once, as far as I can remember, did Jesus ever stop and ask somebody what religion they followed before he offered to help them. And considering the fact that he started off with only 12 guys who could even be considered his followers, that pretty much means that everybody he helped was a non-Christian. I mean, not to put too fine a point on it, but the way he got new followers was to show them compassion and love regardless of what they believed. Maybe that was the whole idea of his teachings. To show so much compassion and love to other people that they became intrigued by him and ended up wanting to be more like him. And then there is the whole ‘turn the other cheek’ message which seems to get overlooked in the rush to find more judgmental biblical quotes to use to tell everybody else how evil they are.
And when you get right down to it, the only people Jesus ever got so mad at that he threw a hissy fit and ended up flipping over tables was a bunch of rich money lenders… or what we today would call bankers… something else to think about… if you are into that whole ‘thinking’ thing.
I was raised Episcopalian, and, although I am now pretty much completely nonreligious, I have read the bible… which is more than a lot of too-religious people can say.