A Lesson In Christian Name Calling and Ad Hominems
I recently several Emails from an individual who claims to be a Christian and calls himself John Hallmark. This is the first email. I haven't done any editing. The entire email was one paragraph:
"Wow! You have really gone all out to make some kind of a statement! Who are you angry with? God? Fundies? It is absolutely hilarious that you people that go to all this trouble to attempt to shoot down God and prove to us ignorant folk that He doesn't exist, Jesus isn't coming back, etc. ALWAYS overplay your hands! I was reading your nonsense with great interest, until you said that David exposed himself like a pervert, and I just HAD to look that one up! If you read that verse again, you will find that two people called David a pervert - you and Michal (David's wife). And if you read a wee bit further, you will find that because of what Michal said, she was stricken barren (that means she can't have kids) for the rest of her life. Please understand that if I thought it was worth my time, I would answer all of your claims - but I'm rather positive that this e-mail will be deleted. Just in case you are the curious type, though, and you are still reading this, who are you trying to reach?
P.S. Please write back!! Please! Please!"
NOTE: Hallmark didn't take the time to research the word or he would have learned that the Hebrew word "galah" is the word used for 'uncovered' and refers to the removal of all clothing, resulting in nakedness.
Hallmark also states that he can answer all of my claims (blue italics above) but somehow never gets past this one.
He also begins his attempted insults here by explaining or defining simple terms such as "barren", pretending that I don't know their definitions.
It always amazes me that Christians insist if someone doesn't agree with
them, they must be angry with "God" or some other entity. Since there is
no proof that "God" exists, no I'm not angry with an apparent non-entity.
Some of the best times in my life were as a born again fundamentalist Christian and I can't say that I was ever grossly mistreated by any fundamentalists. I simply don't believe the bible is the word of any god or that Jesus Christ actually existed. Must I be angry with someone or some entity to reject the bible and its teachings?
No, you can reject the Bible and its teachings without being angry at
someone. I reject many "religions" and their teachings, but I don't make it
a point to get a website, take many different isolated parts of it out of
context and aggressively attack its contents. When you referred to David as
a pervert, you could not have possibly read that whole passage (that's more
than just one or two lines). When you say that you were a born again
Christian, do you mean that you had a personal relationship with God? How
could you have ever known someone if you are doubting their existence?
You people? That takes in quite a lot of territory. Would you care to be
more explicit? Did you mean "you people" who are Black or "you people"
who have brown eyes or "you people" who don't believe the bible is the word of
Perhaps you could also explain what you mean by, "..overplay your hands!"
And why do you consder yourself ignorant folk? Is it because you don't
know much about the bible?
I'm terribly sorry - I forgot who I was talking to! "You people" indeed
refers to the group that do not believe that the Bible is the Word of THE
diety (that would be God).
To "overplay your hand" means to go too far and wind up sinking your own
ship, so to speak. You defeat your own purpose. In your case, it wasn't
enough that you exercised your God-given freedom of choice (not believing
the Word of God), you had to aggressively attack it and in the process
display your foolishness for anyone with access to the internet to see. Any
second-grader could have read the one selection I chose ("David is a
pervert") and showed you how badly you blew it. Another verse in the Bible
says to be as shrewd as serpents... Next time try shrewd and stop while
you're only a little behind. Or is it that you just can't see the obvious?
The pharisees could not understand Jesus' parables because they didn't want
Another example of one overplaying one's hand is a website not unlike your
own that not only attacks Christianity but has links to pornographic sites
on the same page (speaking of perverts)!! How laughably stupid is it to
basically say, "We don't need God or Jesus - we can do things on our own!!"
and then show the rest of us WHAT you are doing on your own!!
I referred to myself as "ignorant folk" because I was being facetious (that
means "joking at an innappropriate time") in regards to the angle you were
taking. Actually, I do know a little bit about the Bible. More importantly,
I know the Author.
Well, obviously I was wrong about thinking you don't know much about the
bible. You apparently know a great deal more than I, to consider what I
have written to be "nonsense" yet having condescended to write to me.
I learned somewhere that if you take things out of context, you often come
up with something totally different. So, reading an entire passage of
Scripture before coming up with attrocities like "David is a pervert" puts
me WAY ahead of you as far as "knowing much about the Bible". I
"condescended" because you were "brave" enough to leave an e-mail address in
plain sight. Besides, this is like shooting fish in a barrel (that means
Thanks for explainng what "barren" means. I've often wondered what that
You are very welcome! Anytime I can help out...
I can't help but notice that you didn't (or couldn't??) address the part
where I wrote: "until you said that David exposed himself like a pervert,
and I just HAD to look that one up! If you read that verse again, you will
find that two people called David a pervert - you and Michal (David's wife).
And if you read a wee bit further, you will find that because of what Michal
said, she was stricken barren." So, what do you think about this (and please
THIS time let's have a bit more depth than, "Thanks for explaining what
'barren' means. I've often wondered what that meant." I can't wait!!
Please do answer all of my claims. I am very interested in your answers.
So far you have answered nothing but have implied that after a cursory reading of my website, you are capable of refuting all of it. Is this the case? BTW, I take the time to answer all of my email.
I would love to answer all of your claims, however, my premonition that this
ONE is going to take the better part of our lives is proving true. Let's get
through this one first and we'll see how old I am, okay?
"So far I have answered nothing"? What was the question? I thought it was I
who wrote you? No wonder the Bible threw you for a loop! You got confused
over who sent who an e-mail! You are more awesome than I had imagined!!
Answering all of your e-mail is something to be proud of...
Some who have left born again fundamentalism, are in the process of
leaving or are thinking about leaving have found what they describe to be a great
deal of help after reading my website. The nearly 500 members of the email
support group which I moderate have also found it helpful as they continue to distance themselves from the superstition and myths of Christianity.
So you are like the leader of nearly 500 people who need support because
they have turned their backs on the "superstition and myths" of
Christianity? It's a shame you didn't find out what it was about first...
No, I'm not the leader of nearly 500 people. I'm the moderator of a group. Read what I wrote!
OK John. I've written back. Now what?
Now write back again! And THIS time answer that question you avoided (about
Michal accusing David of being a pervert and becoming barren as a result),
My reference is not out of context in the least. Not only did David admit what he did, he referred to himself as a fool. Sounds like I hit a sore spot with you. David *was* a perverted individual. Yet biblegod liked him in spite of
his constant immoral actions.
Let me show you how badly you are indeed taking this out of context. My
(Living) Bible says: II Samuel 6:20-23
David returned to bless his family.
But Michal came out to meet him and exclaimed in disgust, "How glorious the
king of Israel looked today! He exposed himself to the girls along the
street like a common pervert!" David retorted, "I was dancing before the
Lord who chose me above your father and his family and who appointed me as
leader of Israel, the people of the Lord! So I am willing to act like a fool
in order to show my joy in the Lord. Yes, I am willing to look even more
foolish than this, but I will be respected by the girls of whom you spoke!"
So Michal was childless throughout her life.
Yes, Mike you did indeed hit a sore spot with me. I get sore with the
"willfully ignorant". I get sore when there are innocent people out there
looking for the answers to life and people who distort the truth and take
the Scriptures out of context (please see above) show up to attempt to lead
them astray. Someday, though, the "sore spot" will be all yours (2
Corinthians 11:14-15 "Yet I am not surprised! Satan can change himself into
an angel of light, so it is no wonder his servants can do it too, and seem
like godly ministers. In the end they will get every bit of punishment their
wicked deeds deserve.")
I'm afraid I was sick the week they taught "Overuse of Asterisks", so you
are going to have to help me out - what does it mean when the word "was" is
between two asterisks?
"biblegod"?? That's gotta make you feel really tough...or smart....or...
Here's another question I'm dying to know the answer to - If God doesn't
exist and Jesus doesn't exist, how come David does? He's in the same Bible
that we find God and Jesus in.
"constant immoral actions"? Let's see - he numbered the people of Israel
after God told him not to. I would call that disobedience, not immorality.
He WAS immoral when it came to Bathsheba, sending Uriah to the front lines
to get killed. That's murder, adultry, and lust. But that was pretty much a
one time deal (a HUGE one time deal) - not a constant one.
I meant that I allowed myself to be duped. I chose to believe a lie. I
was as born again and had as much of a "personal relationship" with biblegod
as does anyone who makes the same unfortunate, subjective, unsubstantiated claims.
Well, I see your problem then. Next time steer clear of this "biblegod" guy.
Try God (He's the one you haven't met yet).
As I mentioned before, it's pretty much impossible to question somone's
existence AFTER you have had a relationship with them. Let me break it down
for you: One time I was friends with this guy. We hung out, threw the
football, etc. Then we had a bit of a falling out after a dumb argument (it
was all his fault). Anyway, I moved to another state. After I got to my new
place of residence, I started thinking to myself, "I know I was friends with
that guy and we talked a lot and threw the football and stuff, but...did he
actually exist?? I mean I know I had a relationship with this person, but I
think somebody made him up!
SO...IF you had a relationship with God, There HAS to BE a God! Right? And
if God doesn't exist or maybe He exists, than you could not have possibly
had a relationship with Him! Right? Are you still with me?
I indeed do not believe that the bible is the word of any god.
Brilliant analogy, Hallmark! To help you understand the concept, I wanted to believe I had a relationship with "god". While for you, believing you have a relationship with god, you then take that a step further to believe it validates god's existence. It only validates that you have a belief.
I would suggest that you make an effort to remember who you are talking to
when you are attempting to communicate with them. I makes for a more coherent email.
And I indeed believe you do not. Nothing else could explain this...
(Apparently you have a sarcasm filter on your e-mail...) I'm downing my
ginkgo biloba as I type, Mikey! I will remember who I am talking to from now
on! Scout's honor!
Yet you have failed to provide even one example of my "foolishness" or
rebut anything I have had to say.
You *have*, however, managed to indulge in the typical practice of Christian
name calling. In addition, you have attempted to manipulate your words in an attempt to project your would be intelligence.
Don't look now, Mike, but that whole "David and Michal" thing...THAT was a
rebut. I realize it was kinda sneaky the way I got that giant paragraph past
ya, disguised as a coherent thought, but if you respond to all of my "new
and improved" rebut, I would greatly appreciate it.
Well, I couldn't possibly get a more expert opinion on the name calling
thing, since you managed to call MY God a "biblegod" (taking His name in
vain) and saying that He does not exist. Furthermore, it was YOU who called
David a pervert. Remember, Michal tried that and it didn't turn out too well
for her. You also called David what you are accusing me of calling you - a
fool. I'd say you are WAYYY ahead on the name-calling thing (quality AND
Even though you have failed to do so at this point.
Well, Mike, if we are to have an intelligent conversation, you're going to
have to at least meet me halfway.
The difference between you and the pharisees is that they didn't *want* to
understand. So far you have demonstrated that you are incapable of understanding.
I'll just quote you at this point...You *have*, however, managed to indulge
in the typical practice Christian name calling. In addition, you have attempted to manipulate your words in an attempt to project your would be intelligence.
(Oh great, now I'm not even in the conversation anymore!)
Pornographic sites? Perhaps you'd like to be more specific.
How laughably stupid is it to refer to a Christian parody site as
And why would I need two entities for which there is no proof of
If you have any extrabiblical, eyewitness, historical proof that Christ existed - please - send it!
If you have any evidence that biblegod exists, I'd enjoy seeing that also.
This other person's website had the pornographic links - my point was
referring to "overplaying one's hand". Remember?
I'm not sure what is more laughably stupid - a (whatever you are) not being
able to read the word "links" or not being able to spell the word
"pornography" - don't forget the "h"!
You can't read or spell! Take all the help you can get!
"Extrabiblical"?? Well, let's see... He's in the dictionary, almanac, and
the encyclopedia - haven't found Him in the atlas yet...hey, wait! He's also
on my calendar (see Christmas and Easter)!!
"Eyewitness"?? Do you mean that now I have to be over 2000 years old and
from Israel (or thereabouts)?
"Historical proof"?? Like I should go back in time and swipe one of His
sandals or something? Or would a cancelled check do? Apparently you are not
aware of the existence of things like the shroud of Turin, the Dead Sea
scrolls, the Ark, etc. These things would be the "historical" items you are
after. Or do they not exist either?
As far as the evidence, my whole life story (and many others as well - I
believe a lot of them are chronicled in a book called the Bible) is more
than enough evidence for anyone. Of course, the people that are running from
God may not take the time to LISTEN...
And now let me challenge you: PROVE THAT HE DOES NOT EXIST (I'll be right
You and your "biblegod" (whatever that is...)
Spare me the definitions and sarcasm. You obviously are not capable of refuting my 'pervert' comment. Why rely instead on pretending to provide your definitions for other words?
Rule of debate, Hallmark - a negative can't be proven. You are the one making the claims regarding the existence of biblegod and Christ. The onus for proof is on you.
Please, Mike, don't get upset. It's just that you are making less and less
sense. I guess believing in God takes away my ability to understand your
last sentence - the one that begins, "Why rely instead," That one is a
You continue to demand explanations after saying that you can answer all
of my "claims".
Let's see those answers you so freely claimed you have.
(Pssst...scroll up and you'll find them!!)
If you had taken time to read the entire website, you would realize that David was a sexual pervert but nonetheless found favor in biblegod's eyes. One example of the inconsistency of biblegod who Christians love to claim
There's no way I could have read more than the few lines that I did - it was
making me ill. And the only thing I would have found out by reading your
entire website, you showed me in your e-mails - your extreme confusion.
Another question: how come you refer to Christ as "Christ" but God gets
called "biblegod"?? Are you really that upset with Him?
Your comment was that you could answer all of my 'claims'. So far the
only answer you have provided is your attempt at not so subtle sarcasm. You need to refer to your own comments next time, before you put your foot in your mouth.
And the second part of the sentence you are quoting from talks about you
ignoring the answer to the "claim" that we are presently on.
Between the two of us, I am the only one referring to my claims.
I *did* indeed find out what it was about. Unfortunately, you are still laboring under belief in the superstition and myth.
Can you prove to me that my beliefs are indeed "superstitions and myths"?
And, by the way, what if you wind up being wrong about YOUR beliefs? What
happens when you die?
What's to answer? Obviously, biblegod didn't like having Michal recognize that David was a very immoral individual so, according to the fairy tale, in his usual manner, he punished her.
Look up "Pascal's Wager".
And I still haven't seen your answers to all my claims.
If it is a fairy tale, why do you believe ANY of it? If it is a fairy tale,
David never existed. Your theology is so full of holes that I am embarrassed
The answers to all your claims?? "What's to answer?" (Where have I heard
Please do post this on your website (and any other places you can think
Hi John - My experience has been that when someone is unable to make an acceptable presentation or argue/debate in a logical manner, they frequently resort
to caustic, abrasive sarcasm and demeaning remarks in an attempt to take the focus away from their inability.
That, Mike, is the first thing you have been accurate about. And now that
you've identified yourself, why don't you (PLEASE) advance to the next stage
by trying to SOME semblance of logis in your correspondence (PLEASE!!)
Your Living Bible tells the story perfectly. David exposed himself to
some young ladies. The manuscripts are unclear whether he exposed his private
parts. The fact that the story indicates that he exposed himself seems to verify that he did show those parts of his body to the girls. Michal saw what he had done and was filled with disgust. She told David so. David acknowledged his actions and admitted that he was acting like a fool. He also attemtped to justify his actions by claiming he was acting like a fool to show his joy for the lord.
David did not expose himself. You are a liar and your place is in hell.
Michal was upset because David was acting, according to her, in a way
unbefitting a king, and she rebuked him for dancing before the Lord. God
WANTS people to praise him, whether it be by dancing before Him, singing
praises to Him, etc. That is why God punished Michal. David was being
sarcastic when he talked about his "foolishness". He was saying that he was
going to continue doing what she perceived as foolish because he was doing
it for God and nobody else. You have repeatedly distorted the holy Word of
the living God and you will be punished. After having to put up with your
willful stupidity for the better part of 3 days now, I just hope I can be
there to see it.
That's mighty Christian of you Hallmark.
The implication is that because Michal was disgusted, biblegod punished
her by not allowing her to conceive. That's quite a serious penalty for
simply being disgusted that one's husband exposed himself.
Again, Michal rebuked David for doing the right thing (kind of like you
"rebuking" me). You just continue to dig yourself deeper and deeper -
Incidentally, I have no doubt that you understand to whom I am referring when I use the term "biblegod".
Yes, Mike, I do. You are referring to God, with whom you "claim" to have had
a relationship. Funny, when I have a relationship with someone, I usually
know their name... (Heads up, Mike - that was more sarcasm).
The point of the webpage about David is to illustrate the inconsistency of biblegod's thinking. Even though David was often immoral, a liar, a
hater of biblegod's word, a bigamist, one who tortured animals, and a murderer,
biblegod found favor in him. "King David did that which was right in the
eyes of the Lord." (I Kings 15:5). God said, "I have found David the
of Jesse a man after mine own heart." (Acts 13:22 NLT).
You might be interested to know that your website actually illustrates your
own intellectual and spiritual shortcomings.
"David was a hater of God's Word" - Is that why he wrote most of the Psalms?
(LOL) You stupid dumbhead! (LOL)
No, Hallmark, its because that is what biblegod called him.
"Wherefore hast thou despised the commandment of the LORD, to do evil in his sight? thou hast killed Uriah the Hittite with the sword, and hast taken his wife to be thy wife, and hast slain him with the sword of the children of Ammon.
Now therefore the sword shall never depart from thine house; because thou hast despised me, and hast taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite to be thy wife." (2 Samuel 12:9-10)
"He tortured animals"? Are you referring to the lion and the bear that he
killed because they were about to devour his sheep? I'm confused - was he
torturing the bear, the lion, or the sheep? (More dummy points for you!)
No, I'm referring to David having hamstrung all but 100 of the chariot horses:
"And David took from him a thousand chariots, and seven hundred horsemen, and twenty thousand footmen: and David houghed all the chariot horses, but reserved of them for an hundred chariots." (2 Samuel 8:4)
David did indeed sin (and some whoppers, too), but the part of the Bible
(that thing you call a fairytale book, but like to quote from) that you are
not talking about (typical atheist cult-leader behavior) is that David
REPENTED. I'm gonna say that one more time for the cheap seats - David
REPENTED. To repent means "to change" - I strongly recommend you try that
before you die in your sins, or Jesus comes back.
I find it impossible to harmonize how biblegod would take away Michal's
ability to conceive because she became disgusted, yet biblegod condoned
all the vile acts committed by David and even claimed he "did that which is
right" and is a "man after mine own heart."
Mike, I've noticed you find a lot of things impossible. And it's no wonder -
"For with Christ, all things are possible." You are without Christ. I just
wish you didn't find it impossible to read for the purpose of understanding
and retaining knowledge.
The innocent people out there to whom you refer are often seeking truth.
If they look for it in the bible, they are simply looking in the wrong place.
Wrong again, Mikey.
It is inconsistent, errant, imperfect and quite obviously not the word of
a perfect, all knowing deity.
Then why are you so attached to it?
I have not distorted the bible or taken words/verses out of context. You would, of course, argue that I have because you have no other defense
I would, of course, argue that you have (because you have). And until you
make it a necessity, this defense is all I need.
The only individuals being led astray are those who believe the bible is
the word of a god and attempt to live their lives by it. It doesn't take
much of a read to realize that the god of the bible is a hideous, demonic
monster who kills whenever he has a whim.
Congratulations, Mike. You just outdid Satan. Not even he was stupid enough
to disrespect God, let alone did he call Him (there's that name-calling
thing again) a "hideous, demonic monster". I have a strong theory (and you are rapidly
making it into a law) that says, "Evil is stupid". You can no longer afford
to worry about the fact that I have referred to you as stupid and you really
need to refrain from making up stupid nonsense to put in e-mails and
websites. You have all but sealed your own fate by calling your Creator a
hideous, demonic monster. You need to waste absolutely no time in falling on
your face before God and pleading for forgiveness. You are hell-bound, plain
He obviously can't create humanity without screwing it up so he destroys it and starts over. Second time
same as the first according the the bible. Biblegod just can't seem to get it right.
And of course there's the usual Christian rhetoric that Satan is behind
what I have said. That's much easier than making an attempt to refute what
I've said with logic.
I think we'll leave Satan out of this one. YOU are the one that attacked
God - Satan's a lot smarter than to disrespect Him like you aggressively
did. Are you familiar at all with Satan's future? HINT: Read Revelation.
This is no longer about winning some petty theological argument - this is
now about going WAY over the line and wronging the ONE Person that you
should NEVER wrong. You can tell your support group atheist buddies that you
won this "fight" or whatever you like. But because of what you just did, I
would like to discontinue our correspondence. Again, let me say that you
need to take this opportunity to plead with your Creator for forgiveness.
Typical. You don't have the answers so you run.
By the way, the use of asterisks is a common practice for emails, especially on email lists to emphasize a word. I'm sure you knew that but I'll include the information here, just in case you actually didn't know. Apparently, you don't communicate too much on the web.
With regard to David's existence, I never acknowledged that he existed.
We are discussing stories from the bible. It is a well known fact that to debate a story does not necessarily mean that either one or both of the debate participants believe the story to be factual. Its not necessary to believe it to be real in order to demonstrate the flaws in the story. My apologies for assuming you would know that.
You claim I haven't met "god", pretending you don't know to whom I am referring when I use "biblegod". This is a common practice of Christians. You attempt to eliminate the "personal knowledge" and believe that proves the unbeliever was never a Christian. I complied with scripture, sincerely sought god, asked Christ to forgive my sins, repented and became a Christian. If, after my compliance, I still was not a Christian, it certainly proves my claim that the bible is not the word of any god.
In one of your attempts to demean, you pointed out that I left the "h" out
of the word "pornography". What a petty, trifling attempt to take away
the focus of you inability to debate by citing a spelling error. I *did* notice spelling errors in your first letter to me but declined to mention those. It wouldn't have been pertinent or proper. If that gave you a feeling of superiority, knock yourself out!
I will take the opportunity to put all of your mispellings in red when this goes on the website
I had asked for extrabiblical, eyewitness, historical evidence that Jesus
Christ ever existed. The only comments you made were the non sequitur, meaningless responses you gave.
If you manage to figure out what 'extrabiblical, eyewitness, historical evidence' actually means, write back. Tell me where I might find it.