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Bible

  • In my opinion what distinguishes the Bible from the other books is its sense of time. Its first concern is to establish a calendar. Then it traces a genealogy. It imposes rhythms, it orders, it operates, it does not abandon the earth where its destiny must be fulfilled and whose own destiny must be fulfilled by it. Its history will be that of men and not of idle gods. The whole spirit must become incarnate and explore the possible.

    • Adrienne Monnier,
    • 1938, in Richard McDougall, tr., The Very Rich Hours of Adrienne Monnier ()
  • The Bible gives me a deep, comforting sense that 'things seen are temporal, and things unseen are eternal.'

  • There is much in the Bible against which every instinct of my being rebels, so much that I regret the necessity which has compelled me to read it through from beginning to end. I do not think that the knowledge which I have gained of its history and sources compensates me for the unpleasant details it has forced upon my attention.

  • ... if you search the bible, you will find no reference to birth control or gay marriage, and you will not find a word, strangely, about stem cell research. I have searched.

  • Cowards always drag in the Bible to back theirselves up far more than proper people does ...

  • Bible texts are best read with a pair of glasses made out of today's newspaper.

  • Neither the Acts nor the Apocalypse nor the church dynamited slavery. The New Testament says not one word about animals and the sorrow in their eyes. Nineteen centuries after the Sermon on the Mount people still laughed at hunchbacks, freaks, cripples, impotents, cuckolds, and old maids.

  • Nowhere have I found words more powerful than those in the Psalms. Their fervid poetry cleanses one, gives one strength, brings hope in moments of darkness. Makes one look critically into oneself, convict oneself, and wash one's heart clean with one's own tears. It is the ever-burning fire of love, of gratitude, humility, and truth.

  • ... ain't it right queer how the Bible's got somethin' in it to fit everything a body does or says?

  • People who quoted the Scriptures in criticism of others were terrible bores and usually they misapplied the text. One could prove anything against anyone from the Bible.

  • Creative writers have always speculated about how things observed in nature came to be. Aesop's Fables, Rudyard Kupling's Just So Stories, and many other works, are replete with such entertaining tales. The Garden of Eden story is of the same genre as 'How the Leopard Got Its Spots.'

  • The Bible writers didn't care that they were bunching together sequences some of which were historical, some preposterous, and some downright manipulative. Faithful recording was not their business; faith was.

  • The consensus appears to be that as it is presented and practiced in our churches the gospel is not Good News for women.

  • The Bible and Church have been the greatest stumbling blocks in the way of woman's emancipation.

  • Amid ancient lore the Word of God stands unique and pre-eminent. Wonderful in its construction, admirable in its adaptation, it contains truths that a child may comprehend, and mysteries into which angels desire to look.

  • ... read the Bible to the children, until they are old enough to read for themselves ... The Bible, not nursery versions of it. There is a Bible in words of one syllable; I am happy to say I have never seen it. Such a monstrosity should be put alongside of the Rhyming Bible, of which, I believe, only one copy is in existence.

  • ... the Bible is used as a means of reinforcing their [women's] subordination to men through divine sanction.

  • I had always been told the bible was a book about love, but I couldn't find enough love in it to fill a salt shaker. God is not love in the bible; God is vengeance. There is no other book between whose covers life is so cheap.

  • ... the Bible has been used as a way of making us accept our situation, and not to bring enlightenment to the poor.

  • ... I picked up the Bible and read it from cover to cover one weekend — just as if it were a novel — very rapidly, and I've never gotten over the shock of it. The miracles, the inconsistencies, the improbabilities, the impossibilities, the wretched history, the sordid sex, the sadism in it — the whole thing shocked me profoundly.

  • Someone has asked me to paint Biblical pictures, and I say no, I'll not paint something that we know nothing about, might just as well paint something that will happen two thousand years hence.

  • [On the New Testament:] I ... must enter my protest against the false translation of some passages by the men who did that work, and against the perverted interpretation by the men who undertook to write commentaries thereon. I am inclined to think, when we [women] are admitted to the honor of studying Greek and Hebrew, we shall produce some various readings of the Bible a little different from those we now have.

  • ... I was greatly influenced by the history of my Native people and their plight. Their oppressors brandished a bible in one hand and a gun in the other. I soon discovered that the gun will kill you immediately, but the intellectual death brought about by the bible with its misogynistic and cruel views is much more insidious, especially for women.

    • Simone Anter,
    • "Of god, women and Natives," Freethought Today ()
  • ... the white man had come with the Bible in one hand, the bottle in the other.

  • American Atheists has always encouraged the public to read both the Old and New Testaments from cover to cover. Many people become atheists after reading the Bible.

    • Ellen Johnson,
    • in Jack Huberman, ed., The Quotable Atheist ()
  • He who would be well-traveled should journey far and wide / In the Holy Scripture. Those roads lead to blessedness. / He who would be well-traveled should journey through the Bible's books, / For the whole world can be seen there.

    • Sibylle Schwartz,
    • 1650, in Katharina M. Wilson and Frank J. Warnke, eds., Women Writers of the Seventeenth Century ()
  • Women are a very small factor in Holy Writ, as but one-eleventh of the Bible refers to them at all, and in the interest of justice and good morals it is a pity much of that was ever written.

    • Josephine Kirby Henry,
    • 1905, in Annie Laurie Gaylor, ed., Women Without Superstition "No Gods--No Masters": The Collected Writings of Women Freethinkers of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries ()
  • The Old Testament is the record of men's conviction that God speaks directly to men.

  • Even if you don't believe a word of the Bible, you've got to respect the person who typed all that.

  • Holy Scripture is so exalted that there is no one in the world ... wise enough to understand it so fully that his intellect is not overcome by it. Nevertheless, man can stammer something about it.