The Anglican Archbishop of Sydney, Peter Jensen, is on a new evangelical attack. He wants to give every family in Sydney a free Bible in an attempt to halt the decline of Bible ownership and study, especially among the young. Of course, he’s only planning to give out the New Testament, or Christianity-Lite as I like to call it. The likely cost is around half a million dollars. Imagine where that money could be better spent doing good works.

Peter Jensen

Jensen is concerned that Sydneysiders are at risk of losing their core values due to a lack of knowledge of the New Testament, once again perpetuating the myth that Christianity is responsible for our moral structure. Western civilisation is built on a structure of Greek and Roman morals that were simply poached by the New Testament Christian cult. Remember the vengeful god of the Old Testament razing entire villages and telling his followers to leave no man, woman or child alive? Not the best moral framework to endorse. In fact, much of our moral progress, such as the equality of women and acceptance of sexual preference variation, has been and still is actively opposed by Christians.

Jensen’s plan reminds me of a comment by American comedian Dennis Miller:

Now 7-Eleven has bowed to pressure from the Moral Majority to remove Playboy and Penthouse from their newsstand. I guess to be fair you have to look at it from the fundamentalist perspective… because what it does is it forces a certain type of literature on somebody in a public place. It would be like, uh, oh, I don’t know, say like putting the Bible in everybody’s hotel room or something crazy like that.

I checked where we stayed this past weekend and sure enough, there was the Gideon Bible in the nightstand. I often wonder why there’s no Koran, Bhagavad Gita, Torah, Dianetics or anything else there along with it. The other mythologists are missing a prime opportunity there, aren’t they? I’m sure the motel and hotel owners would have no problem with it. They wouldn’t want to be seen as hypocrites, surely.

Anyway, back to Jensen. He said, “Would it not be wonderful if some person to whom you gave a copy of the word of God read it and was saved?” Well, yes, it certainly would. Of course, he means the Bible, which, among Christians, is the alleged word of their god. He has also said on numerous occasions that he has no intention of silently acquiescing to the death of the Anglican faith. At least he admits it’s dying. One down, umpteen more to go.

Still, more power to him. There’s nothing like a good, solid education in religious texts to set intelligent minds free from the absurd and dogmatic bonds of man-made religion.