Homosexuality is an abomination according to God. God loves everyone. God hates fags.
America is a Christian nation blessed by God. God hates America. God loves all nations.
God is forgiving and merciful. God is vengeful and curses those who displease Him.
God wants women to be subservient. God created everyone as equals.
Hell is simply separation from God. Hell is a place of eternal torment and torture. Hell is final death, not pain.
Have you ever noticed that a prejudiced person tends to worship a god who holds his or her same prejudices? Or that people who value kindness and compassion worship a merciful and loving God? Conservatives believe their God is conservative, while liberals believe their God is liberal.
The things that we value are also the things that we see as “good” or “right.” What a religious person sees as “good and right” is then applied as a characteristic of “God.” Because it is attributed as a characteristic of God, the idea is then strengthened in the mind of the believer–it is certainly good and right if God thinks it is! This is of utmost importance. It gives reason to believe that a religious person’s morality doesn’t come from God, their morality is projected onto their idea of God.
Because the major religious texts contain contradictory information about the nature of God–a vengeful and vain god at times, a loving and merciful god at times–it is easy to focus on just the views that align with a person’s own values and sense of morality. If I believe, for instance, that some races are better than others or that there is something wrong with those who are GLBT, then I can find verses to back up these claims while ignoring verses that state one shouldn’t judge or that we should love our neighbors. If on the other hand, I believe that everyone is equal, I might ignore verses that suggest prejudice against other races or sexual orientations while emphasizing the verses supporting love and acceptance.
When faced with a moral dilemma, a religious person often asks “What would God want me to do?” or as the popular Christian slogan puts it, “What would Jesus do?” Yet, two people with different value systems are going to come up with two vastly different answers to this question based on their own opinions and personal experiences. Asking what God would want or what God would do is just an abstract way of asking what YOU think you should do in a given situation. Ultimately, it is the individual who makes the call. Their belief that they’ve made the “right” decision once a decision is reached, is validated and justified because the person now considers this course of action or this particular viewpoint to be a religiously moral position. Both the moral belief and the religious belief are strengthened in the individual’s mind.
In other words, God is simply a believer’s own self-projection. What a person believes about God provides much more insight about the individual than it does about a divine being.