This morning I found myself watching The 700 Club on one of those religious channels available via cable, like Trinity Broadcasting Network and C-Span. The man on the show was telling me that I'm a terrible sinner, and that I'm doomed without God. If I recognize and seek forgiveness for this sin, apparently, I can gain entrance into Heaven, which by all accounts is quite a nice place to be. If I don't, I'll be sent to a place that is a lot like Revere Beach in August. A mercilessly hot place full of hideous, grotesque abominations. And there will be sand in my crack.
This religious show had me asking myself why God is so eager to punish people. Not only does He set up a very, very long list of sinful activities (coveting!), but we all carry the weight of Original Sin. Because of that minor apple-picking incident decades ago, I'm going to be denied access to paradise and tortured forever if I don't kiss some serious ass.
We all know that most people are not getting into Heaven. A weekend in New Jersey will tell you that. You've already excuded 5/6th of the world's population when you punish non-Christians. And even among Christians, only a very small number of them are prostrate enough to get in.
So God has a party and lets only a few people in. Then he hogs the dip. Meanwhile, the rest of us burn for eternity because our neighbor had a really hot wife.