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Ok.  So everyone is a sinner.  But you do recognize some hierarchy of sin.  Don't you?

You can actually construe it from the doctrine that there is a hierachy of sin, but there are contradictions.

Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

Add, I sure wish they would speak plain Aramaic.  :)

I hope it is clear here that my complaint is with the sort of Christian who insists all who do not follow the same footsteps and he or she is following will roast lavishly forever and ever. I've certainly met Christians who were a little less tyrannical about the whole thing.

The fundamentalists don't seem to be the sort to let anyone do anything half way. Well, you can sin halfway, then do the JC is my savior thingy and its okay. But you can't be a partial sinner and get into heaven, according to them. Or at least if you can, they don't bring it up. The fact that the bible mentions a loophole or two would not go over well in some circles.

My thesis here is not that humans can't differentiate between degrees of badguyness, but that the church is built on the concept of sin, and it has to be a one sin fits all situation, because they are defining all of us as bad guys, and they have to have a way to convince even the nicest first grade teacher that she might as well be in cahoots with Al Capone. People aren't allowed to go comparison shopping for which sins are bad and which are really really bad. Common sense can be used by the poor wretches to compare and contrast the various offenses at the hobby level, but in real life it cannot matter. Chewing gum in class and shooting up the class are, for all practical purposes, described as equally offensive to their god. The church doesn't have time to quarrel over the details. So they just call you sh*t and ask you to love them. And God, the kid and the holy ghost or whatever version they're big on in any given subgroup.

I've always wondered how the holy ghost feels about us by the way. He's never mentioned as one of our admirers.

Anyway, I'm not talking about the practical. I'm talking about the necessary, and the Christian church is necessarily built upon defining not only all major and minor social aberrations as sin, but too in defining all humans as sinful. Automagically.

I remember quite clearly that as a little child I was told I was a sinner, and I just couldn't quite parse that accusation. I didn't anguish over it much though. However, others on this site have described how horrified they were as children when they were told they were sinners, and destined for a large and overpopulated BBQ grill somewhere if they didn't proclaim their newfound love for the fellow in the robes. It was apparently somewhat scarring, brain-cell wise. I apparently lucked out because my approach to the charges was casual. Others were not so fortunate.

The church pronounces everyone guilty not because everyone is guilty, but because everyone needs to be guilty for the scam to work.
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