Believing in God doesn’t make you a good person. Believing in a God who cares about everyone doesn’t quite do it either.
Because there’s still room for a caveat. The caveat being this: “God loves you, but if you don’t believe everything I believe about God you’re going to hell.”
If you think God condemns people so easily, so will you. And you’ve elevated your own beliefs as judge, jury and executioner.
Saying that it’s written in a book isn’t good enough either. That’s a cop-out. It’s a way of avoiding the responsibility of educating yourself beyond a narrow set of beliefs.
Although religious texts have many flaws, they still have value. They’re worth reading, because they represent what people think about the human condition and what they believe has been revealed to them through their faith in God.
There’s too much danger in interpreting them literally or accepting such texts as decreed directly from God. Because as we’ve seen, that can lead to terrible things, such as inquisitions, wars, and acts of terrorism.