Ends Justify The Means – Billboard

You know how I say religious people employ what’s called “ends justify the means? What I mean is they’ll do whatever it takes to advance their goals. A word, a phrase, an image or a deed can be vilified if it attacks their interests or embraced if it advances their interests. So bear with me for a moment and tell me what you think the reactions would be by those upstanding, moral, religious people to the above billboards on the highway. Would there be outrage? Would there be comments about the pervasive sex all around us? Would this be validation for people to isolate and “protect” their children from such vile influences? Perhaps. Now all of those billboards I made from this ACTUAL billboard:

Ah, so now it’s different, isn’t it? Same imagery, same thoughts in your head but oh, it’s promoting a church. I guess that’s okay then. According to this report, you can see this billboard in Jacksonville, Florida. As the pastor said:
“We’ve had a great turnout at church just from billboards alone — a few negative comments, but it seems like you do anything outside the box where church is related you’re going to have the pros and cons with it,”

Ends justify the means.

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23 Responses to “Ends Justify The Means – Billboard”

  1. That last one sounds like an atheist billboard, but then of course every atheist would encourage christians to actually read their bibles, too. ;) Do I find the billboard wrong or offensive? Certainly not, but I find it hypocritical. I think this also goes to my idea that it's not religious morals that shape society but rather society that shapes how religious morals are interpreted. That last post on your blog was a product of the Victorian era's sensibility influencing religious thinking. Obviously 21st century Jacksonville Florida's influence makes a pastor view this billboard as good and appropriate.

  2. I like the church sign as it shows that at least one Christian congregation has a healthy attitude about sex. Unfortunately, there are other Christians who would foam at the mouth if they saw your fake signs anywhere. They’re probably also chastising the pastor who posted his sign. The rabid Christians make life difficult for the more sane ones, as well as for the nonbelievers. The problem with religion is that it comes in so many sizes and flavors that it’s difficult to critique it meaningfully.

    If people are going to attend church anyway, I feel a lot better about them going to a church that would post this sign then one with messages like, “Paradise or fire, where will you spend eternity?” or “Read the Bible, it will scare the hell out of you.”

  3. Phillychief said, “it’s not religious morals that shape society but rather society that shapes how religious morals are interpreted.”

    I don’t think the flow is one-way only. I think that religion and society influence each other and it’s probably a chicken-egg kind of question depending on the issue.

    My problem with your claim that the billboard is hypocritical is that you are painting all Christians with the same broad brush. I’m the last person in the world who wants to be a Christian apologist, but sometimes it’s important to define our targets more precisely. I’ll admit that’s tough with a religion that has something like 20,000-30,000 sects (depending on who’s counting, I guess). It would be hypocritical if the same people who posted the sign are the same ones who would criticize your alternatives. It would not be hypocritical if the people who would criticize your alternatives would also criticize the Christian version, which has probably happened.

  4. Just as the guys who cooked up the religions in the first place did, people since use the tool of a holy book to advance their ideas. As long as a holy book is venerated, then what you say carries more weight if you can somehow make it seem like it’s in step with that book.

    This cuts both ways. The South’s dependence on slave labor made them find and interpret passages in their bible to justify slavery whereas abolitionists in the North found and interpreted passages to condemn it. I think just as society evolves to extend greater freedoms and liberties and insure they be had by all and that makes a kindler and gentler read of the bible, those unhappy with that (like granting equality to gays) will read that book in a way to suit their needs.

    Bottom line, I don’t think those books themselves influence shit. It’s people who influence society, and those books are just tools and have been such from the moment they were created.

    Hypocritical – yes, I agree with what you say that it would be hypocritical only if this particular church objected to similar ads for others. I made the mistake of confusing one group of christians for other or all christians but honestly it’s so confusing to tell which ones are the “real” christians and which ones aren’t. I guess it depends on how they happen to use their bibles, which might just be influenced by their environment. ;)

  5. I’m trying to figure out what position those guys are in.

  6. Funny you say “guys” because my other ideas were a gay billboard and one for NAMBLA.

  7. I’m trying to figure out what position those guys are in.

    Yeah, I was wondering that too. It looks almost like the woman is laying on the man’s back. I’m not aware of any.. uh.. useful positions there.

    I think the only thing that bothers me about the billboard is that it’s still contains unhealthy attitudes about sex (though much improved). Pure sex? Do they mean only sex? Somehow I think they mean only the sex they approve of. How about religion staying out of the bedroom period?

  8. I can’t imagine what the sermon would be. I agree, they need to just stay out of the bedroom.

    I’m sure there’s an online Kama Sutra or something that could have an answer for the feet positions, or it’s like an old episode of Real Sex I saw years ago where the women put on strap ons and returned the love to their hubbies, so to speak. I’m guessing that’s probably not going to be in the sermons though. Who knows? It’s not gay to Jesus if you get it from your wife maybe.

  9. Hmm, I did not know christians had sex. Silly me. I’m a fan of sex whether it would be God’s way or Jenna Jamesons way, so I have no issues with the billboard.

    Right on christians, right on.

  10. Most hard-core Christians would even object to this Church’s sign. ANYTHING about sex is something to remove from the discussion. Like Chappy, I “guess” I’m glad to see that some Christians can actually discuss the subject. But they certainly aren’t in a majority – at least in America. It’s a Puritan thing. We’re cursed!

  11. Well as OG said, I’d rather they weren’t talking about it. Stay out of people’s bedrooms. What I’d like to see is simply that they wouldn’t get all bent out of shape when the rest of us talk sex or depict sex.

    To me, mixing religion and sex is about as useful as mixing politics and sex. What on Earth could a debate about faith vs works or immigration policies bring to a sex discussion? Ridiculous. It’s like some absurd Python sketch.

  12. First, clearly the man has already had sex, rolled over on his belly, and wifey is snuggling up against him, with one leg under his right leg, and one leg over. He’s snoring. She didn’t come yet, and is pissed. That’s Christian sex.

    Second, I agree about sex. Keep everything about it out of the churches. And in the atheist blogs. We need more sex talk here. I’ll start.

    Penis (of course, that’s the first word to come to my brain), vagina (#2), coitus (oh, so clinical), intercourse (ditto), foreplay (yum), G-spot (what’s that?), blowjob (no explanation necessary), clitoris (another unknown), anal sex (did you know you can get pregnant from anal sex? That’s where lawyers come from), ejaculation (I’m commmmmiiiing!), 69 (I dreamed I was kissing Abe Lincoln),…

    OK. You get my point. Does that church get into sex? Really into it? Or is it just another excuse to preach to us and tell us what to do in our private lives.

  13. It would be instructive to find out if the Jacksonville church that advertised on this billboard also advocated distributing condoms in public schools.

    If not, maybe I understand why the position shown seems like it would work only for a couple of contortionists.

    Of course, maybe the slogan on the billboard should be: Come to church and get fucked.

  14. How about:
    Church? This Sunday, sleep in and fuck.

  15. I’ve heard of all kinds of sex before, but never having sex “god’s way.” What the hell is that? How do they envision their god having sex?

    I searched the church’s website and couldn’t find anything on their sex sermons. Damn it! Foiled again!

  16. I think "god's way" is immaculate conception followed by virgin birth, which might explain why the two unfortunate lovers in the billboard are so positioned as to never allow their genitals to touch.Babs: What? You thought you'd find something good in their sex sermons? Come on now!

  17. God’s way? Who knows? Missionary position with exclamations of “oh god” and “thank you Jesus”? Role playing threesome where the hubby plays a drunken Lot and wife and 2nd woman play seducing daughters?

  18. Agreed, sex ‘God’s Way’ has something to do with young virgin girls.

  19. And I share the view of Conan (the barbarian, not the late night host) that you can keep your virgins, I’ll take an experienced woman any day. :)

  20. The funny thing is – it seems to me like NO ONE has sex on the mind like Christians do. The main difference is, they couldn’t have a fun discussion about it like this. It’s very strange.

  21. Lifey – I was hoping to find something horribly bad, which would make it good.

    Evo – Of course the Christians don’t have fun talking about sex. That wouldn’t be nearly perverse enough for them. I think when the evangelicals stand up and preach about the evils of sex they have a boner the whole time.

  22. You’re so Babs… I mean BAD… maybe both?

  23. Philly,

    I’m with ya on the experienced women. That’s why I married an ex-catholic girl. :)

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