HOME   People do good because they are human, not because they are religious! 

Do not give God any credit for the good they do, they did it!

 

Does God Reward?
 
People who believe in God usually believe he gives rewards. This doctrine is full of contradictions and hypocrisy.

 

Psychologists have shown that talented kids who are rewarded by praise for their achievements tend to get fairly careless after.  That is because they get complacent and forget they have to keep working at their talent.  It is also because they care more about the praise than what they are praised for.

 

However, once you praise people for making a good effort they will drive themselves harder and for longer and more consistently.

 

A God who rewards you for your achievements is not truly a good God.  Jesus in the parable of the sheep and goats praised the achievements of the sheep and rewarded them.

 

Believers in God expect rewards.
 
Some admit they want these rewards.
 
Others boast that they would do the good they do if there were no rewards.
 
Both camps then seek rewards. Those who say they don't care about rewards are boasting and boasting is its own reward.
 
It is more humble to do a good work in front of an audience than to say a thing like that!
 
Some say they don't care about rewards but want God to be a rewarding God for they want their loved ones to be rewarded. They claim to be the kind of people that would be willing to let God take away their chance of Heaven if it meant letting their loved ones go to Heaven. That is another boast.
 
Also, if rewards are so bad and being selfless so good surely if you did not want rewards you would not want them for your loved ones? You would want them to be totally unmotivated by the desire for rewards as they do their good deeds.
 
If God exists then he comes first for he is goodness. The highest goodness is doing good with no reward except the thought that it is the will of God. But then religion says God rewards in Heaven which would mean you are getting rewards that are not rewards at all but insults for they mean nothing to you but doing what God wants does. Belief in God is incompatible with belief in real rewards.
 
The Catholic Church teaches that a single instant of submission to the will of God as in, "Your will not mine be done" is worth more than several lifetimes of good works. A religion like that is essentially fanatical and the world is stupid to think the Church really values good works as much as it pretends. If God rewards you then it is not so much for the good works you do as for your belief in him and submission to him. The reward is essentially approval for your madness.
 
There is no humility in a person who considers a prayer to be worth more than a godless person serving the sick of the world.
 
The rewards God supposedly gives for praying and serving God are one of the principal attractions in Christianity and Islam and the religions would not exist without these bribes. Yet if God is really good he cannot give rewards. Anyway, when those cults say you need grace to rise above your sinfulness and that God is self-sufficient for he is all-powerful where is the satisfaction in a reward that you get for a good work that God helped you to do for you could not do good on your own? How can you be happy with a reward for a work that God used you to do that did not then really come from you alone? God only rewards what he did through you. Thus he is not really rewarding you.
 
To accept a reward for a selfless act is to say, “I did the good deed because it was good but now I am treating it as if I did it for myself.” You are kind of repenting of it and if self-sacrifice is sacred then your repentance is unholy and wicked and insulting to the people you helped - even if they do not take it that way. If you do good because it is good and not for a reward then you do not approve if you would accept a reward for your ideal is to forget about what is in it for yourself. So for God or anybody to reward you is to invite you to do what you believe is wrong.
 
If it is bad to reward a selfless person then it is diabolically bad to encourage people to believe in a God who rewards all good deeds. Expecting a reward from people would not be as bad as expecting it from God for unlike him they have to be selective in what good things they reward.
 
Religion says that truly good works are done for God and his honour. That is to be the main or only motive. But God being almighty and all-powerful does not need anything from us. You did your good work for God who does not need it and when the good is that meaningless what pleasure could you take in the reward? If you do take pleasure then you are deceiving yourself. You would not be doing the good just because it is good for all it is, is meaningless.
 
Virtue, according to the sages, is its own reward. Further rewards then are unnecessary. People are to do good because it is good and so rewards would be an insult. Rewards would be necessarily inferior to the reward that is virtue so there would be no point in giving them. When people put the desire for rewards out of their minds the rewards are not rewards for they mean nothing to them. They do not want the praise and thanks of others but for others to copy their example and do their best. They would be offended to be praised.
 
A reward must fit the deed. Any more “reward” is a gift not a reward. Christians arrogantly think they are going to get an everlasting reward for maybe giving somebody a cup of water! How humble! It shows great cynicism to think that people can't do good unless they are bribed with an everlasting reward!
 
If God exists then he comes first for he is goodness. The highest goodness is doing good with no reward except the thought that it is the will of God. But then religion says God rewards in Heaven which would mean you are getting rewards that are not rewards at all but insults for they mean nothing to you but doing what God wants does. Belief in God is incompatible with belief in real rewards. Yet people have been tricked by the Church to think they should encourage belief in God so that people will do good thinking they will get a reward. Without the doctrine of rewards, people would say that the God belief is pointless. That says plenty about them!
 
Expecting a heavenly reward and going among the poor to work for nothing is not being unselfish or showing absence of self-interest. The self-interest is just looked for a different way from the usual way. There is more self-interest in a person who serves others for a permanent heavenly reward than one who does it for a wage.
 
The craftiest form of selfishness or self-centredness is when people disguise it as the service of God.