This evening we’ve already had your suggestion that God is only really a guru – a friend when you’re in need. I mean, he wouldn’t do anything like bugger around with Job to prove a point. Which, if I now tell you that must mean that that book is not the word of God, you’d say: well, who ever believed that it was the word of God? Let me just tell you something: for hundreds and thousands of years, this kind of discussion would have been in most places impossible to have, or Sam and I would have been having it at the risk of our lives. Religion now comes to us in this smiling-face, ingratiating way, because it’s had to give so much ground, and because we know so much more. But you’ve no right to forget the way it behaved when it was strong, and when it really did believe that it had God on its side.
- Christopher Hitchens