Neither the Bible nor the church gave us the idea of
immortality. The Old Testament tells us how we lost immortality,
and it does not say a word about another world, from the first
mistake in Genesis to the last curse in Malachi. There is not in
the Old Testament a burial service.
No man in the Old Testament stands by the dead and says, “We
shall meet again.” From the top of Sinai came no hope of another
And when we get to the New Testament, what do we find? “They
that are accounted worthy to obtain that world and the resurrection
of the dead.” As though some would be counted unworthy to obtain
the resurrection of the dead. And in another place. “Seek for
honor, glory, immortality.” If you have it, why seek it? And in
another place, “God, who alone hath immortality.” Yet they tell us
that we get our idea of immortality from the Bible. I deny it.
Robert Green Ingersoll – “Orthodoxy”(1884)