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%%This trope is about misuse/misunderstanding of religion by creators. Please limit your examples to ones from actual media, and avoid adding "things people generally get wrong"
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->'''Pope:''' A last supper I commissioned from you and a last supper I want. With twelve disciples and one Christ.\\
'''Michelangelo:''' ...'''One'''?!\\
'''Pope:''' Yes, '''one'''! Now will you please tell me what in God's name possessed you to paint this with '''''three''' Christs in it''?!\\
'''Michelangelo:''' It works, mate.\\
'''Pope:''' Works?!\\
'''Michelangelo:''' Yeah! It looks great! The fat one balances the two skinny ones.\\
'''Pope:''' There was only '''one''' Redeemer!\\
'''Michelangelo:''' I know that, we all know that. What about a bit of artistic license?
-->-- ''MontyPython: Live from the Hollywood Bowl''

%% One quote. Extras go on the quotes tab.

Religion makes for great motifs and imagery in fiction and art, but it's also a varied and complex topic. This means that creators often take liberties, either to serve the story or due to lack of research. This may range from ignoring minor details of doctrine to broadly ignoring basic beliefs. The degree of variation often relates to how closely related a creator's culture is to the specific religion; the lesser the relation, the greater the liberties taken.

See also HijackedByJesus, SadlyMythtaken, SymbologyResearchFailure, HollywoodVoodoo, ChristianityIsCatholic and NunsAreMikos.

If you really want to know about the religions, why, [[ShownTheirWork look no further than our]] UsefulNotes pages.

While we can understand your love for a show, please refrain from making {{justifying edit}}s based on your personal [[WildMassGuessing theories]] or [[{{Fanon}} explanations]]. That's what the discussion pages are for. Also be aware of the NoTrueScotsman Fallacy; a lot of things in religion are open to (mis)interpretation, and [[PoesLaw for every alternate theory, there's bound to be some group that takes it deadly seriously]]. This is more about claiming such-and-such a belief is mainstream, or explicitly stated in a certain religion's scriptures or equivalent thereof, when it's not.

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!!Examples:

[[foldercontrol]]


[[folder:Advertising]]
* In Mexico, there is a common PSA for a children's illness organization depicting the LittlestCancerPatient as an angel. The text translates to English roughly as, "We want no more angels in Heaven; we need them down here." This is already a serious failure to understand Catholic and Christian dogma, but coupled with Mexico's overwhelmingly large Catholic majority, it's truly odd. It's probably supposed to mean "we don't want dead kids, we want them to live" and they are using angel in the "cute" sense, and while there is a rank in the hierarchy of angels, called "Powers", which are made up of human souls who were "made perfect by their righteousness" they're technically not angels, just drafted human souls. Also, the apocryphal "Book of Enoch" and many of the earliest Kabbalist writings believed the angel Metatron is actually the Prophet Enoch transformed, while Sandalphon is the Prophet Elijah.
* "Kosher style" food. Kosher is simply anything prepared in compliance to Kashrut (dietary laws) on how to prepare and combine food, not a style of food. One can have Kosher Japanese or Chinese food, for example. This also follows for the similar Muslim concept of halal-meaning "permissible" and "fit" versus treif or haram-"torn" and "forbidden." In addition, during Passover there’s ‘Kosher for Passover’, meaning it’s fit for eating during Passover, during which Jews are not allowed to eat anything with leavened yeast in it (so no bread, pasta, or beer), as well as nothing with legumes for [[AllJewsAreAshkenazi Ashkenazi Jews]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Anime and Manga]]
* Partly because of how Christianity is perceived in Japan, and the country's [[JapaneseChristian low percentage of practicing Christians]], [[AnimeCatholicism you can usually expect this in any work based on or referencing Christian lore]]. At best, you can count on ChristianityIsCatholic, with a generous helping of CreepyCoolCrosses ''[[FauxSymbolism everywhere]]'', despite [[JesusTaboo no one ever mentioning Jesus]].
** One particularly frequent mistake is NunsAreMikos.

[[/folder]]

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* Chuck Austen on Roman Catholicism in the ''Comicbook/{{X-Men}}'' comics.
** The villains in the story plan to get Nightcrawler, a devil-looking mutant, installed as the pope then at a crucial time have his image inducer fails revealing him to be the Antichrist while distributing communion wafers that when activated will cause people to dissolve, simulating the Rapture, which will cause all the Catholic Church to declare war on all the mutants, wiping out the mutants, breaking the Catholic Church, destroying Western Civilization, and causing all the former Catholics to join their church. This plan is either insanely stupid or surprisingly brilliant. It's insanely stupid because the villains were a small, breakaway faction of Catholicism with likely very little actual power in the papal elections and therefore could not get Nightcrawler elected as pope, would require everyone in the Church to assume he is the Antichrist, and not, say, someone who replaced the pope, have these communion wafers distributed far and wide and not have anyone discover them, have Catholics spontaneously adopt the Rapture (as this is not part of Catholic Dogma, but originated in Protestantism), and that this will cause the collapse of Western Civilization even though large swaths of Western Civilization don't practice Catholicism, that all the Catholics will spontaneously lose their faith including the more secular and non-practicing ones, and that all these ex-Catholics will join their church, rather than the hundreds of other faiths out there. The reason why it's potentially brilliant, is that it reflects how [[CrapsackWorld cynically accurate]] the reactions of the Marvel human population would be, and that having the Rapture really ''would'' cause problems because it would overturn a lot of previous dogma. If only they mentioned the latter bit.
** Also, the Rapture described in the story is what's referred to as a pre-tribulation Rapture, in which the Rapture is followed by a period of war, famine, death, etc. before Christ returns. In order for this plan to work, the villains in this story would need the resources to simulate both the tribulation and Christ's return to maintain believability. They obviously don't have these resources because then they could just kill the mutants directly instead of making the scheme to begin with, and it would require doing a rather large case of blasphemy by ''faking the return of Jesus Christ.''.
** Also, the antichrist Nightcrawler was supposed to be mistaken for was from the pop culture version of a particular interpretation of Revelation - an interpretation, needless to say, not held by Catholicism in general, which considers that part of the book to be [[GettingCrapPastTheRadar thinly-veiled criticism of the Roman Empire.]]
** So, in other words, their whole plan relied on the false assumption that ChristianityIsCatholic.
** Linkara also point out (in these reviews [[http://atopfourthwall.blogspot.com/2009/01/uncanny-x-men-423-part-1-of-2.html]] [[http://atopfourthwall.blogspot.com/2009/01/uncanny-x-men-424.html]]) that Chuck Austen got some of the Bible quotes he used in that story wrong and he even misspelled the word revelation! It's safe to assume he didn't do too much research.
* The ''ComicBook/ChickTracts'' often do this to any religious ideology besides Jack Chick's own version of Christian fundamentalism (which is rather extreme, even for normal fundamentalism). When he does his research, it is usually from unreliable or discredited sources -- sometimes even his own version of Christian fundamentalism. As a result, not everyone is convinced his works aren't an elaborate parody. It helps that he is so cryptic a person that absolutely nothing is known about him. Wikipedia even suggest that "Jack Chick" might have been the "pen name for an unnamed author or authors". Examples of Artistic License - Religious Studies from ''Chick Tracts'' include:
** [[http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/1074/1074_01.asp Freemasons worship Baphomet]]. In reality, Freemasons tend to be Christians (but not Real, True Christians (TM) according to Jack Chick, of course). The only requirement to become a Freemason, in fact, is believing a higher power exists, though they don't get specific about it.
** His apparent belief that the Catholics have never heard of God or Jesus deserves a special mention. And for that matter, his apparent belief that there are actually people in Western society who have never heard of God or Jesus.
** More on Catholics:
*** Catholics worship the Virgin Mary ''instead'' of Jesus. They never worshiped Jesus. They worship Baal, who is not the Virgin Mary.[[note]]The contradiction between these things is never addressed.[[/note]] He also believes that the Bible is against Catholicism because the Book of Revelation calls Babylon "The Great Whore." The passage he cites speaks of Babylon, and Jack Chick believes that Catholicism originated in Babylon, and more precisely, copied from Babylonian paganism. [[FridgeLogic Never mind that early Christianity developed into Catholicism several centuries AFTER that book was written, and that there are far likelier targets available]].
*** [[http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/0071/0071_01.asp The IHS on the host (communion wafers) are initials for the Egyptian gods Isis, Horus, and Seb/Geb]]. (They're actually the first three letters of {{Jesus}}' name in Romanized Greek.) Anyone with even rudimentary knowledge of EgyptianMythology can see how mind-bendingly laughable it is to connect Geb with Isis and Horus in a positive fashion.
** [[http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/0071/0071_01.asp All Protestants take the Lord's supper symbolically.]] ([[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martin_Luther#Eucharist_controversy Martin Luther would beg to disagree,]] and other denominations teach that there is a spiritual "real presence" of Christ in the sacrament, just not a physical or substantial one.)
** [[http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/1031/1031_01.asp Allah is not God]]; he is some kind of Babylonian moon god that was left over after Muhammad threw all the other idols out of Mecca.
*** Then there's [[http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/0042/0042_01.asp this comic]]; even if you assume a TranslationConvention from Arabic, the Arabic word for (big-G) "God" simply ''is'' "Allah". Arabic-speaking Christians address their worship to "Allah". So how do you say "Allah is not God" in Arabic?
**** "''الله ليس إله''" [[http://www.chick.com/reading/tracts/5199/5199_01.asp was used]] for the curious. So yes, it does lose a lot in the translation, to the point that the same phrase [[http://studybible.info/Arabic/1%20Corinthians%2014:33-34 is used with the opposite implication]]: (Allah [God], is not the [god] of confusion...) in the most common modern Arabic bible, ironically the same one that antagonist of the story, an Arab convert to Protestant Christianity, would end up using.
*** It is true that Islam differs from Judaism and Christianity, but the lunar symbol is just that, merely a symbol (probably left over from Persian times). It wasn't even adopted until well into the ''1400s.'' Green color is more the Islamic symbol, but it's hard to spin that into hidden meanings. The reason it sounds convincing is that it's a half-truth. Also, the line right after is laughable:
---> "At 25, he had married Khadija, a wealthy '''Catholic''' widow who was 40 years old...
*** Who, besides playing to the author's weird beliefs on Catholics (to which even Wikipedia says nothing to prove), she looks closer to 25, and he looks closer to 40.
* ''{{Azrael}}'', in ''spades'', the second series even more so than the first.
** A particularly {{Egregious}} example is the 2011 BatFamilyCrossover ''Judgement on Gotham.'' In this crossover, Azrael ([[Characters/{{Batman}} Michael Lane]]) teams with the Crusader, a superpowered psychotic, in order to destroy Gotham City, which they perceive as a modern day Sodom/Gomorrah (It's later revealed that they were manipulated into doing this by Ra's al Ghul, who apparently likes to play with Dominoes). In accordance to Literature/TheBible story on the topic, however, they decide to instead first see if there is one righteous soul in the city. So, [[SarcasmMode naturally]], they decide to test Batman (Dick Grayson), ComicBook/{{Catwoman}} (Selina Kyle) and Red Robin (Tim Drake). If they find one righteous soul, they'll spare the city. Aaaaaaaandd here's where it fails. In the original Sodom and Gomorrah story, God agreed with Abraham to not destroy the cities for the sake of ''ten'' righteous people. This then begs the question of why Azrael and the Crusader didn't just take a poll of the local Christian churches. We the readers are then expected to believe that 1.) The biggest "sin" that the Sword of Sin (a sword that when plunged into a person's body reveals to both the victim and the wielder the sins of the victim) could dredge up from Dick Grayson was not helping some random guy from the circus when he was a ''kid'', as opposed to, say, fornication, lying, lustful thoughts, use of profanity etc. 2.) We are further expected to believe that Azrael and the Crusader sincerely think that they can find an individual without sin, which, according to Literature/TheBible, yes, ''Literature/TheBible'', is impossible with the sole exception of Jesus Christ. 3.) In relation to point 2, we are then expected to believe that Tim Drake, who, as good a guy as he is, has lied, thought lustful thoughts, and used profane language, is "sinless." We are also expected to believe that [[OutOfCharacterMoment Tim is pretentious enough to even think he has no sins, which he does think, according to his opening monologue]]. 4.) We are then expected to believe that Selina Kyle, ''Catwoman,'' would fail the "sinless" test solely because she ''wouldn't kill her sister "in the name of God"'', as opposed to her history of stealing, fornication, etc., this test ''completely'' violating every rule of Christianity. The reason it's so ridiculous is that the entire premise of this crossover relies on Azrael and Crusader, the former being a staunch Catholic from boyhood, being completely ignorant of the Bible's most basic principles, to the point that ''Catwoman'' knows more about Christianity than they do ("God and God alone can judge").
* ''ComicBook/TheMightyThor'' is ripe with artistic license from HornyVikings to changing the genders of certain characters in NorseMythology (i.e. Laufey is Loki's ''mother'' in the lore) to all out HijackedByJesus (with Loki being a blatant antagonist). Marvel's adaptation of Thor and the mythology is a hot topic in many Heathen circles, though that isn't to say that everyone is going to be upset with it.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Documentaries]]
* The first ''Zeitgeist'' film [[http://conspiracies.skepticproject.com/articles/zeitgeist fails so completely and utterly to get even one fact right about Christianity]] that even atheists and people skeptical of Christianity turned against it completely.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Fan Fiction]]
* ''FanFic/TwilaTheGirlWhoWazInLuvWithAVampyre:''
-->"I DONT BELEVE IN GOD I AM N ATHEIST. i thnk [[DevilButNoGod saten]] [[ComicallyMissingThePoint created dis universe]] god [[LogicBomb bles u satan]]" [sic]
* The "Ten Commodents" from ''FanFic/StarkitsProphecy'', including:
--> 11. No BENG GAY!f [sic]
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Film]]
* In ''{{Dogma}}'' the concept of Plenary Indulgence is portrayed completely wrong. Multiple characters who ''should'' know better (angels and a cardinal) describe it as a clean slate, and the forgiveness and removal of all sins. It is not. Plenary Indulgence is the removal of the need for temporal punishments of sins that have ''already'' been forgiven. It does not remove nor wipe out a person's sins. One might argue that Bartleby and Loki failing to understand the concept properly [[FridgeBrilliance is part of the joke.]] Also, Metatron calls himself a "seraphim" and reveals two wings. The singular of "seraphim" is "seraph," and they have six wings.
** {{Dogma}} also states that angels can't have sex when the Bible says they fathered children. The film further states that the Catholic church has a huge conspiracy to conceal the existence of Jesus Christ's brothers and sisters. The same ones that are mentioned explicitly as such in the Book of Matthew. And the Book of Acts. And the Book of Luke. And the Book of John. And the Epistle of James and the Epistle of Jude, each believed to be written by ''brothers'' of Jesus.
** Accordingly, the Grigori (what Creator/BenAffleck's character was) were a choir of Angels discussed in the Apocrypha, which is considered non-canonical by Catholicism. Moreover, in Catholicism (and several other denominations of Christianity), they follow the understanding of Angels under Pseudo-Dionysius the Areopagite, in which case they A.) lack the sensitive powers inherent in animal and human souls and because of that B.) lack bodies. The only way the Angels/Demons are able to be at a location in any sort of temporal means would be to possess a temporal host. Other than that, position in space and time is utterly irrelevant to them. Grigori were the exception, but again, not viewed as Canon by the Catholic Church (and they had gender, and sired children. This was one of the reasons behind the great flood, to get rid of them).
** Interestingly, a lot of the film's plot runs on the fact that Azrael, through Bartleby and Loki, is ''intentionally'' exploiting loopholes and using everyone's beliefs against them. The Cardinal is using the concept of Plenary Indulgences wrong, the whole "God is infallible" idea being proved incorrect has no basis in any official teachings, and half the stated rules and consequences happened (in-universe at least) centuries after the Bible began to be written. It's a humungous BatmanGambit running on nobody being 100% in the know about what was and wasn't possible, with the only omnipotent being in existence (God his-/herself) being [[ItMakesSenseInContext stuck in a coma]]. It's entirely possible that Azrael's entire plan would have turned into a big pile of nothing anyway, with God just being mildly miffed that Bartleby and Loki were schucking God's edicts ''again'', but having some [[MercyKill sympathy]] once Loki actually got the chance to realize his wrongdoings and repent.
* The B-movie ''Lost Souls'' starring WinonaRyder. The filmmakers have admitted to making up the Bible verse that is central to the plot. One of the main characters is seemingly doomed to be possessed by demons because he hasn't been baptized. No one thinks to just baptize him and end the issue. Apparently the director and writer thought Catholics can only be baptized as infants.
* Likewise, Creator/QuentinTarantino admitted to making up most of Ezekiel 25:17. Only the last part of Jules Winnfield's diatribe is (almost) the real verse, i.e.; "And I will execute great vengeance upon them with furious rebukes; and they shall know that I am the LORD, when I shall lay my vengeance upon them."
* ''The Order/The Sin Eater'' starring Heath Ledger.
* ''Film/{{Stigmata}}'':
-->'''RogerEbert:''' "Stigmata" does not know, or care, about the theology involved, and thus becomes peculiarly heretical by confusing the effects of being possessed by Jesus and by Beelzebub."
** It also features a desperate conspiracy by the Catholic Church to cover up the existence of the newly-rediscovered Gospel of Thomas, which would apparently destroy the entire institution of religion if discovered. However, it was actually discovered in 1945, and published (and translated) shortly after with no opposition whatsoever.
*** Although the Gospel of Thomas discovered in 1945 was written in Coptic Egyptian while in the movie the language was Aramaic and not the gospel of Thomas but rather the gospel of Jesus himself supposedly saying that he was everywhere and that formal church hierarchies were unnecessary and even illegitimate.
* In ''Keeping The Faith'' there is a scene where people in a synagogue are shown seated during kol nidrei, which would not happen in real life. This is not the only inaccuracy in the movie, but it's definitely the most {{Egregious}} example.
* ''Film/{{Constantine}}'' borrows symbols and names from Christianity, but that's where the similarities end.
** A major plot point in the film is that, according to Catholic doctrine, people who commit suicide always go to Hell. This has not been the case since 1997, when the Church decided that people who were mentally ill were not entirely responsible for their actions if they chose to take their own life. At least one of the suicides in the film was committed by a mental patient. Constantine's suicide is more complicated, since suicide is only an unforgivable sin because you can't repent for it before you die. Constantine is brought back to life, so he can repent. However, as Constantine died and saw hell, he has ''already'' been condemned in the eyes of God.
*** Also, as the concept of brain death has become better understood, there's been serious debate in the Catholic community as to whether or not a person can commit suicide, and repent in the few seconds before the brain shuts down.
** When Constantine mentions the "Spear of Destiny" and says "Jesus wasn't killed by crucifixion," the Catholic he's responding to replies with "I know, he was killed by a spear. I paid attention in Sunday School, you know." Except in the Bible, Jesus ''was'' killed by crucifixion, and a spear was only used to poke his corpse to demonstrate he was already dead. There are people who think that Jesus was "really" killed by the spear, but those tend to be people who claim the Biblical account is ''wrong''. No one would be able to teach the theory from the Bible, certainly not in Sunday School.
* "If you believe in God, you must believe in the Devil..." proclaims the trailer for ''TheLastExorcism''. No, you don't. If this works at all, it is [[DevilButNoGod the other way]].
* Mrs. Carmody in the film adaptation of Creator/StephenKing's ''TheMist'' was described as crazy within the film, but anyone vaguely familiar with Christian scripture or theology should have been able to make a pretty convincing argument against her, on her own terms.
** While the main characters criticize Mrs. Carmody's ravings that it's the Rapture (and that human sacrifice is required to appease God), at one point a tough biker-guy volunteers to go on an expedition outside: his parting shot was that for the record, he did believe in God, but thought Carmody was a lunatic. This contrast was all-too-brief, because this man was killed shortly afterwards.
* In ''Priest'' (1994, dir. Antonia Bird) a major part of the plot involves a girl confessing that her father sexually abuses her, and the priest's (who also happens to be gay, just for the zeitgeist) subsequent attempts to protect her without breaking the Seal of the Confessional. This is incorrect according to the Canon Law of the Roman Church, but is commonly misunderstood (even by priests!): the seal applies only to confessed sins. The girl was not confessing a sin (her father raped her), and the priest was therefore not bound by the seal. Later, the father himself comes along to "confess" (actually to gloat). This is likewise not bound by the seal, as it applies only to genuine confessions - the father was gloating, not confessing, and was therefore not entitled to protection.
* Part of the massive backlash at Roland Emmerich's ''[[TwentyTwelve 2012]]'' was how it perpetuated the belief of many RealLife Christians (and others) who have tried to connect the end date of the Mayan calendar with their own belief of Judgement Day. The Mayans never equated the end of their calendar with the end of the world. After all, the Georgian calendar "ends" on December 31st, and no one interprets that as the end of the world. Mayan mythology had nothing resembling an apocalypse, ignoring the inherent absurdity of Christians looking to a non-Judeo-Christian source for their eschatology.
* {{Played for laughs}} in the {{poker}} tournament movie ''The Grand'', where Larry Schwartzman shows up to a table wearing a hijab and claiming to have converted to "Muslam". This was a scare tactic against "Sob Story" Barry Blausteen, an expert at psyching out his opponents who happened to be Jewish.
* In ''Film/EndOfDays'' a priest claims that the 666 in Literature/{{Revelation}} actually means 999, and therefore the end of the millennium, since in dreams and visions writing and numbers may appear as mirror images or upside-down. Even if we agree to that, there is the problem that there is no way the writer of Revelation could have known about Arabic numerals, and if he did, at the time their visual appearance had not been developed to a point where 6 and 9 resemble each other that closely. Revelation explicitly says "six hundred and sixty six", not "666"; and in Greek numerals that would be χξς, which doesn't look like anything upside down.
** This isn't even going into the possibility that the Mark of the Beast is actually six hundred ''and sixteen.''
* ''Film/{{The Mummy|1999}}'': Anyone else wondering why the ''Jewish'' God is bothering to reenact the ten plagues of Egypt (''out of order'', no less), for the sake of an ''Egyptian'' curse?
* The ''Film/{{Apocalypse}}'' film series shares many of the problems with ''LeftBehind'', which it was derived from. For instance, in the third film one character states that ''all'' Christians believe in the Rapture.
** This has more to do with their narrow definition of Christians (i.e. only people who believe as they do exactly). So people who don't believe in the Rapture are not Christians, according to them.
* ''Film/{{Help}}'' is sometimes erroneously taken to be an example of this trope, because it features the goddess Kaili which is "obviously" a misspelling of Kali. However, according to the DVD commentary, this was done deliberately to avoid UnfortunateImplications; they wanted a goddess who ''sounded like'' Kali without actually being her.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Literature]]
* The main conflict in the Hugo-winning science fiction novel ''A Case of Conscience'' by Creator/JamesBlish depends entirely on the "fact" that the Catholic church rejects evolution. In fact, the Catholic Church (in the 1940's) said the theory and religion are not mutually exclusive and that the church has no problem with the theory. Compared to certain Protestant sects Catholicism has taken a very moderate stance of the controversy - they were originally neutral on the subject but later came down in favor of it (in fact, English Protestants both supported and rallied against the theory in more or less equal measure). The church made no official pronouncement about the subject at all until Pius XII adopted a neutral attitude. This is more a case of Theology Marches On than a pure example of this trope, but the central character is a Catholic priest who is freaked out by the existence of an alien species that appear to be without sin yet have never known Christianity: in RealLife, the Vatican issued a statement to the effect that it was definitely possible humanity would find such a species out there in the universe, and the idea of sinless aliens actually works within Catholic theology since they would not share Adam's curse. ([[FridgeLogic Wait]], would that mean that humanity's [[PlanetOfHats hat]] is sin?!)
** Or, you know, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gregor_Mendel Gregor Mendel]]? That guy with peas who figured out the theory of genetics and was also an Augustinian friar.
** The claim that the Catholic Church/the Pope opposes evolution is still used today. Especially egregious considering that [[http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG0015/__P19.HTM evolution is part of the Catholic catechism.]]
** Some Protestant churches do oppose evolution. And ChristianityIsCatholic, right?
** Additionally, while the Church accepts evolution, individual laity or clergy may not. This is no surprise.
* It's a pretty minor example, but in ''Literature/AmericanGods'', there are a couple of examples of Creator/NeilGaiman basing his presentation of a god on Victorian-era interpretations of SlavicMythology instead of the original. One example is the idea of Bielbog being the "good god" brother of the "dark god" Czernobog. Modern evidence is that the former didn't actually exist in Slavic tradition. Probably justified [[spoiler: as Bielbog is an [[JekyllAndHyde alternate personality]] of Czernobog]] in Gaiman himself admitting that he had sparse evidence of Slavic Mythology and so had to use artistic license. There's also the issue that [[spoiler: Loki]] is given some association with fire. This is the result of [[ArtisticLicenseLinguistics a bad etymology]], most likely originating from the story where Loki ends up in a contest against Logi who is the personification of fire, and probably a bit of association of him with [[HijackedByJesus Lucifer]]. This one, as with the previous example could also be attributed to [[ClapYourHandsIfYouBelieve things becoming true if people believe]] in this universe. [[FridgeBrilliance Which means]] that they're representations of the originals brought by Slavic immigrants to America. Many of whom [[FridgeBrilliance would have immigrated in the 19th/early 20th centuries]]. Presumably, the original Slavic gods are still in Eastern Europe. The book makes it clear that America can clone or reincarnate gods while the originals are still in their home countries.
** An in-universe case of religious studies failure occurs within the book. Mr. Wednesday asks a random woman, who identifies as pagan, about Easter- and she responds that she doesn't follow that Christian crap, indicating she knows squat about paganism.
*** Which again shows another Religous Studies failure, because there never was a pagan Goddess called Easter, Easter was a fake made up by Bede. However, when Neo-paganism was formed, this wasn't known yet so Easter isn't a pagan goddess, but still venerated as a goddess in some neo-pagan denominations.
* There're some in-universe examples in ''Literature/FatherBrown'' stories by Creator/GKChesterton.
** In ''The Blue Cross'', a MasterOfDisguise criminal poses as a Catholic priest; but he makes the grave mistake of talking religion with Father Brown. He then attacks reason, which is, as Father Brown says, bad theology; that, among other things, helps Father Brown to uncover the disguised criminal.
** In ''The Vampire of the Village'', there's an Anglican parson, whose behavior is a strange mix of High-Churchman and Low-Churchman traits. Which helps Father Brown to deduce that [[spoiler:he is just posing as a clergyman; but, due to ignorance in religious matters, he plays a [[TheThemeParkVersion Theme Park]] version of a parson]].
** Then there's ''The God of the Gongs'', in which Chesterton randomly decides that there's a form of Voodoo that involves HumanSacrifice (and all the [[ValuesDissonance casual racism]] in that story). People from non-Abrahamic religions didn't get much respect in those stories.
*** The preface to ''The Wisdom Of Father Brown'' gives an explicit disclaimer that the "native rituals and customs" in various stories are made up for plot purposes. He cannot be blamed for not doing "research" he did not claim to be doing on things he did not claim are true. It still does not come off well though, as it's a common misconception about Voodoo which he contributed to by making up this literary version.
** Then there is his novel THE MAN WHO WAS THURSDAY, where a [[spoiler:fake]] anarchist relates that he tried disguising himself as a bishop, but when he entered the drawing room shouting "Down! Down! Presumptuous human reason!" people somehow figured out that he was an impostor, since it seems real bishops don't act like that.
* In the [[Creator/NealStephenson Stephen Bury]] terrorism thriller ''The Cobweb'', we encounter a Kosher butcher who's working ''on a Saturday afternoon''. Aha! No kosher butcher would work on the Sabbath! Is he an impostor? An agent for the terrorists? ...nope. His Sabbath-desecration is not noticed, then or later, in the book. Maybe he's just a bad religious Jew? Who knows.
* John J. Miller's WildCards novel DeathDrawsFive is an over-the-top plot with various [[SinisterMinister Sinister Ministers]] and [[KnightTemplar Knight Templars]], which depends entirely on the fact that he did not research what Christians of ANY denomination actually believe concerning the Second Coming.
* ''Mary Mae and the Gospel Truth'' has a woman pull her daughter out of school because the mother believes fossils are fakes, and home schools Mary to teach her creation instead of evolution. What this outright ignores is that modern creationism does not reject that fossils exist, it merely rejects the belief that millions of years are required for them to form, citing some modern examples (like 70-year-old petrified teddy bears found in a cave) to justify belief that a [[TheGreatFlood rapid global flood]] could do just as much damage in a year-and-a-half.
** But Fundamentalists being who they are and lacking a central authority, there probably are some who believe that fossils were made by Satan.
* ''LeftBehind'' is very accurate in its portrayal of a very specific flavor of pre-millenial dispensationalists the writers belong to. ([[CreatorProvincialism Even if it is weird]] to see the formerly non-believing protagonists [[InstantExpert talk and behave like long-term believers instantly upon converting]].) Everyone else (from Catholics, Jews and Atheists right up to competing premillenials) gets the shaft, badly.
* In ''Literature/TheirEyesWereWatchingGod,'' the people of Eatonville claim at one point that any romantic speech has to reference Isaac meeting Rebecca at the well. Rebecca met Isaac's family servant (usually said to be Eleazer) at the well, and Isaac and Rebecca's son Jacob met his future wife Rachel at a well, but Isaac and Rebecca's first meeting did not involve a well. Possibly [[JustifiedTrope this was meant]] to show the townspeople as being uninformed, as they're generally not the smartest bunch.
* In ''HisDarkMaterials'', the climax of the trilogy hinges on a second Fall of humanity, in which it's prophesied that Lyra "will disobey" and thus become a "second Eve" (from Literature/TheBible). What she actually does is [[spoiler: fall in love and make out with Will.]] She may have had sex, but even WordOfGod on the subject is "maybe, maybe not," sometimes slanted more toward the [[http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2003/12/12/1071125644900.html not]]. The issue is that if you leave out the sex between unmarried teenagers, there's nothing in her actions that Literature/TheBible considers sin or "disobeying" at all. Even that may not be a sin, since it's supposed to happen prior to another Fall-Adam and Eve are implied to have had sex before eating the fruit.
** And then, of course, there is the statement that Catholicism has literally stood in the way of every single scientific and technological advance in history and that these advances had to be 'snatched' from them at every turn. Never mind the fact that the actual first book of the series revolved around some nasty scientific experiments conducted for the Church, meaning that statement isn't even accurate ''in universe'', the truth is that the real-life Church has been funding science since before it was actually ''called'' science, and still does. The long story [[ArtisticLicenseTraditionalChristianity is here under science]], but the short version is that they own at least two scientific institutes - [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pontifical_Academy_of_Sciences the Pontifical Academy of Sciences]] and the extremely venerable [[http://vaticanobservatory.org/ Vatican Observatory]] and fund many more. The idea that they have ever opposed, or even disliked, science is a total myth. These are the guys who accepted evolution as soon as they had deemed there was sufficient evidence to support it (this was in about 1942).
* ''Literature/ThePowerOfFive'': Horowitz takes a few liberties with the belief system of the Incas, several Native American myths, some Ancient Chinese legends and even the theology syllabus of Roman universities in order to work the cosmology of the series into them. Also, in a more nitpicky example, he claims that the five-pointed star symbol of the Gatekeepers has "nothing to do with Christianity", which isn't strictly true - a few examples of early Christian artwork do use a similar five-pointed star as a symbol of Christ. It would still be a bit odd to find it carved on a secret door in the Vatican, but it wouldn't be as unbelievable as the book implies.
** The Incan tumi given to Richard is described as having a sharp point. Tumis do not have points; the blade is semicircular.
* In the epilogue to ''[[Literature/DianaTregarde Burning Water]]'', Creator/MercedesLackey admits she changed several elements of UsefulNotes/AztecMythology to fit story needs.
* The author of ''Literature/AWolfInTheSoul'' admits in his introduction to creating some highly speculative aspects of Jewish mysticism that may not be in any way accurate.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Live Action TV]]
* On the ''[[{{QI}} QI panel game]]'' (you know, ''[[{{Irony}} the one that centres its entire premise around dispelling common misconceptions]]''), Steven Fry gleefully stated as outright fact ([[ManipulativeBastard in the Christmas special, no less]]) that the biblical account of Jesus was based on the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mithras_in_comparison_with_other_belief_systems#Mithraism_and_Christian_Theology Mithraic Mystery Cult]]. Quite apart from the fact that we know almost nothing about them (well they ''were'' a [[ExactlyWhatItSaysOnTheTin mystery]] cult), a lot of what we do know contradicts many of the claims made on the show (and by many others besides the QI researchers). Sorry QI, but [[ArtisticLicenseHistory you fail history]] and religious studies forever.
** This plays into a lot of common arguments that much of Christianity's stories are based upon common aspects of Pagan mythology. While it is possible to draw comparisons between the book of Genesis and other religious texts, it is generally false to claim that aspects Christianity are based on earlier religions and folk-lore. See ArtisticLicenseTraditionalChristianity for more details.
* ''Series/{{Charmed}}'' and its portrayal of UsefulNotes/{{Wicca}} can certainly qualify, such as stating the Wiccan Rede to be "no personal gain" rather than "harm none" and completely disregarding Wicca's theology involving a Goddess and God, instead focusing on a completely made up cosmology involving beings such as the Elders and Whitelighters. It's more like watered-down Christianity than anything else.
** Most of the actual Wiccans who turn up on the show are made to look silly. And the dialogue keeps using "Wiccan" as just a synonym for "witch". The "witches" in CHARMED mythology have little resemblance to either legendary witches or contemporary crafters. One can use "low" magic without adhering to the Gardnerian construct of a "Wiccan" religion, and one can accept the religion without being an initiated "witch".
** A particularly bad case was the episode about the warlock/deacon, which only made sense by claiming that ordination as a priest would somehow confer additional "protection" against evil magic. . . especially as deacons are already in Holy Orders.
** The (allegedly) Wiccan ancestor in question was from Salem at the time of the witch trials, which makes this an explicit example of the very common misconception that Wicca is (a) an ancient religion, and (b) just the "polite" term for any sort of European paganism other than Norse or Greco-Roman. And she was burned in Salem. Anyone who frequents TV Tropes knows the drill: convicted witches were ''hanged'' in Salem, not burned (one man was pressed to death for refusing to plead to the charges).
* ''[[Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer Buffy]]'' portrayed UsefulNotes/{{Wicca}} as a way to get magick powers rather than as a religion, {{Lampshaded}} when Willow ran into a realistic Wicca coven in college and was annoyed with it by the lack of spell casting. Same word, two completely different meanings.
--> '''Willow''': Talk, all talk! [[BlahBlahBlah Blah blah, Gaia, blah blah]], moon, [[BuffySpeak menstrual life-force power thingy]]. You know, after a couple of sessions I was hoping we would get into something real, but...
-->'''Buffy''': No actual witches in your witch group?
-->'''Willow''': No, bunch of wanna-blessed-be's. You know, nowadays every girl with a Henna tattoo and a spice rack thinks she's a sister to the Dark Ones.
** An early episode also featured a group of vampires celebrating the feast of S:t Vigeous, PatronSaint of vampires. One wonders how a saint dedicated to demonic predators was canonised in the first place, but presumably it's just their name for him, or maybe vampires have their own religion, including saints?
* Any time ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'' goes near religion. People have complained about the way Christianity and everything associated with it is being presented, but it's always had a bad track record with religion. Check out any episode where they talk about the old pagan gods; They Fail Religious Studies Forever by making it seem that there was apparently only one religion ever before Christianity hit the scene. The show just uses the term 'Pagan God' for any "god" of an old polytheistic religion. They specifically say the Trickster exists in Norse and Egyptian mythology, and that the Vanír were Norse gods, too.
** Lampshaded when Sam corrects a girl in the pilot, after she says that the pentacle is a symbol of Satanism.
** Try to find any mention of "66 of 666 seals" in Revelation.
** They had Castiel scold the boys for believing that the Antichrist will be the son of Satan. "Your Bible gets more wrong than it does right," he explains. Except... the Bible never describes the Devil having any children. You'd think an angel would know better (however, it was a popular piece of Christian folklore that the Devil fathered children with human women, but not official doctrine, which is likely where this idea comes from).
** Samhain, that demon in "It's the Great Pumpkin, Sam Winchester". Samhain is actually the Celtic Sabbath that falls on Halloween, and it's pronounced SOW-EHN, not SAM-HANE. Please, if you're going to insult every Celtic witch out there, at least do it right, and it becomes even more obvious when you realize that "Samhain" is also the Irish word for "November", so it wouldn't exactly be difficult to check the pronunciation...
*** A similar mispronunciation with the ghost of Halloween in WesternAnimation/TheRealGhostbusters, although that may possibly be deliberate.
** According to ''Supernatural'', if an angel falls from grace they become human, but according to Christian theology if an angel falls from grace then they become a demon. Hence the term "fallen angel". This is probably down to [[Film/CityOfAngels a certain film]] in which an angel falls in love with a woman and becomes human by, er, jumping from a building.
** Particularly egregious when Sam, in order to create purified blood, confesses one particular sin (as he sees it) in an empty confessional booth. Reconciliation (the sacrament) involves going to an actual priest, reciting a specific prayer, confessing ''all'' sins, and doing some sort of penance, ''none'' of which Sam does. It's implied that he does something similar to prayer, which, while very nice, isn't the same thing as reconciliation.
* ''Series/DefyingGravity'' has an episode in which Paula, a devout Catholic, proclaims the discovery of aliens as a sign of the upcoming Rapture. As stated above, the Rapture is ''not'' Catholic doctrine. Possibly justified, however, if she has just picked up on pop cultural Protestant beliefs. Plus, it's in the future.
* The worst example on ''Series/TheXFiles'' was probably the laughably bad portrayal of Judaism in "Kaddish", but attempts to portray AgentScully's Catholicism or any other forms of Christianity tended to run headlong into the writers' total lack of research.
** And Voodoo, and Wicca, and their conflation of Satanism and (Aleister Crowley's) Thelema, which had nothing to do with real-world Satanism or Thelema.
** A more specific example: in the episode ''3'', a character writes "John 52:54" on a wall, and Mulder is immediately able to bring the verse to mind. Problem is, it's actually "John 6:52-54" he's thinking of, and "John 52:54" doesn't exist.
* The ''Series/DoctorWho'' serial "The Daemons" implied that Beltane was a night for evil spirits, when it in fact was a day for purification, transition, and fertility rituals.
* The first episode of ''Series/{{Bones}}'' written by Kathy Reichs had "Wiccans" who were all-female, descended from the Salem "witches," and who stole corpses and used bat bones in their ceremonies. Even though the corpse stealer was portrayed as a blasphemer that did curses for hire and was feared and pitied by the less [[spoiler: deliberately]] psychotic Wiccans, the rest still fails.
** It also claimed (through Sweets) that the pentagram is an Ancient Wiccan Symbol signifying solidarity and sisterhood. [[ArtisticLicenseHistory Sumer, Pythagoras, and Agrippa would like to have a word with you.]] The symbol has not only been used by pagans, but also ''Christians'' before its modern use by Satanist groups tainted it for them.
** In episode 10 of the 5th season of Bones, Daisy repeatedly claims that it was more likely that Jesus was born in March than December, and that early Christians celebrated his birth in that month. It's long been debated when Jesus was born, for both month and year (or, in some cases, whether or not there even ''was'' a historical Jesus), but no evidence is offered that early Christians celebrated it in March. On the contrary, all evidence suggests they celebrated it in December (as for whether or not that was when he was actually born, see ArtisticLicenseTraditionalChristianity) and his ''conception'' in March (Feast of the Annunciation).
* In the third season of ''Series/VeronicaMars'', Piz starts ranting on his radio show about how even though he is a Catholic school boy, the concept of Purgatory completely baffles him. He then goes on to completely incorrectly explain it as the place for people not good enough for Heaven (a common misconception among non-Catholics and Catholics alike, so maybe this is TruthInTelevision?). Purgatory is the place of purification for souls on their way to Heaven in which the temporal effects of their sins are cleansed.
* Then there's that episode of ''Series/{{Lost}}'' where Mr. Eko tells Claire that the dove that appeared after Jesus' baptism signified that John had cleansed Jesus of his sins. Actually, being the Son of God, Jesus was sinless, and the Dove was another way that God claimed Jesus as his son. This can partially be explained by Eko [[spoiler: not being a real priest, but actually a drug runner who caused the death of his brother (who was an actual priest) then became a "priest" to atone for this.]] Guess he didn't have much time to learn theology... This may also be a belief in the heterodox idea of [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adoptionism Adoptionism]] [[spoiler: which again shows he is not a real Catholic priest]].
* In one episode of ''Series/{{Psych}}'' a priest, who's supposed to be an experienced exorcist, immediately jumps to the conclusion that a girl was possessed because she had been having mood swings. He later then shows up to perform an exorcism on another girl without even taking any steps to find out if she was really possessed (i.e. sending her to a doctor or a psychologist, or even just interviewing her himself).
** Sadly, this can be TruthInTelevision if we're talking about clergy from some of the flakier Charismatic or Fundamentalist ''Protestant'' sects, some of whom will do exorcisms at the drop of a hat. But a Roman Catholic priest? Either he's a little loopy himself and/or acting without any official authority, in which case he'd get in big trouble with both secular and ecclesiastical authorities.
*** This very same thing happens in an episode of ''[[CSICrimeSceneInvestigation CSI]]''. The team investigates a girl's death during an exorcism. The church performing the exorcism turns out to be made entirely of the exorcist and a handful of followers.
* On the TV miniseries ''{{Roots}}'', the people in Kunta Kinte's village are shown to be Muslim, and the women of the village walk around topless. The problem is that if the women were Muslim, they would certainly not be topless in public. The only specific command in the Qur'an about female modesty is that they must cover their breasts (it's probably FanService).
** They could be less-observant Muslims (actually [[RealityIsUnrealistic fairly common]] for West African Muslim peoples far from the region's great cities).
* In the ''Series/MysteriousWays'' episode "29," a man sees the number 29 drawn by a toy pendulum during an earthquake and believes the apocalypse will occur on the 29th of the month, as the number 29 is always associated with disaster. Among the reasons he gives is "Many people believe Christ died at 29." Not only is Christ's death the ''opposite'' of a disaster, in Christian theology, but ''no one'', or close to it, believes Christ died at 29.[[note]][[http://www.google.com/search?q=christ+died+at+29&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=com.ubuntu:en-US:unofficial&client=firefox-a Google it for yourself.]][[/note]] The most common age suggested is 30 or 33. Miranda's reaction (an annoyed "'Many people'?") possibly suggests that the error is the character's, not the writers'.
** There's also an in-universe case in the series finale "Something Fishy," in which fish rain from the sky onto a small town. One of the town's residents tries to explain the spiritual significance, but mixes up Bible stories as he does so, leading to tales of God punishing Pharaoh for not believing Noah (followed by Noah escaping the Parting of the Red Sea in his ark) and "mana from Heaven sent to the Israelites in the belly of the whale."
* The portrayal of UsefulNotes/{{Wicca}} on the episode 'Red Rum' of ''Series/TheMentalist'' was a source of much outrage to actual Wiccans and Neo-Pagans. In their eyes, the [[InNameOnly "Wiccan]] [[CloudCuckooLander priestess"]] on the show was pretentious, irresponsible, and utterly immoral. It goes without saying that while every religion abhors murder, using magic (considered a sacred gift from the God and Goddess) to murder someone is beyond blasphemy. The characters consider the religion of Wicca and the practice of witchcraft as interchangeable (though [[TruthInTelevision this mistake is made in real life too]]) and have very dismissive opinions on it. Rigsby even goes so far as calling it an "alternative lifestyle like [[Franchise/StarTrek Star Trek]] or yoga". While it could be seen that the "priestess" was an [[AlternateCharacterInterpretation attention-seeking girl with no understanding of the faith she claimed to follow]], viewers were not shown any contrast to this image, which is essential in portraying something that most viewers know little to nothing about.
* An episode of UnsolvedMysteries claimed that a mortar and pestle are used in "Satanic rituals." Maybe, but it's more commonly used in gourmet cooking to grind spices and herbs, herbalism to mill herbs, compounding pharmacy to custom-create drugs, recreational pharmacy to mill "herbs," and millions of other uses. [[InsaneTrollLogic And the investigator immediately jumped to "Satanism."]]
* The Series/CriminalMinds episode "Minimal Loss" that deals with a hostage situation involving an isolated, self-sustaining religious commune that is similar to the real incidents at Waco and others, states the group had begun as libertarians, before turning religious-[[SarcasmMode because, of course, "Libertarians aren't religious."]] Uh, no-many libertarians ''are'', though granted, the movement itself is not religious. While a group could go from being libertarian to authoritarian regardless of having religious beliefs or not, the scenario the episode lays out seems pretty unlikely, to shift from libertarian community to apocalyptic cult.
** In another episode, "Perennials," the suspect believes himself to be the reincarnation of a serial killer who died the day he was born, in the same hospital, and is killing the people he believes are reincarnations of the dead killer's victims, placing fly larvae by their bodies in the belief that it will make their souls be reborn into these instead of humans, so ending the cycle. Morgan states that "See, a fundamental tenet of reincarnation is that you can come back in any life form, not just human." Wrong-in some reincarnation beliefs, such as Hindus', this is true-others like the Druze, though, believe people are only reborn in human bodies, not animals. They also differ on whether people can be reborn into different sexes than they had before.
* Creator/StephenColbert plays this for laughs on ''Series/TheColbertReport''. Although his character is (like him) a Catholic, the brand of Christianity he seems to follow appears to have more in common with the kind of apocalyptic Evangelical Protestantism that the right-wing pundits he parodies follow. This is evidenced by the fact that he keeps referring to the Rapture as though he believes it, when in fact it is most emphatically ''not'' Catholic doctrine. One suspects that this is an [[GeniusBonus intentional joke for people who know their Catholic doctrine]] -- which Colbert certainly does, seeing as he teaches Catholic Sunday School and is quite well-educated more generally.
* Invoked and PlayedForLaughs in ''MontyPython'''s the Last Supper sketch, in which Michelangelo invokes artistic license in his defense after painting a Last Supper with 28 disciples, a kangaroo and [[spoiler:three Christs]]. The commissioner (the pope) is altogether less than pleased.
* In HellOnWheels, Mormon Aaron Hatch says Bohannon has damned his daughter Naomi to Outer Darkness for eternity because they had extramarital sex (and she got pregnant). However, Mormon doctrine is that only those who have first accepted the Holy Ghost and then denied it will go to Outer Darkness, which you'd expect he would know. See "Plan of Salvation" on the {{UsefulNotes/Mormonism}} page.
** Then there's the whole business with Bohannon marrying the Mormon girl. Mormon wedding ceremonies are not open to non-believers. The ceremony that the Swede presides over doesn't resemble a Mormon sealing in any case, but still, a Mormon bishop (even a fake one like the Swede) would not preside over the marriage of a Mormon girl to an outsider.
** Only LDS sealings are strictly between members and closed to outsiders. Bishops and other Church officers are quite capable of performing civil marriages with any mix of member and non-member (though whether or not this was true in the time the series takes place may be another story).
* ''Series/{{Frasier}}'': Very many in the Bar Mitzvah episode: the fact that the service ends after Frederick finishes reading his ''haftara'' (there is a whole other prayer service that follows); the fact that a dinner is apparently served then (this service is in the morning); Martin taking photos in a synagogue on the Sabbath (even in a Conservative synagogue he would be asked to stop).
* ''{{Series/TheGoodWife}}'': In a rather awkward and contrived manner, with Zack's (ex-)girlfriend Nisa. Initially it's only her skin color that's a topic of debate (because of the possible repercussions for Peter's campaign), but later she is mentioned to be the daughter of a Hamas-sympathizing Muslim cleric, which basically rolls three separate unlikely scenarios into one. A Muslim girl not wearing a scarf? Progressively more unlikely the more conservative the family gets. A Muslim girl allowed to have a boyfriend before marriage? Progressively more unlikely the more conservative the family gets. A Muslim girl allowed to have a ''nonbeliever'' as a boyfriend? Unlikely even for moderately Muslim families. All of the above at once, with the father in question being the aforementioned Hamas-sympathizing cleric? You must be joking, even if the boyfriend is the son of the Cook County State's Attorney (and later Illinois Governor).
[[/folder]]


[[folder:Music]]
* In USA For Africa's '"Music/WeAreTheWorld,", a who's who of popular musicians sing about ending world hunger and the like. At one point they sing, "As God has shown us by turning stones to bread; that we all must lend a helping hand". They apparently confused the temptation of Jesus, in which Satan tries to convince Jesus to turn stone to bread and end his fast, with Exodus, in which God causes nourishing manna to fall from the sky to feed the Israelites, or with the Miracle of Loaves and Fishes, in which Jesus asked one follower to share his lunch with over five thousand others, and they ended up with twelve baskets of leftovers, proving that a little kindness goes a long way.
* "Psalm 69" by Music/{{Ministry}} opens with a priest telling his congregation, "Open your prayer guides to the Book of Revelation, Psalm 69." There are no psalms in the Book of Revelation. Those would be found in [[CaptainObvious the Book of Psalms]].
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Pinball]]
* Creator/{{Bally}}'s classic ''Pinball/{{Fireball}}'' pits the player against the Fire Gods -- Odin and Wotan.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Tabletop Roleplaying Games]]
* Almost anything in the ''World of Darkness'' series, ''TabletopGame/NewWorldOfDarkness'' or ''TabletopGame/OldWorldOfDarkness'', is likely to run up against this, although the new system is far better at just inventing ''new'' fake religions for characters than trying to ham-handedly wedge ''actual'' religion into the games. The Long Night is a good example of one of these made up religions.
* ''Warhammer40K'' mostly averts this, as the single dominant religion involves a PhysicalGod on whose very existence humanity depends, but a great many of its elements come from highly flanderized church rites. It's when the fanon starts referring to the Inquisition as "Catholic Space Nazis" that this trope is attained. Other religions are either for aliens or consist mostly of killing others to prove your faith and receive gifts from your patron god.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Theater]]
* In ''Theater/{{Man Of La Mancha}}'', the comic musical number "I'm Only Thinking of Him," starring Alonso Quijana's niece, housekeeper, and local priest, is usually staged with the priest sitting in the middle of a confessional booth between the two women. While that's funny and convenient for a briefer song, Catholic confessionals are one-on-one. Something about privacy.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Video Games]]
* Completely justified in ''VideoGame/BioshockInfinite'', where Zachary Comstock creates a new religion for his beloved [[FloatingContinent Columbia]] meant to embody the purest ideals of {{Eagleland}}. The end result is a mishmash of Catholicism, Baptism, Protestant Evangelicalism, Mormonism and a personality cult, with a bit of Judaism thrown in for good measure (the "it would have been enough" sermon the preacher gives at the beginning of the game was [[http://www.digitaltrends.com/gaming/ken-levine-considers-his-role-as-storyteller-and-auteur-on-bioshock-infinite/ confirmed]] by WordOfGod to be a rewriting of [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dayenu Dayenu]]). He also ends up deifying the three Founding Fathers who, if they were alive at the time, [[StopWorshippingMe who were probably the least willing to be accepted as spiritual figures]], and replaces the Father/Son/Holy Spirit with [[OurFounder Founder]]/Fathers/[[{{God}} Lord]]. In that order.
* VideoGame/TheLastResurrection portrays Jesus (the game's final boss) as being personally responsible for crusades, inquisitions, witch-burnings and Nazism; during the ending sequence the heroes conclude that world peace will not be achieved until all religions are abolished.....I don't think I need to explain in anymore detail why this belongs here.
* VideoGame/{{Okami}} portrays Amaterasu as a goddess in the form of a wolf, when her sacred animals were ravens and crows, and occasionally horses. While it arguably draws inspiration from Ainu wolf worship, it can't really be justifable because a) it's like depicting Odin as boar because boars were relevant in NorseMythology, and b) not all other kami are depicted as wolves.
** Amaterasu is a wolf because of a pun. Wolf is written as ookami, which can also mean "great god".
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* Modern Wiccans (or those who claim to be) are skewered in [[http://somethingpositive.net/sp04242002.shtml this]] strip from ''Webcomic/SomethingPositive'', though Davan fails to point out that no one was burned at Salem. This is a fairly accurate (if slightly exaggerated) depiction of what some [[{{Wicca}} Wiccans]] refer to as "fluffy bunnies" -- people (usually teens) who think that all they need to be a real Wiccan is to read a few books on it and buy a few supplies. Outrageously, patently false past lives are not unheard of among fluffies, either.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Web Original]]
* PlayedForLaughs in ''[=LagTV=]'''s LetsPlay of ''{{Minecraft}}'', where Jeff (Maximus Black) uses a Black Jesus avatar and makes statements about Christianity that are completely outlandish. This is made even funnier by two facts: Jeff makes mistakes about even the most basic aspects of Christianity that even non-Christians tend to absorb through PopCulturalOsmosis, meaning the only possible explanation is willful ignorance, and his partner Adam ([=NovaWar=]) actually ''is'' religious and calls Jeff out on his mistakes all the time. Such classic examples include calling the Last Supper "the Big Feast" and claiming that the Virgin Mary wasn't a virgin after he met her; when Adam points out that [[ParentalIncest Mary was Jesus' mother]], Jeff quickly says "I meant the Virgin [[HoYay Larry]]", explaining that he ExperimentedInCollege. Adam also expresses mild surprise when Jeff manages to recite the prayer "Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep" correctly.
[[/folder]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* An episode of ''TheSimpsons'' had Flanders do some home television, reenacting Cain's murder of Abel. Then his kids asked how there came into being more humans when Cain and Abel were the only two humans (followed by asking whether or not [[HomosexualReproduction Cain and Abel had children with each other]]). Flanders has a snide remark with the implication that the kids shouldn't be reading too much into it (an indication he doesn't really know). However, Literature/TheBible makes it clear that Adam and Eve later had other children so they weren't the only two humans; the first one was named Seth. Cain is also explicitly stated to have had a wife in the Land of Nod. While where ''they'' came from isn't made clear, this trope is in effect because Flanders's kids asked if Cain and Abel had sex with each other and produced children that way, and Flanders never corrected them.
** In another episode, "Lisa the Skeptic", somebody digs up what appears to be an angel's skeleton. Lisa, as the title would suggest, is the only person to suspect it's fake. All of the other people in town, including Reverend Lovejoy, criticize her for lack of faith. Except that, according to Christian tradition, angels do not have physical bodies and cannot die. Therefore even those who believe in angels, ''especially'' the minister and the deeply religious Mr. Flanders, should have called it out as a fake from the beginning.
** When Homer and Bart convert to Catholicism in "The Father, the Son, and the Holy Guest Star", Marge is given a glimpse of Catholic Heaven (with Mariachi, Pinatas, spaghetti dinners, Irish pubs, Riverdance, and drunken fist fighting) and Protestant Heaven (portrayed as a boring country club with badminton and croquet, and everyone talking in vaguely East Coast accents). At one point it's revealed that Jesus himself has been hanging out in Catholic Heaven a lot, leading one of the Protestants to cluck, "He's gone native" - which would suggest that Jesus is a Protestant, despite living 1,500 years before Protestantism existed. What makes this really absurd is that Jesus was neither Catholic nor Protestant: he was Jewish. [[RuleOfFunny However this was done intentionally for laughs .]]
* In the ''WesternAnimation/AmericanDad'' episode "Rapture's Delight," Stan expects the Rapture despite being an Episcopalian. The whole episode follows the RuleOfFunny by overdramatizing even the already overdramatized ideas perpetuated by things such as the LeftBehind books. A lot of stuff doesn't match up with even the most rudimentary aspects of Rapture belief.
** It strange that this one church Stan happens to go to apparently has the power to ban people from ALL of Christianity including different forms, branches, and sects of Christianity. Which isn't even remotely possible.
** In fact the whole episode falls in this categories (seriously you can have a drinking game with the number of examples this one episode provides). For example, why would the weapons needed to kill the Antichrist be at the Vatican, when the Antichrist isn't even Catholic doctrine? Another example would be that Stan was not allowed to enter the Vatican because he is no longer a Christian. [[SarcasmMode Yeah that's right, non-Christians are not allowed to enter this Catholic building]] when in real life anyone can enter the Vatican, even in restricted areas, so long as you buy a ticket. Also, the Bible never talks about Satan having children (though it's been a popular folk idea). And to top it all off, at the end we see the Antichrist sporting the upside down cross, even though it's not really a Satanic symbol (I know most people don't know this, but one would assume that the Antichrist of all people would know). In fact, an inverted cross is the symbol of the ''pope'', after the legend in which St. Peter (traditionally viewed as the first pope) was crucified upside down so his death would not resemble Christ's. It even appears on the Papal throne. It's even been taken by anti-Catholic Christians to be a sign that the Pope is the Antichrist, making this doubly ironic.

**** This also raises the question why would the Vatican even care if a Protestant (a person from a completely different branch of Christianity) is banned from there.
* Played for laughs in the "Jewbilee" episode of ''WesternAnimation/SouthPark''. Judaism is portrayed as the worship of Moses, who takes the form of the Master Control Program from ''{{Tron}}'' and has an obsession with children's arts and crafts. Haman, from the Book of Esther, is portrayed as a demonic creature that is worshiped by the denomination of Anti-Semitic Jews. Since Matt Stone is half-Jewish, it's obvious this all falls under the RuleOfFunny.
** In "Cartmanland", Kyle's parents try to restore his faith in God by reading him the story of Job, but stop at the point where Job is stricken with boils, declaring that to be where the story ends. The account of Job actually ends with Job gaining a new family and twice the amount of wealth he had lost (unsurprisingly, Kyle's faith is not restored).
** The episode "Probably (2)" featured everyone going to Hell except for Mormons. Mormons believe that only the truly wicked go to Hell (called "Outer Darkness") and not because they were not Mormon. However, in the WesternAnimation/SouthPark universe, hell is only bad if you were a bad person, otherwise it's not that bad. The Mormons go to heaven so they don't ruin hell for everyone else. Saddam's going to Heaven (with the Mormons) is actually depicted as ''punishment.''
** In the end of the "Cartoon Wars" arc, the Muslims terrorists produce their own animated film to get back at the FamilyGuy episode. The film depicts Jesus, along with many Americans crapping incessantly on each other. In reality, Muslims have no contempt for Jesus, in fact Jesus is known as one of the most important prophets, just not the savior.
* ''FamilyGuy'' does not seem to know the difference between the defined Catholic dogma of purgatory and the theory of limbo. Apparently their justification for Peter's stereotypes about Jews in the "When You Wish Upon a Weinstein" episode was that much of what Peter knows about his own Catholic faith is stereotypes.
** The writers are obviously a pretty big fan of RuleOfFunny and generally [[TheyJustDidntCare just doesn't care]], but his use of Jewish symbols is, unsurprisingly, way off the mark. In at least a couple episodes of ''FamilyGuy'' he shows Jews wearing prayer shawls at the wrong times (either outside of prayer, or at nighttime services when they are not worn), and on ''TheClevelandShow'' at one point, in a fantasy cutaway, it shows Cleveland reciting Kol Nidre, the Aramaic annulment of vows that begins Yom Kippur, by reading it from a Torah scroll. It is a legal declaration, not a Biblical passage, and is certainly not found in the Torah (it's not even in the same language).
** In the episode "Friends of Peter G.", Brian makes a passing comment about how people "were fine for thousands of years without religion," we then see a few peaceful BC-era characters suddenly begin killing each other at the announcement of Jesus' birth. [[ArtisticLicenseHistory One doesn't need to do much research to understand why that one's wrong.]]\\\
Just to go into detail for those who don't know how this joke fails on a number of different levels. First the joke implies that there were no religions before Christianity (a.k.a. the BC period) which is clearly false, one doesn't even need to know too much about history to figure that one out. Second the joke also implies that where was no war or violence before the creation of Christianity which is also not true. For proof of all this just look in '''every history book ever made'''! So one could see this joke not only fails when it comes to religion but also fails when it comes to history to the point where even [[PlayedForLaughs rule of funny]] doesn't change the fact that it's clearly wrong. Whether this clear lack of research was intentionally (for some reason) or not is [[Administrivia/ExamplesAreNotArguable arguable]]-either way that also doesn't change the fact that it is utterly wrong.
** In the episode "The Road to the Multiverse" Stewie and Brian traveled to a universe where Christianity never existed. The world is considerably more advanced than our world. Their justification for this was if Christianity was gone there would be no "Dark Ages". [[SarcasmMode That’s right the fall of the Roman empire, the Bubonic Plague, and the raids by the Great Heathen Army (aka the Great Danish Army) and other nations had nothing to do with it. It was all Christianity's fault!]] Let's ignore the fact that all of the information we have from that time came from those Christian churches, and that they were the closest thing to schools they had at that time. Yeah the Crusader wars were terrible, but the information we got from those wars allowed the early Western society to bring themselves back up to speed with the rest of the world (believe it or not the early Western society was in pretty bad shape after the Bubonic Plague, and the raids by the Great Heathen Army). The Crusades were not, originally, as much of a religious conflict as their reputation implies. Not to say Christianity was completely blameless, but to say that Christianity alone caused the Dark Ages is just plan wrong.
*** Not to mention, as the "Friends of Peter G" example above points out, there were OTHER faiths before Christanity, so one of them would have taken it's place or a new one would have come into existence.
* Done satirically in ''TheBoondocks''. Uber-naïve Jasmine [=DuBois=] not only believes that Christmas is a celebration ''of'' SantaClaus, but that he is the central figure that all of Christianity revolves around.
* ''WesternAnimation/ScoobyDooAndTheWitchsGhost'' had a character identify as [[WitchSpecies one-sixteenth Wiccan]], which would make sense if Wicca doubled as an ethnic identity like Judaism, but it doesn't. They also push the age of Wicca back at least to the Salem witch trials, whereas in fact it dates from the 20th century (so to be one-sixteenth Wiccan, which would take five generations, is only barely possible even if you involve a lot of {{squick}}). In the finale, this means (and somehow it's Daphne who just intuitively knows this, and not the one-sixteenth Wiccan herself) that she can cast magic, defeating the evil Witch. Oh yes, in this movie, Wiccans are good, and Witches are evil, doesn't everybody know that?
* ''WesternAnimation/TheRealGhostbusters'': The [[AnthropomorphicPersonification ghost of Halloween]], Samhain, has his name pronounced "Sam-hain" rather than the proper Gaelic pronunciation "Sah-wain" and in fact has nothing in common with the original pagan holiday other than, perhaps, the death of the year. This may be a case of SadlyMythtaken (i.e. a pagan holiday being demonized for a Christian audience) except that the imagery (jack-o'-lantern head) and overall personality (DarkIsEvil) have more in common with the [[OlderThanTheyThink modern-day]] [[PopculturalOsmosis conception]] of Halloween as a dark, scary, sinister holiday ([[LighterAndSofter when it isn't all about parties and candy]]) than its ancient much-debated roots which are lost in the mists of time. [[FridgeBrilliance So the mispronunciation and lack of connection to the original holiday may be intentional--because this is the ghost of what people have come to associate with Halloween, rather than its original meaning]].
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