This incident reminds me of Voltaire's justly famous quote:
Truly, whoever is able to make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities. If the God-given understanding of your mind does not resist a demand to believe what is impossible, then you will not resist a demand to do wrong to that God-given sense of justice in your heart. As soon as one faculty of your soul has been dominated, other faculties will follow as well. And from this derives all those crimes of religion which have overrun the world. (From, "Questions sur les miracles", 1765).