Of course religious texts are easy to twist. They're written in metaphor. That's their purpose. But when you have literalist interpreters trying to control the masses for their own pleasure and perversion then that's where the problems come in.
Papal primacy is the key here.
The Roman Catholic Church attributes to the primacy of the Pope "full, supreme, and universal power over the whole Church, a power which he can always exercise unhindered." A power that it attributes also to the entire body of the bishops united with the pope.(And not all united with the Pope. Some are in it for their own reasons(political) and others change their religious views after being in the Church so long.)
Meaning: anyone else is a heretic. The Pope's word is law, and when he is later proven to be a jackass he doesn't apologize, he just moves on business as usual. Priests, bishops, and archbishops get bitch slapped by him all the time. It's nothing new. Just politics of power. And WHY did the Crusades and Inquisitions happen? Because they were heathens who refused to be controlled. Oh, and the Church wanted all the riches of the Holy Land. Why do you think that the Church is the richest institution in the world? But I digress.
When we follow it back the gospel accounts of Matthew (16:1719), Luke (22:32) and John (21:1517) and then look at history then we see that they are all that they use to claim the Pope is the Head Cheese. Peter was supposedly the founder of the Church and so anyone who was ordained by him began the apostolic succession which is still going strong today.
You said: "Did Jesus say: "If you find any Jews, torture them until they convert because they are heretics"?
Damn skippy. He didn't. Supposedly. But Yahweh sure did like murdering people because they weren't believers. The Old Testament is repugnant like that. But when the Old Testament is brought out for investigation by those who want to argue with those who believe in the literal version then they say, "Oh but the Crucifixion and Ascension negated God's past decisions. It's a new plan now." -- like that'll make a megalomaniac any nicer and fluffier to those worried about the state of their souls. God changed his mind. That's that.
Dogma is inherent in religion and it harms. Open spirituality frees.
There's some very quirky stuff going on in science the past few decades, ToTheAnkles. Now scientists looking at 'dark matter' and the supposed laws which govern all matter in our universe are finding that other galaxies are not bound by the same laws. Look it up. Gravitational redshift in relation to dark matter and the like. 'Natural law' and 'the scientific method' don't always sinc up when we look beyond our own little blue marble in the stars. Then again, neither do common sense and the way-things-are. Humans can be stupid like that.