Noah’s ark, manna, and a convenient device for ignoring the inconvenient point

So shortly after writing a post about how the last thing the world needs is another bunch of Christians building a life-size replica of Noah’s ark, I learn that — you guessed it — yet another church is building a replica of Noah’s Ark.

This time it’s John Hagee’s church in San Antonio, Texas. Hagee’s son, Matthew (whose singing is much better than his theology), says the purpose of the $5 million project is to convince people “to say it happened,” because clearly the question of historicity is the only thing that matters in the story of Noah. And because building a replica proves something happened, just like the way Peter Jackson proved the existence of Rivendell.

And what else should Hagee’s Cornerstone Church spend $5 million on? I mean, it was either this or else waste all that money on something like feeding all the poor children in San Antonio for a year.

Chaplain Mike at Internet Monk posted this promotional poster from Cornerstone’s website:

If you can’t read the image, it says:

Cornerstone Church invites you to attend the unveiling of its newest addition, a 28,400-square-foot Noah’s Ark-inspired building!

The Ark boasts true-to-size animatronics animals, custom-designed wall murals, synthetic trees and grasses, LED shooting stars, custom wood-plank carpeting and more. The building will host the children’s church Sunday school as well as Mother’s Day Out program. With its unique, stimulating, and larger-than-life elements, the Ark experience will truly bring to life the famed Bible story and be an inspirational adventure to all who enter.

  • Continuous Tours
  • Carnival Rides
  • Biblical Puppet Shows
  • Story Readings in the classrooms by Sunday school teachers in Bible costumes
  • Moon Bounces, Face Painting & Balloon Clown Artists
  • Hot Dogs, Roasted Corn, Kettle Corn & Cotton Candy

I am dazzled by this. It’s so appalling that it almost wraps all the way back around into a kind of delight.

Here’s more from the delightfully appalling/appallingly delightful Christian Post article:

“I want them to say it happened,” Executive Pastor Matthew Hagee told mysanantonio.com. “The Ark was real. Salvation is real. What God desires for Noah, God desires for me. For Noah, it was a boat. And for me, it was Jesus Christ.”

… Hagee, son of founding pastor John Hagee, described The Ark, saying it has vestibule entrances with outdoor scenes of the ship’s hull, crafted with alder wood panels. At one vestibule will be a talking macaw playing host.

Each of the animals in the central area of the hull – from a tortoise, sheep and zebra to a rhinoceros, lion and elephant – will be named for a great church figure from history, as a springboard to lessons on John Bunyan, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Charles Wesley and others.

Nine of the 16 creatures will be animatronic, created by Animal Makers, a Southern California firm that specializes in robotic animals for Hollywood movies. Some are new, and some were formerly leased. The rhino, for example, had a short appearance in the John Cusack film 2012.

“You’d be hard-pressed to find any church with animatronics,” Michael Chanley, executive director of the International Network of Children’s Ministry, was quoted as saying. “It communicates so much value to the family, ‘We don’t just want your kids to come here and learn. We want them to experience God,’” he said.

You’ll recall that the Apostle Paul rebuked the church in Corinth for not having animatronics. That communicated such contempt for the family, and it denied children the chance to experience God the way one only can in a sacred space like the Hall of Presidents.

I’m not sure that moon bounces, kettle corn, or a talking macaw named Hudson Taylor will really help to achieve Matt Hagee’s goal of convincing visitors of the historicity of Noah’s ark. But those carnival touches — Chaplain Mike calls it the “Disney-ization of Christianity” — serve the same purpose as that preoccupation with proving the historicity of a story that never itself demands such an interpretation. The whole point of both of those is to distract from the whole point.

Fundies and inerrantist evangelicals like to pretend that they take the Bible more seriously — and more “conservatively” — than other Christians, and yet they’re always willing to go to outlandish lengths just to avoid engaging the meaning of the text. Read them the story of Noah and they’ll start talking about the carrying capacity of all those cubits, reciting arcane non-facts suggesting that the hydrological history of the Grand Canyon “proves” there was a global flood in antiquity, or whatever else they can come up with to change the subject and avoid dealing with the actual story the text actually gives us.

The story of Noah is one of many in Genesis where, as Tim O’Brien wrote, “absolute occurrence is irrelevant.”

“Did exactly this actually occur precisely in this way?” is probably the least interesting, least insightful, least helpful, least edifying, least inspirational questions one could ask about this story. Those who make it their first question, and their most important question, seem to be trying to hide, to evade, to distract themselves from actually engaging the actual story on its own terms.

They’d rather talk about historicity — by which they mean cubits and kettle corn.

Cara Sexton has a nice, rambly post up this weekend on being a rich Christian in an age of hunger. It’s titled “On Hoarding Manna.” The reference there is to a story from Exodus 16, in which God miraculously provides bread from heaven for the Israelites in the wilderness:

When the layer of dew lifted, there on the surface of the wilderness was a fine flaky substance, as fine as frost on the ground. … Moses said to them, “It is the bread that the Lord has given you to eat. This is what the Lord has commanded: ‘Gather as much of it as each of you needs, an omer to a person according to the number of persons, all providing for those in their own tents.’”

The Israelites did so, some gathering more, some less. But when they measured it with an omer, those who gathered much had nothing over, and those who gathered little had no shortage; they gathered as much as each of them needed.

And Moses said to them, “Let no one leave any of it over until morning.” But they did not listen to Moses; some left part of it until morning, and it bred worms and became foul. And Moses was angry with them.

Sexton’s reference to this story tackles its meaning head-on. She doesn’t flinch from the implications of it and she wrestles with those in her post.

Her approach is very different from that of the literalist evangelicals I’ve heard preach and teach from this passage. For them, the key thing was, as Matthew Hagee put it, “to say it happened,” to believe the manna was real — that the above story from Exodus 16 is a historical account of actual events. That was what they preached on and taught about. That was the first question they brought to this passage and the thing they treated as most important.

With manna as with Noah’s ark, the whole point of this obsession with historicity seemed to be to distract from the whole point of the story.

 

 

  • Alanlionheart

    Alfgifu I think your logical deductions have taken you to illogical conclusions if you don’t mind me saying so.
    For example, The Bible says that God is a spirit. If He is Spirit then how can He be a Book? You missed out on some important facts.
    1, God spoke the universe into being. The creative events of that are written down as a matter of record.
    2. Jesus is spoken of as the Word of God made flesh. In other words Jesus is the embodiment of all that God spoke about in His word, the Scriptures and He demonstrated that to the disciples.
    So we honour God because of what He has caused to be written down as a record of all His works but we worship Him only. If we start to worship a book, that is idolatry.
    3. I also honour and respect my brothers and sisters in Christ and God’s word says we should.
    4. We understand God’s word because the Holy Spirit teaches us all things about life and Godliness. So how can “other perspectives from people who are not Christians” give me more than God?
    So respectfully I have to disagree

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    It makes perfect sense when you know that Genesis had multiple authors — a minimum of two — and that it’s most likely that it was formed by merging the beliefs of various tribes together, compromising on elements they had different or in common, which is why numerous characters have multiple names and details change or are needlessly repeated from one telling to the next. That’s how we get two separate accounts of the world being created, three sister-wife narratives and several different variants of the resurrection of Jesus.

    And yes, Genesis 6:19 explicitly says two of everything. “And of every living thing ofall flesh, two of every sort shalt thou bring into the ark, to keep them alive with thee; they shall be male and female.”

    A clear reading of the text doesn’t say a word about the laws of weather or physics being drastically, planet-ruiningly different. In order for Genesis to be literally true, everything we know about the world today would be a radical departure from the world of a mere few thousand years ago.

    At the very least, Genesis calls for rainfall of 8708 inches per day uniformly over the entire earth. Since rainfall comes from the process of water being evaporated and collecting in clouds to be released back to the earth, this would require either most of the oceans to have evaporated or for there to have already been water in the atmosphere. The early Hebrews suggested the latter, believing that the sky contained a canopy of solid water, which God let loose upon the earth. If one wants to talk about fairy tales…

    http://www.theskepticalreview.com/tsrmag/2noah93.html

  • Alanlionheart

    No I said that Belief in Christ is not ………..
    When we were discussing Genesis a few days ago we were doing so from a historical angle basically saying that if Genesis was not true the God was lying thus throwing doubt upon everything else that follows. The fact that it is true regardless of whether one believes it or not id NOT a salvation issue.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Offer’s there if you ever need it. Today actually wouldn’t be a good day to try this anyway, since Comcast just spontaneously decided that DNS is no longer in vogue and therefore I’m going offline and online like a slinky.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    God would not be lying if Genesis were proven to be 100% false. The people who taught you that Genesis must be historically true in a manner literal to its writing would be either mistaken or lying.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I lied, I came to the library on lunch.

    All I’m trying to do is get you to look at the much wider picture and focus on the relational nature of our God

    So Christianity is a religion, even though you say it’s not, and it’s a SPECIAL religion?

    Why should we believe you when you say Christianity is SPECIAL?

  • arcseconds

    nice poem, but Galileo was never tortured.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    “he went away sad” does not speak to me of the man being embraced as a newly christianed brother of Christ.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    I would have guessed Alan Sargent, myself.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    True. But “intimidated by being shown the implements of torture” doesn’t fit the meter.

  • EllieMurasaki

    I would call that psychological torture of Galileo, myself. If he hadn’t imagined the physical torture that would ensue with the implements, he couldn’t have been intimidated by the implements.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

    “Long ago, when threats of torture broke his shattered will” scans well enough. The poem is gorgeous either way, though.

  • Lorehead

    Except the text says that they went to a nearby village, Zoar, which God did not destroy.

  • Lorehead

    Possibly an over-literal translation of a figure of speech. Many translations (such as the NIV and NET) take the daughters to mean that there are no men anywhere nearby to give them children, not that they believe there are no men left anywhere in the world.

    As for the real motive for including the story, the punchline is, “In this way both of Lot’s daughters became pregnant by their father. The older daughter gave birth to a son and named him Moab. He is the ancestor of the Moabites of today. The younger daughter also gave birth to a son and named him Ben Ammi. He is the ancestor of the Ammonites of today.” It’s a racist slur on the Moabites and Ammonites.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    You don’t think the Jews feel they have a relationship with God? You don’t think Muslims feel they have a relationship with God?

    Not just monotheists, either. I remember some of the posts that one of our currently-absent Pagans made describing her interactions with Hecate, and I’d say that her religion certainly includes a personal relationship with her goddess.

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    That might be worth sending to Ms. Faber, if she’s findable online.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Yes, but for the sake of simplicity, I’m intentionally referring to three different religions all sharing the same root God(s). Like the above (witchcrafty Torah!), it’s inane to assume that only one religion is capable of having a personal relationship with God — when talking about the same God who appears in multiple religions.

    That’s like saying that of three loving children, only Brandon has a relationship with his father.

  • MaybeKay

    It’s been a while since I read any of this stuff, so I could be wrong, but I think in the Epic of Gilgamesh this comes up, too? I seem to remember that way back in this time period, people really did believe there was a possibility they were the only people left on earth. Life was so precarious, travel was so difficult, and settlements so rare that if one city fell, its inhabitants thought there really was a good chance the human race would fall along with it. I have no sources off the top of my head for any of this, though, sorry.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kalleoskar.isaacson Carl Oscar Isaacson

    It’s interesting. This attempted replica made me think: “Well if it really happened, we should be able to trace that DNA back to Noah’s time. And wouldn’t all those animals have extremely limited DNA differences – wouldn’t the whole of the animal kingdom be pretty vulnerable to the kinds of mutations that lead to weaknesses like hemophilia? Noah’s grandsons would all have to marry his grand-daughters. They’d be like first cousins once removed and we’d all be as messed up as backwoods Arkansas.” Yep that ark reproduction led me straight to thinking about the literal veracity of Genesis and brought me that much closer to god. Yep, sure did. Thanks Hagees.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Well, that’s if you go by Christian canon exclusively. In Jewish folklore, Adam had a wife before Eve who bore hundreds of children with him. She’s mentioned in some translations of the Bible in Isaiah 34:14.

    And desert creatures shall meet with hyenas,
    and a goat-demon shall call to his neighbor;
    surely there Lilith shall repose,
    and she shall find a resting place for herself.

    Other translations change Lilith to a lamia or simply a screech owl. However, the night demon has a much more fleshed out history elsewhere: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lilith

  • AnonaMiss

    My dear Mr Lionheart

    If giving people several hundred years to repent before destroying them – and then destroying the newborn babe who has done nothing wrong – were a literal history of God’s love in action, then I would have to have some serious words with Him, of the “What the fuck were you thinking?!” kind.

  • The_L1985

    By the “evangelical bubble,” I refer to the state of having never been around any other perspective in your life, and being encouraged not to question or explore those other perspectives. When I started going to public schools at 15, and discovered that atheists and members of non-Christian religions weren’t the horrible monsters I’d been taught to believe, it was a major shock.

  • The_L1985

    Where is the whole “chance to repent” thing mentioned?

    In Jonah, Nineveh is given the chance to repent before destruction. In Genesis, there is no mention of this. When you consider that only the patriarchs are ever described as able to communicate one-on-one with God in the Torah, how would they know? It never mentions anyone else

    And that “after their kind” argument just compresses evolution into a much tighter time period, to a rather ludicrous extent. For example, dogs evolved from wolves (in fact, the current biological classification of dogs is as a subspecies of wolf, Canis lupus familiaris). The amount of physical and genetic variety among dogs clearly indicates that they have been around for a very long time. It takes a certain number of generations for a species to develop that level of variety. In bacteria, generations last a couple of minutes, so you get really fast evolution, resulting in such phenomena as the flu (technically a virus, but same generation length so same principle) being different every year, so that you need a different flu shot every year. In dogs, elephants, and humans, generations last a lot longer, so evolving new traits takes millennia. There are carvings and paintings of modern species that are tens of thousands of years old. By ancient Egypt (4000 years ago), all the animal species we associate with the region already existed. This is not possible if speciation happened after a flood 5000 years ago.

    And I wasn’t making assumptions about the environment. I was making assumptions about the following properties of water:

    1. Water evaporates and rises into the atmosphere at certain temperatures.

    2. Because warm things are less dense than cold things, the water rises up through the atmosphere.

    3. The water condenses into tiny droplets to form clouds.

    4. When the clouds become dense enough, the droplets fall as rain.

    You can’t stop having water cycles without changing how heat and molecular motion work. In other words, not just the environment, but every single thing in the entire universe would have to have been dramatically different pre-Deluge.

    Add to that the proven impossibility of our atmosphere to sustain the vapor canopy described by Flood advocates, and the fact that the sheer amount of tectonic upheaval described (“and to drain the water, God formed our modern ocean basins”) would produce enough heat to vaporize the planet, and a global flood is clearly impossible.

  • EllieMurasaki

    In Jonah, Nineveh is given the chance to repent before destruction. In Genesis, there is no mention of this.

    It wasn’t about repentance. It was about destroying the angels’ children; the rest of the world’s children were an afterthought. Read 1 Enoch sometime, and then compare it to Genesis 6.

  • The_L1985

    The liberal Christians were not the ones who destroyed my faith. To the contrary, when I was talking to liberal Christians, I realized that the conservative Christians had lied to me about a lot of things. I was forced to determine which things I was taught were true and which were lies. Having to sift through things that you were taught by authorities you trusted during your formative years is HARD on anyone, especially psychologically.

    The Catholic Church, to which I previously belonged (I went to private Protestant schools for most of my schooling), was a major offender in terms of lies, especially regarding sex, abortion, and the roles of women in the early Church*. This, combined with the horrific sex scandals in the Church (where cover-ups were perpetrated by conservative Catholic clergy) and in various Protestant denominations, led me to the conclusion that these people could not possibly believe in the god they claimed to worship and not be certain of their own damnation. They consistently behaved in an unloving, dishonest, disrespectful manner. Like mausoleums, they focused on putting on a pretty face to the world, while being filled with rot and decay. I searched desperately for something that wouldn’t create such dangerous pride.

    Then, I started meeting Pagans. I became curious, and started studying about their theologies and gods. Something “clicked.” It was like coming home–it meshed perfectly with what I’d always believed about the world, and the lack of a hierarchy meant that the reputation of an organization would never come before holding people accountable for moral wrongs. I had experiences of other gods, and I finally felt spiritual peace.

    Conservative Christians caused me to “stumble.” Conservative Christians drove me away from Christianity. Liberal Christians only helped me to see the hypocrisy and cruelty that hid behind the pure and noble facade I’d been focusing on for years.

    —————————————

    * The “In God there is no male or female” can’t be reconciled with “women can’t be priests” or “same-sex relationships are evil” in any meaningful way. If gender ceases to matter to God when you become a Christian, then almost everything I was taught about gender and sexuality by Christians is deeply wrong.

  • The_L1985

    I have relationships with my gods as well. It’s offensive when people insist that because they have a personal relationship with their own god, that I somehow can’t.

  • The_L1985

    40 years…wow. Congratulations on that!

    I have a bit of an apology to make as well. I saw you using a lot of the same arguments I used as a teen, and wrongly assumed that you were a teenager as well. Sorry for that.

    And…”Molecules to man evolution” is not a thing. Evolution, in the field of science, refers solely to one life form evolving into a new form. It does not concern the origins of life or the planet.

  • The_L1985

    I know this, but Alan didn’t mention it, so I didn’t. I’m pretty sure that in another post, though, I clearly mentioned that some of the people killed were only “guilty” of being born of men and angels, a thing they could not control or help.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

    “The liberal Christians were not the ones who destroyed my faith. To the contrary, when I was talking to liberal Christians, I realized that the conservative Christians had lied to me about a lot of things. “

    See? If it hadn’t been for those liberal Christians, you would have gone on believing what you’d been told! It’s totally their fault!

  • P J Evans

    Giant squid. Population crash, followed by a population explosion. All within the last 50 thousand years. They think all the giant squid are one species, also.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    And I’m 100% sure your fatuous statements are of no use to me.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Of course Paul & Luke put pen to paper

    Um technically they used parchment or vellum or something like that since paper as we know it today is made with a bleaching process that didn’t exist (at least on a large scale) back then.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    And yes, Genesis 6:19 explicitly says two of everything. “And of every
    living thing ofall flesh, two of every sort shalt thou bring into the
    ark, to keep them alive with thee; they shall be male and female.”

    I guess that leaves out all the bacteria, then. Pretty sure they reproduce asexually so the question of a male and female type bacteria isn’t one that can be answered sensibly.

    And bacteria are important! :)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    I’ve never had my curiosity stifled. However I do AGREE (!!) that it has
    got me into trouble from time to time but God is good and we have all
    got over it

    It’s actually kind of depressing seeing that from someone.

    I keep being reminded of that ST:TNG Book “Gulliver’s Fugitives”.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    ISTR the Mormons used that doctrine until it became socially untenable and quietly did away with it in 1978.

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    And what about the adorable phasmatodea insects? Many species of those can reproduce asexually as needed, so would we need both a male and a female, or would we need a male for genetic diversity? :o

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    As I understand it, the Mormon doctrine that restricted the eligibility of black people within the church was based on something distinct from the Curse of Ham thing. The political motivation for dropping it* had to do with their conversion efforts in South America

    (* And by “motivation for dropping it”, I of course mean “motivation for praying real hard that God would forgive black people, only to receive new information from On High clarifying that God actually had been okay with all races the whole time and was sorry for the misunderstanding)

  • http://anonsam.wordpress.com/ AnonymousSam

    Yeah, it was linked to the story of the Lamanites, wherein (in translations prior to 2010 and in footnotes prior to 1981) God curses the Lamanite people with black skin and that proper repenting gradually turns their skin white and beautiful. In later translations, it just says they were cut off from God and that repenting renders them pure.

    Blatant retconning.

  • Amaryllis

    Having been away from this thread for a few days, I tried to catch up, to figure out what the conversation had been and where it is right now, since it still seems to be active.

    I tried various combinations of “newest,” “oldest,” and “load more,” and I’ve come to the conclusion that it can’t be done. And what can be done is time-consuming and irritating.

    (And, in other news, water is wet.)

    But Disqus, I hate you.

    That is all.

    ETA: and the damn thing won’t even let me log in.

  • http://jamoche.dreamwidth.org/ Jamoche

    > anything that is spiritual but not Godly is witchcraft by definition.

    Sounds like my ex-boyfriend. And that quote is exactly why he’s ex.

  • P J Evans

    And if you have it set to ‘oldest’, you still have to poke it every time, because whatever it’s using to order posts, it isn’t actually time and date.

    Disqus managed to make itself worse in the last ‘update’.

  • Alanlionheart

    Then why don’t you?

  • Alanlionheart

    I’m sure it was a major shock
    But it shows how judgemental “Christians” are so locked away in this bubble. This is NOT God’s way
    But there is another side of Christianity. And that is the side that Jesus meant it to be, to have love and compassion, forgiveness, doing the stuff on the streets that Jesus was doing and living life as it was meant to be lived.
    Once people break out of judgemental “Christianity” they can smell the coffee and break free of such wrong thinking and living and be the people God meant them to be.
    The reason I know this is because I once belonged to the judgemental camp.
    Now, as a Street Pastor I see life in a different way and people love us because we show them God’s love I action, we listen and don’t judge them. Then they allow us to pray for them and help them without strings or conditions attached.
    Please forgive the people who caused you to move away from God. I can assure you that the Church is not all like that and neither are Christians who have been set free from this kind of “religiosity”. And this is the very reason why I have argued that Christianity is not primarily a religion

  • Alanlionheart

    You are right, the chance to repent is not specifically mentioned in Genesis rather implied. And OK I know I am treading on dangerous ground here reading into the Bible something that is not specifically mentioned so feel free to shoot me down in flames of you disagree :)

    We first read in Genesis 6 that 3 ….the Lord said, ‘My Spirit will not contend with[a] humans for ever, for they are mortal; We also read in the same chapter … The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time.

    The issue of God contending with mankind means that He was active in the world dealing with issues but the population at that time effectively turned their backs on God. The same sin that Adam & Eve had committed at the fall.
    In verse 9 we read This is the account of Noah and his family.
    Noah was a righteous man, blameless among the people of his time, and he walked faithfully with God. 10 Noah had three sons: Shem, Ham and Japheth.

    As is usually the case, even today, people go about their lives ignoring God and His message of salvation. But can you imagine such an obvious sign of what was to come as Noah started to build the Ark in presumably the desert, but certainly on dry ground and the ridicule he and his helpers must have gone through during the construction. And Noah being a righteous man is hardly likely to have been silent on his reasons for doing such an apparently stupid thing.

    Then notice that is was God who shut the doors of the Ark, thus preventing Noah from yielding to the cries of the people as they begged to be let in as the flood waters rose.

    One the matter of dogs, I entirely agree with you that wolves are part of the same family “kind” You can call them Wolf kind of dog kind but they are still of the same kind. They haven’t for example evolved into cats.

    I disagree on the “time” argument. I think there is plenty of evidence to show that different species of dog can arise in a very short space of time compared to the so called millions of years some adhere to.

    In regard to water, again there is no argument between us. The Bible is silent on the issue and the water canopy idea whilst not totally discarded is being looked at afresh. But then one would expect that with science.
    As for the flood not being global, scientists have created models to show the feasibility of it happening and are tackling the associated issues of heat etc as new ideas and thinking come to light in scientific discovery.
    So although there is a lot of scoffing I would dismiss these ideas quite so quickly just yet with respect.

  • Alanlionheart

    .Thank you for sharing this with me. I get truly saddened by accounts such as this.

    We met a person on the streets one night whose first reaction to us on learning we were a group of Christians was “you won’t like me”. When we asked why she replied along the lines “because I’m a lesbian and my Christian nan has disowned me”

    I can tell you that when we heard that we were brought to tears and we told her that God lover her and hadn’t disowned her and we loved her. We ended up having a group hug and she asked us to pray for her which we gladly did, focussing on a reconciliation with her family.

    I get so angry at the wrong behaviour of the church and so called Christians who should know better.

    Such behaviour is not of God and brings His precious name into disrepute.

    The church is not a hierarchy and was never intended to be and leaders are held to account by their local congregations.
    True leadership in the church is one of a person serving the church and is part of the 1 Corinthians 12 body where everyone has a role to play, where no one is above another or more important than anyone else and everyone has the same servant heart as it says in Acts having everything in common.
    I agree that men and women are “equal” in God and enjoy the same inheritance as everyone else. But don’t confuse that with “sameness”. People are NOT the same. We all have different gifts and talents just as important as everyone else.
    The issue is therefore not one of inequality but one of headship and recognising each others God given roles.
    Headship does not imply subjecting another to your rule but rather serving.
    In the Bible men are commanded to love their wives as Christ loves the Church. God never commanded women to love their husbands and didn’t need to. Men on the other hand have to have a standard set for them by which we will be judged. If you compare how Christ loved the church you will see how a husband is to love his wife and I dare to suggest that there is no better way than to have enjoy such unconditional love.
    In the church the only reason we have these silly discussions is because of hierarchy and the fact that women are not given governance “jurisdiction” over men. But that does not exclude them from leadership

  • Alanlionheart

    Thank you
    No apology necessary……… I don’t “do” age so in effect I am still a crazy teenager at heart :)
    I know that evolution doesn’t concern itself with the origin of life but that doesn’t excuse it from what I consider to be the crazy notion that after life started we just evolved from molecules to man.
    For me the whole process falls flat on it’s face as there simply is no clear evidence for it other than in the vivid imaginations of artists and hopefuls looking for explanations in bone fragments and trying to make connections to show imagined “evolving” along the way. So we get all kinds of fraud taking place that are still in text books today.
    The Biblical creation account is so much more logical

  • The_L1985

    OK, I can see where the confusion on evolution is happening, because “species,” “family,” and “variety” are not interchangeable words.

    For two things to be members of the same species, they have to be capable of breeding and producing fertile offspring. Being members of different species means that they either can’t interbreed at all (like cats and giraffes) or that they can interbreed, but their offspring are sterile (horses and donkeys can breed to make a mule, but mules can’t have babies).

    Dogs and wolves are the same species. We know that because dogs and wolves can interbreed to make fertile pups. Unless you’re classifying foxes and coyotes as “dogs,” which makes sense because they’re both in the family Canidae (the dog family). They’re not in the same genus, though. Coyotes and jackals are in the genus Thos, and foxes are in the genus Vulpes. Dogs, wolves, and dingos are all the same species: Canis lupus. Dogs are Canis lupus familiaris, and dingos are Canis lupus dingo.

    Here’s the list of how things are classified, from biggest group to smallest, most specific group:

    Kingdom–Phylum–Class–Over–Family–Genus–Species.

    You can remember it using the following sentence:

    King Phillip Came Over For a Giant Sundae. :)

  • AnonaMiss

    Because it isn’t.

    And if you think our God would do/did some of the things that are ascribed to Him in the Bible – the explicit ordering of genocide, the personal carrying out of genocide – then I think you’re a terrible human being for worshipping Him. If you honestly misapprehend the character of the Lord so badly, it is your moral duty to oppose Him as a monster. If the Noah’s Ark story is literally true, then God is a mass-murdering, bloodthirsty, genocidal deity, incompatible with what we learn of Him incarnate as Jesus.

    This is not the God I know; and so I know that the Noah’s Ark story is not literally true.

  • EllieMurasaki

    The Biblical creation account is so much more logical

    Tell me, were man and woman created at the same time, or was woman created from the already-created man?

  • Alanlionheart

    I agree, it isn’t the God I know too in the way you describe Him.
    But the fact remains that God is not only Love incarnate but a God of Justice as well. If that were not so then we would have just cause to disagree.
    The sad fact of life is that His original creation went wrong, not because of anything He did but because of what mankind did to corrupt it.
    So the judgement of God is a judgement we brought upon ourselves in rejecting Him.
    It was not for nothing that God says the wages of sin is death. It became that way when Adam sinned and he thus introduced death into the world for the first time. He actually died twice, once in his relationship with God and once in his physical death.
    This is why evolution is so wrong especially when theistic evolutionists try to reconcile it with the Bible.
    What they are saying in effect is that for millions of years death reigned before Adam. If that were so then God could not have pronounced His creation as “very good”.
    All of us are under that curse until we repent and receive Jesus as Saviour & Lord of our lives. And we all reap the consequences of our wrong doing.
    So don’t blame God, please, for what we get wrong especially when He has provided a way to put things right and we choose to ignore it.
    As the Bible so aptly puts it, we reap what we sow


CLOSE | X

HIDE | X