Fri. Apr 19th, 2024

I agree! This title needs an explanation. But this statement is based on a logical truth. What exactly is the Bible? It is a collection of short stories by authors not connected to the actual events. The New Testament is much the same except its subject deals with the life and times of a single man and a group that shared his beliefs. Now, I would agree that the title is too broad, but not as off the mark as you might think.
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First, let’s talk about the Bible. Within many fundamentalist Christian groups, the Bible is inspired directly from God and is perfect. They teach a verse-by-verse understanding of the Bible and its perfection. But in fact, it is anything but perfect. It constantly contradicts itself and makes little sense in others.
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I agree with John Romer, a famous Egyptologist and student of the history of the Bible. His assessment is that the true power and staying power of the Bible is not in its words. But in its spirit. That we are more than just a smarter animal, are not alone in our trials and suffering, and that our good deeds shall be rewarded. It is within that spirit that this nearly 2,000-year-old book has value. I don’t believe that it is a perfect anything. Just another human effort to create comfortable certainty, about our place in the universe.
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I am going to use a ridiculous example of what I am saying. A recipe for spinach salad. A spinach salad is made up of spinach, bacon, onions, cheese, croutons, and dressing. And the dressing is made up of honey, vinegar, mustard, and lemon juice. Okay, nothing out of the ordinary here.
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Somebody, somewhere, tells people that spinach is the way to heaven. That bacon, onions, cheese, croutons, and dressing are its followers. An institution begins to form, and special clothes are made and worn. Over time, stories are created to justify the deity Spinach and its followers. That book contains the back story of why Spinach is a god. Over 2,000 years, everything becomes institutionalized and wealth pours in.
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Generation after generation, people are taught that the only way to a vision of perfection, called heaven, is to worship the Spinach God and its recipe. Over that time, the institution has become everything. Everyone forgets in the march of history, that they are worshiping a recipe. Traditions and ceremonies are formed and they reinforce the narrative. The leadership becomes rich and powerful. They hire others to take their religion of the Spinach Salad to conquered lands and force them upon the conquered.
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Time and distance create a narrative that cannot be unproven. Hail the perfection of the Spinach Salad God and its recipe. We will begin today’s lesson with 1 pound of clean fresh spinach…All bow…
RC Romine

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