History Channel premiere: Why I support “The Bible”

As you probably noticed the History Channel’s epic mini-series “The Bible” trended big after its premier. The fact that one … Continued

As you probably noticed the History Channel’s epic mini-seriesThe Bible” trended big after its premier. The fact that one of Hollywood’s power couples Mark Burnett and Roma Downey produced this series is a witness that “The Bible” still continues to be a world-changer. My wife and I were part of the diverse leadership that has been fully-committed to promoting this production. Along with leaders and organizations like Luis Palau, Leith Anderson, Focus on The Family, World Evangelical Alliance, and T.D. Jakes we thought this was a project worth backing. I was part of an informal committee that got behind the project and agreed to talk about why I . My wife and I have traveled with Mark and Roma and helped promote it to thousands of Latino Evangelical congregations across the country. The question is, “why?”

First and foremost, we know that the project would have detractors from all sides. Some progressives would think it’s too religious while others would think it doesn’t stick closely enough to the holy Bible itself. My concern is that both sides are missing the point. This mini-series proclaims to be a film- adaptation of some of the most well-known Bible stories. It never claims to be a visual-literalist rendering of Scripture. This labor of love seeks to get the nation in the world talking about the Holy Bible again. This is
not
a bad thing. I watched it with my wife and two sons to re-introduce them to some of the stories. Afterwards, we actually opened their children’s Bible and reread some of the stories. The point here is that having the mini-series as a conversation opener in kitchens and board rooms across the nation need not be seen as a threat to pluralism or Scripture itself. The mini-series is a gift in that it calls those who wish to revisit or visit for the first time the stories of Scripture. Whether you’re Christian, Jewish, Muslim, atheist, or agnostic this conversation is worth having. If the mediums of television, film, and theater have been used to engage the nation in topics like sexuality, war, violence and power why not the Bible?

One reason I am watching and supporting “The Bible” is because I know that television is often the nation’s number one form of consumption. I know there may be detractors who say but I don’t agree with the rendition in this scene or that. Some would say, “I would’ve done it differently.” That’s fine. But let’s not miss the proverbial forest for the trees. A major Hollywood couple invested their time, energy and gifts to get people talking about the Bible again. With all of the options that television has to offer, some quite toxic, why not an adaptation of the holy Bible? Again, it’s not claiming to be anything other than that. People all over the country right now may be reading their bibles for the first time. This is not a bad thing.

Mark and Roma had something to lose with this risk of faith. They are already a Hollywood couple known for “Touched By An Angel,” “Survivor,” “The Voice” and many others. The critics may well miss the point of a film version of The Bible. Did Cecil B. DeMille’s “Ten Commandments” (1956) seek to give a visual word-for-word rendition of Exodus? No. Did Franco Zeffirelli’s “Jesus of Nazareth” (1977) give a visual word-for-word rendition of the Gospels? No. Each of them was a film adaptation that invited people to read the stories for themselves. The point is that a film was made by two people who love the Bible and want to share it (at great personal investment) with a new generation. This is not a bad thing.

As a seminary professor and pastor I’ve done some praying, thinking, and teaching about the holy Bible. My hope is not that we would enter into some endless bickering about how accurate or inaccurate an adaptation is but rather we would be challenged to invite a new generation to engage the Bible anew. This is not a bad thing. I welcome it.

Rev. Gabriel Salguero

President, National Latino Evangelical Coalition

Pastor, The Lamb’s Church

New York, NY

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  • Omar Edwards

    To those who would avidly criticize this production: I believe you have the concept of the show all wrong. The purpose of the mini-series is to bring an interest to the Bible, and to be in-line with the Spirit of the Scripture, which it is overall. It is a dramatic adaptation, not a doctrinal exposition or documentary. These are not necessarily mistakes. These issues were addressed with some very respected theologians and historians, as were the changes. As with any dramatic presentation, there is a degree of artistic license involved. There are aspects of the stories that are modified for this purpose – on purpose – thus, an adaptation. Even so, the over-arching message has not been changed. And that is what they are trying to do, illustrate the story. And, as in normal everyday dealings within congregations and denominations, there will be disagreements as to the particular details, especially since, even with the knowledge that we all have, we still don’t have it all right. Are there things that were portrayed that I wish were done differently? Definitely! But that’s not the point.

    This series is an open door for us to create conversation and interest in the Scripture, especially to those who are not believers. Let’s forget about our own need for perfection and look at this for what it is. This will reach more people in a more effective way than probably any one of us has been a part of ourselves. So let us use this to bring the truth and rejoice that the name of the Lord is being glorified, and the story of redemption is being told in prime time on a global level, instead of being voices of division & religiousness.

    If these were a series of sermons, conferences or seminary classes, then I would be more critical. But it’s not. So let’s use this for good, instead of discouraging even those non-believers who are on our pages who wouldn’t step in our churches, but would be willing to at least watch a program that isn’t exact, but is overall accurate.

  • Omar Edwards

    Now, as far as the production, cinematography, acting, etc, everyone always has an opinion, whether it’s on the History Channel, or from Hollywood. But let’s not throw the baby out with the bath water. The Bible is being discussed. The name of the Lord is being glorified. And people are interested in what the Bible has to say.

  • Joel Hardman

    Did the History Channel throw in any ancient alien theories?

  • kawivest

    I was looking forward to watching this mini-series, but I was very disappointed in how it was portrayed. This story wasn’t based on the facts of the BIBLE. FACT: Hebrews and Egyptians DON’T LOOK LIKE THAT! THIS IS THE HISTORY CHANNEL! I THOUGHT IT WOULD BE FACTUAL! I understand that people are entitled to artistic expression, but there is a line. When we talk about facts, it should be just that; FACTS! The way that this story was portrayed reminds me of the movies in the 50′s and the 60′s when they would have a Caucasian man playing a Native American man. Better Example would be Elizabeth Taylor playing Cleopatra! Why is it ok to distort history? I am positive that if a man of color played the role of George Washington in a movie, someone would have problem a serious issue with it.

  • kawivest

    I know that some people may not see this as an issue but it is 2013. You would think by now it would by ok to tell the truth!!!!

  • kawivest

    I know that some people may not see this as an issue but it is 2013. You would think by now it would be ok to tell the truth!!!!

  • jarandeh

    Lord of the Rings is way better.

  • mimi-mo

    Though not a literal interpretation of Scripture, the show highlights Biblical stories of hope, faith and redemption. Notice how everyone appeared dirty but the angels and Jesus or God (who was present in some scenes of the first episode but whose face is hidden)-reminds one how despite human imperfections and trials, God doesn’t abandon His people. The show was rich in symbolism if you look for them with themes of blood (Passover scene) and sacrifice culminating in a scene where God demands a sacrifice of Abraham’s son. At the last moment, however, God provides the perfect lamb to be sacrificed instead. Sound familiar? It should to believers.

  • jdpetric

    “… and Jesus or God ?

    Jesus is and was not not Almighty God.

    If Jesus were God why did he say the following when a certain man ran up and fell upon before Jesus’ knees before him and put the question to him: “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit everlasting life?” Jesus said to him: “Why do you call me good? Nobody is good, except one, God.”? Mark 10:17,18

  • mimi-mo

    John 14:7-10 [7] If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” [8] Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” [9] Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, `Show us the Father’? [10] Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work.

    John 10:30 “I and the Father are one.”

    John 14:11 Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves.

    John 10:37-38 [37] Do not believe me unless I do what my Father does. [38] But if I do it, even though you do not believe me, believe the miracles, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father.”

    Matthew 27:43 He trusts in God. Let God rescue him now if he wants him, for he said, ‘I am the Son of God.’”

    John 17:11 I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name–the name you gave me–so that they may be one as we are one.

  • mimi-mo

    14 The Word became a man and lived among us. We saw his divine greatness—the greatness that belongs to the only Son of the Father. The Word was full of grace and truth. 15 John told people about him. He said loudly, “This is the one I was talking about when I said, ‘The one who is coming after me is greater than I am, because he was living before I was even born.’”

    16 Yes, the Word was full of grace and truth, and from him we all received one blessing after another.[d] 17 That is, the law was given to us through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God. The only Son is the one who has shown us what God is like. He is himself God and is very close to the Father.[e]” John 1:14-16

  • Rongoklunk

    People used to think that Zeus was real. And Jupiter. And Wotan. There are thousands of these gods. The ancients were addicted to making them up, and over the eons invented thousands of them, including yours, and Allah and Vishnu too.

    Atheists would love to believe in a God. That would be so cool. But there’s not a scrap of actual evidence to support such a belief. We would also love it – if there was an afterlife. That would be just terrific. I’d give my right arm to live forever. But my brain is unable to believe such obvious wishful thinking. It’s like Ann Druyan wrote about Carl Sagan…he didn’t want to just believe, he wanted to KNOW, to FIND OUT. And that required a much more inquisitive brain that wouldn’t stop looking because someone said there a god up there. He had to know, and went on to become one of America’s greatest scientists, and ended up more convinced than ever that god was invented by frightened people who needed assurance that they would never die. The thing is…truth is much more important than any superstitious belief. It really is.

  • offerings

    I think this also opens a door I would not want to walk through. Imagine witnessing or sharing with someone who saw this production. I would implicitly be representing the Bible as presented in this show, yet possibly telling that person a different (actual) version of it. Yet another avenue to be used by Christian bashers who are already promoting what fools they think we are.

  • nkri401

    Why do some people get touched by an angel and some others get touched by the devil?

  • nkri401

    kaw,

    If you start out with a fiction, does it matter if it’s a fiction x 2?

    BTW, “History channel” is a proper noun and does not mean history; like “Fox News” is a porper noun and not really news.

  • nkri401

    “…not really mean news”

  • offerings

    I would take exception to comparing this project to former “adaptations” of the Bible. What does that have to do with the vision of these producers? And with all of the “backers” publically being behind this one, I’m sure many were led to believe we were finally going to see an accurate work. Why change anything? What was there to gain? I must admit that in this era of political correctness, it seems too obvious why one story in particular was changed.
    I agree that the importance of getting people to open the Bible and/or talk about it cannot be measured, but did it have to be changed to accomplish this purpose? And with all due respect to all who promoted this series, would you justify Scripture being changed from the pulpits of the world? We already know there are some carrying new/different messages. Would you also promote them? Is it not the same issue?

  • jdpetric

    John 14:7 , “If YOU men had known me, you would have known my Father also, from this moment on know him and have seen him.” WHY ?

    Because as Colossians 1:15 says, “ He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. Jesus was God’s frist spirit creation.

    Besides, if Jesus were God, what Jesus said at John 14:6 would not make sense, “Jesus said to him: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

    Jesus said to him: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

  • jdpetric

    The New Encyclopædia Britannica says: “Neither the word Trinity, nor the explicit doctrine as such, appears in the New Testament, nor did Jesus and his followers intend to contradict the Shema in the Old Testament: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord’ (Deut. 6:4).

  • jdpetric

    In The Encyclopedia Americana we read: “Christianity derived from Judaism and Judaism was strictly Unitarian [believing that God is one person]. The road which led from Jerusalem to Nicea was scarcely a straight one. Fourth century Trinitarianism did not reflect accurately early Christian teaching regarding the nature of God; it was, on the contrary, a deviation from this teaching.”—(1956), Vol. XXVII, p. 294L.

  • jdpetric

    John L. McKenzie, S.J., in his Dictionary of the Bible, says: “The trinity of persons within the unity of nature is defined in terms of ‘person’ and ‘nature’ which are G[ree]k philosophical terms; actually the terms do not appear in the Bible. The trinitarian definitions arose as the result of long controversies in which these terms and others such as ‘essence’ and ‘substance’ were erroneously applied to God by some theologians.”—(New York, 1965), p. 899.

  • jdpetric

    “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, …” Ephesians 1:3a

  • Rongoklunk

    And the funny thing is Jesus may well have been a character of the imagination. He didn’t necessarily exist. It’s at least controversial. Not everybody believes he was real. Jame G Frazer, who studied folklore, magic, ancient traditions, and religions in the 18th century was around when many cultural traditions still existed, and traveled widely examining cultures across the globe. Of course it was still 1800 years after the ‘crucifixion’, so who knows what happened back then?
    In his book “The Golden Bough” he writes that Roman prison guards had a habit of choosing a prisoner at certain times of the year – to be treated as a king for a week or two, even allowed access to royal concubines, and the best food and wine they could come up with. Then when the time was up – they’d turn it around and treat the prisoner as harshly as possible, making a fool of him, and eventually killing him – usually by crucifixion. They did it to this Jewish fella in Jerusalem and it made the locals very angry. They were outraged. He was one of ‘them’. And the rest is supernaturally made up history, which is not much different from tales of other guys also born of virgins, being killed and floating off to heaven even before JC’s time – assuming he ever lived at all.
    Reminds me that a christian named Albert Schweitzer himself searched for evidence to prove that Jesus really existed, and wrote a book about it called
    ‘The Quest for The Historical Jesus” and reports that ;
    “There is nothing more negative than the result of the critical study of the life of Jesus. The Jesus of Nazareth who came forward publicly as the Messiah, who preached the Kingdom of God, who founded the Kingdom of Heaven upon earth, and died to give his work its final consecration, never had any existence.”
    Albert Schweitzer; 1875 – 1965. from “The Quest for The Historical Jesus”, also quoted in “Atheist Universe” by David Mills.

  • jdpetric

    The first-century Jewish historian Josephus referred to the stoning of “James, the brother of Jesus who was called the Christ.” (The Jewish Antiquities, Josephus, Book XX, sec. 200)

    Tacitus, a Roman historian who lived during the latter part of the first century C.E., wrote: “Christus [Latin for “Christ”], from whom the name [Christian] had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus.”—The Complete Works of Tacitus (New York, 1942), “The Annals,” Book 15, par. 44.

    With reference to early non-Christian historical references to Jesus, The New Encyclopædia Britannica states: “These independent accounts prove that in ancient times even the opponents of Christianity never doubted the historicity of Jesus, which was disputed for the first time and on inadequate grounds by several authors at the end of the 18th, during the 19th, and at the beginning of the 20th centuries.”—(1976), Macropædia, Vol. 10, p. 145.

    Certainly no other man that ever live had such an impact of humans to date.

    However Rongo, you and those you referenced are free to believe what you want.

  • jdpetric

    Your point ccnl ?

  • PhillyJimi1

    Ccnl, it is true because the bible says it is true and the bible is true because? A snake tricked a rib woman in eating some fruit? Or a guy lived inside a whale? Oh, yea that is a creditable book.

    Sure historians like Tacitus were familiar with the stories and the followers of this Christ. It doesn’t verify anything.

    If 2000 years from now a historian found some documents about the “9-11 Truther” movement. Does that make their claims true?

    I think there was a real historical Jesus that started the story but what ended up in the bible was crafted to build a new religion. Jesus was a Jew and taught the Jewish faith. Paul created Christianity not Jesus.

  • xexon

    I like the bible. It contains much wisdom for daily living.

    But has the author read anything besides the bible? I’ve read most of the world’s holy books. They all pretty much say the same thing. That we should treat each other as we desire to be treated.

    Until you take the Pepsi challenge with these “other” scriptures, you’re guilty of a biased opinion that comes from religious tunnel vision.

    x

  • Secular1

    I am recording this series and intend to see it. My motivation is purely academic in the sense that i can gather additional material to critique the filthy tome. So my view is that re-rendition of these amoral stories is as worthwhile as the rendition of the stories of Isis and Osiris, or that of Odyssey, Iliad. I will grant that the latter stories are much more colorful and engaging than any and all the biblical stories. Although they too, have very little socially redeeming messages.

    But as pure entertainment, greco-roman mythologies and Hindu mythologies are treasure trove of captivating stories. In comparison the biblical and koranic stories are boring harangues as they were written originally (actually as they were translated as i am not at all familiar with Greek, Aramaic, or Hebrew). But I am sure the translations did not loose any of the stylistic flair, if there was any in the original languages. I saw the Ten Commandments, the movie way before, (I was completely captivated and enthralled by the movies) I ever read Exodus (KJV). i tell you, after reading the book I was aghast that Cecil De-mille was able to make the movie from that book. Reading of Exodus was. like every book of OT needed great determination to keep from tossing them out the window – boring, boring, boring. Needless to say very amoral.

    Growing up in India, I have seen many a movie made of Hindu mythology, especially the ones in Telugu language. Read both Ramayana and Mahabharata, and several others. Again, though I had enjoyed the entertainment of the movies, the same stories when read were every bit live, vivid and painted the scenes just as in the movies. In this case I read before I saw the movies, and I felt that text brought the stories to life.

  • twmatthews

    The eye is not irreducibly complex. You can have an eye that is evolutionarily more advanced than the human eye or you can have an eye that is inferior to the human eye. But the eye certainly can be reduced in complexity and still function as a light sensing organ. That’s what an eye is.

    Some organisms like aquatic worms can do little more than sense light without being able to differentiate shapes. Others can see general shapes. Others can focus and see features including color. Each of these examples demonstrates an eye that is more or less complex than the other.

    Our eye is a good example of an organ that was designed by the evolutionary process and not by some grand designer. After all, what would be the benefit, as is the case with the human eye, of the lens presenting the image to the brain upside down and forcing the brain to reverse it? If I were designing the eye, I would have presented the image in the correct orientation to begin with, allowing the brain to function on higher level matters like what I’m going to make for supper tonight or what kind of craft beer to accompany said supper.

  • twmatthews

    Hi ccnl123,

    Your reference above to Josephus fails to reference that most historians have concluded that the two references Josephus made were “add ons” long after Josephus died. In fact, by reading the sections above and below the references to Jesus, you will find they read much better with those references removed. In fact, it’s just like someone stuck them in there since they read like they are out of place.

  • twmatthews

    Scott said, “Unfortunately, your reading comprehension is clouded by your presuppositions and prejudice.”

    And yours are not? I would say if anyone needs a lesson in critical thinking, it’s you.

  • twmatthews

    I’m as worried about the judgement of your god as you are about the judgment of Zeus.

  • xexon

    I’m an advaita. There are no deities for me.

    Your path teaches you to have faith in God. My path taught me to see God in all things and merge with it.

    There is no king on a throne somewhere. That’s religious mythology. You’re God. But until you conquer the human self identity, you will think you are somehow apart from God.

    The bible only reinforces this. Because it was written by ordinary men who had not achieved what they wrote about.

    Had someone like Jesus written the scriptures, your path would have been far different. You would see God. And not just imagine what it must be like…

    x

  • xexon

    No other country on earth has produced more living saints than India. There isn’t even a second place.

    Hinduism and Judaism are actually very close cousins. They spring forth from a common sourcethat is now buried beneath the sands of time. But somewhere along the way, a split occured. Judaism took the earthly path. Hinduism retained the spiritual path.

    Both are now shrouded in symbolism to the point the original teachings are lost, save a few people.

    Spiritual awakening occurs in those who have worked for it. Irregardless of the religious path they were brought up in.

    The Abrahamic religions preach duality. An eternal rift between creator and created. Hindus know nothing of duality except that it is illusion. And ultimately, oneness will prevail.

    There is NOTHING that is not God. It is your human mind that “thinks” otherwise. Religions are for people who think .

    x

  • ccnl1

    I recommend reading all of the provided references.

  • ThomasBaum

    xexon

    You wrote, “The Abrahamic religions preach duality. An eternal rift between creator and created.”

    By “Abrahamic religions” you mean Judaism, Christianity and Islam, many seem to “group” these together whereas the only thing, person in this context, that joins these is Abraham.

    Judaism is about God not only choosing a people but forming them and God started this with one person, Abraham and continued this with Isaac and Jacob.

    Christianity is about God becoming One of us and in becoming One of us, God became a Jewish Person, Jesus.

    Islam is a total distortion of what is written in what are referred to as the Old and New Testaments, chronologically speaking, even tho islam did not start until sometime in the 600″s AD, Ismael is inserted in place of Isaac quite far back in the BC era.

    The God of the bible and the god of the koran are NOT the same and even those that do not believe in God should easily be able to see that.

    Unless someone denies reality, it should be obvious that all is not good in this world.

    Christianity, which flows straight from Judaism, is God taking away the “rift” between God and man and this rift did not start in eternity but in time, seeing as time is part of God’s creation.

  • ThomasBaum

    xexon

    You wrote, “Hindus know nothing of duality except that it is illusion. And ultimately, oneness will prevail.”

    Does this mean that Hindus think/believe/know that everything is illusion?

  • ThomasBaum

    xexon

    You wrote, “There is NOTHING that is not God. It is your human mind that “thinks” otherwise. Religions are for people who think .

    How can, in your opinion as stated in the above statement by you, the human mind which is God, according to you, think otherwise?

  • ThomasBaum

    xexon

    So according to you, all one has to do to see God is to look in the mirror?

  • northernharrier

    This show didn’t belong on the History Channel, because that in itself misled viewers into thinking that all of the content reflects historical evidence. In reality, there is no reliable, peer-reviewed historical evidence that many of the incidents described actually occurred. The program would have been more appropriate for a channel featuring religious content regularly.

  • xexon

    In a manner of speaking, yes.

    But the air between and the mirror itself is also God.

    Realization of God reveals the big picture. Human vision is like looking at a microscopic closeup at the expense of the big picture.

    x

  • ThomasBaum

    xexon

    You wrote, “Christianity does NOT flow from Judaism. In fact, orthodox Jews see Christians as idolators”

    Of course the orthodox Jews see Christians as idolators but that does not mean that Christianity does not flow directly from Judaism, Jesus was born a Jew, lived as a Jew and died a Jew and the “movement”, Christianity, came directly thru Judaism.

    You then wrote, “Judaism and Islam are more closely related than Christianity’s claim to be close to Judaism. But because of the current political mess in the Middle East, this is not discussed very much.”

    Seeing as Judaism started with Abraham and continued with Isaac and Jacob whereas islam did not start until the 600′s AD and threw away Isaac and Jacob and said the line came thru Ismael, sounds more like a complete change of story to me.

    Either one is true or the other is true or they are both false, both can’t be true therefore there is nothing “closely related” concerning Judaism and islam except for Abraham and after that totally different.

  • ThomasBaum

    xexon

    You wrote, “It is individual ability, not group effort, that opens the door to the kingdom.”

    I have met God the Father and I have met the Holy Spirit and I have met satan and I have had some other experiences and I would most definitely say, at least in my case, that it had absolutely nothing to do with “individual ability”, I wasn’t even looking for God, so to speak, I was just looking for forgiveness.

    I happen to believe that reality is real whereas you believe that all is illusion and that is fine for you but there is no way I can believe that considering what I have been thru.

    I do not believe that God is the clay that made everything, I believe that God created the clay and everything else except for God.

    I believe, and stake absolutely everything on, that God’s Plan which God has had since before creation is for All, ultimately, to be with God in God’s Kingdom.

  • ThomasBaum

    xexon

    The “big picture” to me is that God Is God and I’m not and that God has a Plan that is something for absolutely everyone to be thankful for and I don’t need to know all of the details.

  • Jay.L

    I think there is too many Christians who are overconfident in their theological understandings and look for every opportunity to criticize and argue about the Bible or God-related matters. Many of this miniseries’ critics are pointing out all of its flaws, yet fail to appreciate the depth of emotion and feeling in each story of the Bible. This series aims to capture some of that intensity and I feel it does so very well.

  • ThomasBaum

    Do you consider the “crucifix” an idol?

  • longjohns

    Well. We can teach favortism with Esau and Jacob. Terrorism with the story of Passover where innocent little kids are killed to advance a political goal. Slavery in Numbers. Genocide at Gericho. Greed in Acts where the first Pope killed a parishioner for not donating all his money to the church. Paul’s misogynism in forbidding women to teach. Oh and of course disobedience in the modern churches by praying out loud when Jesus told us not to.

    There are indeed many lessons in the Bible! Really is a must read to learn something about how the world works.

  • xexon

    There is no evidence. Only stories. Stories are not evidence.

    This is why religions are call “belief” systems. You hear the story, and if you agree with it, you believe in it. With virtually nothing to back it up but the emotion and zeal of likeminded people.

    It’s a cult of personality.

    Divine origin? All things are of divine origin. ALL things are God. It is the human mind which tears God in half and declares one half better than the other. It is the human mind that is the Satan of religious mythology. Since you wake up in this world with the mind already running, you have no recollection of consciousness otherwise. When you wake up here, you have “fallen” from heaven. And can longer see God.

    But that’s reversible. You like to speak of religion. Religion is one of the biggest anchors to the world itself. It attracts the spiritually thirsty and diverts them back here. It’s doing it to you right now. You have pride in your mastery of Christianity. This means you are more interested in being a Christian than you are a seeker. You’ve timed out in a comfort zone of your own making.

    And you wonder why the spiritual scenery for you never changes…

    x

  • ThomasBaum

    ScottinVA

    By false Jesus, are you speaking of the Jesus Who said, “Eat My Flesh and Drink My Blood”?

    The Jesus that after He said this, many walked away from and Jesus did not change one word of what He said?

    So you think that the Jesus spoken of in the bible is a liar?

    You also think that the person who God chose from all of humanity to be the mother of God-Incarnate is an idol?

  • ThomasBaum

    xexon

    First you say, “There is no historical evidence that Jesus ever existed. None.”, then you say, “Jewish? Even some Jewish intellectuals question what Jesus was. Case in point,”

    In other words, you are saying that Jesus never was and that O yeah, Jesus was but He wasn’t a Jew, which of these are you claiming to be true or are you claiming both of these to be true?

    You then wrote, “And as you will recall, Jesus was quite harsh with Judaism. So to say he was Jewish doesn’t fit either. He was something else.”

    Was it some of the Jews or was it Judaism, there is a difference, don’t you think?

    You then wrote, “I don’t have enough hours in my day to fully respond to all your highlights, but I will say that there is no religion on earth that is not of the earth. And to the earth it will bind you. That is the nature of belief.”

    So are you saying that all beliefs, except for your own of course, binds one to the earth?

    I thought you said that we are all god so why would anyone’s belief, (right, wrong or indifferent) take away one’s godness and bind them to the earth?

    Are you saying or implying, in your belief, that the god that we all are, is thwarted in getting us all back to the oneness or whatever you call it, by the illusion of us humans.

    How could an illusion, our humanness, possible thwart what you consider god?

  • twmatthews

    Absolutely not true. If you would spend less time contemplating about a 2,000+ year old book of fiction and more time understanding science and the scientific method, you would understand why there is no such thing as an irreducibly complex organ.

  • longjohns

    Sorry Scott. Read and studied the good Book 20+ times. Never been to a single atheist web site. Arrived at all the conclusions all by myself. Maybe it is you who needs to read the Bible. Oh, and feel free to call other people fools–something Jesus seems to have admonish against.

  • longjohns

    Arrogant. Angry. Calling others liars and fools. Wow. Just the kind defender we need for the Bible. Maybe you can try to explain why Passover is not an act of terrorism or that Joshua didn’t commit genocide at Jericho instead. That would be more helpful to your cause.

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