I Want Another Turn! Slippery Slides are Fun!

The thing about slippery slopes is that they are fun – the height may be fearful at first and the results unknown – but at the park with your Dad, it is meant to be fun.

I have taken the slippery slope – I made the statement the other day that Adam and Eve are to be taken figuratively (In the same way I believe Paul looks at stories in the Bible Gal.4:24) It never actually happened and it doesn’t really matter, because figuratively doesn’t mean historically or literally. Overwhelming evidence in all the sciences…well particularly biology, anthropology and geology points to the reality of a creation account different to that of the Bible. And really it should come as no surprise that an ancient tribal nation, thousands of years ago, would not be able to contain the cosmos in a few words. Once on the slippery slide it is difficult to stop, I am told the slide leads to a cliff…..into the abyss. Is this faith or is this fear? Anyways what about the other stories of the Bible? Did they happen? As already pointed out, whether they happened or not is really irrelevant, if it is God’s Word there is still much meaning, and heaps of food to chew on. Where was I? That’s right, the other stories – archeological evidence, although not conclusive, is pretty certain that the Exodus (as recorded) didn’t happen. Moses is indeed an Egyptianish name and the ten commandments are a condensed version of Egyptians principles so there is likely to be an element of actual history in there.

Hold your breath here it comes………..but it didn’t actually happen!

For me as a Christian, this slide has been scary, but now that I’ve done it once it is really fun. Let me explain why.

When the Israelites came to the promised land they were commanded by “God” to kill every living thing of the Canaanites, children, women, animals you name it. In other places he tells them to do this and also to take the virgins forcibly to be wives and the men as slaves. Further back he drowns the entire human race! I have no problem with paradox, but somethings are just sick – watched a show last night about the Westboro Baptists and listened to a sermon by their leader – not healthy. Similarly a God who follows the same mentality as an ancient mid Eastern tribal group is really not my cup of tea and not healthy…sick in fact.

The thing about history is that it hasn’t always been recorded in the same way as us moderns would do it, and even with us, history is still recorded with a bias – I think I have heard it said somewhere that history is recorded by the victor. I think it more than possible, in fact I personally am certain that God never said any of these things…they thought they “heard” and this is how it was recorded. When a tribe went to war, they went with their god in the lead and victory was ascribed to that deity. Enough said, it comes as a relief to me that God is in fact best described by Love – therefore making this slide fun.  I wrote a grotesque poem about “beer goggles” and our need to wear them to make God more appealing, I don’t think this is a good way to go forward, do you?

Rather than beer goggles, is it not better if we put on our Jesus goggles and let those Goggles shape our image of God. Letting the recorded history of a violent, sexist and legalistic tribe shape our view of God is a bit silly. With the Jesus Goggles on we can still see God’s hand and read the Bible with the respect it deserves, and perhaps even grow.

 

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