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How Is This Three Days?


R. S. Martin
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He died. He came back.

 

If that bit's true then were there Zombies at the crucifixtion? Cool!

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Seems to me the most important event in the history of the world should be able to stand up to my simple scrutiny.

 

mwc

A widely accepted theory on this forum and elsewhere is that the Jesus story is fabricated, either from whole-cloth or, more likely, from an assortment of "messiahs" and other ANE (Ancient Near East) myths. Okay. Let's say that's so.

 

If fabricated, why would the gospels have done such a "sloppy" job, as many claim, with the facts? Why didn't one of those vicious church councils that destroyed all evidence that opposed their views (allegedly speaking here), just fix this alleged problem with the death and resurrection day as well as these others inconsistencies? We seem to think the early church had great power to eradicate heretics and all the other "lost" and "missing" gospels, yet they couldn't count to three?

 

If one is fabricating something, why not do a good job at it? When two criminals tell the exact same story, one knows they've likely contrived a lie together. If all four gospels told the exact same story, there would be no need for four of 'em and I'd be highly suspicious.

 

-CC

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you don't need to do a good job if you can kill anyone who says 'The Emperor is actually naked'... the church DID do that a lot... the level of literacy amongst the early Christians was pretty poor and the construct of 'faith' and the 'mystery' card (ecclesiastical for 'shut the fuck up') shut up a lot of objections.

 

It's probably just an error, or, more likely, the Christians leveraging the actual 'day of resurrection' from the Monday to the nearest Sunday (that wasn't sacred to Jesus at all, but meant a lot to Constantine)

 

Since when does Bollocks have to make sense?

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...

Seems to me the most important event in the history of the world should be able to stand up to my simple scrutiny.

 

mwc

A widely accepted theory on this forum and elsewhere is that the Jesus story is fabricated, either from whole-cloth or, more likely, from an assortment of "messiahs" and other ANE (Ancient Near East) myths. Okay. Let's say that's so.

 

If fabricated, why would the gospels have done such a "sloppy" job, as many claim, with the facts? Why didn't one of those vicious church councils that destroyed all evidence that opposed their views (allegedly speaking here), just fix this alleged problem with the death and resurrection day as well as these others inconsistencies? We seem to think the early church had great power to eradicate heretics and all the other "lost" and "missing" gospels, yet they couldn't count to three?

 

If one is fabricating something, why not do a good job at it? When two criminals tell the exact same story, one knows they've likely contrived a lie together. If all four gospels told the exact same story, there would be no need for four of 'em and I'd be highly suspicious.

 

-CC

 

CC,

 

Do you not read history books? For one thing, Biblical criticism is relatively new, only within the last couple of centuries. Would it matter to criminals to have their stories straight if their stories are not going to be analyzed until centuries later? Also, when you are killing people who disagree with you, it doesn't matter if your facts line up.

 

Taph

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Also, when you are killing people who disagree with you, it doesn't matter if your facts line up.

 

See, either great minds think alike, or fools seldom differ ;)

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Also, when you are killing people who disagree with you, it doesn't matter if your facts line up.

 

See, either great minds think alike, or fools seldom differ ;)

 

You said it so much more intellegent, though!

 

Taph

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Perhaps...

 

You make a valid point that Biblical analysis is only around 150 years old, and started with German Protestants trying to prove RCC dogma 'wrong' and found that there were a HUGE number of errors both within post Council of Trent Canon, and across the extant Greek, Latin and Coptic texts that had survived. From memory (source Ehrman) the number is in the mid 1tens of thousands (35 to 50 thousand errors, some impacting on major articles of faith) within the books of the Trentine canon... if you expand into books accepted for a time by the major sect, that number increases exponentially. In the end, the Protestant sects fled from the 'higher criticism' route since it wholly undermined the Sola Scriptus approach they were trying to engender. It's why generally Protestant sects dislike you to read too much history, or override the emotion filters. The greatest trick they ever pulled was making people accept 'faith' as a major defining part of their personality and self view.

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A point that is often lost is that one really shouldn't look at the Bible through the lenses of modern notions of fact and fiction. The various writers of the Bible were laying out their "truths" not the who, what, when, where, why and how as is common today. Mythology doesn't mean bald-faced-purposefull-lies. It means...well...myth.

 

Gah. This is one of those instances when I know what I mean but I have a hard time putting it into words.

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It's like Mithras, Osiris, or Ahura-Mazda... illustrative myth; just dressed in Palestinian clothing. It can't be regarded in any way 'true' in the Classical sense (since really it's Hellenic Judeasim mixed with a 'pagan' mystery cult)

 

Lots of the concepts that we take as 'given' in Christianity aren't even supportable in Aramaic; 'the after life', the 'future kingdom', separation of god from creation, Hell, the trinity, the nature of evil... all sorts of good stuff. In Aramaic the concept and description of the passage of time is alien (one faced in the direction of the past... the closest Western analogy is in the phrase that which has gone before imaging time being a camel train the past moves away and one is always in the 'now')

 

If one takes the original Greek of something simple like 'The Lord's Prayer' and casts it back into Aramaic (this has been done by a Dr Neil Douglas-Klotz) one ends up with a text that has over 82000 possible valid readings. The Beatitudes get even more complex, the 'Sermon on the Mount having more than 100,000 possible, equally valid, readings.

 

To say that a book, translated from a language of the subtlety into a relatively prescriptive language like Greek, thence to Latin, thence to other more prescriptive languages, contains much of the original concepts or text is facile at best...

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CC,

 

Do you not read history books? For one thing, Biblical criticism is relatively new, only within the last couple of centuries. Would it matter to criminals to have their stories straight if their stories are not going to be analyzed until centuries later? Also, when you are killing people who disagree with you, it doesn't matter if your facts line up.

 

Taph

Yes, I do read a lot of history. I was a history teacher for many years and have a master's degree in history and am now working on a master's degree in religion.

 

Remember that the church did not begin killing those who disagreed with it until about 300 years after the life of Jesus.

 

-CC

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That is not strictly true. They were enough of a problem to the Romans for them to take notice early, and that was more to do with them fighting each other over whether Jesus was flesh only, God made flesh, or not really flesh at all, than their stance over whether the Emperor was a god or not (late Roman Catholic gloss... it's hard to think that someone is a martyr when they've been shopped by another sect of Chrisitans... when they weren't sexing up and inventing martyrs, of course)... The killing just got more systematic post First council in Nicea (325)... that was when the significant re-writing of history started, too... donation of Constantine? Toilet paper! and the book burnings...

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Wasn't Christianity just a small sect and didn't make much of an impact, until Constantine converted in 312AD, and used it to take over the world?

 

Yep, Eusibius was the Bishop of Cesarea, who was also Constantine's buddy, wrote the history of Christianity, "Ecclesiastical History", which is what Christians today believe about their history. Constantine gave the church unlimited power to tax, supress, and coerce those who didn't agree.

 

CC,

 

Did you go to a Christian school? I know people who were very strong fundamentalist Christians who deconverted because of what they learned about the real Christian history obtaining their degree.

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If one is fabricating something, why not do a good job at it? When two criminals tell the exact same story, one knows they've likely contrived a lie together. If all four gospels told the exact same story, there would be no need for four of 'em and I'd be highly suspicious.

Arlight, why not simply "fix" the errors? That's a more than fair question. The answer, in my opinion, is essentially politics. In a nutshell, the religion was going to replace the failing religion of emperor worship. But, it was by no means a unified religion. And, despite the might of the empire, it still needed the support of the majority sects to pull this all off (otherwise we're talking mass genocide instead of simply a massive genocide that was the killing of the "heretics" later on). So what to do? As usual we must make compromise. That's why the books that were the most well known are in the bible and the ones that are specific to the "fringes" (popular though they may have been) could be removed. Those that wouldn't "compromise" got branded "heretics" and we know what happened to them. But since the books were in such wide release, well, the cat was already out of the bag so to speak and it's really hard to put it back in now isn't it. But as others have said, the populace was mostly illiterate and so, as we know from even today, jumping "around" these inconsistencies in the stories is easily done from the pulpit.

 

Now, even though that is a lengthy answer, it truly is a nutshell because it is obviously much more complicated than all this of course (it would have to be...I mean..why not just immediately roll some troops down and wipe out the Aryans instead of excommunicating Arius with the further back and forth...well, they remained useful in the larger game of course). It's all politics.

 

mwc

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CC,

 

Did you go to a Christian school? I know people who were very strong fundamentalist Christians who deconverted because of what they learned about the real Christian history obtaining their degree.

 

Nope. I have graduated from three different secondary schools and am attending a fourth one now. All were godless (i.e., secular) schools! :HaHa:

 

-CC

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...But as others have said, the populace was mostly illiterate and so, as we know from even today, jumping "around" these inconsistencies in the stories is easily done from the pulpit.

... mwc

 

This is so true. Everyone is different, of course, but I have never understood how one could be a Christian, go to church every Sunday morning for three hundred years, and not ever study the Bible!!! Not that everyone needs to be a scholar, but please at least know the outline of the book upon which your religion is based. My goodness.

 

-CC

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This is so true. Everyone is different, of course, but I have never understood how one could be a Christian, go to church every Sunday morning for three hundred years, and not ever study the Bible!!! Not that everyone needs to be a scholar, but please at least know the outline of the book upon which your religion is based. My goodness.

It seems incredible to us, but illiteracy aside, prior to the Romans getting involved the first 2/300 years there was no bible so what writings were the "right" ones (each local group had their own idea of orthodoxy) and after the Romans it became illegal (and more enforced as time went on) to even own a bible (unless you were a "special" exception). It seems to me that if someone truly wanted to know the "truth" back then that they had their work cut out for them (several lifetimes worth of work I would imagine since it would mean traveling to each local sect to compare each set of writings to discover their differences...making literally perfect copies of those writings...then moving on and repeating the process all over again). Now who would or could do this? No one. The assumption, I'm quite certain, would be "G.Luke is G.Luke is G.Luke" but we know in hindsight this is most certainly NOT the case and it's not the case for one single text. The assumption was the texts were divine and the same and only those who had actually seen differences knew the truth (and they declared the ones they didn't like "heresies" and if they held sway they managed to get them destroyed or buried for thousands of years when the guardians of said documents tried their best to protect their holy, and orthodox to them, documents). It really does make a lot of sense.

 

mwc

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This is so true. Everyone is different, of course, but I have never understood how one could be a Christian, go to church every Sunday morning for three hundred years, and not ever study the Bible!!! Not that everyone needs to be a scholar, but please at least know the outline of the book upon which your religion is based. My goodness.

It seems incredible to us, but illiteracy aside, prior to the Romans getting involved the first 2/300 years there was no bible so what writings were the "right" ones (each local group had their own idea of orthodoxy) and after the Romans it became illegal (and more enforced as time went on) to even own a bible (unless you were a "special" exception). It seems to me that if someone truly wanted to know the "truth" back then that they had their work cut out for them (several lifetimes worth of work I would imagine since it would mean traveling to each local sect to compare each set of writings to discover their differences...making literally perfect copies of those writings...then moving on and repeating the process all over again). Now who would or could do this? No one. The assumption, I'm quite certain, would be "G.Luke is G.Luke is G.Luke" but we know in hindsight this is most certainly NOT the case and it's not the case for one single text. The assumption was the texts were divine and the same and only those who had actually seen differences knew the truth (and they declared the ones they didn't like "heresies" and if they held sway they managed to get them destroyed or buried for thousands of years when the guardians of said documents tried their best to protect their holy, and orthodox to them, documents). It really does make a lot of sense.

 

mwc

 

And, therefore, we walk by faith, not by sight. The Bible is a "sight" thing. It's great, in my view, and teeming with wisdom for life (and some stupidity, too, of course), but for the Christian the Lord is to be the light and it's too bad the Bible became the Word of God, thereby dethroning the (IMO) true Word of God. That was a mistake, IMHO.

 

-CC

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And, therefore, we walk by faith, not by sight. The Bible is a "sight" thing. It's great, in my view, and teeming with wisdom for life (and some stupidity, too, of course), but for the Christian the Lord is to be the light and it's too bad the Bible became the Word of God, thereby dethroning the (IMO) true Word of God. That was a mistake, IMHO.

So.....??? Sit down, shut up and don't ask questions??? :shrug:

 

I realize you wouldn't put quite like that but it's coming down to that.

 

As for the "word of god" thing...I recall reading that the Jews had proclaimed the Torah the living word of god before the xians made mention of any god-man so I'm not sure exactly who did what when where on that bit. Perhaps it's the usurpers and not the ururpees that are the cause of the problems? :wicked: Of course we could head down the path of the Logos but that's likely unrelated to the whole of the problem of the three days.

 

Not that it's really on topic but let's face it. The bible is a "sight" (sound) thing. Jesus and every single solitary thing about him (the apostles, Paul, you name it) was a "sight" thing (we'll grant they happened for the moment). So what's the difference? A sight thing is a sight thing. No one, not one single person on the planet simply woke up in a cave, being raised by monkey's or something (meaning zero human contact...ever) and KNEW Jesus. Not one (that later left evidence). Nope. It was a "shared" experience. It made its rounds from some origin (a muddy origin at that...not the nice point it should be) to where it is today. Mouth to mouth and later via a book. Paul can try to claim otherwise but before he "met" jesus he heard about him via the people he "persecuted." I'm sure they "witnessed" to him. The story didn't "appear" out of thin air that day on that road but over quite some time via each and every person he came into contact with. Did he see/hear something later on? I don't know or care because he didn't live in a sterile vacuum. What I do know is that if he was in Jerusalem (as he should have been according to the stories) he would have likely SAW jesus live...but no mention. He saw the stoning of Stephen. He should have (being the mighty persecutor he was) came into contact with the 11 long before he says he did. But he didn't. I don't care WHY he didn't or WHY he doesn't mention but he was close enough to ground zero to HEAR the doctrine prior to his own conversion.

 

So why the rant? Because. The bible IS god. It IS the ONLY thing that EVER brings a person to this god. EVER. Without the bible this god ceases to exist (not counting the bits of artifacts and whatnot, or the Book or Mormon...I'm sure you know what I mean). He will NOT magically appear in anyone's heart if we erased all the bible's from the earth AND from the minds of all humans. He will simply "go away" like all the rest of the forgotten gods that have suffered the same fate. Certainly without the bible YHWH/jesus would become a different type of god (as is already happening with jesus the ultimate hippie -- loving compassionate figure that is just dripping with love and sugar sweetness and his nearly forgotten "father" and the gibberish inspiring ghost pal "what's his name?"). The closest thing to a "relationship" to be had is bowing before the "idol" that is the bible or suffering the fate of "out of sight, out of mind" (which means being a "bad" xian or taking the "create your own god" path I just laid out).

 

mwc

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Faith in WHAT? The whole argument is circular.... The only evidence is the bible, and we all agree that it's pretty much hokum written by noisy an violent competing sects, each one claiming that THEIR dying Man-God was the only true one, with a pedigree extending back to the Hittite God of War that Abraham accepted as the 'Creator God'.

 

'Walking in faith' is, as an answer, a non answer. It's like the answer given by junkies as way they take Heroin... 'It feels good' (There are times Marx had a point). It is The political 'response' to which the only true answer is 'It's my programming'.

 

one thing about Eusebius, he delivered on a 'religion to control and empire' in spade. It still controls The Empire.

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And, therefore, we walk by faith, not by sight. The Bible is a "sight" thing. It's great, in my view, and teeming with wisdom for life (and some stupidity, too, of course), but for the Christian the Lord is to be the light and it's too bad the Bible became the Word of God, thereby dethroning the (IMO) true Word of God. That was a mistake, IMHO.

So.....??? Sit down, shut up and don't ask questions??? :shrug:

 

I realize you wouldn't put quite like that but it's coming down to that.

 

Oh, gosh, no. Each person must do what seems best/right/correct to him or her. What I am saying is that I think it is better to allow room for varying points of view. Some need the Bible to be the inerrant, infallible sole rule of faith and conduct. That won't work for me or many others. Many just don't see it this way at all. There needs to be a recognition of the fact that the Bible has been understood in various and sundry ways forever and I think each person must follow their heart/spirit/mind/intellect/whatever. If one needs to be a fundamentalist, that's fine. If one needs to be an atheist, that's fine, too. If one needs to be whatever, that's fine.

 

As for the "word of god" thing...I recall reading that the Jews had proclaimed the Torah the living word of god before the xians made mention of any god-man so I'm not sure exactly who did what when where on that bit. Perhaps it's the usurpers and not the ururpees that are the cause of the problems? :wicked: Of course we could head down the path of the Logos but that's likely unrelated to the whole of the problem of the three days.

Good points.

Not that it's really on topic but let's face it. The bible is a "sight" (sound) thing. Jesus and every single solitary thing about him (the apostles, Paul, you name it) was a "sight" thing (we'll grant they happened for the moment). So what's the difference? A sight thing is a sight thing. No one, not one single person on the planet simply woke up in a cave, being raised by monkey's or something (meaning zero human contact...ever) and KNEW Jesus. Not one (that later left evidence). Nope. It was a "shared" experience. It made its rounds from some origin (a muddy origin at that...not the nice point it should be) to where it is today. Mouth to mouth and later via a book. Paul can try to claim otherwise but before he "met" jesus he heard about him via the people he "persecuted." I'm sure they "witnessed" to him. The story didn't "appear" out of thin air that day on that road but over quite some time via each and every person he came into contact with. Did he see/hear something later on? I don't know or care because he didn't live in a sterile vacuum. What I do know is that if he was in Jerusalem (as he should have been according to the stories) he would have likely SAW jesus live...but no mention. He saw the stoning of Stephen. He should have (being the mighty persecutor he was) came into contact with the 11 long before he says he did. But he didn't. I don't care WHY he didn't or WHY he doesn't mention but he was close enough to ground zero to HEAR the doctrine prior to his own conversion.

 

So why the rant? Because. The bible IS god. It IS the ONLY thing that EVER brings a person to this god. EVER. Without the bible this god ceases to exist (not counting the bits of artifacts and whatnot, or the Book or Mormon...I'm sure you know what I mean). He will NOT magically appear in anyone's heart if we erased all the bible's from the earth AND from the minds of all humans. He will simply "go away" like all the rest of the forgotten gods that have suffered the same fate. Certainly without the bible YHWH/jesus would become a different type of god (as is already happening with jesus the ultimate hippie -- loving compassionate figure that is just dripping with love and sugar sweetness and his nearly forgotten "father" and the gibberish inspiring ghost pal "what's his name?"). The closest thing to a "relationship" to be had is bowing before the "idol" that is the bible or suffering the fate of "out of sight, out of mind" (which means being a "bad" xian or taking the "create your own god" path I just laid out).

 

mwc

 

You have an important point here. It is the written word that has kept Jesus alive (discounting all spiritual elements). But this is all we have. If it were not for the written word we would have lost Julius Caesar, too, and Alex the Great, and Socrates and everyone prior to audio and video recordings. The written word was all we had to capture a moment in time and pass it on. It's a weak substitute for reality; you are right. But it's all we have.

 

-CC

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It's like Mithras, Osiris, or Ahura-Mazda... illustrative myth; just dressed in Palestinian clothing. It can't be regarded in any way 'true' in the Classical sense (since really it's Hellenic Judeasim mixed with a 'pagan' mystery cult)

 

Lots of the concepts that we take as 'given' in Christianity aren't even supportable in Aramaic; 'the after life', the 'future kingdom', separation of god from creation, Hell, the trinity, the nature of evil... all sorts of good stuff. In Aramaic the concept and description of the passage of time is alien (one faced in the direction of the past... the closest Western analogy is in the phrase that which has gone before imaging time being a camel train the past moves away and one is always in the 'now')

 

If one takes the original Greek of something simple like 'The Lord's Prayer' and casts it back into Aramaic (this has been done by a Dr Neil Douglas-Klotz) one ends up with a text that has over 82000 possible valid readings. The Beatitudes get even more complex, the 'Sermon on the Mount having more than 100,000 possible, equally valid, readings.

 

To say that a book, translated from a language of the subtlety into a relatively prescriptive language like Greek, thence to Latin, thence to other more prescriptive languages, contains much of the original concepts or text is facile at best...

Yes, but it seems to me that it is work like you mentioned that allows these concepts to be seen in there. Eternity and forever were also mistranslated as such and was never supposed to mean what those words mean to us. If one can put the understanding that 'now' is what is being referred to, then the original concept becomes a little clearer and the contradictions diminish or become less important because you are then talking on a different level of understanding...phiolosophical vs literal or conotative vs denotative.

 

The 'now' is still being referred to by spiritual speakers. :shrug:

 

What did my post have to do with the three day thing...not a damn thing. :)

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You have an important point here. It is the written word that has kept Jesus alive (discounting all spiritual elements). But this is all we have. If it were not for the written word we would have lost Julius Caesar, too, and Alex the Great, and Socrates and everyone prior to audio and video recordings. The written word was all we had to capture a moment in time and pass it on. It's a weak substitute for reality; you are right. But it's all we have.

And there's the rub. You (believers) now have a choice to make if this god refuses to manifest himself directly. You may idolize what is manifest, the bible or the creation. To bible is "safe" because to idolize the "creation" makes you "pagan," does it not? So the "creation" is used as "evidence" of the "creator" but the bible is idolized as the creator (it contains all aspects of said creator).

 

Despite claims to the opposite the bible is the creator. I know that sounds strange but it goes hand in hand with how people see history. All the people you pointed out as examples are just "words in some book" to most people and that's why they find history to be among the most boring of subjects. God, while "out there," is only "known" through some pages in a book (or stories relayed via someone telling the stories from that book). God "lives" in the same way those other figures "live" and that is simply "in a book." They allow that "god" (out there) does other things (feels things, desires things, thinks things about them, etc.) but they require the book to know what those things are since "god" doesn't tell them himself. No book equals no "god." The book therefore is afforded the status of their god. It is an idol. It is the only "representation" their god has. Without it, it becomes impossible to "know" this god.

 

The pagans, likewise, weren't "confused" as some have said in their worship of nature. They "reached out" to their god(s). Their god(s) just failed to "reach" back. :) The same is true of all gods. Remove the idols (nature, bible, crosses, etc.) and the god(s) cease to exist. They don't reach back.

 

mwc

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...

 

The pagans, likewise, weren't "confused" as some have said in their worship of nature. They "reached out" to their god(s). Their god(s) just failed to "reach" back. :) The same is true of all gods. Remove the idols (nature, bible, crosses, etc.) and the god(s) cease to exist. They don't reach back.

 

mwc

 

But if we remove all the idols, we too cease to exit. All that is ceases to be. Darkness and void descend and all is silent.

 

I don't disagree that some seem to worship the Bible or make of the Bible a god. It is important, as I see, it to always separate the "God" from the "Bible." God transcends the Bible and in fact is barely revealed at all in the book. But the book does point to God. And, in my view, it gives us a decent portrait of the time God in Christ visited the "laboratory." Just my view.

 

-CC

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With due respect, poetic nonsense. The primates don't worship a thing and the Bonobos seem pretty happy most of the time.

 

I do like the idea of us being favoured lab rats... the ultimate Christian reduction.

 

As to the Pagans, their gods WERE directly involved... to claim otherwise is to just accept the crap (and I mean REAL EX-CRE-MENT of the Lewisian style apologist. I'm no fan of burning books, but ~LEwis, his whole canon would be on my list for be expunged from human memory... simply for being eye-bleedingly bad.

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I note my 'faith in WHAT?' has received no attention at all! Not that I expected an answer that would mean anything to the sane... :)

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