times, religion is something personal and for an individual to disparage or
take to task the religious beliefs of another is rude and inconsiderate. However, these are not normal times. In this nation today, we see a union of political
and religious forces such that politicians brag about wearing their religion on
their sleeves and religious zealots not only claim that the
While this may come as a surprise to some, the Bible is not God. It is a book inspired by God but this does not mean that every word and syllable in it was placed there in accordance with His will. The Bible was written by men who had a great reverence for God, but they were men and, being men, their writings were fallible and as much a reflection of themselves as they were of God. This truth is repugnant to Fundamentalist Christians because they believe the stories of the Bible were written by God through men. Nowhere is this written in the Bible, but Fundamentalists believe it because this is what they want to believe. However, the truth is that there is no way to substantiate their belief and similar to a belief in God, its validity is a matter of faith. However, in this particular case, it is a misguided faith that is anything but harmless.
God does not change. He is a perfect being; all knowing and all powerful. Therefore, there is no reason for Him to change. However, if you believe the Old and New Testaments are factual accounts of God's relationship with man, then you have to concede that God changes and not in a small and insignificant ways. The God of the New Testament is far different from the God of the Old. In the Old Testament, God does not promise forgiveness of sins, salvation, an after-life, or an eternity with Him in heaven. No, all the Old Testament God offers to His chosen people is a deal; obey His laws and He will bless you, do otherwise and you will suffer the consequences. This carrot-and-stick approach to religion is in sharp contrast with the religion of the New Testament where there are no chosen people and salvation is a gift from God given to all those who love and accept Him.
From reading the Bible, it should also be clear that the Old Testament God is petty, wrathful, vindictive, demanding, intimidating, unforgiving, cruel, and easily manipulated. In sharp contrast, the God of the New Testament is tolerant, loving, and forgiving. He has none of the undesirable characteristics of the Old Testament God. This being the case, God changed and these changes are so profound that He is a completely transformed entity. In fact, one can reasonably conclude there are two Gods; a negative God of the Old Testament and positive God of the New. Obviously, this is absurd and being absurd it follows that God must not have had a direct hand in writing the Old Testament because God does not indulge in absurdities. Therefore, it also follows that the Old Testament was written by men who, among other things, wrote down stories that had been passed down by word of mouth through the centuries and God had little to do with much of what they wrote. To think otherwise makes no sense and leaves us with far too many contradictions and inconsistencies that cannot be dismissed or ignored.
The story of
Noah and the flood is and excellent example of why the Old Testament is not history. Every aspect of this legend is an impossibility
that defies reason and common sense.
First of all, the ark is dimensioned such that it could not possibly
hold the numbers of creatures necessary; never mind the food and supplies needed
to survive, not only a voyage of forty days and nights, but the time required for
the world to return to normal after the flood receded. Also, gathering up two of everything that lived in the world is an impossible task.
Today, we are still discovering unknown species in remote areas of the
world. Is it reasonable to believe that
Noah had the means and resources to gather all these creatures when he didn't
even know they existed? Noah had no idea
The fact that Noah and his family were the only people in the world whom God deemed worth saving also defies comprehension. Surly, there must have been many other people around who loved God and led moral lives. What about all those infants and babies who were intentionally drowned? Weren't they as innocent as Noah? When the flood receded leaving behind a world of dead people, animals, and plants, how did the animals released from the ark survive? There was nothing around to eat other than carrion, rotten foliage, and the other animals from the ark. Can you imagine what this rotting world smelled like? In any case, wouldn't the predators eat the surviving herbivores and other weaker animals? No, the story of Noah is absurd in a multitude of different ways and this includes the specifics of the flood itself.
the Bible, the flood covered the entire world including its mountains. Therefore, even the top of
No, there is
nothing about Noah and the flood that makes sense and this includes God's purpose
for flooding the world. People are born weak
and prone to sin. This being the case, did
God kill off all of humanity save Noah and his family because people are the
way He created them or was He trying to improve his breeding stock. If the later is the case, then He wasted His
time because just a few generations later, God had to fire and brimstone
As human beings, we have a strong desire to have things make sense. In keeping with this desire, we reach out to God because, for most of us, living and dying without a higher purpose makes no sense. God is many things, but the one thing we can be most assured of is that He is truth. Lies, deception, and falsehoods are repugnant to Him because these things are at cross purposes with his nature. Therefore, Christians of today are faced with a dilemma. The Bible has two parts; a New Testament governed by the New Covenant, which promises redemption and salvation, and an Old Testament, which is rife with contradictions, inconsistencies, and falsehoods. What is a truth-loving Christian supposed to do? Fundamentalists tell us the problem lies within our intellect and to reconcile the situation we should stop thinking, accept the Bible at face value as the holy word of God, and believe what we are told. They never stop to think that our intellect and free will are among God's greatest gifts and to ignore them to find Him is sacrilegious.
It is not God's intent for us to live with contradictions or falsehoods and this brings us to the two most intentionally ignored pieces of New Testament scripture. In Hebrews 9:13, the Apostle Paul says, "When He (God) said a new covenant, He has made the first obsolete. But whatever is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to disappear." In Matthew 26:27 & 28, Jesus is quoted as saying, "All of you drink this, for this is my blood of the new covenant, which is being shed for many unto the forgiveness of sins". These two passages of the bible are significant and profound because they tell us Jesus Christ established a brand-new religion that will not only replace the Old, but will make it disappear. Therefore, there is nothing in the Old Testament that has any meaning or relevance for a Christian. How can it be otherwise when God has rendered the Old Covenant obsolete? From this, it follows that those who hang on to the Old Testament by believing there is something in its lessons and commandments that is relevant to Christians, have rejected the New Covenant, have rejected the reason Jesus Christ came into the world and by so doing, have rejected Jesus Christ. And in case you fail to see the implications of this, a person who rejects Jesus Christ is not a Christian.
The Old Covenant was simple. Obey God's laws and you will be blessed; disobey and you will be cursed. Noah and the flood is a perfect illustration of how this primitive type of religion works. The New Covenant, at first glance, also seems simple. Accept Jesus Christ as your lord and savior and you will be saved. However, things are far more complicated than they appear because accepting Jesus Christ means you will follow Him by making your life mirror His. Doing this requires intelligence. It doesn't take a great amount of thinking to abide by the Old Covenant because doing so is simply a matter of following a set of written laws. In contrast, to abide by the New Covenant you must know and understand Jesus, and apply this knowledge to situations which arise in your life.
Understanding all of the above, the dilemma between Christianity and science is resolved. For those who truly are Christian, the Old Covenant and Testament is obsolete and has disappeared. Therefore, there is no erroneous biblical history of the world to stand in the way of seeking and finding the one true God. God is truth and science is a disciplined way of finding the truth. Therefore, instead of disproving God and working against Him, science compliments God and works to reveal the majesty of His creation. Science will never prove or disprove God because its sole purpose is to tell us what, when, and how about the universe God made. The issues of who and why are the sole providence of religion and rather than being mutually exclusive, the purposes of science and religion fit together like hand and glove. The problem that Fundamentalist Christians have is that by holding on to the Old Testament, they have embraced a history of the world that is not only inaccurate, but absurd. Then they compound this error by rejecting science and wearing this rejection like a badge of honor, never realizing that the badge of honor they are so proud of is repugnant to Christianity.
Jesus Christ came into the world in fulfillment of Old Testament prophesy, to establish a New Covenant with all of mankind. This New Covenant established a brand-new religion that replaced the old religion in its entirety. Christianity, the new religion we are talking about, is comprised of three elements:
- The forgiveness of sins.
- A path to salvation.
- Freedom from the tyranny of religion as government.