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Wednesday, 12 July 2017 16:20

Look before you leap!

Written by 

To the Editor:

Now that the Republican Party has temporary political control over America a strong push is being made to “promote” Christianity. Christians, beware! Did I mention that Christians need to beware of this effort?

When you boil it all down, Christianity is only a belief. It is not a science. It is not based on provable facts as some political leaders seem to be claiming these days. Some are pushing for teaching the Bible in schools. They will not be able to present that as a book of facts.

I personally believe there are many truths and sound tenets within the Bible. However, that does not render the whole book a collection of facts. Neither is evolution as factual as once perceived and accepted (according to many modern scientists).

Here is powerful evidence that Christianity has been and will remain a belief. The first five words of the King James Version of the Bible are: “In the beginning God created ….” Thinking people must ask this question — specifically, when was the beginning? You don’t have much to work with when you say merely that something happened in the beginning if you don’t know when the beginning was.

Humans seek clarity on the onset of all events, i.e., births, historical happenings, etc. Why do Americans celebrate the Fourth of July? Why not just celebrate sometime around that date? Does anyone know exactly when Jesus was born? Does anyone know when He was crucified and died? Scientists use standard methods in an attempt to establish dates for inanimate objects as well as for life forms on earth. This usually results in a good “educated guess.” It gives us something to go by. We want to nail things down as well as we can.

What compels humans to seek such precision, the truth? Maybe that is just the way we work. We want to understand things in terms of their relative time. Tree rings show foresters the growth rates and climatic conditions affecting trees. Even they are unable to interpret that evidence as facts. It is merely a systematic and useful guide.

Now to the words that are very difficult to say and consider. Where did God come from? When and how did He assume control of the heavens and the earth that the Bible says He created? Native Americans befuddled our European ancestors with those questions. Native Americans had their own beliefs and oral history. Rather than listen to them about their beliefs and historical accounts, they were subdued militarily and endured the “Christianizing” process, wiping out much valuable insight into how they developed their beliefs.

Country Music Hall of Fame singer Merle Haggard sang, “No, you never liked the clothes I wear on Sunday just because I don’t believe the way you do. But, I believe the Lord knows I’m unhappy ‘cause I can’t be myself when I’m with you.” If Haggard was accurate that he was rejected because he didn’t believe like someone else, what does that say about Christian acceptance/rejection of others?

Today there is a religious struggle being played out between Christianity and Islam. Or is there? Is this not really a struggle for worldly power that is playing Islam against Christianity in yet another “holy” war?

In summation: If (1) we can’t say when the beginning was even when some people are claiming that we are near the “end of time,” and (2) we don’t know how God came to be, how could anyone propose a “creation science”? We are left with a belief. We have to choose as individuals to believe or not to believe. Governmental bodies should not be trying to coerce anyone to accept the Bible as a book of facts.

Christians need to look before they leap into the idea of a theocracy for America. The marriage of Christianity and government will corrupt both like mixing coffee with cream. Neither component (coffee or cream) could ever be restored to its original state of being. If Christians want to practice Christian tenets, they would be wise to not allow worldly governments to creep into their environs in search of political strength.

Dave Waldrop

Webster

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