Tuesday, May 16, 2006

So, Here's How My Mind Works.

I see the reports of the heavy rains and flooding in the North East.  One headline is "Almost Biblical".  Let me start by saying these folks are in my heart and prayers.  I have good, solid, Christian on-line friends up that way.

But, this is how my mind works.  I see this.  And it jogs my memory of a little documentary type show I watched the other evening.  It started by saying that every major civilization in the world has some gigantic flood account.  (Breaking in here with a correction:  they were saying that civilizations scattered throughout the entire world have a major flood story.  Thank you, PLittle, for keeping me honest. ;o)   They may very in detail, scope and lots of things, but they all have one. 

Now, hang on.  Don't want to loose no one.  So my mind jumps to "That in itself should pretty well prove the flood occurred, if you accept some things from the Bible as true."  Bear with me.    Say the flood happened exactly like the Bible says.  Whole world covered.  Mankind starts again from Noah's offspring.  Mankind gets cocky and builds the tower of Babel.  God confuses their language.  So they start to drift apart and go to other regions to live and contact with other groups or clusters slows considerably.  Each little clan,  so to speak, has their own language.  Develops their own customs.  Passes down their own stories in their words, by their people, colored by their life experiences.  In a centuries old gossip game (you know, whisper a sentence in one ear, pass it down through twenty people and at the end you get something that often doesn't have one word of the original) each story takes on its own character and life, reflective of the people.  Now, take by faith that Seth's descendents who stayed in the region and closer to God in general, kept the story line truer to form.  Take by faith that the account Moses recorded in Genesis was inspired by God and he was the Editor in Chief.  There you have it.  Not hard to believe at all.  Simple to understand the different traditions passed down. 

Now, my mind jumps to the Gospels.  Four narratives by four men about our Lord Jesus.  Some folks just can't get passed the fact one story is in one gospel and not another......that two gospels tell what appears to be the same story with a different light, or spin.  Well, let's go to a football game.

Makes no difference who's playing, but for the sake of argument we'll say it's the 49'ers and the Saints.  Let's put Matthew in the press box.  Give Mark a bench seat with the team.  Stick Luke in the general admission.  And John hitches a ride in the blimp overhead.  All four men see the same game.  But you can bet they are gonna have some very different stories to tell of it when they all gather back at the club the next day.  One view is up close and gritty.  One view is aided by much stats and instant replays.  One is ..... well average.  See some, miss some.  And poor John....all he sees are ants. 

Now add to this that these men were all different.  Each writing to a different audience and for a different purpose in each epistle.

Matthew (A jewish tax collector):  Shows us Jesus as King, the messiah who fulfills the promise of God in the Old Testament. - written for the Jews

Mark:  Shows Jesus as the Servant who does God's will and records more miracles than any other for  he wrote it for the Romans, who valued deeds far above words.

Luke (A gentile and a physician):  Showed us Jesus as the Perfect Man, God incarnate.  Traces his genealogy back to Adam.  Shows Jesus often in prayer.  Written for the Greeks, the intellectual thinkers of the times.

John:  Shows Jesus as the Son of God as his diety is revealed in every chapter, that all might believe.

And each guided by God.  They are all valid accounts.  All honest in their reporting.  But each with a different flavor or emphasis, accordingly. 

And thank God!  Thank God we have a multidimensional picture of Him! 

Comprised by 66 books, written by 40 authors over 1600 years.  Penned in 3 languages and upon 3 continents.  Yet there is continuity of direction and purpose. 

13 comments:

  1. Good entry Barbara, Helen

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  2. Superb Barbara!  And the Bible is still the number one book. No matter where you go or how many thousands of books that come and go....the Bible is still there.  If nothing else.......that should speak for itself!

    Blessings!
    Darlene

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  3. AMEN sister......

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  4. Wow that was awesome.  I never thought of it that way before.

    I've always liked reading Luke the best, don't really know why 'cause I ain't all that intellectual.  My hubby loves reading John.

    Love the analogy!

    Hugs,
    Gwynn

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  5. And then along comes a fictional account of Jesus' life, his marriage to Mary (what the Holy grail is "really all about") ... People are so gullible, and ready to believe a dramatic-mystery-thriller as being closer to the truth than the Gospels themselves.

    I believe in the authenticity of the Bible, for the reasons you wrote of in this entry.

    You made some quality points! Continuity and direction after 2000 years! Bea

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  6.   But...here's the problem. The statement that every major civilization had a flood legend is not true. Many did. Maybe even most. However, not ALL. Also, while every place on Earth may have experienced widespread, catastrophic flooding at one time, all the evidence we see tells us that there was no one universal flood that covered the entire globe.
      That is not to say that there is no God. It is not possible to know that one way or another. However, it is possible to know that many of the things described in the Bible never occurred.
      Nor is it necessary for them to have occurred. As in the parables of Jesus, when he spoke of a sower sowing seed, do you think he was talking about a specific person? No, he was using a story to make a point. The old testament is also full of stories that illuminate. That doesn't mean they're literally true. There doesn't have to have ever been a real Job for one to learn the lesson of humility from that book.
      Likewise, there doesn't have to ever really have been a universal flood for us to learn that our actions have consequences.
    -Paul
    http://journals.aol.ca/plittle/AuroraWalkingVacation/

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  7. naturegirlfromnyMay 17, 2006 at 5:06 AM

    Great account of the bible!  Linda

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  8. I enjoyed your analogy about watching a football game - a great post.

    Be well,
    Charley
    http://journals.aol.com/cdittric77/courage

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  9. very interesting reading...Hugs...Ora of Ky

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  10. oh i know its un real...i live in indiana and its been raining for a week and a half :(

    ttyl
    emily

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  11. I have read a book several times that gives much detail to the Bible.   It is "The New Testament---A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings" by Bart D. Erhman.    I recently saw him on TV and he said that there is nothing in the extensive manuscripts concerning Jesus having been married and had a child.   He was speaking of the "Da Vinci Code" of course.    It is facinating to understand the documentation of the early Christians.    The first several centuries of the Christian Church were made up of people that were being converted from different religions that worshipped pagan gods as well as Jewish converts.    The gospel of Mark is believed to be the first written around 60 to 70 A.D.     mark

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  12. I really enjoyed the way you related the four gospels to a football game. some people like to think that because the accounts are different they aren't real. but of course, like you said, they were four very different men.

    Shermeen xx
    http://journals.aol.co.uk/shermeen0621/PublicThoughts/

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  13. What a great post and great example for those who just have such a hard time grasping why there are differences in the gospels!

    You definately have a gift in explaining things!!

    God Bless
    Christy

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So glad you stopped by! Come 'round any time. ~ Barbara

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