Rambling through the scriptures

I’m spiritual, not religious, but I try to read the Bible anyway.

Though I consider myself a rather spiritually-oriented fellow, I’m not a student of the Bible. Not by any stretch. I haven’t even read the whole thing. That’s something I’ve intended to do for the last 30 years, but good intentions don’t mean much.

Still, during those 30 years, I’ve managed to fool around with the first five books of the Old Testament (King James version) and I’ve run across a few verses that condone some very vicious and surprising acts and ideas. At least I found them so and you might as well.

I must state at the outset that I have no desire to degrade or in anyway disparage the Christian or Jewish faiths. I simply wish to call these scriptures to your attention and you can make of them whatever you will.

It’s often claimed that Adam and Eve were the first man and woman, but apparently there were, in fact, other people around. Genesis, Chapter 4, verses 16 and 17 says: “And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord, and dwelt in the land of Nod, on the east of Eden. And Cain knew his wife, and she conceived.” If there had not been other people, the only female Cain could have had sex with was Eve, his mother.

However, incest wasn’t unknown during these early times because Genesis Chapter 19, verses 32 through 35, reveals in some detail a sexual union between Lot and his two daughters and verse 36 clearly states: “Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father.”

Then there’s this fascinating passage from the Book of Numbers, Chapter 31. After the Jewish army defeated the Midianites, the Israelis took the captured women and children to Moses. Whereupon, in verse 17, Moses declares: “Kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by laying with him.” And, in verse 18, “But all the women children that have not known a man by laying with him, keep alive for yourselves.”

Chapter 7 of Genesis relates the well-known story of Noah and the flood. Verse 23 states, in no uncertain terms, that “every living substance was destroyed which was upon the face of the ground, both man, and cattle, and the creeping things, and the fowl of the heaven… And Noah only remained alive, and they that were with him in the ark.” So, a mere 4,000 years ago, which according to scholars is the time of Noah and the flood — there wasn’t a single living thing left on earth, except for those on the arc.

Really?

Well, maybe not, but that’s what it says.

Second Peter, Chapter 3, verse 8, says: “A day is with the Lord as a 1000 years,” which means that our feeble daily time-scale isn’t worth much compared to the Lord and a time-scale that’s infinite. The key word here is “as”. The verse doesn’t say “a day is a 1000 years”; rather, it says “a day is … . as a 1000 years”, meaning a day is simply a lot of years. The verse is open to a broader interpretation; that is, it might just as well read, “a day is as a million years.” Or, more accurately still, “as a billion years.”

However, there is a fundamentalist Christian sect — composed, no doubt, of intelligent, hard-working, very respectable, loving Christians — that combine this Scripture with the first chapter of Genesis and flatly and emphatically conclude the earth is only 6000 years old.

Really?

Well, maybe not, but that’s what they believe.

Again, as stated at the outset, I have no desire to belittle or decry the Christian or Jewish faiths in general. These are just some candid and honest observations and interpretations of the Scriptures. Accept or reject them as you will.

Wally DuChateau can be contacted at wallypooh@skynetbb.com.

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