Category Archives: Uncategorized

Westboro Baptist Church

I know the  nut job “Christians” tend to turn people off of religion, but if it makes you feel better, people like those at Westboro Baptist Church are acting not of the Bible but by their own homophobic social agenda.  In response to their list of “verses about God’s hatred” I’ll post verses about God’s love, and other verses that explain why WBC is wrong…

John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Proverbs 27:22 – Though you grind a fool in a mortar, grinding him like grain with a pestle, you will not remove his folly from him.

Proverbs 6:16-19 – There are six things that the LORD hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers. (ironically enough, this is posted on WBC’s list too)

Romans 8:37-39 – No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 5:8 – but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Ephesians 2:4-5 – But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved.

1 John 4:7-8 – Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.  Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.

Psalm 86:15 – But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and graciousslow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.

Deuteronomy 7:9 – Know therefore that the LORD your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations. (btw, “Thou shalt not be gay” isn’t a commandment.)

John 13:34-35 – A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.  By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another. (It’s safe to assume that calling people fags in a public setting isn’t exactly loving one another…jussayin.

Matthew 7:1-2 – Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you.

Matthew 19:16-17 – And behold, a man came up to him, saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?” And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments. (again, none of God’s commandments are “don’t be a fag.”)

John 8:7 – And as they continued to ask him, [Jesus] stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” (excellent parable about sinners condemning others’ sins above their own…which leads me to the next verse…)

Romans 3:23 – For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God

—————————

The Bible does speak about times where God was angry and abhorred the immoral acts of his creation, but it went FAR beyond homosexuality. God abhorred those who mocked his name, lived a life of constant immorality and disdain for God, and spread their lifestyle to others by their example. Homosexuality may have been involved, but that’s hardly why God hated those people. And God’s instruction is for those people who aim to seek God. If the homosexuals and the heathens have no interest in serving God or doing his will, combating their folly with signs of protest is so absolutely ineffective. And in the case where a believer and follower of Christ happens to be homosexual, are they sent to Hell anyway? Romans 10:9 doesn’t think so –  “Because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” Pelting sinners with hate speech does nothing to change their path (Proverbs 27:22). It does however disgust those of us who actually follow Christ and try to live a Christ-like lifestyle, and I would interpret as sowing discord among brethren (Proverbs 6:16-19).

Christ didn’t teach us to live a life of harsh scorn for those who don’t live for God. He taught about using compassion and love to give people a deep-rooted DESIRE to live for God. Those who deny God are not intimidated by the punishments you propose. You don’t have to support homosexuality if you honestly believe the Bible condemns it as a Hell-worthy sin, but there are much better ways to reach those who need to find God. Slapping them in the face with your signs just turns people away from the God you claim to worship, making your attempt counter-productive and against God’s will.

If someone protested your gay brothers funeral with signs that said “Xenu hates fags.” would you suddenly reach the epiphany that you needed to change your ways to please Xenu? Obviously not. A more reasonable and effective process would be to first explain why people need Xenu…or even who Xenu is why I should care.

You can’t work under the assumption that everyone knows God and should just blindly do what a bunch of hate-filled wackos tell them to do, because the end result will always be the opposite of your intention. Learn from the example Jesus set…you’ll catch more flies with honey.


Why I believe in God

I apologize…It’s been a long while since I’ve posted. I’m ashamed to confess that I haven’t made as much time for this blog as I should.

I’ve been coming across a lot of anti-religious dialog and articles online lately, and it makes me wonder why people are so opposed to the idea of religion…or even a diety, regardless of an association with an organized religion.

I believe in God for the sake of hope. I like the idea of having the hope that my life is not just one of a random existence. I like believing that there’s more purpose to my existence. I could be wrong, but I plan to live a life full of hope regardless. If I die and I’m wrong, then so be it. If we assume there is no Heaven, then you can’t have regrets once you’re dead.

I don’t denounce scientific discovery, and I don’t believe it’s my duty to save other people’s souls.  I believe in a God who forgives and who doesn’t look down on us derisively; a God who gives us free will, but controls all other aspects of the world harmoniously (the proverbial balancing of the universe, so to speak). A God whose commandments are designed to improve our quality of life and promote peaceful coexistence.

I love living with the hope that my purpose in life goes beyond merely surviving. I love believing that when people around me pass away, they’re not just dead, but in the hands of God. I love the hope that comes with my faith.

So, regardless of what evidence people may bring forth disputing the existence of God or the Messiah, my hope won’t go anywhere.


Chapter 4: Cain and Abel

Yes, I realize I promised an update back in May, but the truth of the matter is that I’ve been severely sidetracked, and just haven’t had time to blog about my readings lately. So this is the part where I catch back up 🙂 I’ve read 13 more chapters of Genesis since my last post (yeah, I’m way behind my 1-year goal, I know), so let’s start back up and get a move on…

Genesis 4: Cain and Abel

Cain and Abel

Cain and Abel were the sons of Adam and Eve. Gen 4:1-2 shows that Cain was born first, then Abel.

Cain was a worker of the ground and Abel a keeper of the sheep.

Gen 4:3-5 says that in the course of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of fruit from the land. And Abel also brought an offering of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions, and God had favor for Abel’s offering, but not for Cain’s offering.

I believe this ties into the idea of putting God first and making him a priority, showing Him that he deserves the absolute best we have to offer. Where Cain merely brought an offering of fruit to the Lord, Abel brought the firstborn of his flock. Considering that fruit can be quickly grown and is a renewable resource and that the firstborn of a flock is of limited availability, this verse shows that consideration was made by Abel when producing an offering; he gave not only something of more monetary and intrinsic value than Cain’s offering, but he gave the Lord the prime cut, so to speak. This seems to tie into tithing as well. By taking our tithe off the top of our income; giving back to the Lord before we give anything to ourselves, we show that God is a priority above all else.

So, as a result God showed favor for Abel and his offering, but not for Cain’s offering.

Cain became angry, so God said to Cain “Why are you angry? If you do well, will you not be accepted? If you don’t do well, sin is waiting for you, but you must conquer it.” God is basically saying to Cain that he has no reason to be angry – it’s his responsibility to do well in the eyes of God, and if he does then God will show favor for him. If he does not do well in the eyes of God; if he does not put God first, he leaves himself vulnerable to sin, and therefore is left fighting to overcome it.

Despite God’s warning, Cain goes to talk to Abel in the field and rises against him, killing him (Gen 4:8)

in Gen 4:9-10 God asks Cain “where is Abel your brother?” and Cain responds “I do not know; am I my brothers keeper?” But God says “What have you done? His blood cries to me.”

God then curses Cain from the ground that received his brother’s blood. God commands “It shall no longer yield to you its strength. You shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth.” Cain responds to the LORD “My punishment is more than I can bear. You have driven me away from the ground and from your face I shall be hidden. I shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth and whoever finds me will kill me. (Gen 4:13-14)” and God says “Not so! If anyone kills Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold.” And the LORD marked Cain to protect him against any who should want to attack him. This goes back to my point made in the story of Eden…although man had risen up and disobeyed God’s instruction, God still offers mercy through his punishments. Cain was outcast and cursed, but God sent him away with his protection. It’s important to me to believe in a God who is just in punishing those who disobey, and those who do wrong (because, in all honesty, people don’t learn without retribution.), but it’s just as important to believe in a God who will never turn his back on you.

So why does Cain get a guarantee from God that he will not be killed, after he, himself, just killed his brother? That’s something I wonder myself…and my best interpretation is that the punishment God had for Cain was between the two of them, and no one else was going to be allowed to punish Cain for his wrongdoings. One crime against God, one punishment from God. What do you guys think?

Cain left the land and settled in Nod, east of Eden. Where he and his wife (not previously mentioned or named) bore a son, Enoch. When Cain built a city on the land, he named the city after his son, Enoch.

Enoch fathered Irad.
Irad fathered Mehujael
Mehujael fathered Methushael
Methushael fathered Lamech

Lamech took two wives, Adah and Zillah. Adah bore Jabal and Jubal. Zillah bore Tubal-cain and a sister Naamah.

Gen 4:23 Lamech says to his wives that he has killed a man for wounding him; a young man for striking him. And in 4:24 he says “If Cain’s revenge is sevenfold, then Lamech’s is seventy-seven fold.”  — I have to confess that this verse confuses me a great deal. There’s the consideration that Lamech was a wicked man who delighted in having multiple wives to whom he spoke with condescension. This is lightly demonstrated in Gen 4:23 when he says to his wives “Adah and Zillah, hear my voice; you wives of Lamech, listen to what I say.” The context seems to indicate a command to listen rather than a plea for understanding from his wives. This also shows a great deal of egotism as he refers to them as “you wives of Lamech,” which could play into the fact that perhaps Lamech is bragging in verse 4:24 and taking delight in his murder by saying that his was far more valiant than Cain’s, and therefore his own demise is deserving of 11 times more vengeance than what God swore upon anyone who struck down Cain. But then there’s the consideration that perhaps Lamech felt remorse for his actions and was saying that he, himself, deserved 11x the punishment that God swore upon the person who struck down Cain. I tend to accept the first interpretation, but would love to know what you guys think.

Genesis 4 ends with Adam and Eve bearing a son, Seth. Eve says “God has appointed for me another offspring instead of Abel, for Cain killed him.” which works into the belief that God is a provider and nurturer. Seth goes on to father Enosh, and at that time people began to call upon the name of the LORD (Gen 4:26).

Conclusion: While we are given free will, sin is waiting for us unless we put God first in everything we do. In the event that we falter, it is up to us to rise against and resist sin in order to get back on track. If we let sin consume us, it has nasty, long-lasting repercussions that affect not only those around us, but the generations that follow as well.

Next: Chapter 5 – the descendants of Adam
Chapter 5 shows the timeline of Biblical history that proves to age the world. There’s a lot of science vs. religion debate on this topic, which I fully intend to address 🙂

 


May 21…

I know I’m way behind on updating this blog – I’ve still been reading, but I’m struggling to find time to contribute my progress to this blog. I’ll have a new post for everyone this week. However, I need to take a minute to address a problem I’m having…

for real this time

…this whole Judgement day thing sparked by Harold Camping and Family Radio.  I know most people think it’s a bunch of hokum, but the thing that concerns me the most is how they say “The Bible Guarantees it!” Which of course leads to religious persecution, and for those who may have previously thought about seeking out the Bible will probably forever be turned away when, in fact, we’re all still alive on May 22nd. This is why I started this blog to begin with. There are so many whack jobs out there making WILD claims that they profess are supported by the Bible, when in reality they’re making these claims based on loose interpretations of select verses. I’m going to directly address the words posted on Family Radio’s website…

I should start by addressing their loophole around Acts 1:7 that says “And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power.” Family Radio (FR) interprets this to mean we shouldn’t be bothered with knowing when judgement day comes…we should focus on sharing the Gospel. While I agree with that, I don’t agree that’s what Acts 1:7 is saying….and Matthew 24:35-36 agrees with me “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” Seems like the only argument I really need to show that the Bible doesn’t guarantee anything about a specific date, but I’ll go on…

FR also says “Therefore, regardless of how brilliant or how learned a theologian or Bible student might have been, or how diligently they studied the Bible or faithfully served Christ, it was impossible to learn from the Bible the timetable for the end of the world. Anyone who claimed he knew the time of the end was always wrong.” Which to me it just sounds like they’re tooting their own horn, saying “No one could ever figure out the exact date of Judgement day…except us.” Proverbs 16:18 comes to mind…”Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” FR could probably spin that into a “guarantee” of Saturday’s Apocalypse, too, but I’ll go on…

Regarding 2011 as the “Chosen year,” FR says this…

“God in His great mercy has given a marvelous proof that the year 2011 is the year of Judgment Day and the end of the world. Remember in 2 Peter 3:8, in the context of pointing us to the flood of Noah’s day as well as to the destruction of the world at the end of time, He declared: “one day with the Lord as a thousand years and a thousand years as one day.” Years ago we learned from the Bible that the flood occurred in the year 4990 B.C. More recently we learned that Judgment Day is to occur in the year 2011 A.D. 2011 A.D. is exactly 7,000 years after 4990 B.C.

Just before the flood Noah was instructed by God that in seven days the flood would begin (Genesis 7:10-16). Using the language of 2 Peter 3:8 that “a day is as a thousand years,” it is like saying through Noah, who was a preacher (2 Peter 2:5): “mankind has seven days or 7,000 years to escape destruction.” Since 2011 A.D. is precisely 7,000 years after Noah preached, God has given mankind a wonderful proof that Judgment Day will occur in the year 2011

God doubled the statement “a day is as a thousand years” to greatly increase our assurance that this is established by God and will shortly come to pass (Genesis 4l:32).”

Firstly, 2 Peter 3:8 is a verse offering comfort to those worrying about end times. By reading 2 Peter 3:9 (“The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.”) You can conclude that 2 Peter 3:8 is simply showing that the Lord is undeniably patient, and wants us all to have the chance to reach repentance, because what we see as one day, the Lord sees as 1 thousand years. God waits 1000 years for every day we spend seeking repentance. Sounds like a pretty patient God to me.

Secondly, by FR’s logic, the 7 days that God gives Noah to prepare for the flood somehow relates to the destruction by fire mentioned in 2 Peter 3:7. The number 7 is used pervasively throughout the Bible, so with the flawed logic that 2 Peter 3:8 is some code to the day of judgement, FR could do that math with hundreds of other verses in the Bible, and make it seem as a prophetic warning.

And Genesis 41:32 states that God repeated the prophecy (Gen 41:28-31) of plenty and famine to Pharaoh to establish that it was going to happen, without a doubt. This does not allude to FR’s claim that God is emphasizing that the world will end precisely 7000 years after the flood. It’s somewhat amusing that FR keeps referencing Bible verses where God speaks clearly and straight to the point to say what he has to say, yet FR is grasping at straws and using vague interpretations to warn us of God’s “definite” timeline of Judgement Day.

A huge portion of FR’s website “proof” is a big number game. Numbers are great and they do offer significance, but unfortunately numbers can be added/divided/multiplied/subtracted to get any answer you want. That’s the great thing about numbers. Unfortunately for FR, in this case, it offers very little infallible proof. As indicated below, taken from FR’s website…

“Let us return now to the 722,500.07 days from April 1, 33 A.D. (the day Christ was crucified and died) until May 21, 2011 (the day when God’s salvation plan has been altogether completed and all of the true believers are brought, or raptured into Heaven).

The number 722,500 is made up of two sets of identical significant numbers. Each number is intimately related to God’s salvation plan:

5 x 10 x 17 x 5 x 10 x 17 = 722,500

The atonement or redemption demonstrated by Christ’s suffering and death on April 1, 33 A.D. (the number 5) is 100% completed on May 21, 2011 (the number 10) when all the true believers are raptured into Heaven (the number 17).

Remarkably this number sequence is doubled, to indicate it has been established by God and will shortly come to pass (Genesis 41:32).”

Seems air-tight, right? No doubt whatsoever.

The Bible I read offers no guarantee of Judgement Day on May 21, 2011. The only thing the Bible I read guarantees, regarding the time of the rapture, is that no one but God will ever know. FR uses a bunch of loose interpretations to assert “definite proof.” The fact that they use Acts 1:7 and ignore Matthew 24:35-36 shows that they’re just manipulating diction to make their point. Even if their argument used more logic than numbers, and they had more solid proof, Matthew 24:36 simply contradicts any of it. FR says “Therefore, regardless of how brilliant or how learned a theologian or Bible student might have been, or how diligently they studied the Bible or faithfully served Christ, it was impossible to learn from the Bible the timetable for the end of the world.” Sounds to me that FR might actually learn a thing or two by reading and learning the Bible. And maybe they should use Acts 1:7 by their own interpretation and stop worrying about when the world is going to end and focus more on sharing the Gospel, as it’s written, not interpreted. There’s a reason no man is supposed to know the end of time…as FR quoted 1 Thessalonians 5:2 “For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.” It would seem by exposing the “truth” of the end times and narrowing it to a specific day you contradict this verse.

It deserves to be said that FR is not professing the word of God as it was intended. They have ignored, betrayed, and blasphemed the word of God. It is infuriating to know that people can go so far out of their way to deface the Bible for the sake of pride. I pray that no one holds FR’s words against the word of God. Like I said – whatever claims FR makes is from their own bible…not the Bible I read.


Genesis: Eden

garden of eden

The story of the Garden of Eden has a lot of very powerful insight into who God is and who his creation is to him.

By the way, I suppose I could take a second to address my opinion on the debate of whether God is a man or woman. Since gender is solely designated (by God for man) for the sake of reproduction, and God has no need to reproduce, gender would be irrelevant. The fact that God is referred to in the masculine may have something to do with the gender roles during Biblical times. We’ll get into all that later though. Back to Eden….

Genesis 3:1 starts by identifying the serpent as the most crafty beast of the field that God created. Genesis 3 never refers to the serpent as the Devil or Satan…it’s not until later in the Bible that such a reference is made. As for now it’s just a serpent (snake-like reptile). And just like in the sunday school story the serpent tells Eve that God is wrong, and she can eat from the Tree of good and evil and be just like God; knowing good and evil. She falls for his deceit and eats, then gives some to Adam. Gen 3:6 doesn’t specifically say if Adam knew what he was eating; that it was forbidden. It just says “she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate,” but you can assume that since he was with her, he knew what was going on and was just as guilty as Eve (this verse becomes important later on). They both instantly realize they’re naked and make some loincloths out of fig leaves to cover themselves.

Genesis 3:8 says “and they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden…” I’ve always been under the impression that God was an omnipresent being with no real physical form (sorry, I don’t think the dude with a gray beard chilling on a cloud is a very accurate representation.), so this verse confuses me. Let me take a second to reiterate that I am not a Biblical scholar. I don’t know everything about the Bible or it’s history. I wish I did, but I don’t have an answer for everything (like why a snake was talking to Eve), but that’s the purpose of this venture; to discover and learn as much as I can about the Bible and the true meaning of it’s words. For whatever reason and by whatever method, God is a physical being in Genesis. My best assumption is that God chose a physical form so he could be near to his creation in the beginning. Not unlike walking alongside the bike while you teach your kid how to ride it.

Gen 3:14-17 : As punishment for what happened, God curses the serpent above all other livestock and beasts of the field, and puts enmity between him and women. Basically saying that he and his offspring will always be despised by man and man’s offspring. As punishment for Eve (who is still referred to as “the woman” until Gen 3:20), God multiplies woman’s pain in childbearing, and says her desire should be for her husband and he will rule over her. Adam, because he listened to the voice of his wife and ate of the forbidden tree,  is sentenced to a life of painful labor for food; “in pain you shall eat of [the ground] all the days of your life.”

Gen 3:20 : Adam names his wife Eve because she is the mother of all living (Eve sounds like the Hebrew for ‘life-giver’ and resembles the word for ‘living’).

(one of my favorite verses) Gen 3:21 “And the Lord God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins and clothed them.” I love this verse because it shows the powerful grace of God. It shows that no matter what wrongs we commit, God will still be there to clothe us…but not before we face the consequences of our actions. Genesis 3 as a whole is an excellent chapter to reference the relationship God has with us – he’s our provider, but he’s also just. He may punish us for our wrongs, but he’s still going to be there for us when in need.

Gen 3:22-24 “Then the Lord God said ‘Behold, the man has become like one of us in knowing good and evil. Now lest he reach out his hand and take also of the tree of life and eat and live forever–” Again, this verse has God referring to himself in the plural, but this verse offers a little more insight…He says “like one of us in knowing good and evil,” and considering only God knew good and evil prior to Adam and Eve’s little mishap, it would suggest that “us” is God and….God. This verse negates my theory that God was referencing himself and the beasts of the land in Gen 1:26, but still doesn’t clarify who “we” and “us” are. It’s been suggested as a reference to the Holy Trinity, but the Trinity is comprised of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Since the Son isn’t born until 1400 years after the book of Genesis is written, I would say that “we” and “us” more likely only refers to God and the Holy Spirit. However, going back to Genesis 1:26 and 27, God says that man was created “in our image,” which opens up the question of what does the Holy Spirit look like? I had always figured the Holy Spirit was imperceptible; without image. In verse 27, Moses seemingly contradicts the previous verse by following up with “God created man in his own image” and referencing God in the singular. All I can say is that I am at a loss with this for now. If you have any insight with some solid supporting references, I’m all ears.

And finally God sent man from the garden and placed a cherubim (angel) and a flaming sword at the east of Eden “that turned every way” to guard the way to the tree of life. Basically, man was sent to sleep in the bed he had made, never to return to Eden.

The story of Adam and Eve is a classic sunday school story, but there’s so much more to it than you may have learned from it growing up. It’s a powerful testament to God’s grace and love, while also showing that God has no problem punishing us for our wrongdoings. God’s love is firm, and that works for me.

Sources: bibleinfo.com, blueletterbible.org, and my ESV Bible.

Next: Chapter 4: Cain and Abel


Genesis : The Beginning

Let me first start by saying that I’ve never understood the argument that science is anti-God and God/religion is anti-science. Crazy concept, but they’re not mutually exclusive beliefs. I guess some people like to think that God refuses to adhere to the laws of physics, but that’s silly. If you believe in an omniscient God like I do, then you’d have to consider that God knew his creation would start to learn how things work and I can’t imagine He would allow our understanding and explanations to contradict his truth. I believe in a God that makes no oversights.

By many accounts, Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy were written by Moses during the 40 years he spent in the wilderness with the people of Israel – 1450-1410 B.C.

Gen 1:1
In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

The implications here are more powerful than many people might realize. IN THE BEGINNING God created. Before there was anything, there was God. It’s a difficult concept to grasp, but if you think about your accepted theory of how everything began, you pretty much have to decide that either God has always been, or matter has always been. The big bang theory states that the universe started as a singularity of infinite density that cooled and expanded to create our known universe. The accepted doctrine offers no explanation of the singularity’s beginning or source. Just that it had always been there surrounded by nothing. Essentially something created from nothing. I have faith that however the universe was formed, it didn’t happen by itself. If the big bang theory turns out to be the accurate explanation of how the universe began, then great. Does it eliminate the possibility of a Creator? no. The two concepts are not mutually exclusive. To create something from nothing is not unlike the God I believe in. Acceptance of one theory is no more implausible than the other. Frankly both concepts are beyond human understanding, but we know something happened and life began. I choose to believe it was done by the hands of God.

Genesis 1:3-31 God created…
First Day – light
Second Day – Heaven
Third Day – Vegetation and Land to separate the seas
Fourth Day – The sun, moon and stars
Fifth Day – Creatures that swim and fly
Sixth Day – Beasts of the land and man

When reading the above verses I noticed a few things that intrigued me…
Gen 1:14 says “And God said, ‘Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night. And let them be for signs and for seasons, and for days and years…”
That passage intrigues me because the lights referred to, in the expanse of the heavens, are stars. A nod to ancient astrology possibly? Before you get grumpy with me, you should know that astrology in biblical times was hardly the Godless practice it is today. And it looks to me that the Bible indicates it was originally a holy practice. Interesting.

Gen 1:26 confuses me because it says ” And God says ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness…” – Who is God talking to? Who is “us?”
The verses preceding this tell of God creating the beasts that roam the earth, so my best conclusion is that God is including them in his conception of man.
The term “likeness” is defined by Merriam Webster as “the quality or state of being like.” and is a synonym of semblance. Do we resemble the beasts of the land? Sure do. 4 limbs, same basic facial structure (eyes, nose, mouth all in the same general position), similar skeletal structures, as well as similar organs and nervous systems. This information all ties into the wonderful evolution discussion that will come later on. This verse is important, in my opinion, to such a discussion.

Gen 1:28 states “And God said to [man and woman], “be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it…”
This verse will also come in handy in a later discussion.

CHAPTER 2

Gen 2:2 “And on the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done.”
People tend to infer from this passage that God needed a break because he exhausted himself, which would contradict the idea that God is omnipotent, but I don’t see it that way.  A rest is defined as “a state of motionlessness or inactivity” – so this verse simply states that God had done all that needed to be done, and stopped. It doesn’t mean he napped, or panted with exhaustion. It just mean he stopped doing what he was doing. God’s so powerful he created the universe a day ahead of schedule. Not too shabby lol

Gen 2:8 God planted a garden in Eden, in the east, where he put the man whom he had created.

(the Hebrew word for man is adam. Adam the proper noun isn’t used until Gen 3:17)

2:19 God put man in charge of naming all the animals of the land, sea, and air. God decides none of the animals are fit enough to be man’s helper, so he creates woman.

2:21-22 God creates woman from the man’s rib while he sleeps. “This at last is bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman because she was taken out of Man.”

So there you have it, this is the Bible’s account of how the world and all it’s occupants came to be.  The true basis of the Bible is divine inspiration. Clearly it’s not Moses’ memoirs of how the earth was made, but more a culmination of prayers and conversations with God (we’ll read about a lot of them in Exodus). If you don’t understand divine inspiration or the Holy Spirit, the Bible will just seem like a Dr. Seuss book full of tall tales and whimsy. I believe the words of the Bible were inspired by God, so the words within have so much power in my eyes. If you take it upon yourself to read along with me, and have questions about specific passages, please don’t hesitate to post your questions. I may not have all the answers, but 99% of the time confusion is simply a result of perspective. Open your mind to new perspectives and challenge what you think you already know.

Next: CHAPTER 3: Eden


This is my God.

On January 22, 2011 I took it upon myself to start reading the Bible from cover to cover. Not solely for the sake of saying I personally did what the vast majority of Christians have yet to do, but to learn more about the religion I choose to profess. Growing up I seldom trusted my teachers or the information they taught. I was never content just hearing the information and accepting it as fact. Why should learning about my religion be any different? So my goal was set – read the Bible from Genesis to Revelation – read for myself what God expects from me. I no longer want to trust others’ interpretations of God’s word – I want to read it directly and see for myself what the Bible says to me. This blog is simply a collection of my opinions, observations, and religious-growth. No more Sunday School cookie-cutter interpretations. I want to read the REAL Word and develop a REAL understanding.

I’ll post as I read through the Bible, and I encourage everyone who reads this to post and offer insight/opinions/debate, etc. I want people to question what they know. There are no answers without questions – no one said the questions and answers have to come from someone else. My theory is – you can follow religion blindly and choose to be blissfully ignorant about what you believe, but why? There are so many amazing reasons to believe. The best part about faith is that ultimately it comes down to you and God. It’s a personal relationship. Don’t let the crazy, nut-job, religious fanatics sway you.

Maybe I should point out a few things about myself first, so you can gain a little understanding about my POV. First, I grew up in church (since I was 10 or 11 or so). Secondly, I don’t believe homosexuality is evil. I couldn’t tell you if it’s a choice or not, and I’m not ignorant enough to pretend I would even know that. And lastly, I love my church, and I love the people in that church, but I will never believe that regular attendance is a prerequisite for salvation.

Maybe this blog will inspire you to take charge of your own beliefs and grow with God. If not, at least you’ll learn something about the best selling book in North America 🙂

P.S. Keep in mind, I don’t tolerate hate speech or blatant ignorance, so if you post horribly offensive things that offer no structure to the debate, they will be deleted.