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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Where Did Cain Get His Wife- Some Literalist Problems

A strict adherence to an overly literal interpretation of the Bible often causes more interpretive problems than it solves.  Take for example the age old question, “Where did Cain get his wife?” (Genesis 4:7) The Young-Earth-Ken Ham-Creationist types insist that Cain married his sister (or possibly a niece.) 

“We’re not told when Cain married or many of the details of other marriages and children, but we can say for certain that Cain’s wife was either his sister or a close relative.” Ken Ham

This may answer the question, but it creates more problems than it solves; now we have to deal with a couple of biological and moral conundrums.

This overly literal reading of the Genesis story is problematic biologically because incestuous marriages often produce children with genetic defects.  But of course, our literalists have an answer for this.  They claim that “There were no genetic imperfections at the beginning of the human race…Genetic defects resulted from the Fall and only occurred gradually over long periods of time (Geisler, Howe, 38).”[i]

How can they know this? Were they there?  There’s nothing in the literal text to say that genetic imperfections appeared only very gradually after the Fall.  They’re just making stuff up as they go along.

But the more problematic area is moral.  If we allow that Cain married his “sister or a close relative” (and what would you like to bet that the literalists will NOT allow that this close relative could have been his mother?)  then we have the moral problem of incest.  This is a no-no in God’s law (and is taboo in most cultures around the world).  Again the literalists have an answer – though not a very good one.

They claim that “there was no command in Cain’s day not to marry a close relative.  This command (Lev. 18) came thousands of years later in Moses’ day (c. 1500 B.C.) (Geisler, Howe, 38).”

But (and this is a big but) there was no command against murder in Cain’s day either.  How can he have been held guilty for that but not incest? 

An overly literalist interpretation creates more problems than it solves. For every question they answer with their twisted reading, another three problems are created.

[i] Geisler, Norman & Howe, Tomas When Critics Ask: A Popular Handbook on Bible Difficulties, Victor Books, Wheaton, IL 1992.

Biblical Limericks: God Doesn’t Like Vegetarians

Cain brought an off’ring agrarian
while Abel came with fresh carrion.
God chose Abe’s, of the two,
so I think that it’s true:
God’s biased ‘gainst vegetarians.

Genesis 4: 3 - 4

Monday, July 28, 2014

I Have Two Words For You: Predator Drones (You Think I'm Joking)

I don't think it's funny that he's not joking - and making a joke of it at the same time.

You can download it here.

Created in Ableton Live (8) using a few sounds from the Freesound Project: 

Military Helicopter
Norwegian F-16 Passing Overhead
Whistling Firework
Police Siren
Distant Tank Shots
Ghost Carnival
Glitch Speech Beep

He Can’t Hear Me

He has been told for so long that God hates him that he believes it.  Now he tells himself, over and over again, that God hates him.  That he is cursed. That God has cursed him from birth. 

And so he hates himself.  He’s tried suicide before.  Shot himself in the gut with a handgun.  Now he just drinks. 

And he hates God.  “F**k you, God!” he shouts. And then he hates himself even more because he knows he shouldn’t hate God.

He believes that his sins are unforgivable. “It’s in the Bible! I’ve read it!” He says this, but because he’s drunk he can’t remember where he read it, but he knows it’s in there.

What can I say to him except, “God loves you.  You are not cursed.”  Over and over again, I say it. “You are not cursed. God loves you.  Nothing you have done is unforgivable.  And again and again, “God loves you.”

But he can’t hear me.  Partly because he’s so drunk.  And partly because this message is so contrary to everything he’s ever been told, and everything that he continues to tell himself.

But I say it again, “God loves you.”

Dr. Tarrec’s Free Weekly Horoscope #11

Aries – There will be a doll on the doorstep.  There will be a doll left on the doorstep that looks like you.  The doll on the doorstep has a message for you.  Do not allow the police to become involved.

Taurus – A tunnel, a river, a door.  Cross them. But beware of oxygen deprivation and hallucinogenic trance.

Gemini – A swarm of newly hatched mayflies is heading your way – a swarm large enough to be visible from space.  But be calm.  This is healthy.

Cancer – You have many small white pearls growing inside your mouth: Odontoma. 

– Even if there have been no “legitimate sightings” there are snakes in the playground and in the lake.  Trust me. I’ve seen them.

Virgo – The crater was opened in secret 40 years ago.  What they found was fiery doorway to hell.  It is burning still.

Libra – You may have been hearing voices all these years, but self-mutilation will not help. 
Scorpio – Alive he went into the well, ignorant of blood and death, but the king is betrayed and disrobed in the kitchen.

Sagittarius – The old man is an idiot; his children are frustrated.  But only for a time. Only for a time…

Capricorn – Have you located the missing eight prisoners yet? The warden will be calling soon!

Aquarius – Volcano day at Pompeii came too early.  The entire chronology was thrown off.  Events must be rescheduled in order to prevent further catastrophe.  

Pieces – It was a brilliant piece of politics to cover the city with quicklime, but will it achieve the desired results?


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