(More Nippets from The 1000 More Things You Always Wanted To Know About the Bible


From the Book: 1000 More Things You Always Wanted To Know About The Bible by Stephen Lang

Chapter 2   THE BIBLE VERSUS the MODERN WORLD

#23  Divine Creation vs. Darwin   According to intellectuals, the 1925 Scopes trial (also known as the “monkey trial”) settled forever the question of whether the Bible was reliable as a science textbook. Technically, teacher John Scopes was found guilty for teaching evolution in his science class, but the worldwide audience that followed the trial felt that Scopes – and Darwin’s theory of evolution – won the day. But not so fast: in the 1090s some school boards began to modify their views on the subject. Scientist who take new findings  seriously began to question whether Darwin was as wise as they thought. And Christians not always willing to roll over and play dead when confronted with a secular worldview, had pressed for school systems to at least teach the possibility that God created the world (and not necessarily in six twenty-four-hour day, following Genesis1). The battle is still on, a battle not just between religion and secularism, but between unbelievers and those who think the deep kerned of truth in Genesis I ( that a personal God created the world with a purpose) is still deserving a hearing in our schools. (p. 11)

Chapter 2  THE BIBLE VERSUS the MODERN WORLD

#52 Ohio, the BIBLE, and The Modern World

The State Motto of Ohio is a quote from the Bible: ” With God All Things Are Possible” (Matt. 19:26) Inevitably the forces of secularism had to protest this, citing the usual issue of “separation of church and state”. In May 2000 a federal appeals court ruled that the motto was indeed unconstitutional. (p. 27)

Chapter 4  WHAT THE FAMOUS SAID

#103  Ralph Waldo Emerson

The essays of Emerson (1803-1882) used to be required readings for every schoolchild, and he is still quite readable. The man known as a Transcendentalist was hardly a Christian in the usual sense, but he did  have a deep respect for the Bible. In fact, Emerson noted that mankind would probably never get rid of the Bible, even if it wished to: ” Pitch it out the window and bounce, it comes back again”, He claimed that the Bible was “the most original book in the world”. “The alphabet  of the nations, and an engine of education of the first power.” (p. 52)

 Chapter 4  WHAT THE FAMOUS SAID

# 112  Uncle Tom’s Author

Harriet Beecher Stowe gave the world the poplar anti slavery novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin, and people often forgot that she was a devout Christian. She credited the Bible not with giving her amoral foundation but also with stimulating creativity: ” I am certain that the constant contact of the Bible with my childish mind was a great mental stimulant, as it certainly was the cause of a singular and vague pleasure”. (p. 56)

Chapter 5  CUSTOMS OF CHRISTIANS

#178  SALT AND HOLY WATER

“Holy water” is water that has been blessed for use in Christian rituals.  It is ordinary tap water, to which a pinch of salt has been added, that has had a blessing pronounced over it by a priest. The Bible says nothing whatsoever about such a practice, but the use of salt in the water has a biblical origin: Jesus told His followers they were to be the  “salt of the earth” Matt. 5:13, and the salt has a long symbolized purity and preservation. (p. 88)

Chapter 5  CUSTOMS OF CHRISTIANS

#184 CLOSED COMMUNION

In many Churches, Communion is “open”- that is, anyone in the church may receive the bread and the wine that are used for the offering. The New Testament itself had a much stricter standard. The Apostle Paul told the Corinthians Christians that “whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself … For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself…                    I Corinthian 11:27-29.  In other words, Christians needed to be right with God and their neighbor before taking Communion. Paul may also have meant that Communion was only for those people who understand its meaning; thus non-believers should not take Communion. In time past pastors sometimes met with their members before Communion to determine if they were spiritually ready to receive it. This was “closed Communion”, which can also refer to denominations that you be a member of their group before taking Communion. (p. 91)

Chapter 6  THE JOYS (and WOES ) OF TRANSLATING

#216  DYNAMIC EQUIVALENCE

Translating the Bible involves taking two ancient languages (Hebrew & Greek) and trying to make them understandable to modern people speaking  entirely different.  One common question for translators is this: Do we try to make the translation’s words follow the same pattern as in Greek and Hebrew, or do we try to make the ideas the same? When translators strive to make the words and sentences as much like the original languages as possible, this is known as formal equivalence. When the translators strive to communicate the ideas it is known as  dynamic equivalence. Translators argue often about what is the  “best” method, but truth is that all translations end up being some form of compromise between formal equivalence and dynamic equivalence. (p. 105)

Chapter 7  SOME CURIOUS BELIEFS AND PRACTICES

#299  VEGETARIAN CHRISTIANS

Among the more curious versions of the Bible ever published was one done by American vegetarianism advocate Olive Pell. Her version of he Bile, published in 1852,  “cleaned up” the King James Version, not only by taking out all the sex and violence  but also by removing all references to eating meat. Miss Pell believed that true believers would frown on anything but pure vegetarianism. (p. 143)

Chapter 8   BACK IN THE U.S.A

# 394   In Spring of 2000, the state of Indiana passed a law allowing public buildings to display the Ten Commandments. The law was an obvious slap at the American Civil Liberties Union and its containing (and effective) efforts to strip all evidence of the Bible and Christianity from public life. (p. 159)

Chapter 8   BACK IN THE U.S.A

# 327  MANNA FOR BREAKFAST

The cereal that later became well-known as Post Toasties first, had the very biblical name Elijah’s Manna (which is slightly wrong, since Elijah the prophet was fed by ravens in the wilderness, but it was not manna they brought him, manna being the miracle food provided for the Israelites in the days of Moses.) (p. 161)

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Categories: America, Bible Reading, Godly Things, Pray, Repent(ing), Seeking the Truths from the Word of God, Sin and..., Spiritually Speaking, Uncategorized, USA | Leave a comment

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