Straight Up

with Davidson Bowen

Myths vs. facts

A myth is a story with a purpose. The purpose usually is to try to explain how the world is. Myths also try to explain the relationship between God and humans.

Many people hold that myths are not true. That isn’t necessarily true.

Too often we get caught up with an event rather than the message behind the event. The Bible, or should I say the Holy Bible least I offend the closed minded Christian, is a collection of books. If you want, we could say a library of books.

These writings are nothing more than people’s experiences of and with God. The common thread running throughout the Bible is humanity seeking God and God assisting or delivering humanity from a situation.

But we somehow behave as if God was sitting in Heaven calling dictation and there were holy men down here writing all God had to say and this IS THE WORD FROM GOD. That was not the situation.

The people of the early Biblical era had a highly developed oral tradition and herein lies the beginning of many problems. You would appreciated that as close an individual is to a situation when it comes time to put what was witnessed into words some things will change. Then when that story is passed on again something else is either added or eliminated.

This is not to say the story we end up with is not true because of discrepancies, but again it take us back to the thread running through that story; the underlying story, the message behind the event.

We need to shed the Sunday school mentality that was fed to us to keep little boys and girls that didn’t know any better in line. Now that we know better let us open the eyes of our mind and show that we do.

When we do this and stop applying blind faith to everything surrounding or mentioned about God the better it would be, not only for us but for Christianity as a way of life and not just an activity.

There is evidence we as Christians accept but then misuse or seem frighten to put into practice. We have evidence that Genesis was not the first book written, it was the Psalms. But we need a beginning so Genesis is placed first; acceptable in the running order of things but we need to move away from the thinking that the record finally recorded in Genesis is exactly how it happened.

The first 11 chapters of the Bible are prehistoric; and that is before written records.

The man Adam, and the woman formed from his rib, Eve, go beyond two physical beings. Rather Adam is a generic term meaning MANKIND and Eve is the Hebrew word for WOMANHOOD.

Mankind and Womanhood became aware that there was a power greater than themselves and this becomes the story of creation.

Again we need to go to what the story is telling is. The first thing is that God created the entire universe and people were meant to live in a special relationship with God. However, God installed in us free will and it was exercised in such a way that we fell from grace, we disobeyed.

This does not open the door for Eve eating an apple but rather the door to the notion that we have a glutinous appetite for knowledge and wisdom and being in charge. It is because of this behaviour that we were cast out of the metaphorical Garden of Eden, which was that pleasant relationship with God.

The Bible repeatedly records our search to reestablish this pleasant or special relationship with God and God leading us back to Himself. Jesus is presented as the ultimate revelation where we can establish a new relationship with God.

When we go with the event rather than the message to be gleaned from the event we run into trouble.

If we continue to hold that Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible we are foolish. Scholars have evidence that he did not, the most obvious being the narration of Moses’ death in Deuteronomy 34. It is highly unlikely that Moses wrote about how he died before he did and virtually impossible that he wrote it after he was dead. The logical assumption is that someone else wrote it.

The story there is the same, God requires obedience if His promises are to be enjoyed.

We can not have a relationship with someone and expect to have the benefits of that relationship.

We need to take the Bible for what it is worth and realise it is not the be all and end all about God. God existed before the world was formed; we have evidence of dinosaurs and we need to stop ignoring this. This too speaks to the might of God. The Bible is about a relationship between a people and God, it is just a part of the grand scheme of things. There is more to life and God than the Bible.

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