Saturday, September 14, 2013

Just a Few Questions: Part I Genesis

With ALL of these questions posed in regards to the Bible wouldn't it be nice to be able to access the questions in one place instead of flipping between blog postings? Now you can! The questions for the first five books of the Bible, the Pentateuch are now in one compilation, and there is no need whatsoever to flip-flop between various posts! Go here for your copy:

How should Bible verses be taken? Literally? Philosophically? Simple stories?

Add any answer you may have to any of the questions in the comment link at the end of the post. Be sure to note the number of the question you are answering/responding to. If you are using Bible verses as references please include the passage location. Thank you.

There are sixty-six books in the Bible, thirty-nine in the Old Testament and twenty-seven in the New Testament. The content presented spans many subjects from creation to the end of the world and everything in between. I do not necessarily have questions about everything in the Bible, but for the books of the Bible that I do have questions about I will go book by book and state the questions I have and the associated verses.

This particular posting is for every Christian, every believer who insists that everything in the Bible is absolute truth, the literal words of God, the only answer to all of man's deepest questions as to why man exists. Christians are eager to convey their spiritual truths to people and should remember that many of these people have questions as to why anyone so willingly believes in the Bible.

While there are those Christians who do not hold the disbelief of the Bible against non-believers, there are also those Christians, who, upon hearing the questions and concerns of non-believers, turn into angry beasts the moment anything in the Bible is questioned or held up to any kind of criticism. There are even those Christians who refuse to listen to the questions and accuse the inquiring individual of being maliciously subversive and asking questions only for the purpose of aggravating believers, and for looking for a way out from being accountable to God.

This is largely for the Christians who will not stop proselytizing long enough to consider the questions non-believers have, questions that are often more than the ordinary questions about creation, the flood, the crucifixion, salvation, and the end of the world. Some of the questions are absurdly simple. Some of the questions require more than just a cursory mental/intellectual glance. Some of the questions are amazingly deep, driving the inquirer to search for answers to questions that do a whole lot more than simply keep a person awake at night when they are trying to sleep.

So, if you are a Christian and you are reading this I want you to pay close attention to each question and each verse the question is related to. In fact, I will not bother you with what I think the answers are; I want to hear YOUR answers. Besides, to be frank I don't even have answers to all of my own questions. I just want you to consider the questions. Then, if you can, give an answer...a valid answer. 

Do not give answers that are the equivalent of "because I said so" or "because God said so" or "because the Bible says so" as such answers are unacceptable. I am not asking you to prove the Bible exists. Obviously, the Bible exists, but please to not misinterpret this statement as any type of admission that the entire Bible is truth. I am just making an amazingly obvious observation that the Bible itself does indeed exist. Heck, where else would I be getting all of the verses I have questions about? 

What I am asking for is not so much for you to prove the existence of God as it is I want you to give strong answers and concise reasoning as to why what you believe should be the same thing I believe. I am not asking for you to stop believing what you believe. What I AM doing is trying to convey to you the reasons why I do NOT believe. 

You say the God of the Bible is the only way. You say that the ultimate in truth and spirituality and salvation is all right there in the Bible. Prove it. Give me a clear understanding as to why I should, for the sake of my eternal soul, believe the Bible, the God of the Bible, the punishments of the Bible, and the salvation of the Bible that is the so-called greatest story ever told. 

Show me what I am missing, what I am misunderstanding. Don't just tell me you believe every word of the Bible as truth based upon pure faith. Some of the questions are very easy, some take careful consideration, and others are seemingly so deep they can put your mind into ribbons.Give me answers about verses that should be taken literally. Give me answers about the semantics of the Bible. Give me answers as to why the philosophy of the Bible and God is what you claim it to be. Give me real answers to these real questions.

Give me a reason to believe.

We will start with the first book of the Bible, Genesis. Since I do not wish to produce a blog posting three miles long I will be breaking it all down into manageable portions.

1. Genesis 1:11-16
11 "And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after its kind, whose seed is within itself, upon the earth: and it was so.

12 And the earth brought forth grass, and herd yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was within itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.

13 And the evening and the morning were the third day.

14 And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs and seasons, and for days and years:

15 And let them be for lights in the firmament of the heaven to give light upon the earth: and it was so.

16 And God made two great light: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: he made the stars also."

Here we are dealing with the third and fourth days of God's Creation. Now, there are some Christians who hold that God created everything in a measly six days, six literal days. Then there are Christians who cite II Peter 3:8,

     "But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day."

For many believers the idea here is that it actually took six-thousand years for God to create everything and then another thousand years to vacation in God knows where. Anyways, here are the applicable questions:

     1) As it is apparent from the language in the verses the plants were created BEFORE the sun. So, how did the plants survive without photosynthesis? And without the sun wouldn't it be far too cold for the seeds of plant life to germinate?

     2) Of course, it is possible for a plant to survive for a shot while in the dark. It might even grow a tad if it has an energy source or a good amount of energy stored. But, a plant cannot survive very long without photosynthesis. If you are going by the theory that a day to God is as a thousand years to man, how did the plants survive a thousand years without photosynthesis?

This video is hilarious. I love the comment about the firmament being quite an obstacle for our space program, hah! Outstanding.

2. Genesis 1:24-25
24 "And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.

25 And God made the beasts of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and everything that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good."

Questions Posed
     1) The insects and land creatures were not created until the sixth day. So, God was either making a brainless mistake or was simply whipping things into existence completely out of order. Many plants rely on insects and even some dry land animals to help with pollination. Considering this and assuming that a day is worth a thousand years, again I ask you how the plants survived without the sun, and not only that but also in regards to plants requiring insects and animals to pollinate, how was this done?

     2) Also, remember that the birds were made on the fifth day and the land creatures and creepy-crawlers (insects) were made on the sixth day. There are many birds with diets that consist almost solely of insects. Again, if we go by the theory that a day to God is as to a thousands years to man, how did the birds survive so long without the food they needed?  

3. Genesis 2:5-6

Now no shrub had yet appeared on the earth and no plant had yet sprung up, for the LORD God had not sent rain on the earth and there was no one to work the ground,

but streams came up from the earth and watered the whole surface of the ground.

7 Then the Lord God formed a man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life and man became a living soul.

15 The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.

Questions Posed

     1) This verse says that no shrub or plant had appeared on the earth due to lack of rain and a good landscaper. However, Genesis 1:12 clearly states that the earth had indeed brought forth/produced plants on the third day, mentioning nada having anything to do with needing rain or needed landscaping service. So, which is it? Which verse is correct?

     2) In regards to the garden God created needing a landscaper service please explain to me why a perfect being would need outside assistance to deal with a creation that was in perfect condition? Remember, this is before the 'fall' and before any major screw-ups had been committed. Why would a perfect God creating a perfect garden need someone to till and work the ground?

     3) Please take note of the part of verse five that states, "There was no one to work the ground." Now go to verse fifteen, read it again and then think about this grand 'plan' that God has for humans. So, it seems as if the very first purpose of man (as intended by God) was in the capacity of rendering service. Lawn service for all intents and purposes. How can it then be said that God loves man so very much and cares for him and provides for him and  loves discourse with man and has voon-der-bar plans for man...when the original purpose was to work the Garden of Eden?

     4) Since God originally placed man into the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it, is the reason why it no longer exists because man was not there to do the job God originally intended man to do? The inability of man to fulfill his garden chores, of course, was due to man's 'fall' and resulting banishment from the garden, because how in the hell can the garden be properly tended to if the serviceman is not allowed inside the garden?

     5) If the Garden of Eden and all of its beauty withered because man was not there to tend to it as intended, why didn't God tend it and keep it beautiful? Why would God allow the beauty He created to die for lack of care?

     6) Did man know that his original purpose was to care for and work the garden? And, if God HAD informed man of his (man's) duty to tend the Garden of Eden would this have made any difference in regards to Adam and Eve plucking and eating the wrong fruit?

Remember, do not give me answers you think I want to hear. Just give me your honest to goodness answer. I am not saying I will agree with it, and I am not saying I will disagree with it. Just give me your answers. 

And since this post is already considerably long I will end it here and provide the next posting sometime soon.

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