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Wednesday, October 05, 2016

How Times Have Changed!

Christianity today is much improved over Christianity of yesteryear. For instance, there was no small segment of Christendom that argued that the Roman Catholic Church was the arbiter of all things true. Well, the Reformers arose to change that perception and, while there are still some who hold it, we know better. In American history there were those who argued that racially-oriented slavery was biblical. They were a lesser race, even, some argued, cursed as the offspring of Ham (Gen 9:24-25). It wasn't merely acceptable; it was divine retribution. Well, we know better today. Along with miscegenation rules that prohibited the interbreeding of races (as if whites were human and other skin colors were not), we've managed to figure out, from Scripture, that there have been lots of errors along the way.

Today, we continue to do so. And it's to be expected. We are, after all, human. We will err. And, for the believer, an infallible corrective is God's Word. So where else have we corrected our thinking?

Well, we now know that 2,000 years of Christians and beyond were all wrong when they thought, as Jesus and Paul and all those guys did, that Genesis was historical narrative. Darwin, thankfully, corrected that. We know now that Genesis is myth -- a sort of parable, I suppose -- and Jesus was mistaken, caught up as He was with His culture, and God did not create all that is out of nothing, but did it by Evolution. Thanks for clearing that up.

All this time we thought that Man was created in the image of God, giving Man a special value beyond the beasts. Now we know that our value is just what we make it, so executing babies in the womb isn't such a bad thing. It's birth control ("Reproductive rights"). (Oh, yeah, and that whole "birth control" thing ... we know better on that now, too, don't we?)

All of Judaism and all of Christianity has held for the longest time silly rules about sex as if they were of God. You know, "It's a sin to have sex outside of marriage" or "It's a sin to engage in sex between two people of the same sex" ... that kind of thing. We Christians are so much more enlightened today.

We've been sadly mistaken on the nature of God in the past, but no longer.
"See now that I, even I, am He, and there is no god beside Me; I kill and I make alive; I wound and I heal; and there is none that can deliver out of My hand." (Deut 32:39)

"I am the LORD, and there is no other. I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the LORD, who does all these things." (Isa 45:6-7)
These are both quotes from the lips of God Himself. Both make the claim by God that He does what we consider "bad things". He creates calamity. He wounds and kills. Bad! Bad God! Of course, we're smarter than that. No believer says, "Bad God!" Clearly, then, times have changed. Maybe back then He did things like that, or, more likely, He never did -- they just thought He did. We're much wiser these days. We've figured it out.

Oh, how about women's issues? The Bible is abundantly clear that wives are to submit to husbands (Eph 5:22-24,33; Col 3:18; 1 Peter 3:1-6; 1 Cor 11:3). In today's age we've figured out how misguided that was. We're pretty sure that the commands to husbands in the related passages are still in effect, but not to wives. Paul was not unclear when he refused to allow women "to teach or to exercise authority over a man" (1 Tim 2:12-14), giving as his basis the order of Creation and the Fall of Man, but we understand today much clearer that he was only talking about the education levels of women. So while uneducated people like Peter and John were allowed to have positions of teaching and authority over men in those days, women were not. Today, that issue is ended and we are so much smarter.

These are just a few examples. There are lots of these things. if you think about it. The Church has been wrong for millennia. We've figured it out. Times have sure changed. Good thing God has us on His side to figure this stuff out for the rest of the world.


Bob said...

i was reading 1st kings last night and i noted that even Solomon with all his wisdom, eventually thought he was too smart for God. God said, don't intermarry with the woman of the world because they will lead you astray. yea well Solomon was like, "I Got this" the next
thing you know he is making alters to other Gods. well God eventually tore the kingdom away from him. silly Solomon, he thought chicks were for kicks. and now the rest is history...
even the wisest among us is vulnerable to the Sin nature.

Stan said...

That has always bothered me. Solomon, listed in Scripture as the wisest man ever, had 700 wives and 300 concubines ... in direct contradiction to God's command that kings shall not multiply wives ... and fell into idolatry. Not too bright, Sol ol' man.

Lesson: If the wisest man falls so far, I'd better be very cautious about my own life.

David said...

I heard this from a woman I know that wanted to go to school to become a pastor,"I feel that God has called me to be a pastor." Her boyfriend nodded with her. So many times now,"how i feel" trumps Scripture, because we know better now.

Stan said...

See? We've improved Christianity! Originally it was predicated on God's revelation, but now we have our feelings to improve that. (Sarcasm on my part, obviously.)

Of course, hearing how "I feel" trumps Scripture, I recognize it as true while I cringe at the perceived connection to a current presidential candidate. :)

David said...

Yeah, my autocorrect tried to capitalize it.