Saturday, April 19, 2014

I keep telling my brain to shut up, but it won't, so I'll inflict some of my thoughts on you guys this evening.  Few more housekeeping items about me and Christianity and all the ways I actually am both the tie dyed liberal sheep of the family and a Christian.

A few things you might find shocking:

1. I actually believe in the literal bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ.   Yes, I know that dead people typically stay dead.  I'm not stupid.  I do know that scientifically it is very difficult to reanimate a corpse.  I really do believe it happened though, and I have several reasons for doing so.  I'm not sure any of them pass a scientific litmus test, but here goes:
  A) People in the first century actually saw crucifixions and were not all that eager to try them on for themselves.   Claiming to be followers of a risen-from-dead-Jewish messiah was a surefire way to get a chance to give it a shot. . See, the common theory on the messiah at the time was that he was going to be a military hero who was going to kick ass, take names and kick the Romans out of Palestine.  Encouraging this kind of behavior was, shall we say, discouraged
 B)  Did I mention the Romans were really good at killing people who weren't good at being polytheists? 
C) This crazy god-man story stuck around.  It also came from the Jews, whose god did not, to sugar coat other mythologies in the region, often "fall in love" with mortal women.  It not only stuck around, it survived its proprietors all dying violent deaths and several centuries of pretty intense (on again off again) persecution.   It even resulted in a Roman emperor, who didn't get baptised until he was near death because he had a lot more people to kill and the church was pacifist at the time, making it legal eventually.  
2.  I also actually believe in the virgin birth.   See 1.C. for details.  This is not something about which I actually worry.  Do not get excited.

3.  I take the Bible to seriously to take it literally.   On some level it would be easier to believe it was dictated to men by God, but that would devalue it.   Seriously.  It's far more interesting as it actually is.  Collections of poetry, prophecy, histories, and crazy letters about infighting in the actually church are far more fun and tell us a lot more about God and his relationship with us than a magic book written by a sky daddy with genocidal tendencies.

That being said, don't you freaking dare blame genocide on religion.  Humans do that just fine without religious intent being involved.   Religion is the excuse, the salt if you will to make it seem more palatable, but human beings come up with some pretty sick stuff to do to each other all on their own.

Another thing:  You can be an Episcopalian and believe in dinosaurs.  No, really.  You can believe in evolution.  You can believe that God doesn't have to tell us EVERYTHING about creation.

4.I really do believe in miracles.  I just find them harder to believe when they come in a commercial package from a guy with a "donation" line and a $4,000 suit.

5.  I am pro-choice because I believe that letting people make decisions for other people is bad.  I find abortion for birth control abhorant, personally.  It's sad, it sucks, and it should be perfectly legal.  Why?  Because God does not want to be in the exam room with you and your doctor unless you invite him.  Because women have a God given right to control over their own bodies.  Because God trusts women with this kind of power (Men can't carry babies after all) and you should too.  Because not all abortions end healthy pregnancies.  Because not all abortions are removing living tissue from the human body. (If you're not big on subtlety, I'm talking about removing a fetus after miscarriage.)   Because the human body aborts more pregnancies than any clinic ever thought about NATURALLY.  Sometimes pregnancies just don't work out and I pray that never happens to anyone, but if it does, leave the government out of it.   The early church was opposed to abortion because it was something done to women by men who had absolute control over their lives. It was dirty, dangerous, and deadly... to the women.  I can't say if it was preferable to the pater familias ordering a new born left out to die of exposure because the baby was inconvenient, but the Church was largely concerned about this as an abuse of women, not an abuse by women.

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