Wednesday, September 20 , 2017, 8:28 am | Fair 60º

 
 
 
 

D.C. Collier: Why the Bible Matters (A Lot) — Part III

[Noozhawk’s note: Third in a series. Click here for previous articles.]

Suppose you were a Martian landing on Earth for the first time. And, in your initial encounters with earthlings, you find yourself confused by a widespread paradoxical behavior pattern that shouldn’t be seen in such a supposedly advanced civilization.

On the one hand, all the information that these earthlings need to live wisely is right at their fingertips (literally, thanks to technology). But only a handful of these highly educated inhabitants actually do live wisely. Their world is still characterized by perpetual wars, rampant social unrest, genocide, abortion, addictions, family dissolution, child abuse/neglect, pornography/objectification, human trafficking, poverty, exploitation, occult spiritual practices, violence, mass murder, terrorism and more.

Everyone seems to be pushing and shoving their way to the top, yet few have any real idea where they are going — their ultimate destination, that is. Most are focused on short-term objectives, even though they know that their stay here is unlikely to exceed 70 or 80 years (and that’s if they’re lucky).

Most of these earth-dwellers, either individually or collectively (as families, tribes or nations), care minimally for others but are willing to go to great ends to take care of themselves.

As a Martian, you are astounded at this ongoing global display of repetitive self-destruction as it gets passed along to successive generations who seem blind to their own bleak history. You ask, “Doesn’t anyone ever learn? They have all that technology and knowledge, so why repeat the same things over and over?”

There seems to be a collective blindness, and the only explanation for this appears to be that it’s in the genes.

Our Martian observer would also learn that humans the world over have ready access to the most widely circulated, most quoted book in human history — the Bible.

But astoundingly, as successive generations “advance” in technology and sophistication, they increasingly view the Bible as antiquated and not applicable to modern times. Sadly, it becomes the most widely unread and unstudied book in their library. What follows is a self–inflicted, endemic shortsightedness, condemning them to repeat history.

Where is their outrage over sin?

For instance, right there in that “book of books,” the word sin gets 1,176 mentions — 814 times in the Old Testament and 362 in the New Testament. Yet the subject of sin never comes up in the daily lives of earthlings — either because it is considered politically incorrect, or perhaps, more to the point, because it might intrude upon people’s lives in an uncomfortable way.

The book of Galatians summarizes the fruit, or result, of sin, which characterize the lives of people who are under sin’s dominion. Written 2,000 years ago, the list is not unlike reading today’s newspaper headlines:

It is obvious what kind of life develops out of trying to get your own way all the time: repetitive, loveless, cheap sex; a stinking accumulation of mental and emotional garbage; frenzied and joyless grabs for happiness; trinket gods; magic-show religion; paranoid loneliness; cutthroat competition; all-consuming-yet-never-satisfied wants; a brutal temper; an impotence to love or be loved; divided homes and divided lives; small-minded and lopsided pursuits; the vicious habit of depersonalizing everyone into a rival; uncontrolled and uncontrollable addictions; ugly parodies of community.

I could go on.1

Our Martian friend wonders why it is that these people get outraged over neglected spotted owls, a personal slight, a rude driver on the freeway or the loss of a coveted entitlement, yet quietly resign themselves to the far greater issue of sin that saturates every area of their personal, cultural, public and political lives.

He might exclaim, “Don’t they see the havoc sin is wreaking in their lives? Can’t they read what the Bible says about its human toll? It’s right there in black and white!”

So, What’s Next?

Considering the cumulative good that the Judeo-Christian worldview (based on the Bible) has delivered over the millennia, one would expect that it would be universally welcomed with open arms.

Such, as any casual reader of world history will attest, is not the case. In fact, things seem to be worsening.

In his book, What’s So Great about Christianity, author Dinesh D’Souza set forth a chilling summary of the current war on religion that is being waged on a global scale:

The atheists no longer want to be tolerated. They want to monopolize the public square and to expel Christians from it. They want political questions like abortion to be divorced from religious and moral claims. They want to control school curricula so they can promote a secular ideology and undermine Christianity.

They want to discredit the factual claims of religion, and they want to convince the rest of society that Christianity is not only mistaken but also evil. They blame religion for the crimes of history and for the ongoing conflicts in the world today. In short, they want to make religion — and especially the Christian religion — disappear from the face of the earth.​2

More next week ...

D.C. Collier is a Bible teacher, discipleship mentor and writer focused on Christian apologetics. A mechanical engineer and Internet entrepreneur, he is the author of My Origin, My Destiny, a book focused on Christianity’s basic “value proposition.” Click here for more information. Click here for previous columns. The opinions expressed are his own.

1. Galatians 5:19–21 MSG

2. D’Souza, Dinesh. What’s so Great about Christianity. Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Pub., 2007. Print.

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