Some Notes and Observations to Daily Digest Readers
On Saturday, 20 October 2007, I received a copy of The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Bible. Just getting through the first twelve pages of the book, I found myself making copious marginal notes and being inspired to jot down ideas for future Daily Thoughts for Internet readers and ME Reports for churches. What follows is derived from accompanying pages of material, sprinkled with observations and ideas of my own. I have not faithfully followed the usual notations for quotations for the sake of making this easy to read, but I want to make sure that you, the reader, understands that I am not claiming what follows is an original work. The collage I am sharing is intended to get you to thinking about how perilous the times are for people of Christian and Jewish faith.
Robert J. Hutchinson, the author of The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Bible asserts 1.8 billion people worldwide esteem the Bible as the Word of God. I think when all variants of that belief are considered his figures might actually be conservative. He points out that despite centuries of non-believers attempting to find fault with the teachings and contents of the Bible; in spite of multitude attempts to cast “doubt and suspicion” on Christianity overall, the Bible has remained the world’s best selling book of all time. The haters of the Bible and of believers in general view with alarm that in spite of their best efforts Christian faith is growing and Judaism is enduring. They are working hard to do something about ending the influence of the Bible and Christians on the world’s affairs. This brings to mind some passages of prophecy in the book they hate. I will say more about this in future communications.
Most Christians in Western countries continue on seemingly oblivious of the fact there is a serious campaign going on to destroy the knowledge and understanding of the Bible’s historical and philosophical significance. The Bible, its themes and ideas are the foundation of and essential to the lives we live every day in the Western world, and that is true whether or not a person is a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ or not. You see, “The ideas contained in the Bible led to many of the things we cherish most in Western Civilization, including the recognition of human rights, freedom of religion, limited government, even science. (For instance I could point out Sir Isaac Newton, so important to modern science, also played an important role enabling the establishment of the Textus Receptus Greek text which underlies the Authorized Version of our Bible.)
Mr. Robert Hutchinson proposes to debunk four myths that Eschatologists and conservative seminary professor are well acquainted with. While others have addressed these issues most who have done so do not get the widespread reading The Politically Incorrect Guide to the Bible is likely to get, so I am grateful, from what I have already read, he is addressing these subjects. Allow me to give you these myths and commentary as it appears in the Regnery Publishing October 15, 2007 information release:
Myth #1: The Bible stifles scientific progress
Biblical religion was not the enemy of science, but rather the intellectual matrix that made science possible in the first place. Without the key insights celebrated in the Bible, which spread throughout Europe, science would have never developed.
Myth #2: Religion is a threat to liberal democracy and political freedom
Secular intellectuals take full credit for the concept of limited government, while in fact the origins of liberty and a belief in limited government lie in the values and ideas found in the Bible.
(Not a few believe some of the secular intellectuals would very much like to replace all democracies with a more all-controlling form of worldwide government.)
Myth #3: Modern morality does not come from the Bible
Atheists like Richard Dawkins are largely ignorant of the influence of biblical law on the development of both Western morality generally and the law specifically. Biblical commandments contain concepts of justice, mercy, concern for the poor, and equality before the law that were unprecedented in their time.
Myth #4: Slavery was virtually mandated in the Bible
Alavery was first officially banned in Christian Europe, and almost all abolitionists who actually risked life and limb to end slavery were devout Christians.
(I might also mention that having lived in the Middle East I know for a fact slavery is alive and well there, and that atheistic societies have a form of slavery, even if it is only to make its people the slaves of the State.)
As I continue to look into this new book I expect to write more on this subject and will share my thoughts and observations with you faithful readers of Thought Today’s Daily Digest.
Dean Michael L. Ford, Th.D.
P. O. Box 752
Buchanan, Georgia 30113