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BeetleMilk's Top Five Fun Bible Facts
Ah, the Bible.
Can you think of another book so interesting? So old? So problematic?
The Bible is one of the most important books ever written in human history. Ever. Bar none. But the fun part is that a lot of people aren't as familiar with it as they'd have you think. It's a lot like the fact that everyone knows about "1984" but very few have actually read it. They know the story in the broadest strokes. The Bible unfortunately suffers from this treatment as well. But, never fear. You might not ever take the time to sit down and read it, but you can at least convince that cute Christian at Bible camp that you did with my help. Although, she might not like what you have to say on the subject...
Is Bible camp a thing? Do people go? Especially anyone that actually reads blogs? I mean, I dunno. I imagine it would be like band camp, but that's a way old reference and I'm dating myself. Let's just get back into the stuff I understand, no?
Fact 1: The Bible is flat out plagiarism.
Don't look at me like that. The content of the Bible is unoriginal on so many levels that it's astounding. Firstly, it was lifted almost wholesale from the Jewish holy text, the Torah. Of course, this is true of the entire Christian religion in many ways. Without getting too far into it, Christianity started as a subset of Judaism, but had to split off due to Christ wanting to allow Gentiles (People not of the Jewish faith or lineage) to be a part of it. Judaism is and was a very closed group. So the Christians copped the book, went on their merry way, changed a few things around, and after the death of Christ introduced their first piece of original work, the New Testament. This is a vast oversimplification of this issue, but well worth your time to look into.
Fact 2: Satan is barely mentioned in the Bible, especially by name
One thing that modern day Christians have done is really built up the myth of Satan. But Ol' Scratch's origins are never really touched on in the Good Book. Our popular perception of him comes from, really, a few verses, and the book "Paradise Lost", by John Milton. You know the story. God was all being God and Satan was like "Bruh." Due to this linguistic trespass, Satan was cast down from Heaven. That is not in the Bible, although his fall is mentioned by Jesus. Additionally, there are a few verses that appear to refer to Satan out of context, but do not. Also, a lot of times he's referred to as "devil" but I'd argue that it's not as immediately clear as we think that "devil" and "Satan" are the same thing.
Fact 3: The authorship of the gospels is highly contested and were almost certainly not written by their namesakes.
The Gospels. You know 'em, you love 'em. Part of the New Testament, these books are multiple retellings of Jesus' life, named after some of his apostles. But historical evidence show that the Gospels were not written by the Apostles they were named after. They also weren't written in an expedient timeline - chances are they were written hundreds of years after the the crucifixion. Historically, this makes sense. When everything happened with Jesus (presuming it to be true, which is an entirely different blog), it is likely that the individuals involved did not know that they were making history, and presumed that they were Jewish. They splintered off later, but our modern interpretation makes it appear as if it all happened overnight - it didn't.
Fact 4: We call it the Good Book, but the Bible was sometimes evil.
Before I get into any of this, it's important to note that the common argument against some of the more deplorable things in the Bible is that it's old, and therefore we can't listen to it. My friends at Lore-Cast even stated that the New Testament supercedes the Old, and that's how we can get past the atrocities in the Old Testament. With all due respect to them (Seriously, I love those guys and they are very knowledgeable), I've never been to a sermon that used Old Testament language and clarified it with "But Jesus wiped all of that bunk away when he was martyred." The reason is because the Old Testament is a lot of wrath of God type stuff, and you need that in order to keep control of people. At least, that's my very simplified reasoning. I could be wrong, of course.
With that said, a thorough reading of the Bible is very disturbing, in many ways. Here's an interesting article by Salon on the subject, and here's a significantly darker one. So make sure to let your daughter know when you sell her into sexual slavery that she had better be damned good at it...
Fact 5: Modern Bibles are incomplete, mistranslated, misinterpreted, and used as a tool for the elite - not for the people.
So, my favorite example of a mistranslation is actually the story of the Antichrist, which I mentioned in a previous blog. Like the story of Satan, we have put our own modern spin on the idea and have glossed over the Biblical interpretation of what the Antichrist actually is. Is it one person? Is it Legion? Good luck trying to figure it out from the Bible. At different parts, it describes them as one person or many. As far as translations go, originally it was "born of a dragon". Now it's Jackal. Now, this wouldn't be that important if, you know, people didn't base their entire life on it. As it stands, because of the importance of the Bible, it's essential we get it as correct as possible. Additionally, back in the day a bunch of dudes (I think we can safely say there were no women in the room) decided which books were canon and which were not. There are amazing amounts of extra-canonical texts out there that were flat out ignored by these guys, like the Gnostic texts. Why? Well... it didn't fit the narrative.
Jesus had to be perfect, a virgin, and he had to be conceived immaculately. Anything that strayed from this perception was yeeted out the door. Again, not a huge deal if people didn't take the Bible as literal gospel.
Bonus Fact: Google "Abominable Fancy". You're welcome.
Well, that's it! If you know me, you know my motto is "A blasphemy a day keeps the existential drama of wondering whether there's an all-seeing being watching my every move and reading my every thought from on high away". I seem to be living it today. Have a great day, friend!