Beliefnet

We could not be luckier here in Kentucky. We are that state that promotes religious quackery. Oh, in case you don't know or are thinking of traveling south to warmer climates, on your way through Kentucky stop and see the Creation Museum. It is our pyramid to primitive faith.

Soon the Museum will serve as host to what some are saying is the debate of the century - Creationism versus Evolutionism. Not since the days of the Scopes Monkey trials has there been another more important debate.

Are you kidding me?

I am so weary of this nonsense. This madness just won't go away, will it?

I suppose not. At least, not as long as there are Christians who mistakenly think that the infallibility of scripture all collapses if Genesis is not regarded as a scientific treatise on the nature and origin of the universe.

The story of Creation in the Genesis account of creation is the story of Adam and Eve, the story of human community. Or, the lack of it.

That's about it.

What the Genesis account is not is a historical account of the creation of the universe.

Why can't puny little minds let this primitive notion go?

You'll have to answer that.

If, however, you were taught in Sunday School, as I was, that Genesis is all about how God created the world in six literal days of 24-hours duration and that Genesis is the explanation about how "original sin" came to be on this planet as a consequence for the sin of Adam and Eve, then you will understand just how conflicted I've been most of my church life after learning the truth that Genesis is not about any of this nonsense at all.

Furthermore, the madness misinformed Christian zealots taught me as an impressionable youth - "brainwashing" might be a better description of it - and so undermined my natural capacity to live by faith by saying stupid things like - "If you don't believe Genesis...if you have doubts about its authenticity...you are not living by faith" and other such maddening and heretical faith statements - then you can understand my consternation over debates like this one that just won't ever go away.

I'm sick of it. And, I know that this is just another reason why scores and scores of thinking Christians have left - again, not their faith or their devotion to Christ - but the churches and parishes that promote this heresy. This Creationism craziness is indefensible and only ever succeeds in making Christians look like a a bunch of intellectually-bankrupt nitwits.

That there are still Christians promoting Creationism is actually more unbelievable than the illogical nonsense in Creationism they wish everyone would just believe.

What is this story in Genesis all about?

The story of Adam and Eve, my friend, is really just the story of you and me.

You are Adam and I am Eve and together...well...that makes we.

Genesis is the Jewish version of the mythical stories of creation found in virtually every primitive culture and religion. Its emphasis is on the Creator, creation, and community. It isn't about proving the existence of God. It isn't about proving that God created the universe in six literal days. And, it isn't about how human beings all got inflicted with something it calls "original sin."

It's not about any of this at all. It is instead, and mostly, about the failure of humans to guard and grow the community God created. Just ask any Hebrew. Which might be a good place for Christians to start anyway, since the book of Genesis comes from their scriptures, not ours.

The creation story is about human community or, more accurately, the propensity of humans to destroy the potential for community.

When you get this simple truth about the purpose of Genesis, you will begin to grasp the point of the Jesus story - which is all about the creation of a new humanity and the potential for a new community. Which is why Saint Paul called Jesus the new Adam (Romans 5:12-18). In other words, Jesus' message...the Genesis message...is that we are one human community, one new humanity!

Jesus did not come to create some new religion. Bishop Desmond Tutu is right when he says, "God is not a Christian." Jesus no more set out to begin "Christianity" than Buddha set out to establish "Buddhism." These religions, or philosophies, were creations of the followers who came after these spiritual masters. Both groups have done much good, as one might argue with all religions. But virtually all religions, including the Christian religion, have been responsible for incomprehensible evil throughout history.

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