Mountain Lions and God
(Printed in the Towanda Daily Review on Sept. 12, 1999.)
It started with mountain lions, progressed to credibility, and somehow ended with religion. Although Warren Robert's message in his letter (Review, 8/30/99) is commendable, I disagree with a few items.
He stated that the existence of mountain lions in Bradford and Susquehanna counties is possible based on "accounts that are reasonable, logical, and consistent," then he offered three guidelines for "gaining and maintaining credibility."
Guideline #2 was, "Speak and write the whole truth all of the time, even if it is not what you wish it were." It would be difficult to improve on this and I would have made it numbers 1, 2 and 3 in the guidelines.
Guideline #1 was, "Praise GOD for the talents He has given you …." Since #3 mentions Jesus, I assume that #1 refers to the God of the Bible rather than to a Deist God or to a God of nature. Guideline #1 implies that all talents come from the Biblical God. And because this God gave everyone their talents, it appears that murderers and rapists should thank Him for their "talents" too. It is "reasonable, logical, and consistent" to do so.
Guideline #3 was, "Serve others, rather than trying to control them…" and included a quote of Jesus from Matthew 20:26 with similar advice. However, in Mark 16:18, Jesus is alleged to have also said of true believers, "…and if they should drink any deadly thing it shall not injure them…." Good advice in Matthew but dangerous and misleading advice in Mark. Thus it is "reasonable, logical, and consistent" to conclude that Jesus, as portrayed in these sections of the Bible, is inconsistent.
To summarize biblical myth, God created Adam & Eve, then punished them and all of future humankind for a minor infraction that He knew they would commit. Later, He drowned most of the inhabitants of the Earth – men, women, and innocent children – because they didn't meet his expectations. Incidentally, He knew that He would kill them when He created them because He created them to not meet his expectations, or else He made a mistake which would make Him imperfect.
After killing or ordering to be killed a few hundred thousand more humans, God retired and His alter-ego, Jesus, takes center stage to soften the horrific nature of his evil twin (or triplet depending on the myth.) Then to redeem humankind from the horrific crime of eating an apple, God has His innocent Son killed, which wasn't much of a sacrifice anyway because the Son was reported to be an immortal deity. A real sacrifice would have been to have him live and become an independent federal prosecutor.
If you doubt the absolute truth of the above myth, you will suffer for all eternity – even if you are a moral and ethical person.
And you thought that reports of mountain lions in our area were strange.
John L. Ferri