Wednesday, October 25, 2006

A group called Time to Turn, a network of Christian students and young adults in the Netherlands have decided to make Chrisitanity "Green." They "want to choose a sustainable and just way of life, based on their faith in Jesus Christ." To do this, they have released a"new translation" of the Bible. And it is a pretty darn trendy translation.

Remember Matthew 19:21? 'Course you do. We live in Uhmurka! We're a Christian country! For the heathen, Matthew 19:21 reads: Jesus answered, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." (NIV) This is one of those passages in the Bible that are not 100% literally true. Everyone knows that no true Christian would ever want to be perfect. (This in spite of the fact that it's in the Bible a second time: Mark 10:21! That's two verses in the Bible that are not 100% literally true! And a third time: Luke 12:33. Three verses in the Bible that are not literally true! The ten commandments are only mentioned once, and we want them posted in schools! The one about giving all your money to the poor? Nope. Don't want that one posted anywhere!)

The Western Bible Foundation is reacting to the wishes of many churches wo want to be more market-oriented. "Jesus was very inspiring for our inner health, but we don't need to take his naïve remarks about money seriously. He didn't study economics, obviously," said Chairmain De Rijke. No Christians, he went on, takes these texts literally. "What if all Christians stopped being anxious, for example, and started expecting everything from God? Or gave their possessions to the poor, for that matter. Our economy would be lost. The truth is quite the contrary: a strong economy and a healthy work ethic is a gift from God."

So the foundation has removed the more troublesome passages from the Bible. “We don't use them anyway! There's no single Christian selling his possessions and giving them to the poor." Some of the most important passages of the Bible: the Ten Commandments, sections of Isaiah, Proverbs, and the Sermon on the Mount, contain holes where the original translation urged radical actions around money, justice or affluence.

Before you Flame, RTFA. The Bible is a marvelous piece of satire, poking fun at the worldy, cash hungry and acquisitive world of Modern Christianity.

And don't forget to vote. Your pastor is going to vote. Don't you want to support him or her?


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