by Benjamin T. Moore, Jr.
“Before you can get someone saved, you must first get them lost.”
The entire Christian message, hinges on the doctrine of “Original Sin.” If you’ve ever been “buttonholed” by some Christian on the street engaging in what they call, “witnessing,” within the first moments of your encounter, they started out by quoting one of several passages from their Bible – Scriptures – pointing out that all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.
Death is too easy. You’ve got to suffer forever.
The next step in their parade, is to convince you of just how terrible and serious this is. Whether you know it or not, there’s this “all powerful being” just waiting to squash you like a bug, turn you into asbestos and then throw you into a fire that burns for all eternity… but he loves you! I admit the cognitive dissonance is a bit much, but for their program to work, it is necessary that you hold these two mutually exclusive positions in your mind.
It gets worse. Suppose you’re living a perfectly good life… even by their rather flexible standards. You’re not a liar or a cheat. You’re paying your taxes. You donate to charities. You’re volunteering perhaps mentoring youth or caring for seniors. Not to worry, they’ve got a cake baked just for you. They’ll tell you all these things don’t matter. You’re a sinner not because of anything you’ve done. You’re a sinner because of what Adam did! Say what? Yes, Adam!
There’s your problem! It was Mayhem!
It all goes back to that fateful day in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve took a bite from some fruit they were not supposed to eat. Of course, you had nothing to do with that. However, God whom really, really loves you… and evidently hates you at the same time, can hardly wait to burn you for all eternity, not because of something you did, but because of something Adam is supposed to have done. Did I mention? God is also just and righteous! Don’t try and make any sense of of this because there is none. You’ll see why as we continue.
Fall Of Man Or Ascent Of Man?
Let’s suppose temporarily, for the sake of discussion that there actually was a Garden of Eden. The problem is, all of these events would have occurred thousands of years before the development of writing. Thus the story – if it occurred – would of been handed down via word of mouth generation after generation after generation. If you’ve ever played the “Telephone Game,” you know that after one or two people, the original message becomes garbled. Now multiply that by numerous generations and you get my point.
We have no way of knowing what if anything was said, to whom and by whom. We have no way of knowing what was done or not done by any of the players. Was it a fruit that was eaten or was the talking Serpent really a phallic symbol and the forbidden fruit sex? We do not know. Just because a large number of people believe something doesn’t make it true. At one time, the majority of the world’s population believed that the Earth was flat and that the Sun orbited the Earth. They were wrong.
Oft times back then, stories were told not so much to give a factual account of history, but rather to convey a principle or a moral from generation to generation. The minute details of the story were inconsequential. The important information was encoded into the story at much higher level.
The Ascent of Man?
Thus, someone enlightened hearing the story of the events in the Garden of Eden, might actually find a record of the ascension of human development. We began as gathers. Hence the Garden setting. We were naked and subsisted by picking fruit off trees and eating berries. What’s the next thing that happened after eating the forbidden fruit? We realize our nakedness and God kills animals to make skins so we can clothe our nakedness. Hence, we go from eating nuts and berries to hunting and eating meat.
Abel represents the next step. He represents our nomadic herdsman period. Just as today, in various parts of the world, people live off and follow their herds. The Laplanders survive off their reindeer herds. In Africa there are tribes that follow their herds of cattle. The problem with the nomadic lifestyle, although enjoyable, it precludes real technological progress. You cannot build cities if you have to pick up and follow your herd to the next greener pasture.
Cain was a farmer. Farming is hard work. However, through farming, harvesting and storing food, you now have the possibility to subsist in one location. You don’t have to live in tents and be ready to move at a moment’s notice. You can build long lasting structures. You can develop and build a specialized society. People can learn to work metal. People have time to develop a system of education. Thus, as Cain slew his brother Abel, so too did farming put an end to the nomadic lifestyle based on following the herd. All this information is encoded into the first few chapters of Genesis. It is not written on the lines but between the lines.
Original Sin – Mind Control Through Mythology
The real sin in the story of the Garden of Eden is the insulting depiction of God. I have a two year old granddaughter. If I left a cocked and loaded handgun lying on the coffee table and left the room… even if I told her not to touch it in the most unambiguous and emphatic terms possible, when she picked it up, as she surely would, whom would be responsible when the gun went off? Me or her?
In for a penny, in for a pound! Most Christians at this point will want to ascribe to Adam knowledge and abilities that are not in evidence. Had Adam ever seen anything die? Did Adam have any idea what death was? Telling Adam that he would surely die might not have meant much.
Then there’s this whole “Good and Evil” problem. Prior to eating the fruit, Adam had no concept of Good or Evil. Hence, he wouldn’t have known that God is good and equally important, he wouldn’t have known that the Serpent and what the Serpent was telling him was evil. Adam, according to the Christian theological position, was in a state of perfect innocence. If you saw a snake in a tree, you’d back off immediately. If that snake began talking to you, Bible stories notwithstanding, you’d run like Hell! Why? Because you would know it wasn’t natural. Neither Adam nor Eve possessed those innate survival instincts or inhibitions. They were like innocent two year-olds in the bodies of adults.
This could end poorly!
This brings us to the next point. If God knows all things and knows the “end from the beginning…” and If God is all places, then God would have to have known that the Serpent was in the playpen. What parent would put his baby in a playpen, then watch as a venomous cobra wound it’s way through the bars? Furthermore, what parent would then punish his child for getting bit? The entire story begins to fall apart… unless of course God is not all powerful and not all knowing and not omnipresent.
This brings us to yet another “sticky wicket.” What if it was all God’s plan to begin with? Possible. However, now you have God punishing mankind for going along with his plan. See the problem?
Passing Down Sin
Remember, the entirety of Christian theology depends upon everyone being born a “sinner” because of what Adam did. Of course if Christians actually would read their Bibles, they would see that this is false.
[KJV] Ezekiel 18:20
The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him.
There you have it! This passage right here is the death knell for the Doctrine of Original Sin. You don’t inherit the sins of your father and that of course means, you cannot inherit the sin of Adam.
Nowhere in Jesus’ recorded words in the Gospels, does he ever say or imply that his mission is to right the wrong and undo what Adam did. Nowhere! In fact the name “Adam” only appears one place in the Gospels. Luke 3:38 gives the genealogy of Jesus tracing all the way back to Adam. If Jesus’ entire mission, the reason he came to Earth was to be the ultimate sacrifice and die to fix the original sin of Adam, you’d think he might have mentioned it. That would be a pretty important point for him to overlook mentioning it. Surely he would have shared his mission, his purpose with his Disciples… at least one of them. Perhaps Peter?
The entire doctrine of “original sin” comes from Paul. Paul never met Jesus, was never taught by Jesus and quite frankly, not to put too fine a point on things… Paul was a liar and a false Apostle. If you doubt this, read Revelation 2:1-2. Then ask yourself if you know of anyone other than Paul claiming to be the Apostle to the Ephesian Church.
Despite what you’ve seen in science fiction movies or in the performances of Stage Hypnotists, mind control is actually a lot more subtle than what you may have been led to believe. It all begins by planting suggestions and building on those suggestions. For instance, right now your nose is itching. We are all susceptible to suggestions to varying degrees. Nose not itching? Give it a minute. It will. By telling you what I’m doing I’m letting you off the hook. This is just in fun. It doesn’t matter if your nose itches are not. The more you fight it the more annoying the itch will become. The human mind is a marvel.
Try this, next time you’re in a group, clear your throat loudly and then count how many people begin clearing their throats as well. This also works with yawns. Yawns are extremely contagious. These are simple things you can have fun testing. However, what about our core beliefs? It turns out that we are even more susceptible to manipulation when someone accesses a button we’ve already developed a preconditioned response to.
This is one of the reasons I have asked, “how can you judge someone who was raised in an Islamic, Buddhist or even a Pagan home?” We are born with a blank slate. Our parents begin writing on that slate from the moment of our birth. As children we have yet to develop the analytical skills that allow us to determine what is reality. This is when the indoctrination begins. The foundation upon which the rest of our life is built, is laid in our childhood. If you’ve been raised in the “West,” more like than not you’ve been indoctrinated to have a predisposition to believe in Christianity.
What happens when someone begins pushing these buttons? You’ve already been raised to believe that the Bible is the “Word of God.” You’ve been taught not to doubt or question. If they come to you and begin quoting or referencing certain Bible passages, you’re predisposed to give what they’re saying more weight. Naked human beings who didn’t know they were naked? Talking snakes? Forbidden fruit? Under normal circumstances, you’d ask someone what they’d been smoking! However, because of the triggers planted in your youth, you’re predisposed to believe whatever is written in the Bible. If someone tells you you’re “lost,” you’re “lost!” It’s just that easy.
[KJV] Mark 2:17
When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance
Here you have it! According to Jesus, not everyone is a sinner. Some people are righteous. When a proselytizer approaches you to “witness” to you. They never leave it with your accepting Jesus as your personal saviour and accepting his substitutionary death for your sins. Fellowship is the flip side of the salvation coin. Now you need to join a Church… their Church! You will quickly discover there is more to your salvation than merely accepting Jesus. There’s paying tithes – 10% of your income – and giving in the offerings. Matter of fact, if you don’t pay your tithes, you’ll discover that your salvation might not be assured. Yes, it seems heaven has its price too.
So, whom are you going to believe? The recorded words of Jesus or someone who has a financial interest in your joining their Church? The doctrine of Original Sin is Mind Control Through Mythology. Churches have become huge corporate interests who profit from your belief in their message. Everything is designed to control your mind. From the Church building, to the music to the message. It is designed to not only lead you to the altar, but to open your wallet. You need to be aware of whom is pushing your buttons and why.