Monday, February 9, 2015
The problem is that not all facts are equally established and while it is observable and demonstrable that the earth is indeed round (an observation validated by the Bible) and that the sky is blue, the jury is still out on many facets of the vaccination process. There are a great many very smart people that are on both sides of this issue, but before we start forcing people to take shots, it might behoove us to look at the track record of 'science' or rather, what the Bible calls 'science falsely so-called"
For example, it was a commonly held belief in ancient times that living matter could spontaneously arise from non-living matter. It was a commonly held-scientific opinion, endorsed and defended by the great minds of the time, for hundreds and hundreds of years. Everybody from Anaximander to Aristotle took the position that dead flesh spontaneously produced maggots, and that buckets of grain spontaneously produced mice. It was such a commonly accepted idea that Shakespeare even alluded to it in Anthony and Cleopatra. Francisco Reidi performed the first experiments in 1688 that cast doubt on this notion. His experiment was simple; isolate rotting meat form flies and see if maggots develop. They did not. For his trouble he was ridiculed and called 'unscientific'. The pressure was great enough to cause him to doubt his own hypothesis, not based on the evidence, but rather on its reception in the scientific community.
In 1745 an Englishman named John Needham performed experiments in which he boiled chicken broth, killing the microorganisms he believed were present in it. He sealed the broth up and when microorganisms grew anyway, victory was claimed for the idea of spontaneous generation. Later experiments proved that his boiled broth was still being contaminated by the air before it was sealed. It wasn't until 1859 that Louis Pasteur was able to sufficiently isolate the samples to prove , by demonstrable and repeatable experiments, that the prevailing scientific theory of the day was dead wrong.
Another common idea of medieval medicine was the idea of 'humours'. Humours can be loosely defined as 4 different bodily fluids (blood, phlegm, yellow bile, and black bile) that had to be kept in balance to assure good health. This 'science' is a distant cousin to herbalism. In humour thoery different foods were assigned to different humours, and a person was supposed to treat deficiencies in their humours by consuming, for example, more pasta to bring your bile into balance or more sugar to adjust your blood humours. Humours were also tied to the Zodiac and the four season. Further study has discredited humours, but for centuries it was as firmly established a 'fact' as the color of the sky. No serious medical doctor at the time would challenge it, even though it was kind of silly.
All the great minds of the scientific community agreed for almost 3000 years that bloodletting was a valid medical practice. This method resulted in, among other things, the death of George Washington.
Trepanning , where a hole is drilled into the skull to relieve pressure ( and let evil spirits out) was practiced from ancient times to the renaissance without being questioned.
More recently, electroshock therapy reigned nearly 50 years as a viable method for treating a variety of illnesses. In the 1980's a procedure called vertebroplasty was introduced. In vertebroplasty, a sort of cement is injected into the spinal cord to relieve pain after an injury, and this method enjoyed a 90% success rate until , years later, many of the recipients began to experience a whole new set of problems, and further studies found it be no more effective than a placebo.
My point in all this this that the last chapter of this has not been written, and before we charge ahead, it behooves us to look behind. Throughout history, scientists have come up with ideas and theories and procedures that were widely implemented and endorsed and defended before ultimately proving themselves to be useless. Sometimes it took hundreds of years to get the truth out, and it may very well be that future generation will sit back and marvel that we were even considering injecting people with foreign substances against their will in the interest of medicine. Perhaps someday the vax pushers of today will be classified with blood-letters and trepanners.
Thursday, February 5, 2015
Recently a young wife and mother named Veronica Partridge wrote a blog post on her decision to make some changes in how she dresses. It is interesting, movingly personal and very well written. The blog itself starts off with a disclaimer:
Apparently a good chunk of the world didn't read that, even though it is literally the first sentence. Now that's quite telling, as we will explore later. She goes on to say that she had been unaware of how much her appearance and preferences might affect the men around her, and out of concern for her testimony and out of a concern for others, she was going to adhere to a more Biblical standard of modesty. I say, bravo, Mrs Partidge.I am in NO WAY trying to tell people what they can and cannot wear. What you wear is entirely your own choice.
What was fascinating to me was the hailstorm of controversy. Part of the problem is that a lot of Christian writers, including myself, are writing about 'family matters'; to wit we are discussing things intended for saved people, but because we are using the big bad internet as our medium, the whole world gets to listen in on our family discussion. I don't care what the world thinks about modesty. In fact, they prove what they think of modesty by what they wear. But a lot of unregenerate people skipped that first sentence in her blog and claimed she was 'standing up against yoga pants'. She wasn't doing anything of the sort. She was accused of all sorts of dictatorial whims, when the entire discussion was about the decision she had made about herself and what she was going to do. At no point in the blog, or any subsequent interview did she even recommend what anybody else should do. Nevertheless, the unregenerate world flipped out. That's isn't particularly interesting or surprising considering the Bible says they walk "in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened , being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: "
But also weighing in were more than a fair share of professing Christians, some of whom I know personally and some of whom have been the object of my prayers for years. It is to these dear Christian folks, both those I know and those I don't know, that my remarks are addressed.
I wont go into a discussion here on modesty. Others have done a far better job than I can on that issue. I wont tell you what I wear, or what my wife wears. Besides this isn't really about modesty.. This is about your heart. The Bible says "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life." and it also says "..for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh". Whether you like it or not or whether you mean to or not, eventually whatever is in your heart is going to fall out of your mouth, and in this modern age, your keyboard is an extension of your mouth.
So let me ask you this; when you take the exact same position on this topic that lost people take, what does that say about your heart? When you make snide comments in person or online, what does that say about your heart? When your comments say things like "I'm a Christian too, but..." , what does that say about your heart? When you dig up some other blogger that tears Mrs Partridge to shreds and post that on social media with tags to all the other girls you know that agree with you, what does that say about your heart? When you consider your desires and your liberty more precious to you than the fact that you may be a stumbling block to your brother or sister in Christ, what does that say about your heart?
It's obvious to everyone what you think about modesty. To whatever degree you can choose your own wardrobe tells the whole world what you think about this. But when you defend the undefendable, you say so much more about yourself than you probably want anyone to hear. We can talk about 'legalism' all you want, but the fact that you pitch your camp there, with the Bible-rejecting crowd, says volumes about you, and about your heart.
As your brother in Christ, let me plead with you to think about what you're thinking, think about what you're saying, think about why you're saying it, and if necessary repent. The whole world is listening in.