RE: Does the Bible teach a flat earth?

From: Alexanian, Moorad (
Date: Wed Jan 01 2003 - 13:37:59 EST

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    I believe the following is relevant to your discussion. Moorad

    "Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is
    broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through
    it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life,
    and there are few who find it." Matt. 7:13-14

            -----Original Message-----
            From: Dr. Blake Nelson []
            Sent: Wed 1/1/2003 1:59 AM
            To: Jim Eisele; John Burgeson
            Subject: Re: Does the Bible teach a flat earth?

            --- Jim Eisele <> wrote:
    > There is a part of me that misses the knock-down,
    > drag-out fights
    > of the old days. But, the truth comes first, and I
    > am finding less
    > and less to disagree about. I feel uncomfortable
    > de-converting
    > Christians, although Christianity is certainly in
    > decline.

            Jim, you have a penchant for the broad statement.
            What data do you base this grand statement upon? Do
            you mean that membership in particular Christian
            denominations is down in a particular country? That
            Christianity as a worldview is suffering under some
            new or novel attack that casts it in an ill light?
            That church attendance is down in Peoria? Or
            something entirely different?

            Christianity is doing fine and most of the revelations
            you have come to are old hat for those who have gone
            through any serious thinking and/or reading about
            faith issues.

    > There
    > are more important issues than owning up to the
    > mythical nature of
    > Christianity.

            Again, not to belabor the point, but myth in the way,
            for example, George uses it and the way you use it are
            two very different things. Christianity as a
            worldview, however, is not mythical in the slightest.
            Do you mean the mythical nature of some texts that are
            scripture for Christians? That Christianity itself is
            a myth or some other option?

    >Mostly important is how well you take
    > care of yourself.

            Again, I dont understand what this means. Does this
            mean me first? Does this mean understanding one's
            relationship to God and your fellow humans? Does this
            mean servant leadership and self-sacrifice as lived
            out by Jesus of Nazareth? Or does this mean something
            else to you?


    > Hmmm. Eternal life is a nice thought. With all due
    > respect, if you
    > are convinced that that is the way it is, go with
    > it. I'm always
    > happy to present the other side if you feel your
    > life would be better
    > without Christianity. I'm not on a crusade ;-)

            Jim, eternal life is something you have raised
            numerous times in your deconversion about why
            Christianity is a nice thought. Is this why you were
            a Christian? Perhaps I am odd man out, but I have
            never thought Christianity was about eternal life. In
            fact, eternal life has very little to do with the
            Gospel as an end unto itself. So, saying this is a
            reason people want to believe in Christianity is very
            odd and in fact wrong if you have any familiarity with
            Jesus' teachings in the New Testament which focuse on
            the here and now -- which has an effect on how one
            views and relates to one's life and God. Given that
            an eternity facing the reality of one's failings is
            not necessarily a cheery thought, eternal life is not
            necessarily a selling point. Indeed, some Christian
            theologians have gone so far as to suggest (although I
            disagree with them) that eternal life is not part of
            the Gospel bargain per se and would not be something
            to be desired. Regardless, eternal life, per se, is
            not a central message of Christianity. Why do you see
            it as such an important reason why people believe,
            when, in fact, it really isn't a selling point of the
            Gospel at all and talked about only in metaphor?

            Warm regards,


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