We’ve known since at least 1872 that the Great Flood detailed in Genesis is a descendant of earlier flood myths from Mesopotamia. And there may be some credibility to the occurrence of at least some serious floods then, based on the facts that Mesopotamia is a giant flood plain and that there is some archeological evidence for a big flood around 5000 BC. But what we didn’t know until now is that those earlier flood myths also incorporated a boat onto which species of wild animals were sequestered to save them—two by two!
Can you save original sin from science? Here are some valiant efforts.
The 2012 GOP nominating contest has witnessed the final triumph of an unlikely figure. I say “unlikely” because his name hasn’t been invoked much (if at all) by any of the candidates, nor has he been mentioned frequently by the press in its campaign coverage. What’s more, he died in 2007.
Michelle Goldberg has a terrific piece exploring the intellectual roots of Michelle Bachmann: Bachmann honed her view of the world after college, when she enrolled at Coburn Law School at Oral Roberts University, an "interdenominational, Bible-based, and Holy Spirit-led" school in Oklahoma.
On an Indian summer afternoon in front of the Justice Department yesterday, a group of dark-suited ministers gathered to protest recently-passed hate crimes legislation, saying it had had a “chilling effect” on religious freedom. “We will not be bullied!” cried Reverend Pat Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition, to a rank of cameras. “We will not be pressured!
In the Beginning: Bibles Before the Year 1000 Edited by Michelle P. Brown (Smithsonian, 360 pp., $45) The numinous objects displayed in "In the Beginning," the exhibition of Bibles from before the year 1000 at the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery in Washington, D.C., are beautiful, and their arrangement helps the visitor to the show (and the student of its extraordinary catalogue) see important things in a new light. Beauty first: the archipelago of dimly lit vitrines that stretches through several dark rooms reveals hand written Bibles as genuine works of art.