God’s Original Design Shot to Hell

Recently I bought a snazzy looking travel-size Bible (see photo)and have begun to read through it. I’ve done it several times before, but it’s been awhile.

In reading the first few chapters of Genesis I remembered a conversation I had earlier in the fall with the wife of a conservative Christian pastor here in Scotland. She could not get passed the idea that heterosexuality was God’s original design. Therefore, homosexuality was OUTSIDE of God’s original design.

At the time I didn’t see just how powerful those Genesis texts can be for some people. Reading them the other day it struck me that the writer(s) of Genesis clearly wished to communicate that:

1. God created everything.
2. God affirms heterosexuality.
3. Man comes before woman
4. Woman was designed for man’s companionship and aid (marital and otherwise)
5. Man gets to rule over all of creation

Who gets to tell the story determines what gets told and how. Genesis 1 and 2 are dangerous texts, particularly for women, people with same-sex attractions and the animal population.

Looking at the texts as a literal, I can see how some people conclude that God meant for one man to be with one woman. But looking at it a little longer one can also conclude that God designed us to live in the magical Garden of Eden and to eat an exclusively vegetarian diet.

And if we take a literal view of things, in order for humans to multiply and populate the earth, they indulged in incest (Who did Eve and Adam’s children marry?) and polygamy.

And it wasn’t until the time of Adam’s grandson Enosh (at least 200 years after the garden incident) that “people first began to worship the Lord”. So what did they do before that? Was it God’s original design that people NOT worship the Lord?

Clearly people do not live according to “God’s Original Design”. We have many single adult men living alone (And the Lord God said, “It is not good for man to be alone”). People eat meat to excess and in the form of hamburger, sausage and Spam™. And we have coupling in forms other than solely heterosexual. And what about plastic products? And TV? And single moms? And Intersex folks? And Trans folks? And mega churches? And the Bible on ipod? And even the Bible itself?

This whole “God’s Original Design” argument is a terrible slippery slope.

This post has 4 Comments

  1. Anna HP on December 14, 2006 at 7:16 am

    Indeed a snassy looking Bible and a very interesting post. This is exactly the things I think about when I contemplate (I love that word). Unfortunately I haven´t yet come up with a good answer.

    You always find flaws in texts written long ago. Is it maybe time to update the Bible a little? Give someone the mission to add a chapter or two 😀 ??

  2. Willie Hewes on December 14, 2006 at 10:19 am

    Genesis is not very nice to women. One suspects this has something to do with the fact that the books were written and composed by men… way back when.

    You know, my mother and grandmother both sewed their own clothes (and clothes for their many children). My grandmother actually sewed my mother’s wedding dress, a large, white, lace-edged gown. My mother later disassembled it and turned it into an infant-sized dress which my eldest brother wore on the day he was baptised (and so did I, and my brother and sister who followed us. My family’s Catholic on both sides.)

    I know this, even though I’m too young to remember it, because my grandmother would often tell us about it, saying how wonderful it was that the dress she made had been put to such good use, and that the baptism dress was such a sweet and fitting thing.

    If God is anything like my mother or grandmother, I think he delights in the creativity and diversity of his children, and the way they manage to take what they’re given and turn it into something beautiful.

    Dang, you can tell it’s nearly Christmas, can’t you? Anyway, consider yourself tagged, Peterson. 6 weird things, let’s have it! ;p Check my blog for details.

  3. MadPriest on December 14, 2006 at 12:47 pm

    I’m a humourist, liturgist and writer. Usually when I start creating something I have a specific intention and I usually realise my aim in that respect. However, I find that EVERYTHING I create ends up containing elements that I never originally intended – that add to the creation in interesting and useful ways. This may be coincidence or it may be stuff coming up from subconcious. Who cares? And, of course, I always claim the credit.
    Perhaps, just perhaps, it’s that with God when he creates.

  4. jasmine on December 15, 2006 at 10:16 pm

    our bodies are designed to walk. so driving cars, airplanes, and spaceflight is also against god’s original design…

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