It’s got to be one of the most incredible displays of Bible ignorance and Christian history I’ve ever seen. I’d say go on over and read it, but I don’t want to be accused of ruining your next meal.
Al Mohler, Michael J. Kruger, and Daniel B. Wallace did the dirty work for us, and each, in his own inimitable way, took Mr. Eichenwald to the woodshed. I won’t even attempt to add my two cents worth in this way – they’ve done it better than I ever could have.
But there’s one thing I want to point out about this egregious pile of cow-flop, and it’s that it and other screeds like it work because of two things – Bible ignorance and deep-seated hatred for Christianity.
As to Bible ignorance, there are plenty of polls and such out there which tell us the sad truth that the majority of Christians use their Bible as a prop or dust-gatherer at home; far too few of them actually crack the pages and read it at all, much less on a regular basis. That’s why these kinds of screeds work: Christians (not all, but I’d say the majority) will read something like this and say, ‘Oh, really? I didn’t know that’. And worse, they’ll believe it, because they read it in Newsweak, or in the New York Times, or in some other ‘unimpeachable news source’.
But for those of us who happen to be familiar with what’s in the Bible, these screeds reveal that the authors themselves are scaldingly ignorant of the Bible, its history, and the history of Judaism and Christianity.
What indicates the authors’ hatred of Christianity is the tone and language they use in their articles. Case in point, the first two paragraphs from Mr. Eichenwald’s article:
They wave their Bibles at passersby, screaming their condemnations of homosexuals. They fall on their knees, worshipping at the base of granite monuments to the Ten Commandments while demanding prayer in school. They appeal to God to save America from their political opponents, mostly Democrats. They gather in football stadiums by the thousands to pray for the country’s salvation.If this doesn’t signal that the rest of the article is going to be as unbalanced as the author seems, I don’t know what does; as Pastor Mohler writes:
They are God’s frauds, cafeteria Christians who pick and choose which Bible verses they heed with less care than they exercise in selecting side orders for lunch. They are joined by religious rationalizers—fundamentalists who, unable to find Scripture supporting their biases and beliefs, twist phrases and modify translations to prove they are honoring the Bible’s words.
What is really going on here? Did some fundamentalist preacher run over young Kurt Eichenwald’s pet hamster when the reporter was just a boy? He opens with the most crude caricature of evangelical Christians — one unrecognizable in the vast majority of evangelical churches, and even to credible journalists. But the opening lines are truly a foretaste of what follows.Of course, if you’re going to something like Newsweak for fair and balanced religious information, you’re looking in the wrong place.