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So I was perusing a Christian’s blog, as I am sometimes wont to do, and she was discussing the Biblical creation story (version 2, which contradicts version 1 from a few verses earlier, but anyway…)  In this creation account, Yahweh creates everything else, then places one man (Adam) in the Garden of Eden.  He sends all the animals to Adam to be named, and to see if any of them will make a worthy companion for him, and Adam names all the animals and likes some of them but none are quite right.

And God says, “It is not good that the man should be alone” (and creates Eve from Adam’s rib).

No shit, Sherlock.  Humans are social animals.  We need one another, deeply and desperately, both for physical and psychological survival.  And here, God goes and creates a man, and puts him in a (very large and very beautiful) solitary confinement cell.

Now, when you confront Christians with the fact that the world today is full of needless suffering, and God, being omnipotent, could alleviate all that suffering with a word, but he never does, Christians will tend to respond with some bafflegab about this being a fallen, sinful world and/or God working in mysterious ways.  Here’s the thing: in the above story, Eve hasn’t even been created yet, let alone been tempted by the devil/snake to eat the apple and feed it to Adam.

Adam is perfectly innocent; sin has not yet entered this shiny, new, perfect world that God has declared good.  And here is Adam, suffering for no reason except that God did creation this way and not some other way.  (Hey God, when you declared your creation good, was Adam’s suffering part of that good?)  What would it have cost God to create Adam and Eve at the same time, or better yet, breathe on enough dust to create a whole tribe?  Being omniscient, God knew before he put Adam all alone in that garden, that it would not be good for him to be alone.  And the God who is Love went ahead and did it anyway.

It’s also interesting to note, in the most famous story of gratuitous suffering in the Bible, the Book of Job, God doesn’t actually directly cause Job’s suffering.  He agrees to let the devil do whatever he wants to Job – who is not innocent like Adam, but still a very good and devout man.  In the creation account, God sticks it to Man directly.  Either way, what a dick this Supreme Arbiter of Morality seems to be.

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