Download The serpent's promise : the Bible retold as science by Steve Jones PDF

By Steve Jones

Revisits Bible tales as obvious throughout the lens of recent technological know-how, trying to make sure if people are particularly descended from Adam and Eve and if Noah's nice flood used to be really a illustration of the top of the Ice Age.

summary: Revisits Bible tales as obvious in the course of the lens of contemporary technology, trying to make sure if people are fairly descended from Adam and Eve and if Noah's nice flood was once truly a illustration of the top of the Ice Age

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In the same way, Robert Boyle, father of chemistry, felt that the human body lives on even after death; ‘its atoms are preserv’d in all their Digestions and kept capable of being reunited’ (which explained the Resurrection). Robert Hooke, discoverer of the cell, saw the microscope as an attempt to restore the perfection of Man’s senses, lost at the Fall, while Joseph Priestley, of oxygen fame, was equally sure that his History of the Corruptions of Christianity was worth far more than his research on gases.

The New Testament marks a great shift from the Old for it brings the scriptural narrative much closer to the modern world. Instead of a narrow focus on the doings of a chosen people and their implacable god, the Gospels emphasise altruism and inclusiveness, and the rewards to be gained in heaven by making sacrifices here on Earth in response to Christ’s promise of eternal life. To believers, that philosophy explains the origin of devotion, and of society, itself (sceptics, in contrast, see religion as a confidence trick to concentrate power in the hands of a few).

Thomas Jefferson went further, for in his adaptation he considered the miracle stories to be ‘a ground work of vulgar ignorance . . superstitions, factitious, fabrications’. He cut out many of the wonders and dubious additions (and by that he meant the Trinity and the question of Jesus’ divinity) in a search for its essence. The forty-six pages that remained, he was certain, ‘extracted the diamonds from the dunghill’ to give ‘the most sublime and benevolent code of morals which has ever been offered to man’.

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