7/10/13 Alfredo 61
“What about Cain? Where did his wife come from?” Its funny how this question is so often included in the list of questions skeptics use to try to debunk Christianity. Maybe it’s because it is the first seeming contradiction in the Bible (except for the classic “Who created God?”) It was the first question an older man named Alfredo asked me when he explained why he didn’t believe in the Bible. I had approached him while he was watching a soccer game, asking about his beliefs. He believes God is a part of all of us, and that the sun, being the source of all energy, is the closest thing to his idea of God. Alfredo is from Guatamala, and favors beliefs associated with the Mayan culture. When it came to the Bible, he claimed he couldn’t get past contradictions such as the question about Cain’s wife. I know it is important in a street witnessing conversation to avoid getting bogged down in specific arguments such as this, so I gave a short explanation about it but then asked “Have you read the Bible for yourself?” He admitted he had tried to read it but gave up and that his questions were really just based on the negative criticisms of others. “That’s pretty common” I said. “I’ve learned to read the Bible instead by giving it the benefit of the doubt. I’m not trying to disprove it with my questions, and when I do see something that seems contradictory I assume that the problem isn’t with the Bible itself but rather with my understanding of it. I pray for God to help me understand without demanding an immediate answer to my prayer, and I have found that I always come to an understanding I can accept.” I think the only people Alfredo has listened to may have been critics, because as I framed the Bible in a more positive light he began to consider the possibilities that it might all be true. We Christians need to speak up in defense of the Bible and of our faith, because we know that for their part the critics are constantly speaking out against it.