Knock Knock. Who's there?
Boo. Boo Who?
Sorry I made you cry!
That's the joke going around my house lately, by my nearly 9 yr old daughter. She's at the age where riddles and knock-knock jokes are fun times, and she follows me around with her joke book telling me joke after joke.
Knock-knock. Who's there?
Apple tree. Apple tree who?
Sorry I made you cry!
What?? That joke is the version my 4 yr old tells. She hears all the knock knock jokes, and she wants to get involved too. She sees the fun, and wants to be a part, but she doesn't understand what makes the joke funny. So she makes the joke her own, without really getting the point.
Some Christians have this problem too! They hear the message of Christ, and believe it. They want to be involved too. So they start to share the stories of the bible, but they are just repeating things they've heard and can get the story mixed up along the way. And suddenly there are lots of confused Christians (and non-Christians) out there.
Don't think it could happen to you? Quick, answer these questions.
1. How long was Noah on the ark?
2. How many of each animal were on the ark?
3. How many wise men were there visiting Jesus?
4. Where did the wise men visit Jesus?
5. After Jesus rose from the dead, how long was he on the earth?
1. Well, if you read my blog you already know that Noah was not on the ark for 40 days. While it rained for 40 days, he was on the ark for 7 months! I just realized this myself last week when reading the bible account of the story, and not a child's story book.
2. Um, 2 of each animal right? Genesis 7:2 says "Take with you SEVEN of every kind of clean animal, a male and its mate, and two of every kind of unclean animal, a male and its mate, and also seven of every kind of bird...." Okay, so that is way more than 2 of each. The first sentence actually refers to seven pairs - so that is 14 of each kind of clean animal. Why did we think two? Well, there were two of each for the purpose of being fruitful and multiplying...but there was also some eating going on I think.
3. Three wise men, everyone knows that right!? The bible does not say three. In Matthew 2 it says "After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi from the east came." (Magi or wise men). It never references how many. Only that they brought gold and incense and myrrh.
4. Well, of course anyone who owns a nativity scene knows that the Wise Men came to the stable...right after the shepherds, right? Actually, Matt 2:11 says "On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshipped him." House? Biblical scholars point to the fact Jesus was under 2 since Herod sent down the order to kill all children under 2, but was probably around 1 yr old and at his home, not the stable by this point.
5. If you attend a church where the creed is spoken, you know "He descended into hell. The third day he rose again from the dead, and ascended into heaven." I always thought that meant immediately, or at least soon. He spoke to Mary at the grave, visited the disciples and off he ascended. He was actually on earth for 40 days before he went to heaven. Acts 1:3 says "He appeared to them over a period of forty days."
Like my 4 yr old, we can hear the stories and get confused, adding our own take on them. We need to make sure we are reading the bible to get the true story. It is great to be a witness for God, but make sure you're spreading the truth. If you're not sure, pray to God for wisdom (knock and the door will be opened!). And if all else fails, seek godly counsel from a bible study leader or pastor. But remember, test what you hear with the bible.
Knock knock. Who's there?
Lettuce. Lettuce who?
Lettuce pray! (Let us pray).
Matthew 7:7,8 - - "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened."
Revelation 3:20 - - Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.