Tuesday, January 4, 2011

A Korean shook my faith

Despite the way he speaks English, one Korean missionary shook my faith and left me in doubt.It all comes down to FAITH...
I came home from school deciding which to do first: review my Stat12 notes, read my Acctg103 book, or write a speech for our Lit1 debate. Turned out that I have to write this post over the three.

A Korean, around 18 years old, sat on our banig with different translations of the Bible lying beside him. He was talking with my aunt. Then he turned to me and invited me to hear what he wanted to say. Me? I just read the Bible when I want to… But I obliged.
     So I sat in front of him. He turned a few pages from his Korean/English Bible (Two-columned, Korean at the left, English at the other) and read a passage. He read the same verse from the Tagalog and Iluko Bibles as well. Then he asked me a question and I was dumbfounded. The passage read:
Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” –Genesis 1:26
     My parents, grandparents, and religion teachers would say that we believe in only one God. For approximately 17 years I have lived with that philosophy. And right now, I’m not sure if that would change. Read it again and notice the first few pronouns. Us. Our. Even an elementary student would say that both words would imply more than one person.
     He wasn’t done yet. He showed me another verse and told me that the Lamb, Jesus, has a wife. O.o
One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.” –Revelation 21:9
     Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code became controversial for this reason. I believe Brown created a “wife” for Jesus for the sake of one of the novel’s climax. Besides, DVC’s more of a fiction than a historical account or whatever. But the Bible says He did had a “wife”…but the bride’s not a woman in case you’re wondering.
And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. –Revelation 21:10
     The Korean missionary added a note: the Holy City being talked about there is not Jerusalem, Israel. But rather a new place that came from the heavens.

Our conversation lasted around 30 minutes telling me that the Catholic church was made by man and not God Himself; that there is only one church of God and it is in Corinth; that eating the Holy Bread (Ostiya) every Sunday is an unworthy manner for we need to eat it only on the fourteenth day of the first month; and others.
     I admire kuya’s effort to explain his points. In fact, I salute him for trying to communicate with me personally without the help of his fellow brother/translator. As he was explaining things, I reply him with “Yes” or a simple nod. A part of me did believed in what he was saying. Then I remembered my philosophy instructor telling us that the first Bibles were written in Greek and Hebrew. And translating it will create a few (or major) changes in the thought of the original manuscript (the horned Moses, anyone?).
     I admit that my religious philosophies were shaken during the Bible study session. But then again, it all comes down to faith. We must believe what we want to believe. We can share our philosophies to others like what the Korean missionary did. And it’s up to the person whether to accept it or not. But we must also bear in mind that we should respect others’ beliefs; that we should not tell that ours are more superior; that we are correct and they' are wrong; that ours are more socially acceptable.

It’s 9:30 PM. I must have faith that I can finish the rest of my to-do list (i.e. review for long exams and write a good debate speech).

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