The World’s Oldest Conspiracy Theory

In my ninety-one years, I have never been so aware of the preponderance of conspiracy theories floating around.

For example, recently I heard a woman state definitively that the government inserted tracking material into all the COVID-19 vaccinations so it could follow all our movements. The worst part is she believed it!

Then, my mind raced back to the book of Genesis and the myth of the Garden of Eden, where Eve ate the forbidden fruit. (The Bible never called it an apple.) With the bite of the fruit, evil came into an otherwise perfect world. The point of the story was to show that humanity has free will. Because we can choose, we will at times make bad choices.

Let’s remember two important facts: (1) this story is a myth; similar stories have appeared in many different cultures and religions for eons, and (2) no one was there to witness this event because it never happened. But the truth of that myth is repeated every day as we watch the six o’clock news, which is full of humanity making bad choices.

Let’s fast-forward to a man named Augustine, who lived from 354 to 430 CE. As a young man, Augustine was bright, articulate, and horny, which resulted in lots of fornication and destroyed several lives. In 386, Augustine went to hear Bishop Ambrose preach and had a conversion experience. He became a priest in 391 and was consecrated as a bishop in 395. He was a powerful speaker, theologian, and defender of the faith (the Roman Catholic kind).

He also promoted the doctrine of original sin (OS), which was based on his own notorious past. He blamed Eve for his bad behavior and then declared that from that bite, all humanity was infected with OS and was each born “bad.” But not to worry! The Roman Catholic Church has the tools to make that disappear: be baptized, do what the church says, buy indulgences, build cathedrals, and give the Vatican almost all your money. Your OS will go away—plus you get a free ticket to heaven. This has to be one of the oldest conspiracy theories in the history of mankind. It has made billions, maybe even trillions, for the institutional church and still is a moneymaker today.

I don’t believe even one iota of that silliness.

But I do believe in OG—Original Goodness. All humanity is created in “His image,” which always signifies the agape kind of love. However, with free will, occasionally we make bad choices. (Ask me how I know.) But sometimes bad choices can lead to good endings. (Ask me how I know.) For me, it’s not the mistakes we make but what we do about them that matters. The church has pushed OS far too long. Perhaps if it pushed OG, more people might be in the pews.

Let’s stop marketing conspiracy theories in the church, such as virgin births, dead men walking, some mean Old Man living in the clouds and making our lives miserable, and that His Kid lives there with Him. Yikes!

The power of Jesus’s message doesn’t need any conspiracy theories. Agape love is real!

Peace Love Joy Hope



Photo courtesy of cea + (CC BY 2.0)

2 thoughts on “The World’s Oldest Conspiracy Theory”

  1. Great. Plus apples need very cold weather so poor choice in ideal garden where one goes without clothes. My mom revise the scene once she hit Honolulu. Had to be a mango there in the garden she decided after tasting one, irresistible fruit. So poof to that myth.


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