Forrest Gump America's greatest philosopher was asked by his drill Sargent during boot camp if he was stupid because of his naivete. Forrest great line was, "Stupid is as stupid does sir!" Obviously Forrest is a fictional movie character but his insight on human intelligence was very astute. Forrest's character is fascinating. He has the IQ of a twelve year old but always seemed to be in the right place at the right time. Forrest knew nothing about the game of ping pong but teaches himself to become a world champion. He takes the money from his endorsements and buys a shrimp boat keeping a promise he made to his army buddy whose family was in the shrimping business. Forrest knows nothing about running a shrimping boat but ends up turning one boat into a fleet and becomes a business tycoon.

His life long girl friend Jenny lives a wild and reckless life but eventually returns to Forrest who has remained faithful to her and marries him giving Forrest a beautiful son named after him. Tom Hanks portrayal of Forrest Gump was brilliant. I experienced both sympathy and empathy toward Hank's character. Gump should have never achieved one tenth of his accomplishments because the odds were stacked against him.

Forrest did not believe he was stupid when asked that question by his drill Sargent. Forrest was truly a man without guile. To Forrest, calling someone stupid was stupid. He believed a man should be judged by his actions. Forrest's M.O. always put others first. He put his mother, girl friend and friends interests above his own. Forrest although not portrayed as a Christian certainly exhibited values consistent with the teachings of Jesus. "Love your neighbor as yourself and do unto others as you would have them do unto you."

I was listening to Bill Maher on television. He is a comedian and talk show host who believes that people who take the Bible literally are stupid. He misquotes passages of Scripture, takes them out of context and then trumpets, "the Bible is full of contradictions. Maher rejects the authoritative nature of the Bible yet accepts all science as absolute truth. He should know that scientific theories are discovered and debunked every day, yet the Bible has stood the test of thousands of years.

Compare the intelligence of Forrest Gump to Bill Maher. Forrest was a gentle, loving and giving man. His actions spoke for him. His worldview was shaped by selflessness and all who came in contact with him became better for it. Never in the movie did we hear Forrest call someone stupid or tear them down to make himself look good or to get ahead. That sounds like an intelligent person to me.

Maher and others who agree with him make it a habit to attack the messenger instead of the message. They come across as arrogant and use their so called intellectual superiority to Lord it over the unwashed and unenlightened. When they do discuss the issues it is all or nothing. They cannot see the inconsistencies with their ideas but clearly understand every error of the other side.

The question for me is, Why would anyone who denies the existence of God care who believes it, or spend one second trying to prove a negative? "Stupid is as stupid does"!

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Comment by Dr. Henry, President of the AOCI on October 26, 2010 at 7:02pm
Maher(if I think I know who this is) is lost as lost can be. This is an example of God saying..."well you don't want to believe so have it your way"....then the LORD gives them over to a rebrobate mind....He was never chosen. (opening a can of worms here....LOL.). I feel arwnry in Jesus today....ha...ha...lol. Maybe its because I am going on 2 hour sleep and I need to get up early in the manana...
Comment by Michael Shanlian Ph.D. on October 14, 2010 at 7:38pm
Thank-you both for taking the time to comment!
Comment by Rev. Dr. Samuel Sostre on October 14, 2010 at 4:30pm
Dear Dr. Stokes and Shanlian:

Beautiful comments! Your brother in Christ,

Sam Sostre+
Comment by Michael Shanlian Ph.D. on October 14, 2010 at 7:27am
Dr. Sostre,

I like what Mark Twain said, "It is not the parts of the Bible that I don't understand that bother me, it's the parts I do"! Like Twain, Maher objects to the idea that God is righteous and mankind can only approach Him through His Son Jesus Christ. His intellectual gymnastics are an attempt to skirt the real issues. You are right, the Bible does contain allegory and symbolism etc... Many Christians have a hard time separating what should be taken literally. God bless you!
Comment by Rev. Dr. Samuel Sostre on October 14, 2010 at 3:01am
I disagree with Maher. I fully believe that the Bible is the final authority for Christian belief and practice. However, when we say it should be interpreted literally, I would have to qualify that. The Bible is a mixture of poetry, history, songs, allegory, symbolism, parables and other literary forms and each should be interpreted within its context. Also the Bible may convey some characteristics of the ancient Israelite culture (such as the inferior role of women), which may not be applicable to us. But anyway, I also believe with Paul (and Christ) that above all, even above Scripture, there should be Love and Mercy. I am sure many will disagree but I feel guided by the Spirit to suggest this possibility.
Comment by Michael Shanlian Ph.D. on October 3, 2010 at 5:07am
It is sad because Mahar does not realize it is God who gives him the mental capacity to reject Him! I also realize he is not upset with Christians. Mahar was raised Catholic. He looks at God through the prisim of legalism instead of seeing a God of love and mercy. Maybe someday that will change!

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