Tonight, I told my friends that I believe the zombie apocalypse could happen.
Of course I don’t believe that corpses can be reanimated, but I do think it’s possible for there to be a strain of Rabies that’s ultra-infectious and terrifying.
To that, one of the guys responded with, “I just don’t see where God is in that.”
And, okay, I get his point, which does have some valid footing in the Bible, because we’ve got the verse about meditating on things that are good and pure in this world, right? So, I’m willing to consider the possibility that I ought to spend more time thinking about butterflies than I spend thinking about zombies. However, that’s not exactly the point he was making. He was countering my, “Maybe zombies wouldn’t happen, but something like zombies totally could,” point by implying that God wouldn’t let such an atrocity occur.
My response to my friend went something like this, “Where is God in Rabies?”
I didn’t voice the rest of that thought, but my basic point was that there’s a lot of terrible stuff in this world that I don’t really see God in; we live in a messed up place. My pessimism probably stems at least a little from the Old Testament, because I’m nearing the end of pushing myself through it from cover to cover, not skipping a single word. I’m among the many who prefer not to read the OT, because it’s scary and heart-breaking, so I thought it was high-time I get to know the first three-fourths of my Bible a little better. The thing is there are a ton of OT passages that don’t make any sense to me for the very reason that my friend doesn’t believe in the possibility of the zombie apocalypse: I don’t see where God is in them. Example: Jephthah.
In chapter 11 of Judges, Jephthah makes a deal with God that if He (God) will hand the Ammonites over to Jephthah in battle, he (Jephthah) will give God whatever walks through his door first once he gets home… as a burnt offering and sacrifice. God gives him the Ammonites, and when he gets home, Jephthah’s daughter walks through the door to greet him. So, they talk about it, the daughter takes two months to go out into the hills to mourn her virginity, then she dies as a burnt offering and the Israelite girls start going to the hills every-so-often to mourn her. And you know what happens to Jephthah? He ends up in Hebrews as a hero of the faith.
Come on. Is God really super predictable? God could have released Jephthah from his vow, or required something else of him. But He didn’t. You know what else? When Jephthah was making his vow, he didn’t know what would walk through that door – I get the feeling that he thought it would be livestock. But God knew. He could have said something, like, “Hey, Jephthah, you need to be more careful about your vows. This one doesn’t end well.” But He didn’t.
We serve a God who flooded the earth, punished His Son for sins He didn’t commit, and unleashed, or at the very least allowed the, Bubonic Plague to ravage the population. And I’m certainly not saying that God acted unjustly in any of that, because I believe justice is defined by Him. However, when I look at God’s track record, it honestly doesn’t seem that out there for Him to unleash a Rabies-like disease on us. I don’t really believe He’s going to… but I don’t have to suspend my disbelief all that much when I’m watching certain zombie films.
Side note: The only theological problems I see with God letting the zombie thing happen are creation things like free will. Zombies don’t seem to have much of it, and I’m not convinced that God would rob the world of that. Also, God created us in His image, so I tend to believe that He would be a little protective of that image, and zombies are, by definition, humans that have lost their humanity… or images that have lost their ability to reflect God.
Another side note: It bothers me a lot when people make comments like that… “I just don’t see where God is in that.” Okay, well, you didn’t have to knock my halo off like that… let me pick it up, dust it off, and try to theologize with you about something that’s obviously silly and arbitrary. Are we both committed to Christ? Is it sinful for me to believe that zombies could sort of happen? I admit that I have more of a tendency to believe the world is turning into Hell and a hand basket than most people have. George Orwell’s future and Aldus Huxley’s are legit fears of mine, and, yet, I don’t think that somehow makes me less spiritual than the rest of the church. Another one I’ve had people say to me before is the, “I don’t see the light of God in you,” one. Are you crazy? DO NOT TRY TO REBUKE WITHOUT BIBLICAL BACKING. If you cannot pull a verse or passage out of the Bible that says that what I’ve just said or done is sinful, then you should not act like you can, especially when I’m only half-serious because… come on… we’re talking about zombies.
BUT… just for fun, maybe you should check out this awesome link that explains with science how the zombie apocalypse might be a real thing. Also, it’s worth clicking through some of their links, because they actually take you to research databases.
And here’s another one to the CDC’s zombie apocalypse page. And yes, that page is legit (sort of). The U.S. Center for Disease Control really did create that page as a dot gov helpful/hilarious thing.