This news popped up in a comment to an earlier post: Creation Museum staff member struck by lightning. That story is from WKRC, Channel 12 in Cincinnati, Ohio. Cincinnati is very close to the infamous, mind-boggling Creation Museum run by Ken Ham (ol’ Hambo), the ayatollah of Appalachia. WKRC says:
A Creation Museum staff member was struck by lightning this afternoon. After reports of lightning in the area, staff members were moving customers off the zip line tower. The staff member was touching the zip line tower, when the lightning struck. The man was taken to Saint Elizabeth Hospital in Florence. He was conscious and talking and is expected to recover.
Zip lines? They’re a new a attraction at the Creation Museum. We wrote about them before — see Is The End Coming for Ken Ham?
Many people regard lightning strikes as a sign of divine disfavor. In Salem and Philadelphia: A Tale of Two Cities we quoted this from a review of a book about Ben Franklin:
The clergy turned a disapproving eye on Franklin’s great invention, the lightning rod. Who was he to disturb the instruments of divine wrath?
So the big question is: What is the meaning of this lightning strike at Hambo’s creationist theme park? Everyone is free to reach his own conclusion, but of particular interest is how the folks at AIG will react to this, shall we say, striking event.
Well, we have their reaction — at least their initial reaction. At the website of Answers in Genesis (AIG), Hambo’s on-line ministry, they just posted a brief article about the incident. It’s titled: Creation Museum Lightning Incident — Praise Report.
Praise report? We weren’t expecting that. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:
We are pleased to confirm that no serious injury resulted from a minor accident today on the zip line course that runs across the property of the Creation Museum.
That certainly is good news. But again we ask: What is the meaning of the lightning strike? Surely the folks at Hambo’s enterprise don’t see these things as nothing more than natural events. They’re always telling us that they see everything in a biblical way. Here’s an example of what scripture says about lightning. These passages come from 2 Samuel 22:
4 I will call on the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.
14 The Lord thundered from heaven, and the most High uttered his voice.
15 And he sent out arrows, and scattered them; lightning, and discomfited them.
18 He delivered me from my strong enemy, and from them that hated me: for they were too strong for me.
Clearly, for those who are steeped in scripture, a lightning strike is nothing to shrug off lightly. The AIG article continues:
In the course of clearing the gardens, trails, and zip line course because of an approaching pop-up storm, Jeff, a staff member under the employment of the company that operates the zip line attraction, was standing on the ground and given a jolt when the energy generated by a nearby lightning strike raced down a zip line.
That’s an amazingly antiseptic description, void of any hint of deeper meaning. Let’s read on:
He did not seem to be seriously hurt, but as a precaution, he was taken to the hospital to be checked out. He was released the same afternoon.
That too is good news, and we’re happy for Jeff. But we must ask one more time: What does this mean? Does Hambo see any divine significance in this event? Ask yourself, dear reader: How would AIG react if the lab assistant to a well-known evolutionary biologist were struck by lightning in the lab? Here’s one more excerpt from the end of the article:
For those of you who heard about the incident this afternoon and had prayed for Jeff, we thank you.
That’s it. It appears they’re not going to consider that there could be some deeper meaning here. Perhaps there isn’t any. But if Richard Dawkins were stuck by lightning, they might have written a very different article.
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