Dying to Believe

Some more of the same

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You would think that at some point Charles Darwin would kick in:

A 24 year old self-proclaimed prophet set himself, 21 congregants, and their church building on fire on Tuesday evening while trying to demonstrate what Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego did in the Old Testament.

Prophet Simangaliso Mncwabe, who runs a church [House of Miracles] with over a hundred and fifty members in Ngodini, Mpumalanga; was preaching about the 3 warriors of the Old Testament in an evening service and then finished off with a demonstration, which did not go so well.

Warning: do not attempt this at home.

There can be no doubt regarding the authenticity of this practice:

Daniel 3:12-26 King James Version (KJV)

12 There are certain Jews whom thou hast set over the affairs of the province of Babylon, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego; these men, O king, have not regarded thee: they serve not thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

13 Then Nebuchadnezzar in his rage and fury commanded to bring Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Then they brought these men before the king.

14 Nebuchadnezzar spake and said unto them, Is it true, O Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, do not ye serve my gods, nor worship the golden image which I have set up?

15 Now if ye be ready that at what time ye hear the sound of the cornet, flute, harp, sackbut, psaltery, and dulcimer, and all kinds of musick, ye fall down and worship the image which I have made; well: but if ye worship not, ye shall be cast the same hour into the midst of a burning fiery furnace; and who is that God that shall deliver you out of my hands?

16 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter.

17 If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.

18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

19 Then was Nebuchadnezzar full of fury, and the form of his visage was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego: therefore he spake, and commanded that they should heat the furnace one seven times more than it was wont to be heated.

20 And he commanded the most mighty men that were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace.

21 Then these men were bound in their coats, their hosen, and their hats, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.

22 Therefore because the king’s commandment was urgent, and the furnace exceeding hot, the flames of the fire slew those men that took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.

23 And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace.

24 Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonished, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counsellors, Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king.

25 He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.

26 Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the mouth of the burning fiery furnace, and spake, and said, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, ye servants of the most high God, come forth, and come hither. Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, came forth of the midst of the fire.

Unfortunately… As with the rest of the Bible, reality triumphs over ancient belief. As this item from African News Update relates the rest of the story, the congregation cheered as Simangaliso Mncwabe poured gasoline on himself and touched it off. Hard truth kicked in immediately, and Mr. Mncwabe realized he was actually burning. People who came to his assistance also caught fire. It took about 30 minutes for science to win out over faith. Only ashes remained of Mr. Mncwabe and 21 others. Likewise the church. Many more required massive treatment at a hospital, which employed modern medical methods instead of black magic.

Maybe I forgot to mention. This happened in the 21st century, about 48 years after men first walked on the moon, and more than 500 years after scientific methodology began to supplant religion as a way of explaining the universe.

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One thought on “Dying to Believe

  1. Pingback: Dying to Believe | Skeptical Analysis

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