I recently purchased the entire series of Star Trek: The Next Generation on Blu-ray. TNG is easily my favorite iteration of Star Trek. For years I would faithfully watch Picard and Crew at 7:00pm Monday through Friday, with new episodes at 8:00pm on Monday nights. Since I now own the entire series, I’ve been working my way through, starting with “Encounter at Farpoint.”
I’m still in season one and, I have to say, things didn’t start that well for The Next Generation. There was turmoil behind the scenes, which led to disjointed stories and character development. The series really hit its stride in season three and just gets progressively better. I have to admit that it’s a little difficult getting through these first episodes, but I know that things will turn around once the crew gets new uniforms.
Here are some Bible stories that, like The Next Generation, started poorly but ended up all right.
Could things have gone any worse for Adam, Eve and the rest of humanity? The universe was literally perfect and then sin, death and darkness entered the world because of Adam and Eve’s actions. The scene in the Garden must have been a little dour with the separation between God and his two humans and the separation between Adam and Eve themselves. Also, nothing had ever died before, but God killed an animal to make clothes for Adam and Eve. That was pretty much the worst beginning possible, but eventually it all turned around. That first animal sacrificed to cover Adam and Eve’s shame, foretold Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross, once and for all doing away with our sin and shame.
Based upon what we know about her, Rahab’s life wasn’t going that well. She was a prostitute in a pagan city. Without any man to care for her, she was probably forced to turn to prostitution to care for herself and anyone close to her. On top of that, she heard rumors that a giant army was going to come and destroy her city. Rahab’s bad beginning, though, had a happy ending. She realized that she didn’t want to mess with Yahweh and she was saved because she helped the spies escape Jericho. Not only were she and her family saved, but she ended up being an ancestor of Jesus.
Some might say that Paul, when he was known as Saul, actually had a lot going for him. He was progressing up the Pharisaical ladder, using his brain and rhetorical acumen to combat the early church. However, in the eyes of Jesus, trying to kill Christians is probably a bad thing. Paul didn’t stay trapped in that bad beginning, though, as his encounter with Jesus opened him up to a whole new world, much like Aladdin and Jasmine. Paul wrote a lot of the New Testament and helped develop a systematic theology for Christianity. He never became the top Pharisee, but he did have an indelible impact on the entire world. I’d say that’s a fair trade.
I’m only through seven episodes of The Next Generation’s first season. While still not great, season two definitely has some great episodes, in particular “The Measure of a Man” and “Q Who.” Eventually I’ll get to seasons 4-6, which are tremendous, but until then I’ll appreciate TNG’s humble beginnings and hope that the best is yet to come for my life as well.
What are some of your favorite bad biblical beginnings?