Friday, November 30, 2007

Latest fundie lunacy: Interstate 35 is "Way of Holiness"

Does this mean you're just 1/4 miles from heaven? Or that you're about to enter hell?
Image from Interstate Guide.

I guess the Bob Dylan song "Highway 61 Revisited" was wrong: it turns out God prefers Interstate 35:
Running right through the heart of the Twin Cities is a spiritual road that dozens of evangelical churches say is specifically mentioned in the Bible as the "Way of Holiness." They call it the "Highway of Holiness." Others call it Interstate 35.

Evangelicals throughout the Midwest, from Laredo, Texas, to Duluth, Minn., have been praying at 24-hour prayer rooms for a month for Interstate 35 in order to "light the highway." Young people in the movement have been holding "purity sieges" in front of LGBT businesses, abortion clinics and stores that sell pornography. So far, Minnesota has been spared of "purity sieges," but 24-hour prayer rooms have been set up in Minneapolis, Albert Lea and Duluth.

The scriptural basis for the new movement comes from Isaiah 35:8, which reads, "And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness. The unclean will not journey on it; it will be for those who walk in that Way; wicked fools will not go about on it." Because of chapter 35, believers say the highway mentioned must be Interstate 35. In addition, a number of people in the "Highway of Holiness" movement claim to have had prophetic experiences that involve Interstate 35.

(HT: Sullivan) If I-35 is some sort of Heavenly Road, what is the proper theological interpretation of the recent I-35 bridge collapse? Or the fact that around the Twin Cities it splits into 35W and 35E? Does that mean everything north of the Twin Cities was cut off from God? Or everything south of the Twin Cities?

Maybe this is all just a ploy by I-35 commuters to get more federal highway money from the religious nuts in the Bush administration: "It's God's Highway! How could you deny funding for an HOV lane?"

It's pretty sad that this sort of wacky biblical interpretation nonsense is still happening. But human nature hasn't changed, so I guess I shouldn't be too surprised. I suppose it's a relatively harmless form of supernaturalist delusion, so I should be thankful. And I do find faddish outbursts like this rather amusing. But it does little to improve my often dour assessment of humanity.


Anonymous Mad Latinist said...

Thank the Lord that highway is in Minneapolis, because I have family, and I had been worried they might get eaten by lions.

How much do you want to bet that the fundies think the lions are figurative, but the highway is literal? And what kind of sense would that make?

BTW, notice the reference to dragons in the KJV translation of verse seven. The bible repeatedly mentions dragons in connection with the desert... according to certain translations.

* Hebrew word for "dragon": tanin
* Hebrew word for "jackals": tanim

But, hey, when in doubt as to the intent of a passage, we all know that King James is divinely inspired. Not only more divinely inspired than the other translations, but also more divinely inspired than the original Hebrew.

In other news, Blogger seems to have disabled nickname+link posting, so no link to my lj.

2:56 AM, December 01, 2007  
Blogger grishnash said...

Ah, but as your link shows, Dylan was right. What's 1/4 mile beyond your sign? You're directed right on to Highway 61.

Also, the comments in your other link beat me to it. With the verse being Isaiah 35:8, this is an obvious indication that the holiest city of Christianity should be Forest Lake, MN.

11:26 AM, December 01, 2007  
Blogger Zachary Drake said...

Does that mean Dylan is God? Or does that mean when you leave God, you end up with the blasphemous Dylan? Of course, there was a brief time when Dylan became exactly the sort of wacky Christian who might think an Interstate is a holy road.

5:49 PM, December 01, 2007  
Blogger Miguel said...

Saw I'm Not There over Thanksgiving weekend, it was great - really fun and beautifully done. Good soundtrack, too. I think you'd enjoy it.

I thought the really special thing in that article was the speculation that it may be more than a coincidence that a Muslim congressman made reference to Israel on the day of the bridge collapse. What is the Minnesota Monitor, anyway?

6:13 PM, December 01, 2007  

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