Saturday, October 24, 2009

Shroud Poems

Since my tweener fiction book, The Peril of the Sinister Scientist, is about a kid who thinks he was cloned from the blood on the Shroud of Turin a friend, Rev Earl Langguth, gave me these two poems he wrote with permission to post them here.


Might Turin’s shroud be stained with Jesus’ blood?

Could we from it extract some DNA?

What might this tell us of our Saviour’s birth,

And might it cause the faithful some dismay?

While mitochondria from Mary came,

Might autosomes suggest a man to blame?

But then, how did the Holy Spirit work?

Could sequencing detect divine control?

Since Jesus was as human as ourselves,

Would not His chromosomes be normal, whole?

I doubt we could the slightest change display,

Divinity’s not shown by DNA

God’s Spirit did that special babe conceive,

He was to live and grow as Joseph’s son,

Would not the genes of David’s line be there,

As if with Joseph’s seed He was begun?

God’s Word is seen in all He did and said,

God sealed it by His rising from the dead!


Geneticists now seem about to gain

Abilities undreamt of in the past,

The monk named Gregor Mendel found the key

To make us think to master life at last.

The double helix yields its complex mold

As mystery relinquishes control

We hope at length to use new knowledge vast,

But know you this: you cannot clone the soul!

If you could clone a man, you’d get his shape

His kind of hair, his eyes, his build, his skin;

And outwardly you’d think him quite the same

But lawlessness would reign there, deep within

An animal in man-shape, not a man

You would achieve, far short of reason’s goal,

Without a spirit, lacking right and wrong—

Because, you see, one cannot clone the soul!

Oh yes, perhaps some scientist will strive

To clone himself— his wife— perhaps his kin;

And he’ll endure the years which then must pass

Before his claims to fame might then begin;

But he will soon discover how he’s failed;

His creature’s nature will be flawed, not whole

A beast which looks quite human, but is not!

Be warned: we cannot think to clone the soul!

I would be interested to hear what people think of Rev. Earl's ideas and will share any comments with him.
A few people have expressed concern about mentioning the possibility of human cloning in a book for kids, but The Peril of the Sinister Scientist is obviously fiction. Most younger readers would just consider Joshua's imaginative ideas part of the plot, and parents of kids old enough to understand the concept would find it an excellent opportunity to discuss such things with them. The book has a definite Christian message.

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