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    Monday, January 19, 2009


    Some of my email readers (yes, there are some, mostly family!) took slight issues with my characterization of US Air 1549 as "not a miracle."

    Dictionary.com's salient definitions are:
    1. an effect or extraordinary event in the physical world that surpasses all known human or natural powers and is ascribed to a supernatural cause.
    2. such an effect or event manifesting or considered as a work of God.
    I think 1) is the one in play here, and, I just don't think this event is something we can ascribe to the direct hand of God. I think God was involved in helping Chesley Sullenberger hone his talents, but, God nothing extraordinary on the Hudson (it is normally quite calm), bird strikes are quite common in aircraft, and flight attendants are well trained as a norm. I don't find the passengers bahavior that unusual, certainly not miraculous.

    Parting the Red Sea, walking on water, feeding thousands with two loaves of bread, raising the dead. Those things are miracles, surpassing all known human or natural powers. Landing a plane safely on water, while a fantastic achievement, is a human achievement, accomplished by humans, granted, yes, with their God-given skills, but human nonetheless. Chesley Sullenberger and the people responsible for this can (and should) give credit to their God.

    But, it's not a miracle.


    1 comment:

    Subvet said...

    Amen brother, amen.