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Invitation to Write in Displayed Bible Results in Angry, Lewd Comments

The Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow, Scotland, is hosting a series of exhibitions called "Made in God's Image." Organized by a company called Culture and Sport Glasgow, the exhibition includes Untitled 2009—a simple, opened Bible. Next to the Bible is a container of pens and a notice which reads, "If you feel you have been excluded from the Bible, please write your way back into it."

There are a number of things disconcerting about such an invitation—chiefly, it makes us the subject and the Bible an object that can bend to every whim and agenda. But what is worth noting is the venomous response of people who have visited the exhibit. Visitors have responded to the invitation by daubing the Bible's pages with a litany of angry and lewd comments. One person wrote: "This is all sexist pish [a word used to express deep disdain], so disregard it all." Another wrote on the first page of Genesis, "I am Bi, Female, and Proud. I want no God who is disappointed in this." Others have even taken the opportunity to alter verses, including Genesis 1:1, to prove that everything about the Bible and God himself is man-made.

The producers of the exhibition have indicated that the most offensive pages will be removed, but Christians in the U.K. are angry that the show had been staged at all. "This is symbolic of the state of our broken and lawless society," said Andrea Minichiello Williams, director of the Christian Legal Centre. "We have got to a point where we call the desecration of the Bible modern art. The Bible stands for everything this art does not: for creation, beauty, hope, and regeneration."

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