Patton: Scholars say Biblical “years of suffering” refer to construction in Ames


Hannah Olson / Iowa State Daily

Construction continues on Bissell Road and near Hoover Hall for the new student innovation center on May 24. 

Davis Patton

Editor’s note: This is a satirical opinion piece. The names of people mentioned and their quotes are completely fictional. The situation this story is based on is also fictional.

In a statement released Tuesday, local Bible scholars believe mysterious texts regarding centuries of suffering in Christianity’s Holy Bible are actually referring to road construction in Ames.

The Bible, regarded as a sacred text by most Christians, predicts numerous times that there will be years of horrific hardship on Earth before their God returns. These texts have inspired many interpretations, including multiple beliefs on how long the hardship will last and whether or not the suffering has already begun.

The most recent interpretation was developed here in Ames by a handful of Biblical analysts. Nearly a dozen Christian men and women began gathering in the summer of 2017 to decipher once and for all what the texts mean.

“It took us nearly eight months to reach a conclusion, and along the way we hit many bumps in the road, literally,” said Pastor George Sandolven of First Lutheran Church of Ames.

The scholars recall many times every week where at least one of them arrived late due to interference from road construction somewhere in Ames. Sandolven said, “from the median construction on Duff all summer to the new ramp on Interstate 35 and Highway 30, everyone was affected.”

After experiencing this for months, the team finally connected their experiences to a Biblical passage from the Book of Mark. The passage states the years of suffering will be worse than any suffering in history of mankind and worse than any to come in the future.

“Once we found that passage in Mark it was so clear to all of us that we are living in, and being detoured around, the Great Tribulation,” said Carol Vuong, a professor of Greek and author of many Biblical commentaries.

To the surprise of the scholars, the statement has sparked somewhat of a Christian revival in the Ames community. Many have come to believe in the Christian faith because of the statement, including Iowa State freshman Marcus Schroeder.

Schroeder said he never believed the Christian idea of a divine creator of all things, instead, “it’s more likely that everything came from nothing.” Additionally, he stated he has never seen proof that humanity is inherently sinful or in need of any moral redemption.

“But now that I see the Bible accurately predicting the intolerable suffering that I experience with the road work in Ames, it all clicks,” Schroeder said. “After reading the statement, I drove straight to church, surrendered my life to God and was immediately baptized.”

The scholars said they are inspired by the massive revival the statement has instigated. Vuong added, “the best part is now knowing that God will return when the construction is done!” Regarding when it will be completed, the city of Ames predicts it will be finished by November 2018, which likely means sometime during 2030.