The Black Swan Bible

As you may have heard, unlike you Christians in America, the Party is paying attention to black swans…

During the Lunar New Year holidays, political circles in Beijing were abuzz with this question: “Who, or what, are ‘black swans’ and ‘gray rhinos’?” This followed a major speech given by President and Chinese Communist Party (CCP) General Secretary Xi Jinping at the Central Party School (CPS) last month, in which the the 65-year-old leader raised the highest alert for Party officials to “be on guard against black swans and keep watchful for gray rhinos” (jingti hei tian’e, fangfan hui xiniu / 警惕黑天鹅, 防范灰犀牛) (People’s Daily, January 22).


As the world watches with anxiety the unfolding series of crises shaking up China, more questions are being asked as to whether simply enhancing loyalty to the top leadership will effectively solve the country’s problems. As long as these problems persist, Xi and other leaders in the CCP’s top echelons will continue to watch nervously for the potential emergence of those mysterious and frightening beasts known as “black swans” and “gray rhinos.”

China Brief Early Warning: Xi Jinping Warns Against the “Black Swans” and “Gray Rhinos” of a Possible Color Revolution, By: Willy Wo-Lap Lam, Jamestown Institute, February 20, 2019

But we know you will ignore looking into them, because you have also pushed away the reality that, if Christianity is the story we are in, then your God, the Great Storyteller, sends Black Swans flying throughout the story.

He is into turn and surprise.

Oh, and just as a reminder, here is an explanation of a Black Swan from Nassim Taleb, the famous originator of the Black Swan concept…

A Black Swan is a highly improbable event with three principal characteristics: It is unpredictable; it carries a massive impact; and, after the fact, we concoct an explanation that makes it appear less random, and more predictable, than it was.

Nassim Nicholas Taleb, The Black Swan

So, we have now begun to try and create an index to the Black Swans which fly into the story in the Bible. As you’ll see, it has much work to be done, so we’d appreciate your comments on the Black Swans in the story in the Bible we are missing.

In this index we are also weaving in our initial sense of how the structure of the story in the Bible fits with Shawn Coyne’s concept of the Beginning Hook, Middle Build, Ending Payoff.

And if you are interested in diving in to our evaluation of the story in the Bible via Robert McKee’s Eight Stages of Story, you’ll find the links in Way Station Six.

The Beginning Hook

Movement One

From the Balance in the Creation to the Inciting Incident, the Fall of Man in the Garden

The Inciting Incident in the Story in the Bible is a Black Swan Turn in the Story 

Genesis 3

Movement Two

From the Expulsion from the Garden to the Flood

The First Murder Was a Black Swan

Genesis 4

The Flood Was a Black Swan Event

Genesis 6:1-8:19

Your God’s Response to Mankind’s Descent Into Horrifying Violence Was a Black Swan Turn 

And notice what Jesus had to say about the Black Swan nature of the flood in Genesis…

“No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. For in the days before the flood, people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man. Two women will be grinding with a hand mill; one will be taken and the other left. Two men will be in the field; one will be taken and the other left.

Matthew 24:36-41

Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. People were eating, drinking, marrying and being given in marriage up to the day Noah entered the ark. Then the flood came and destroyed them all.

It was the same in the days of Lot. People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building. But the day Lot left Sodom, fire and sulfur rained down from heaven and destroyed them all. It will be just like this on the day the Son of Man is revealed.

Luke 17:26-30

Movement Three

From the Flood to the Dispersion of the Nations at the Tower of Babel

The Dispersion at the Tower of Babel Was a Black Swan Turn in the Story in the Bible

Genesis 11:1-9  

The Middle Build

Movement One

From Abraham to David

Abraham Was a Black Swan

Genesis 11:27-32Genesis 12:1-7Acts 7:2-5Romans 4:18-24Hebrews 11:12Ezekiel 16:1-5 

A Black Swan For Pharaoh

Genesis 12:10-20

Abraham’s Black Swan Battle

Genesis 14Hebrews 7:1-10

A Black Swan For Hagar

Genesis 16

A Black Swan For Sodom and Gomorrah

Genesis 19Lamentations 4:6Luke 17:28-30

A Black Swan For Abimelech

Genesis 20

Abraham’s Black Swan Child

Genesis 15:1-6Genesis 17:15-19Genesis 18:10-15Genesis 21:1-7

The Black Swan Setup for the Sacrifice of the One and Only Son

Genesis 22:1-19

Job’s Black Swans

Job 1-2

A Black Swan for Rebekah

Genesis 24

The Black Swan Story of Joseph

This story really has the attention of our team. Since your God is into setup and payoff, we are wondering if there are aspects of this story which are setup for the Christ.

The Improbable Dream
Genesis 37:5-11

A Chance Encounter?
Genesis 37:15-17;

A Black Swan Betrayal Trip to Egypt
Genesis 37:18-28

From Potiphar to Prison
Genesis 39

The Prison Dreams
Genesis 40

From Prison to Pharaoh’s Right Hand
Genesis 41

A Black Swan For Joseph’s Betraying Brothers
Genesis 42Genesis 43Genesis 44Genesis 45:1-24

A Black Swan For Jacob
Genesis 45:25-28Genesis 46Genesis 47

Jacob’s Blessing on Joseph
Genesis 49:22-26

A Glimpse at the Active Protagonist’s Black Swan Purpose
Genesis 50:15-21

Moses Was a Black Swan and So Was the Exodus

The Black Swan Multiplication of Israel
Exodus 1

The Black Swan Upbringing of Baby Moses
Exodus 2:1-10

From Elite to Exile
Exodus 2:11-22

The Black Swan Burning Bush
Exodus 3

The Reluctant Return to Egypt
Exodus 4

The Frustrating Encounter With Pharaoh
Exodus 5

The Continuing Doubts of Israel and Moses
Exodus 6

The Black Swan Plagues
Exodus 7Exodus 8;Exodus 9Exodus 10Exodus 11Exodus 12

The Black Swan at the Red Sea
Exodus 14

The Black Swan Crossing Into the Promised Land

Joshua 3

The Black Swan Fall of Jericho

Joshua 6

Joshua’s Black Swan Day

Joshua 10

Eglon’s Black Swan Day

Judges 3:12-30

Gideon Was a Black Swan

Judges 6Judges 7

A Black Swan For Dagon

1 Samuel 5

Saul Was a Black Swan

1 Samuel 9:21

Movement Two

From David to the Deportation to Babylon

David Was a Black Swan

1 Samuel 16:1-13

Goliath’s Black Swan Day

1 Samuel 17:20-56

Black Swan Elements in the Psalms

Psalm 6:9-10

Psalm 35:7-8

Psalm 55:15-16

Psalm 64:7

Psalm 73:18-19

Black Swan Elements in Proverbs

Proverbs 3:25-26

Proverbs 6:15

Proverbs 24:21-22

Proverbs 28:18

Proverbs 29:1

The Breakup of Israel Was a Black Swan

1 Kings 12:1-24

Asa’s Black Swan

2 Chronicles 14

Jonah’s Black Swan Fish Trip

Jonah 1Jonah 2

The Black Swan Repentance of the Ninevites

Jonah 3

Sennacherib’s Black Swan Night

2 Chronicles 32:1-232 Kings 18-19Isaiah 36-37

Black Swan Elements in the Fall of the Assyrian Empire

Zephaniah 2:13-15;  Nahum 1:9-14;  Nahum 2:1-13;  Nahum 3:8-11

The Black Swan Rise of Babylon

Habakkuk 1:1-11

The Black Swan Fall of Jerusalem

Lamentations 1:8-9;  Lamentations 4:1-12Jeremiah 15:1-8 Jeremiah 18:18-22

Movement Three

From the Deportation to Babylon to the Christ

Black Swans in the Book of Daniel

A Black Swan Veggie Tale

Daniel 1

A Black Swan in a Furnace

Daniel 3

Nebuchadnezzar’s Black Swan

Daniel 4

The Black Swan Writing on the Wall

Daniel 5

A Black Swan in a Lion’s Den

Daniel 6

Esther Was a Black Swan

Esther 2Esther 5Esther 6Esther 7

Nehemiah’s Black Swan Mission

Nehemiah 2

The Ending Payoff

Movement One

The King Comes

Jesus is the Great Black Swan in the Story in the Bible

The Improbable King

Matthew 1:18-22

Luke 1:11-25

Luke 1:26-38

Luke 2:8-20

Malachi 3:1

John 1:10-11

John 1:43-46

Mark 6:1-6

Luke 4:16-30

Matthew 15:53-58

John 6:35-42

John 7:1-5

John 7: 14-15

John 7:25-27

John 7:50-52

Zechariah 9:9

Isaiah 49:1-7

Micah 5:2

Black Swans in the Life and Work of Jesus

Matthew 8:23-27

Matthew 9:18-26

Matthew 14:14-21

Matthew 14:22-33

Matthew 15:32-38

Mark 2:1-12;

Mark 5:11-20

Mark 5:35-43

Mark 6:1-6

Mark 7:32-37

Luke 2:41-50

Luke 4:16-30

Luke 5:1-11

Luke 5:17-26

Luke 7:11-17

Luke 8:22-25

Luke 8:40-56

Luke 10:29-37

Luke 12:13-21

John 2:1-11

John 5:1-10

John 6:35-42

John 7:1-5

John 7:14-15

John 7:25-27

John 7:50-52

John 9:1-34

John 11

The Black Swan Climax: The Crucifixion and Resurrection

Mark 8:31-33

Isaiah 52:13-15

Isaiah 53:1-6;

Psalm 22:6-18

Zechariah 12:10-14

Romans 5:6-8;

Matthew 16:21-23

1 Corinthians 1:18-31

Matthew 28:1-10

Mark 16:1-8

Luke 24:1-27

Luke 24:36-47

John 20

Matthew 27:50-52

Movement Two

The Gospel Spreads to the Ends of the Earth

The Black Swan of Pentecost

Acts 2

A Black Swan For a Crippled Man

Acts 3:1-16

A Black Swan Warning to the Early Church

Acts 5:1-11

The Black Swan Conversion of Saul

Acts 9

The Black Swan Worming of Herod

Acts 12:19-24

God’s Black Swan Work

Acts 13:26-41

Movement Three

The Return of the King

Black Swan Elements of the Time of the Tribulation

Zephaniah 1:17-18

Revelation 11:1-13

Revelation 13:1-4

Revelation 18

The Black Swan Return of the King

Revelation 19

Zechariah 12

Zechariah 14:1-9

Matthew 24:36-51

Mark 13:33-37

Luke 12:40

Luke 17:26-35

1 Timothy 6:13-16

1 Thessalonians 5:1-3

2 Peter 3:3-15

Revelation 16:15

The Black Swan Reign of the King of Kings on the Earth

Zechariah 9:9-10

Psalm 2

Matthew 25:31-46

Philippians 2:9-11

2 Thessalonians 1:4-10

The Black Swan Future of Israel

Romans 11:25-27

Isaiah 2:1-4

Isaiah 11:10-12

Isaiah 14:1-2

Isaiah 19:19-25

Isaiah 49:19-26

Isaiah 54:1-4

Isaiah 55:5

Isaiah 60:1-18

Isaiah 61:4-9

Isaiah 62:1-7

Isaiah 66:7-14

Jeremiah 3:17

Jeremiah 31:10-12

Jeremiah 31:35-37

Jeremiah 33:9

Jeremiah 33:14-26

Ezekiel 28:24-26

Ezekiel 34:23-30

Ezekiel 36:13-36

Ezekiel 37:24-28

Ezekiel 39:21-29

Micah 4:1-4

Micah 4:13

Micah 5:2

Micah 7:11-17

Zephaniah 3:19-20

Haggai 2:6-9

Zechariah 2:8-13

Zechariah 8:1-8

Zechariah 8:20-23

A Black Swan For the Betrayers at the End of the Thousand Year Reign

Revelation 20:7-10

The Black Swan Resolution in the Story in the Bible

1 Corinthians 2:7-10