Tuesday, February 27, 2007

darling would you be my, would you be my...

just read this a few minutes ago and it made me laugh. thought i would share it. this comes from haggai 2:17 (cough, cough. throat clear. ahem.)
"I smote you and every work of your hands with blasting wind, mildew, and hail; yet you did not come back to me," delares the Lord.

what made this humorous for me was that for some reason it struck me as a lover speaking to one whom they are seeking. and i thought, you know, that's not really the best way to get someone to fall in love with you. "hey, i tore up all your shit, destroyed your house, have been stealing your food so you are starving. why don't you come around more often? don't you want to spend time with me?"


Valorosa said...

LOL I hear ya Jon.

I have been emailing back and forth to the husband of a friend of mine who claims to be an atheist. He has challenged me to look at these very things in the Old Testament. The violence and the merciless punishments for disobedience to the rules ... He sent me several examples ... which I knew he would.

And really, what explanation do you give someone for these things in the OT. They are the way they are written ... such a contrast to the gospels. How often did Jesus say "you have heard it has been said ..." then changed the rules ... from an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth ... to mercy.

In the OT we get to know our Father in Heaven ... He pretty much says that He will do as He pleases ... but laced all through the OT is a God calling us to love and mercy ... and telling us that He really didn't want sacrifice. Promising blessing to a thousand generations to those who love him and only cursing to three or four to those who hate Him .. lol

He is always looking and waiting for our love even there ... in the midst of all the bloodshed.

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom and I have never thought it was just a healthy respect ... Our Father in heaven is like the biggest strongest most powerful entity you have ever met ... We need not ignore the fact ... He hates sin, He loves us ... He sent His son to be our "mediator"... He says He is jealous over us ... He says He is a consuming fire .. He says No man has ever seen Him and lived ... lol

Our Father is a different persona in many ways from our brother ... Christ ... our mediator ... and from the Holy Spirit ... who is gentle beyond belief ...

Revelation tells us there is more shit going to hit the fan ...

Can we change who our Father in heaven is ... I'm thinking ... probably not. He's the heavy weight champion against evil. Our brother's blood is on our door posts. We are loved and protected simply because we have received the Lamb of God.

Wendy ftfs

jON said...

yeah. it's a complex issue that is difficult from any angle. i have actually been reading the bible from 3 different perspectives within the past 3-4 months. i am reading 2 chpters a day from the historical OT, 2 chapters a day from the prophets, and 2 chapters a day from the NT, so you can imagine the whiplash i go through on a near daily basis. it gives such a strange picture, but a more complete one i think. and yes, like everyone, i have a harder time reconciling the god i know with the god of wrath.

though, i don't think that it is any sort of a valid arguing point for an atheist to say that god, as portrayed in the OT, is a prick. unless that person can assure me that #1.) they think being angry and expressing it is the WORST of all possible things that a being can do and #2.)they have never been angry, or expressed their anger in a hurtful way towards others. because i am sure your friend would not be able to say that he has never acted out of anger. and i'm sure he would want people to know that he is about love over and all above any outbursts he may have made in the past. or yesterday. or today. or even fifteen minutes ago.

plus, i believe god was making a very cosmic point through all of this. something i am not entirely clear on, so don't ask what it is. but through everything that has happened (throughout human history along biblical lines), a wonderful redemption and a progression of people towards a culture of love and help towards each other (the kingdom) has come about and still thrives today.

because truly, i don't know how much study people do on ancient peoples, but on a whole, it seems to me that ancient cultures were a very warlike, greedy, enslaving, bloodthirsty, calloused people. all over. exceptions here and there, yes. but on the whole, every culture across the earth, that we know of, has been this way. ALL of them needed an overhaul. ALL of them needed some sort of straightening out. and i think god cut his teeth on israel. working with them in ways that wasn't even clear to them in order to show many things to those of us to come later. such as the fact that love and mercy and justice need to abound. showing us how hard our hearts are when we pass judgement on others. the fact that simply passing laws and demanding obedience does not change a person, but rather that a person needs to be free to choose as they will if change is to occur. and that we are better changed by a model of love than a fist of fury.

Nate said...

I have thought alot about the punishments that God used on people in the OT. The thing that keeps coming back to me is, that if you made it small, then you may not know it is God. Such as whent the Assyrians came and conquered Israel and flattened the Temple. They took all of the artisans with them so Israel could never rise again. Then, within the 70 years that God said the punishment would last, the King of Assyria allowed the Israelites to go back and even had the pagan King rebuild the Temple. This was all foretold to them, then when it happened exactly as God said it would, then they could not deny how strong their God was. This is but one example, but if the Israelites did not understand it was their God from all of that, they were idiots. (no we are not going to debate that, because many times they were) My thoughts anyway.

jON said...

interesting convo on defined. would love to add a wider perspective if you feel so inclined.

question: do you guys wander around through the community here? and what i mean is... does everybody who meets here upon a regular basis also checking the spaces and blogs of the others who congregate here on a regular basis? whether you speak up or not? just curious to see how integrated into each others' cyber lives we really are. just curious. because i like to get around. you know me. i'm a cyber slut. wondering if you guys were reading the same stuff i am.

anyway... thank you nate for touching on the topic of the bigger picture, and how it is not so much the specific actions that take place that are of importance; but rather, what the meaning behind those happenings truly is. i knew it needed to be said and i touched on it briefly, but i didn't know how to go into it without making my comment ungodly L---O---N---G.

and, yeah. the israelites were idiots. that's why i identify with them so much.

Dena G said...

So, I had this beautiful post all composed earlier(truly amazing it was, I'm tellin' ya) and when I hit the "publish" button, it vanished. Nothing.

Recollecting my thoughts...I'm a wanderer, too. (Never really thought of myself as a "cyber slut", but...) I've always been fascinated with getting to know the friends of my friends who are not part of our personal circle--it seems to shed a lot of light on facets of my friends' personalities that don't shine through in our own relationships, for whatever reason.

I'm a very regular reader of your blog (and now Nate's as well) and a semi-regular surfer through the blogs of the people with whom you, and my other blogger friends, are linked. I don't always have a lot to say, but I'm soaking it all up.

Kinda funny this...I actually have someone in my life who is going through a very self-destructive period (the person I just blogged about) and, as a by-product of that, is kind of destroying my "house" as well.

We just had a conversation yesterday about how much he has damaged our relationship with the junk he dragged in and why I choose to still stand with him in the midst of his mess.

I can honestly say it's ONLY because love and grace and mercy is abounding in my heart right now...and that's primarily because I had to experience the flipside of it in order to know why those things are so important to give.

Sorry...I think I kind of wandered off the original subject AND got a little too wordy! I tend to do that. Which is why I don't post a lot. ;-)

jON said...

you're calling yourself wordy? have you even read my stuff before? DON'T worry about it. until you match the size of comments like these, i wouldn't give it a second thought. and even then, i'm sure i would enjoy reading them :)

it's good to hear from you. i can talk to myself anytime. what makes this special for me is the different perspectives shared with one another in love.

Dena G said...

Okay, THOSE were long comments!! Next time I feel profuse word vomit about to strike, I'll know I'm safe here.