Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Bible, verse by verse: Take my wife - please!

Yeah, I already posted one of these previously, and I don't intend to embed all of them, but I really like how he's done this.

After all, I've just read this part of the Bible myself, and blogged about it. This video is in reference to Genesis, Chapters 20 and 21, which I talked about here and here. But although his take is similar to mine, he picked up on a lot of stuff I'd missed.

Of course, there's a limit to how much I can say about the Bible, if I ever want to get anywhere. There's just no choice - I have to pick and choose. But I'm glad I gave my impressions first. That's kind of the whole point of my Bible series.


jeff725 said...

Speaking of the Bible, I trust you've been monitoring the Michael Sam story.

A football player in Canada was fined (and eventually cut) for saying Sam should "man up," "get on his knees," and "submit to God fully."

Someone needs to have a word with this dude about irony. "Man-ing up" is "getting on your knees" and "submitting?"

I can hear George Carlin now: "Language ALWAYS gives you away." :)

Jim Harris said...

This is two weird Bible stories. At one time they must have made some kind of sense to the people telling the stories, but thousands of years later these stories are insane. They make God look capricious and there's no obvious moral. I wonder if they were some weird campfire tale that accidentally got included in the Bible? I can't imagine if the Bible was being edited today that they would be included.

WCG said...

I've heard that kind of thing before, Jeff. To them, that's how you 'man up.' To me, it seems like slave mentality.

Given the race of those two football players, and America's tragic history, that probably sounds more offensive than I'd wish. But nothing else really fits better than slavery - voluntary slavery, in this case.

What else is it to 'submit fully' to someone more powerful than you, for fear of punishment and/or hope for reward? What else is it to let that person define your very purpose in life (and death)?

Just because that person is imaginary doesn't make the mindset any less slavish. I mean, the whole point of Christianity is that 'God' made people only so there'd be someone around to praise him for eternity. That's your purpose, according to Christians. How sick is that?

WCG said...

You're absolutely right about that, Jim. I'm sure these were just campfire tales, at first. That was an ancient form of entertainment. Absent books, television, and computers, they listened to storytellers.

It was only through time that these came to take on a cultural significance - even the stories borrowed from their neighbors. Many of these probably didn't even have a supernatural hook, though others undoubtedly did (polytheistic, though).

It was only when this stuff became a religion - and in particular, when it was written down - that the various stories had to be combined into some sort of coherent narrative. But the seams are still very evident.

Christianity is the same way. It's not just the Old Testament that has this problem, but the New Testament, too.

Jim Harris said...

I wonder if historians have found these same stories in other context? I'm sure there are academics working with the proto sources of the Bible stories. That would be interesting to read.