Weekly Shocks' Blog



God, Jesus, Sin, and The Bible: Feeling Uncomfortable Yet?

Let me start this one off with a cheesy yet thoroughly enjoyable slice of wittiness:

A rabbi, a priest, and a minister walk into a bar.

The bartender looks up and says, “What is this, a joke?!”

Haha! Glad I could lighten the mood. It’s always a little awkward bringing up religion in public, unless you’re talking about how you punched an annoying Jehovah’s Witness or a Mormon in the face, at which point you become Top Dog and people line up to buy you beer. That’s a little sad, isn’t it? I mean, yeah, sure, I can sympathize with those who are irritated by overly enthusiastic religious groups. After all, I seem to have a pulsating, proselytizing-faith magnet embedded under my skin, and it’s frankly a little bizarre how often I’m approached in public by members of these faiths asking me if I’d like to talk to them about Jesus. But, in all honestly, I don’t really mind. These folks aren’t all that bad – every last one I’ve met has been unfailingly polite and understanding over my reluctance to discuss my spiritual beliefs with total strangers. Even the half dozen or so who abducted me anyway and forced me into their militia-armed compounds only held me captive for three years, tops. Seriously, these poor guys get a bad rap.

But I kid the evangelicals with their scary cults, attachment to guns, child brides, and total lack of understanding of the general public.

Besides, who am I to judge, anyway? I’m Catholic! We pretty much started this whole mess! (Have I offended any Greek Orthodox out there? Good, good, just running through the list!) Unlike most Catholics, though, I still actually go to Mass every once in a while, because Mass provides structure and rules and occasionally free booze. It’s also a nice chance to talk to the Big Guy, hang out with elderly women, and munch on a substance that strongly resembles cardboard. What’s not to like?

Anyway, because I’m Catholic, I’m apparently off the hook when it comes to actually reading that touchstone of the Christian faith, the Bible. I think the Church’s official stance on laypeople and Bible-reading is that it’s a nice idea, I guess, but if you start getting too many Protestant-like thoughts of independence from it, then a priest is immediately necessary to crush your spirit and gumption into a sticky paste.  Nevertheless, I actually have read the Good Book, partly because I’m a massive geek, partly because I was an English major in college (which is really just a subsection of ‘massive geek’), and partly because I have indeed dabbled in heretical Protestantism on occasion. (Hey, I figure there’s a good chance I’m going to hell anyway, might as well be a giant dork in doing it.) And I gotta say: I love that freaky old book! It is by far the most messed-up piece of writing I have ever come across. Stephen King only wishes he could be this creepy.

I really don’t mean to slam the Bible. Even if you’re not Christian, there are some excellent lifelong guidelines in there (don’t kill people, be kind to others, lay off the pork), and staggeringly beautiful passages and imagery. Plus, your understanding of nearly every great work of Western literature will be greatly enhanced if you’re familiar with Biblical stories. But that genuine praise aside, honestly, some sections in there are just…wow. Holy Mother of God, the Bible really is one goofy, profoundly disturbing, and flat-out weird book. The Old Testament, especially. Here are some of my favorite bits:

Deuteronomy 23:1

He that is wounded in the stones, or hath his privy member cut off, shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD.

(Yikes. I guess I have a better understanding of why men are so protective of their happy areas.)

Exodus 4:24-25

And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that the LORD met him, and sought to kill him. Then Zipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me.

(Is it just me, or does this sound like it either is or should be a Monty Python sketch?)

Proverbs 25:24

It is better to dwell in the corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.

(Having grown up with two rather high-strung, temperamental sisters, I can attest that this is very, very true.)

Judges 15:15

And he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith.

(Apparently, this New and Improved Jawbone of an Ass beats the hell out of Original Jawbone of an Ass which could only slay fifty men before requiring a service upgrade.)

Samuel 18:25-27

And Saul said, Thus shall ye say to David, The king desireth not any dowry, but an hundred foreskins of the Philistines, to be avenged of the king’s enemies. But Saul thought to make David fall by the hand of the Philistines.

And when his servants told David these words, it pleased David well to be the king’s son in law: and the days were not expired.

Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men; and David brought their foreskins, and they gave them in full tale to the king, that he might be the king’s son in law. And Saul gave him Michal his daughter to wife.

(Lucky girl.)

And that’s just the proverbial tip of the iceberg of horror! I completely skipped over all the rape, incest, and beastiality bits! So, have I whet your appetite yet? Good! Then read the Bible. Then we can be geeks together and make other people feel uncomfortable by talking about it! Please? I’m so lonely.

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Comments

  1. You’re insane. You know that, right? I love you anyway.

    Posted 8 years, 6 months ago
  2. * matt says:

    This blog’s great!! Thanks :).

    Posted 8 years, 6 months ago
  3. * justjera says:

    You should really throw in some of the Tao and Gita and if you were a contestant on Jeopardy you could clean up under religion.

    You are really a good writer, by the way.

    Posted 8 years, 6 months ago


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