Friday, December 25, 2009

111: Sticks and Stones May Break Your Bones, but Bears Will Eat You

2 Kings 1-3
He turned around, looked at them and called down a curse on them in the name of the Lord. Then two bears came out of the woods and mauled forty-two of the youths. - 2 Kings 2:24

Ahaziah, the new king of Israel, falls through the second story of his house and hurts himself. He tells his servants to go consult Baal-Zebub (a false god) to heal him. Elijah hears about this, stops the servants, and sends them back to Ahaziah, empty handed.

This so upsets Ahaziah that he sends a company of 50 men after Elijah. Elijah uses his godly powers to burn the men alive. Ahaziah then sends another 50 men. These men also burn. Ahaziah, still not learning his lesson (or just not caring about the lives of his men), sends another 50. The captain of this 50 man team catches the pattern (namely, death) and begs for his life. Elijah goes to this man and talks to him. Is he going to be spared? Maybe? Nope. Burned alive.

[Edit: The third captain actually takes Elijah back to the king. The king is the one that is killed (presumably by burning alive like everyone else), the third captain is never mentioned again.]

When Elijah is about to die he asks his assistant Elisha if he can do anything for him. Elisha requests a "double portion" of Elijah's spirit. I didn't know the holy spirit came in portions. Soon after this, Elijah is carried away "to heaven" by a chariot of fire and horses of fire. I thought hell was the fiery place, not heaven. Actually, I've still not heard of hell. This is one of the first times I'm hearing about heaven.

The first thing Elisha does with his new "double portion" of holy spirit is to make the water of a town good to drink. Ok, this seems like a nice guy. I might finally be getting the nice character I asked for.

This "nice character" theory of mine is put to the test in the very next paragraph. Elisha goes to Bethel. As he is walking up the road, some children call him "baldhead". Good one? Ok, whatever, they're just children. Elisha is obviously going to walk away, kids will be kids right? Wrong. My hope is so often shattered by the bible.

Elisha doesn't just scold the children, he doesn't even just beat the children, he sends rabid bears after them to eat them alive. So much for a nice character. What's even worse is that he does this in the name of God.

In chapter 3 the Israelites feel that they need to go destroy some more Moabites. They do, in fact, go slaughter some Moabites. Why is it that all of these civilizations get "completely destroyed" multiple times?

We have yet another practical use for the bible today: smuggling drugs.

A woman in Tennessee was arrested for trying to give prescription drugs to an inmate. She happened to be hiding these drugs in a bible. A jail official that was interviewed said that the bible is commonly used to try to smuggle drugs. So, next time you see a bible, make sure to look for the secret contraband inside.

This is my favorite quote from the article:
All it takes is finding one Bible that's packed full of tobacco, weed, pills, whatever, and you never look at a Bible the same.
That must make church awkward.

(via News Channel 5)

*Christmas Quote*
Just in case you thought I'd forgotten it's Christmas. I couldn't think of anything terribly exciting to do, so I thought I'd give you a super special Christmas quote.
This is how the birth of Jesus Christ came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be with child through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was a righteous man and did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly. [Matthew 1:18-19]
Now you just have to wait 6 months to find out the rest. Oh wait, Jesus wasn't actually born on Christmas, never mind.

Have a merry Christmas. Or if you don't celebrate Christmas, have a great day!


  1. "The captain of this 50 man team catches the pattern (namely, death) and begs for his life. Elijah goes to this man and talks to him. Is he going to be spared? Maybe? Nope. Burned alive."

    I don't think this is accurate. I don't see where the third captain gets burned alive.

  2. It has been corrected. Thanks!



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