Thursday, May 13, 2010

250: Sticks and Stones May Break Your Bones, but God Will Kill You

Ezekiel 25-27
"Because Moab and Seir said, 'Look, the house of Judah has become like all the other nations,' therefore I will expose the flank of Moab, beginning at its frontier towns—Beth Jeshimoth, Baal Meon and Kiriathaim—the glory of that land." - Ezekiel 25:8-9

This entire section is just a list of people that God is going to destroy for hurting Israel. God seems to be all for destroying Israel until someone actually does it. Then they must be punished because they are terrible people.

First on the chopping block is Ammon. They apparently said "Aha!" when Israel was desecrated. God says that, because of this, all the Ammonites must be destroyed. In fact, God says he is going to exterminate the Ammonites. God is going to destroy a civilization for doing exactly what he said he was going to do (i.e. destroy Israel)? God may not be all powerful, but he's certainly all hypocritical.

Next is Moab. They get much the same treatment as Ammon. This is because Moab said "Look, the house of Judah has become like all the other nations" when Judah was destroyed. I don't even know what that's supposed to mean, much less why that's bad. Did the Moabites even do any destroying or did they just comment on Judah's destruction? I guess you have to watch your words very carefully around God.

Edom and Philistia are next. They both took revenge on Judah, for what I'm not sure. God says that, since they took revenge in anger, God is going to kill them all. Because God has never taken revenge in anger. God would never make it if he was held to his own standards.

The rest of the section (all of chapter 26 and 27) are about Tyre. Tyre, like the other nations, makes the mistake of commenting when Jerusalem (or Judah) is destroyed:
Aha! The gate to the nations is broken, and its doors have swung open to me; now that she lies in ruins I will prosper
Uh oh, Tyre not only said that Jerusalem was destroyed, but they said that makes them happy! God is so upset with this that he spends the rest of the chapter explaining how he's going to destroy him, and an entire chapter after that telling Ezekiel what to say to Tyre.

God says that he's going to send the Babylonians after Tyre and they will utterly destroy them. The timber and rubble from their city will be thrown into the sea. Again, did the people of Tyre actually do anything to hurt the Israelites or did they just comment on how they could be more prosperous without the competition?

In God's message to Tyre, he explains to them how prosperous they were before they pissed off God. What lesson is this teaching? God is just rubbing it in. Again, God acts like an immature brat.

Last weekend Chief Justice of Mississippi Bill Waller cited the bible in the Mississippi State commencement address he gave.
Waller, who was appointed chief justice last year, pointed graduates to one of his favorite Bible verses. He had the nerve to quote the rhetorical challenge of Micah 6:8 - "And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and love mercy and to walk humbly with your God."
In context, the writer of the article is being sarcastic when he says that he had the "nerve". I, however, am not being sarcastic. It does take some nerve to quote a bible verse that tells you to walk with the Christian God in a place where there is sure to be dissenting viewpoints. Who does it hurt to have a secular graduation ceremony? I usually don't mind if people are offended, but on a day that is supposed to be a celebration for everyone it seems appropriate to do everything you can to not offend or exclude anyone.

The author of this opinion piece uses this as a launching point for a discussion about the ten commandments in courthouses:
It hardly mattered Moore contended that the Ten Commandments are the "moral foundation" of U.S. law or that even the U.S. Supreme Court building contains a statue of Moses as one of the world's lawgivers. Nor did it matter that the preamble to the Alabama Constitution says that the state "established justice by 'invoking the favor and guidance of Almighty God.'"

The fact of the matter is somewhere along the way in recent American history the courts in this land got lost and started misinterpreting the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment as totally prohibiting religion from the public arena.

Actually, all the clause really does is prohibit Congress from designating a particular denomination as the state church.
He can contend that the ten commandments are the moral foundation of US law, but that's simply untrue. I agree that the establishment clause does prohibit the promotion of one religion over another. How does putting the ten commandments in courthouses not fall under this prohibition? Is he trying to claim that the ten commandments are somehow universal to all religions? I'm calling bullshit. Somehow I don't think this writer would be so receptive to religion in public buildings if people wanted to put the Koran in court houses.

1 comment:

  1. So... Now Babylon is the chosen people? God seems to be choosing them for a lot lately. I would even say that Babylon has become God's weapon of mass destruction. I guess the Coalition invaded 2,500 years too late.



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