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Point of View: Out With the Old

Wed, 09/25/2019 - 12:36

I’m getting near the end of the Old Testament now, and it surely has been a test.

As I said not long ago there was a whole lotta smitin’ goin’ on, and it was hard for me to warm up to Jehovah, who they said was slow to anger, but I don’t think so. It was His way or the highway.

There were a few good parts, though — some of the Psalms, and Proverbs, and the Song of Solomon. The rest was pretty much fire-breathing anger on God’s part, devastating plagues, famines, and, as I said, untold smiting. I rejoiced when I thought Nineveh, at Jonah’s behest, might be saved (it would have been a “first,” I think), but apparently the Creator had second thoughts, according to Nahum.

Like Adam and Eve, we are — just about all of us, I would imagine — curious. Curiosity seems, given our situation, the most natural, and — potentially, when it comes to improving lives on earth — salvific thing. Is that awful? Is it something we should be ashamed of? Something that requires intercession? I know, I know, pride goeth before destruction, but I’m not talking of hubris here, but about extending knowledge in humanity’s behalf. And in that vein, get rid of the bombs (wouldn’t that be balm in Gilead?). They’re outdated anyway and a waste of money now that we’re getting close to shutting down an entire nation’s power grid. 

You could say the original sin — if you’re going to look at things in terms of good versus evil — was not man’s, but God’s. The Old Testament God’s anyway, his desire to wield absolute power, a seductive attractant unfortunately when it comes to those on earth who would love to reduce cities of the heathen to rubble at a single command.

Maybe (as Sadie Thompson said, in referring to Sydney) things will be better in the New Testament. I’ll read on.