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Archive for November, 2019

A verse


A verse is a verse and not what anyone says that verse means. Each verse is imbued with the spirit, the spirit of the Eternal God, radiating yet unobtrusive and giving an impression of dormancy.

When Life triggers an event in a creature, an event being a tangible situation or a thought or a feeling, that verse’ radiating spirituality is captured by the creature to its own understanding.

That understanding is not conveyable in words or letters. Notwithstanding the inadequacy of words, that moment of capturing is imbedded in our consciousness as a record. Stored and layered as a nacre of a Pearl, adding its own depth and shine of the rainbow to our subconscious mind.

It is that pearl, which is precious. Not because of the value ascribed by the outside world but because of the nourishment it provides to the creature.

Each verse thus stands on its own, yet like a thread, formable into a skein with its neighbouring thread and giving a context in Time. Yet that concept of Time is relatable only within that skein. Those skeins in turn are made into fabric and the Word emerges enveloping the whole creation and also giving a glimpse of itself.

The Verse is the building blocks of the Word, in spirit. Read the Book to understand what I’ve written above. Matchless Word.

Appeasement


There is a passage seldom preached and rarely read with the sincerity with which it ought to be read – it appears in II chronicles 28 chapter of The Bible:

23 “For he sacrificed unto the gods of Damascus, which smote him: and he said, Because the gods of the kings of Syria help them, therefore will I sacrifice to them, that they may help me…”

The character who came to that conclusion was Ahaz, who is rarely included in the Roll of Honour of the Kings of Judah & Benjamin. He was eclipsed by his illustrious son Hezekiah, as a King of Judah & Benjamin.

Leaving aside the truthfulness of the belief as to whether the gods of Syria helped the Syrians, let me lead the reader to what made Ahaz come to such a conclusion despite having the heritage of David as his forebear?

Ahaz’ father was Jotham. His grandfather was Uzziah, the longest serving King of Judah & Benjamin.

Jotham had defeated the Ammonites and had amassed silver and wheat as tribute. His grandfather Uzziah was a greater warrior and had even installed machines to throw stones against enemies – a larger version of a sling to launch projectiles- which history credits as an invention by Archimedes of Syracuse called Catapult.

Therefore, Ahaz was not a person who was depleted of his resources. He had inherited resources from his grandfather and his father in good measure, but he came to a conclusion that the Syrians won the battles with him because the Syrian gods were stronger.

He adopted certain practices like making human sacrifice out of his own children. A practice which was not alien to the neighbouring Baal and Molech worshippers. But with Mosaic law proscribing human sacrifice to God, for any reason whatsoever, except Jephthah, a judge of Israel, none practiced it as an acceptable sacrifice to the Jehovah.

Even in the case of Jephthah, the Judge couldn’t bring himself to redeem his own daughter, though there are very many verses supporting redemption of human beings in the Mosaic rules. Jephthah’s case was more because he lacked good priestly advisors.

Ahaz lost to the Syrians more because he relied on the wealth created by his father and grandfather through their action.

Ahaz’s offer to the Assyrian king was the wealth secreted in the temple and the palaces of the king of Judah. Ahaz requested for support of the Assyrian king, but instead of lending a helping hand, even the Assyrians pillage Ahaz’ wealth.

It was a clear case of wrong interpretation by Ahaz, which led to his downfall.

Both Uzziah and Jotham needed God, as they were involved in risky enterprise of engaging in wars and securing their lands by building cities on hilltops and making their people secure; whereas Ahaz had taken it for granted that the wealth was there for him to enjoy and also deploy it as a means to his salvation.

Out of such a thought is born the concept of APPEASEMENT. Ahaz is a classic case of an APPEASER.

What did Ahaz appease with? He appeased, rather sought to appease with the resources so meticulously integrated into the system through care by both Uzziah and Jotham. The foolish Ahaz had used what he had inherited to save what was left of what he had concealed of what he had inherited.

As a King, it was his duty to show himself to be strong, not as an ‘appeaser’. Appeasement as a minor tactic to a larger strategy may serve well, but not as a quid pro quo.

The foolish Ahaz finally reaches a conclusion that the Syrian gods had helped the Syrians, therefore he should bribe the Syrian gods with more to turn those gods against their traditional worshippers.

What a pity, that weakness brings. It stretches it to even beliefs.

If the reader is still sceptical, please see the gumption of the successor of Ahaz, Hezekiah. Despite the deletion of the resources, though it put him in troublesome times, he had the guts to send letters to the tribes of Israel resume their feasts at Jerusalem.

Ahaz is the hyphen who connected the strong kings Jotham and Hezekiah.

If at all one wants to appease, one may do it with what oneself had earned not on what had been inherited.

Uriah the Hittite & David of Judah.


It is a well known parable of Jesus that notwithstanding the gulf fixed between the Richman and Lazarus, they were able to see each other and talk to each other.

Using the same formula, David and Uriah would have had an opportunity to meet each other and talk to each other in the paradise or for that matter in hell or between these two.

I do not presume that David would be in heaven, as at least two major commandments had been breached by him and he was not punished the way a man of normal means would have been by the Mosaic law, which was in force then. Yet, David did not deserve to be in hell, as he was always humble towards God and had been a supreme survivor of the sins committed, and the punishment for his sins had always drawn a commuted sentence from God. That mercy shown by God to his sins were not in consonance with the Mosaic laws. Yet, the Psalms and his devotions reveal the predominant side of a man who subjected himself to the will of God. Therefore, placing him for a while in Dante’s Purgatory would be in the fitness of things and more as a balance of convenience.

But as a Protestant, the concept of Purgatory is out of question. In any case, I do not know from the Bible as to how the Hittite Uriah was with God. After all, he was a Hittite – a breed which Jehovah is stated to have promised Moses to vanquish and acquire the land of Canaan. But, if we look at his devotion to duty, Uriah had taken it a bit too seriously that David was emboldened to send a contrived death warrant through Uriah’s own hand, when David’s attempt to pass off the pregnancy of Bathsheba to have been caused by Uriah failed.

Would Uriah have known that he was got killed by David. If so, whose would have been the opening lines?

Would it have been an unqualified sorry of David?

When a Sadducee asked Jesus regarding the woman who married 7 men after the successive death of each of her 7 husbands, Jesus said “For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven”(Matthew 28:30).

Therefore to assume that both David and Uriah would be like angels would not be far fetched. Yet, the Rich man and Lazarus parable shows that the dead had not drunk from Lethe for them to have forgotten their past.

Or is it that, being angels, each would have been reconciled and would have no time to hold grudges for those events that took place back while they were alive.

The only conclusive thought for me, based on these two parables is that in the resurrection, Bathsheba would have become an angel and would neither be a wife to Uriah nor to David.

Sometimes I feel the Sadducees had logical reasons to doubt the Resurrection, not that I doubt it.

If logic and reasoning is not broken, definitely there is no Christianity. Reasoning and logic are mere tools for survival in this life and not for stretching it beyond life.

Otherwise, when Jesus said that Elijah had already come as John the Baptist and John the Baptist has been beheaded by Herod, why should Elijah appear in the mount of transfiguration as Elijah and not as John the Baptist?

Human beings extending logic and reasoning beyond the immediate purpose of life, is a wasteful exercise. Can Man contend with God? Yes he can for survival, like Jacob did on his way to Padanaram and still succeed, but cannot survive on the grounds of self-righteousness, though Righteous like Job.

The Greeks had coined a beautiful word for this – “Hubris”. The pride that gets into a man’s mind upon him acquiring power or even in man’s infallibility after complying with all the commandments of God. The only hope for man is Patience, Humility and Doing.

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