Saul, the King of Israel was after David, his son-in-law. David was sore afraid of Saul, as the whole state machinery was put after David to the extent that David tells Saul’s son Jonathan ‘there is but a step between me and death’!
Even David, so wise and skilled couldn’t withstand the onslaught of the machinery that was set upon by Saul that he decided and migrated his family to the land of Moab. Before David found favour with the king of Moab, David landed up at the palace of Achish, the King of Gath, one of the conglomerates of the Philistines. David was mortally stricken when he was presented before Achish that he feigned madness, and found his escape by a disgusted Achish.
David was able to escape because he was assisted by Jonathan, the son of Saul. Had not Jonathan assisted David, in probability, Saul and Abner would have overtaken David.
Saul was so upset that none who belonged to his own tribe of Benjamin, showed him that his own son Jonathan was in league with David.
The following passage reflects the Loser in Saul.
“Then Saul said unto his servants that stood about him, Hear now, ye Benjamites; will the son of Jesse give every one of you fields and vineyards, and make you all captains of thousands, and captains of hundred”.
Saul’s position as the King of Israel had given him the ability to apportion lands and other resources, which Saul had been whimsically apportioning among his own Tribe of Benjamin.
Saul relies on the Benjamites to inform Saul of the doings and affiliations of David. Basically, Saul expected his tribesmen to give him clue of the life of David and Saul feels that the Benjamites has let him down.
Firstly, that Saul as the King by distributing the resources of his kingdom would be able to buy the LOYALTY of people was erroneous.
Secondly, by distributing such largess to his Tribe, they were DUTY BOUND to inform Saul, was downright stupid.
Thirdly, by thinking that since David was from the other Tribe of Judah, people from Benjamin Tribe wouldn’t sympathise with David’s cause, is a loser’s premise.
Fourthly, that the intangibles like Loyalty, Insider information would be forthcoming only from because of tribal affinity is proven wrong immediately after this verse. It is an Edomite called Doeg, who sneaks on David’s meeting with Ahimelech, the priest at Nob.
It is only a person with information who can share it, irrespective of whether he was a Benjamite or not. In this case it happened to be an Edomite.
The loyalty bought with State’s resources neither got Saul the loyalty of his tribesmen nor the intelligence of the whereabouts of David.
It was this attitude of Saul, that he could BUY the loyalty & information by REWARDING HIS OWN TRIBE by distributing the State’s resources is the greatest flaw. His Tribesmen think it is a matter of RIGHT to be given that largesse. In any case, Saul was NOT PAYING anything out of his own sweat or tears or blood, which makes Saul a cheat, who is merely putting his hand into the till of the National Resources and distributing.
The down fall of Saul was immense. He was so interested in the outcome of his wars, that he went to the extent of getting a Necromancer to raise up Samuel to divine for Saul. The ominous prognosis was “to morrow shalt thou and thy sons be with me:” – what a terrible thing to hear, from the dead Samuel!
To submit to the limitations of a human being is the true crown of a King. To be just in the distribution of the national resources is the sceptre of righteousness. Gathering information somehow, like Saul, from the dead, takes the seeker there.
Kings beware! Power has its limitation only in two ways:
0. in its supply- when it would be cut off -is known to none.
0. One’s own mortality.
Posts tagged ‘david’
One of the greatest enterprising INITIATIVES shown by David was that he did not graze his sheep or feed his goats with the companionship and the comfort of togetherness with other shepherds. Simply put, DAVID DID NOT ENSCONCE HIMSELF WITH THE COMFORT OF FAMILIARITY! He fed the sheep and goats by grazing them in places fraught with the presence of lions and bears.
That courage to lead his sheep and goats among those uncertainties and challenges prepared him for the greater battles with his enemies later in Life.
The initiative shown in shepherding offered David the opportunities to show his courage and valiance. Those victories gave him the provenance to see Goliath’s temple, as the chink to be taken advantage of.
Plus his skill, in Slinging, honed in those shepherding times makes David see what others COULDN’T see & DO.
If effort is nothing, then David wouldn’t have made it as one of the icons of courage, poetic skills and an able King.
As David was ageing, Joab told David: My lord, I am your cousin and I take the liberty of this relationship to tell you that Kingdom is not easy to divide like other property. My Lord should decide who is going to rule in your stead. Again taking advantage of my relationship of an uncle to all My Lord’s sons, I should say that Adonijah would fit well. David shot back: Where does that leave Solomon? Is he not superior in all imperial skills to Adonijah?
I agree! Yes I agree, but we should consider pedigree.
Bathsheba was an adulteress once. That My Lord regularised it through breach of at least four commandments of Moses, notwithstanding.
But that is known to only three of us and only you are not the interested party, and that’s why your thoughts stray thus, said an angry David.
Abhishaag had been reporting all these conversations to Solomon, when ever he came to see his father alone.
For Solomon, that was a shock, that his mother was an adulteress. Now his fertile imagination wanted a proof as to whether Bathsheba had become a fallen woman before her marriage or after her marriage to David.
In the former case, he deduced that she ought to have been married to someone else than David his father. Adultery had not had such a low threshold then, it had to be physical. Solomon couldn’t handle that his mother had lied to him. But when no occasion arose, how could I hold it against her? , thought Solomon.
But given to nuanced thinking he thought: yeah, it was for my father David’s sake Bathsheba had committed adultery. After all who could have resisted him except Mehrab, with her princessly arrogance at a skillful upstart!
There was a pristine side to the man who gave mankind the fifty first Psalm – How to handle adultery, post-facto, with abject surrender before God. Uriah wasn’t alive for David to fall at his feet. There he surrenders to God unconditionally.
So Solomon thought: But she was an adulterer, for whose sake, didn’t matter.
There Solomon felt a certain sense of uncurious forgiveness for Bathsheba. A bonding, shiningly built on decency of a mom-son relationship.
Solomon wanted the kingdom now, not to hold power but to keep that secret between just his father David and his mother Bathsheba.
Joab has to go! Joab HAS TO GO! No IAM GOING TO SEND HIM FROM WHERE THERE IS NO RETURN!
Joab never ever returned to haunt his mother or his mind!!!!!!
What struck me as a opening remark was I WON’T KEEP YOU LONG, which is what King Henry the Eighth is supposed to have told his six wives!
The story has a certain perverse eagerness, on the part of the person who concocted the story, based on the historical fact that Henry VIII had had six queen consorts most of whom had been executed by Henry! Tharoor merely repeated, what was originally said by , the then Prime Minister TONY BLAIR, to an European delegation. Events couldn’t have unfolded as per that smart one-liner, as the reason for Henry VIII disposing of the Queens on one ground or the other was that, he believed that they were incapable of producing a male heir to the throne. As such, it must have happened after each had brought forth a female child or had gone childless for a while. So such a PREPONDERENT STATEMENT WOULDN’T HAVE BEEN POSSIBLE AT THE OUTSET OF EACH ENGAGEMENT! It appears to me as a smart concoction post facto!
It leads us to the next fact whether any of the six queens did finally produce a male heir and if so did Henry stop his UXORICIDE? Jane Seymour did gift a male child, who eventually sat as the Defender of Faith, at a tender age of ten and died six years after his ascension! The next was the daughter of his first wife, Catherine of Aragon. She also did not serve long and Elizabeth I, ascended the throne and she became the Defender of the Faith for a full four and a half decades, before James came and legitimised the work of Wycliffe through the KING JAMES VERSION, of the Protestant Bible.
So history is not a mere narration of events, it is a subtle interpretation of the events seen through the mental filters of any mind conditioned in a way either voluntarily through an ideology or events.
So when Tony Blair said that Henry told all his wives that he WOULDN’T KEEP THEM LONG, it was an expression of a newly converted Catholic, to further blacken the image of Henry the Eighth, as a demonstration of his adherence to his Catholic belief!
One of the ideas found acceptable by Absalom, when he usurped rather attempted to usurp the throne from his father David, was that he prove to the people with him, that he was irreconcilably alienated from his father David, was to indulge in sex with David, his father’s, concubines, PUBLICLY! Absalom did it publicly and proved to his followers that he cannot reconcile with his father, ever! Likewise, Tony Blair had to be judgementally insensitive to the man on whose edifice he had built his career and his being!
When Henry asked the Church of Rome for the dissolution of his marriage with Catherine of Aragon, there was his contemporary, Charles the Fifth, who was the Holy Roman Emperor, who secured the Pope’s temporal interests. And this Charles V, was a nephew of Catherine of Aragon. So the Pope had to make a choice, and circumstances made him to go with the immediate geographical power which was of more immediate importance to the Pope, then.
The interesting part is that the Kingship of England, which is legitimised by the Protestant Church of England , had to suffer the barb of Tony Blair, who because of his catholic leanings, was not willing to see the Liberty gained by the English people even though they were the benevolent byproducts of the evil deeds of Henry VIII!
When Tharoor repeated the quote, it must have gratified many Papists, as Henry’s role has been truly SEMINAL in the Reformatory process (called schism by the Catholic Church) of the Church if England!
Why not we look at the Pope not having granted the dissolution of the marriage between Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon as another political compulsion (as Charles V was keen on keeping his aunt as the Queen consort of England)? We desire no such thought as that part of the history would have no great appeal, as there was no departure from normal human affiliations, whereas Henry’s deeds of executing 3 Catherines and two Annes stand in the way of his rehabilitation, for having secured the Liberty of the Church if England! (Btw Jane Seymour died soon after she delivered the baby boy, who became Edward VI) .
Shall we say Jane Seymour DID NOT TAKE LONG TO GIVE HENRY WHAT HE WANTED – A BABY BOY?
But Tharoor’s opening sentence itself was accusative of the moral grounds on which Doctrine of Lapse was invented by the Imperial Governors General, to sustain their hold on Indian revenues!
My dad asked me, ” Why did David try to get Michal, daughter of Saul, after he was accepted by the tribe of Judah as their king, considering the fact that she was cohabiting with another person by name Phlatiel?”
With his vast sense of righteousness and the commandment : THOU SHALT NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, to back him, he thought he had stumped me.
I had thought it all out!
I said, IT IS NOT WHY, BUT WHEN, that we should occupy our consideration. David knew he was gypped in the case of Mehrab, when he defeated Goliath. Through his second attempt to get to be the son-in-law he gets the foreskins of the uncircumcised, and gets Michal. The RIGHT to have Michal had been sealed through performance of the bride price, and he had CONSUMMATED his relationship as his wife, yet Saul to spite him uses the old old civil death concept and gets her married to Phlatiel!
David did not go after her like Samson before him, just because his wife has been wrongly given to someone else. HIS PATIENCE COUPLED WITH HOPE made him wait till he was crowned the king at Hebron.
The TIDE TURNED.
Ishboseth asks a foolish question regarding another woman called Rizpah to his commander Abner and Abner, who was sensing the dwindling fortunes of Ishboseth, quickly abandons Ishboseth, citing the Rizpah episode as the reason.
It is at this juncture that David the shrewdest king CLAIMS HIS RIGHT TO MICHAL.
David was no fool, there is no point in being a wise one like Solomon and own an array of foreign princesses and spending his TIME on aesthetic pursuits without consolidating the foundation laid by his father David, ASSIDUOUSLY.
Nor was David a victim of the woman’s VANITY. David cared a fig for what Michal thought of David’s naked performance before his God! In fact he says that it was the same God who made him the King of Israel instead on being merely the son in law of the king! Therefore HE DIDN’T MIND LOOKING VILER IN THE EYES OF THE PRINCESS’ HANDMAIDENS!
Whereas, the biggest fool Solomon, who was running on the steam of his father David, expends the steam in the service of all those alien princesses who adorned his outward magnificence as accessories to his Kingship!
David tells Abner, get the woman Michal, for whom David had made a tally of 100 foreskins as the bride price! Abner, who was the Commander to the Army of Saul and for Abner and his brothers David had carried parched gram, figs etc. when the Giant Goliath was challenging the Israelites to send a challenger to fight him. Further, Abner was the one who once took him to Saul and recommended David as the challenger to Goliath. Abner now returns meekly and yanks the woman from the bosom of Phlatiel and “restores” Michal to David !
That’s MANLINESS OF DAVID coupled with COURAGE to withstand the guile of the woman worshiping men, and advantage seeking tantrum-ing princesses!
David KNEW WHEN TO CLAIM EVEN HIS RIGHTS! That made him the man he was, not succumbing to the sinuous, sensuous and emotional appeals of the feminine LA BELLE DAME SANS MERCI!
David was the Man, maybe Jehu comes close, but without the poetic skills or the pioneering spirit of David, though!
Talent hits a target no one else can hit; Genius hits a target no one else can see. – Schopenhauer
Article 161 of the Constitution of India
161. Power of Governor to grant pardons, etc, and to suspend, remit or commute sentences in certain cases:
The Governor of a State shall have the power to grant pardons, reprieves, respites or remissions of punishment or to suspend, remit or commute the sentence of any person convicted of any offence against any law relating to a matter to which the executive power of the State extends.
It is no news that the conviction and the sentence were pronounced by the Sessions Judge in Bangalore on a sitting Chief Minister of one of the major states of the country. The sentence was to have been pronounced by the court earlier on a day which was not followed by a public holiday, however for reasons best known to the Honourable judge the verdict was postponed to a day which was to be followed by a court holiday! This may not have been the intention of the Sessions Judge to pronounce the judgment on a day prior to a court’s CLOSED HOLIDAY , but it has so happened – the effect of which was that an appeal could not be filed before the higher court competent to grant relief to the convict.
My question is very ELEMENTARY – if the offence was committed in the state of Tamil Nadu and the prosecution of the offence was followed by the Tamil Nadu police and their prosecutors, does the GOVERNOR OF KARNATAKA have the right to exercise the powers vested in him in terms of Article 161 of the Constitution of India?
Assuming that the Governor of Karnataka were to be vested with the powers of Art.161, does the Governor of Karnataka have the power to say that the conviction and sentence on the Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu relates to “any law relating to a matter to which the executive power of the State (Karnataka) extends”? I think not. It would be the power of the Governor of Tamil Nadu who would have the power – simply because, if the Governor of Tamil Nadu did not have the power to pardon/commute the sentence of the convicts in the RAJIV GANDHI MURDER CASE, which was prosecuted by the CBI, merely because the TRIAL PROCEEDINGS were ordered to be conducted in a neighbouring state, the Karnataka state’s Governor would not be able to assume such powers which do not belong to his executive jurisdiction.
The reason for vesting with such powers was to grant the higher power of MERCY to the government over JUSTICE, as MERCY is a higher jurisdiction, as there is every possibility of miscarriage of justice, “reasons of state”, and also as a a protection against laws which are strictly imposed for legal reasons which may not be very reasonable, and may affect the very fabric of the state (cf. Nanavati’s case)! It is time we defined “reasons of state”!
I do not for a moment say that there has been a miscarriage of justice, neither am I authorized to say so, but when a person under oath of allegiance to the Constitution and the head of the Government were to be pushed to the predicament of having to face the verdict of her past action, the verdict could put THE COLLECTIVE WILL OF THE PEOPLE OF TAMIL NADU at loggerheads with THE SENTENCE of the VERDICT! Indeed in this case, the CM of Tamil Nadu has been sentenced to imprisonment for 4 years.
In the instant case, the WILL OF THE PEOPLE OF TAMIL NADU has been downgraded unceremoniously without an opportunity of exercising respite from /suspension of the sentence, by the Governor of the state, where the offences were committed. She was straight taken to the gaol! When a constitutional provision is available for such rare occurrences, is it a must that the provisions of the Criminal Procedure Code should be followed so meticulously? I think not.
The head of the Government of the state of Tamil Nadu was unfortunately tried in a state, which had some serious outstanding issues like the Cauvery Water dispute, in which the then CM of TN (OPS being the present incumbent) had taken a very strident position against the state of Karnataka. That takes one to the next question – If the trial couldn’t have been fair in TN, would the trial in KA been IMPARTIAL, especially in the light of the fact that KA is ruled by a political party which has celebrated the conviction and sentence of the CM of TN?
After all, we should all remember that a Sessions Judge is under the control of the state government in which he is employed and does not have the IMMUNITIES which are enshrined & reserved in the Constitution for the High Court and Supreme Court Justices only! If the Hon’ble Supreme Court was convinced that a FAIR TRIAL was not possible in the state of TN, based on a partisan petition filed by a rival politician, was the point as to whether the trial in KA would be IMPARTIAL, also considered? I wonder if the SC considered the point!
A democratically elected CM of a state needn’t have to be cornered on a Saturday with no option for approaching a higher judicial forum where the Justices are vested with immunities against the government of the day! Even Henry VIII, whose major profession was to accuse his queens of treachery, treason and infidelity and have them executed, sent for the Hangman from Calais, who was known to MERCIFULLY use a fine sword instead of an axe, when Anne Boleyn’s time came for her neck to be laid on the block!
I would like to narrate an episode from the Bible to illustrate my point: the first king of Israel, SAUL was defeated by the Philistines and to circumvent the ignominy of being dragged in the mud and then being killed painfully and ignominiously, Saul planted a spear and leaned on it and he is supposed to have died (I Samuel Ch. 31) but from the account narrated by an Amalekite to David (who became the Second king of Israel), Saul was still alive and that the Amalekite was requested by the moribund Saul, to kill him and the Amalekite claimed to David that he indeed killed Saul and had brought Saul’s Crown and Saul’s bracelet for David. David asks him one withering question at 2 Samuel Ch.1 v. 14 : HOW WAST THOU NOT AFRAID TO STRETCH FORTH THINE HAND TO DESTROY THE LORD’S ANOINTED?
I don’t for a minute say that a Chief Minister of a State is an “anointed” person, much less when NO POLITICAL CHIEF, (which means the prime minister or any of the Chief Ministers) has been included in Article 361 of the Constitution of India, which expressly provides immunity to the President of India and all Governors of the states against institution or continuation of criminal proceedings during the term of their office! Yet the Chief Minister who had won an election in her own name and might and had very recently mopped up 37 Members of Parliament seat out of the total 39 of the state of Tamil Nadu deserved at least a bleak chance at the judicial and executive remedies available in the Constitution of India!
Therefore, our judicial system should not be following AMBUSH JUSTICE of first instance, where all options for judicial remedy and executive remedy are foreclosed and the convicted CHIEF MINISTER is forced to languish and labour under the verdict of a court of first instance, located in a HOSTILE CONTIGUOUS state.
MERCY is above JUSTICE and let us make NO mistake of it.
The trouble with most of the Christian preachers is that they do not highlight the passages in the Bible which reflect COURAGE, EXECUTION OF ONE’S DUTY, ASTUTENESS and WISDOM; instead they parrot those passages which are aimed at making “SHEEP” out of men and women who listen to those sermons.
The reason, I presume, is that WEALTH over COURAGE has become the priority of the Preachers. When the followers are wealthy, they could use Malachi 3:10 and skim them of the cream and lead those smug lives.
One of the Biblical characters whom I admire most is JEHU, the Commander of the Israel army during the reign of AHAB and AHAB’S son JORAM (JEHORAM). and who subsequently became the King of Israel. Jehu was not merely courageous but astute and wise as well. These are difficult qualities to blend. JESUS says, BE WISE LIKE A SERPENT BUT INNOCENT AS A DOVE. That was a blend recommended by JESUS, seldom one hears these being expatiated in the sermons, as the Preachers know that if their followers become “wise as serpents” but also “innocent as doves” the followers would reach their SALVATION without ENRICHING THE PREACHERS! So such passages are left out, in the belief that the “wise” are anyway going to become wise and innocent on their own without their “help”.
JEHU fits the bill of having been WISE LIKE A SERPENT but also INNOCENT LIKE A DOVE. How could I say that when he committed regicide and also “reginacide”? Read on and I assure you that I have my reasons for such a conclusion:
II Kings 9
30 And when Jehu was come to Jezreel, Jezebel heard of it; and she painted her face, and tired her head, and looked out at a window.
31 And as Jehu entered in at the gate, she said, Had Zimri peace, who slew his master?
32 And he lifted up his face to the window, and said, Who is on my side? who? And there looked out to him two or three eunuchs.
Ahab, the husband of JEZEBEL was dead and his son JORAM (JEHORAM) was ruling Israel in Ahab’s stead. The Queen Mother was JEZEBEL and exerting much influence in the affairs of the state of Israel. I would like to tell those readers who are not familiar with the political structure as it was then that the original Israel of 12 tribes had split during the reign of Rehoboam S/o SOLOMON into Israel consisting of 10 tribes and Judah consisting of the 2 tribes of Judah and Benjamin. So AHAB was in that line of the Kings who ruled Israel minus the 2 tribes of Judah and Benjamin and for brevity called JUDAH the kingdom.
JEHU was one of the commanders of the army of AHAB and later served his son Joram, but JEHU was a believer in the God of Israel, whereas Jezebel was a worshiper of BAAL and this had led to a lot of internecine manoeuvrings within the kingdom.
To come back to the thread of the story, Jehu kills JORAM and rides to the palace in JEZREEL, then the capital city of ISRAEL. So JEZEBEL sees JEHU riding into the palace and she “painted her face and tired her her” to receive JEHU and when her offer of PEACE was rejected outright, Jezebel asks him a very LOADED QUESTION; “HAD ZIMRI PEACE? THE MURDERER OF HIS MASTER”
With a little help from 1 Kings 16:15-20 we would be able to understand the connotation!
So here JEZEBEL from the upper floor of the palace addresses JEHU and tells him to recall the fate of ZIMRI and how people would rebel against his regicide and turn against him and kill him. Jezebel had lost her son/step-son JORAM and is still finding time to paint her face and tire her hair- is it because she, as having got used to her regal ways had to present herself ‘beautified’? I guess not. She had lost Ahab and was continuing her life unaffected with her son Joram and now that JORAM was dead her motto must have been THE KING IS DEAD, LONG LIVE THE KING – THE NEW KING JEHU. But inter-se between Jezebel and Jehu she wanted to have CONTROL OVER Jehu, so that her writ would continue to run in the kingdom.
JEHU, tells the eunuchs in the palace to throw her down and JEZEBEL meets her match and end in the hands of JEHU. In effect what JEZEBEL told JEHU was YOU COULD HAVE KILLED THE KING, BUT TILL YOU TAKE OVER THE INSTITUTIONS AND THE PEOPLE OF THE KINGDOM, YOU CANNOT EXERCISE CONTROL AND ADMINISTRATION OVER THE KINGDOM. AND I, JEZEBEL, HAVE CONTROL OVER THE ADMINISTRATION TAKE ME AND ALL IS YOURS AND YOU, JEHU, DO NOT HAVE TO FACE THE FATE OF ZIMRI. IF YOU, JEHU, WANT PEACE, THEN MAKE ME YOUR QUEEN! I AM ALL DOLLED UP AND WAITING…….TAKE ME AND WE CAN RUN THE KINGDOM!
This was nothing but SEDUCTION, not all sexual but POWER flavoured with sexual innuendo.
Why was Jehu wise? Jehu DID NOT ENTER the palace, but stood outside. There could have been TREACHERY inside and JEHU was aware of Abhimelechs and Siseras who had met sordid end by getting too close to the tower or inside the tents where women were staying!
THAT WAS THE SERPENT LIKE WISDOM IN JEHU. Yet at the same time he bided his time till he was anointed so that he could take over the reins of Israel. In the BIBLE, the only person who was assured kingship to heirs till the fourth generation was JEHU, not even DAVID was able to retain all the 12 tribes beyond the third i.e David, Solomon and Rehoboam!
But why was that so? A man who wants to be the king should be away from the wiles of wayward women. JEHU succeeded where even DAVID failed and history shows that. That SEXUAL INNOCENCE coupled with the WISDOM to wait and choose the most opportune time to strike makes JEHU a bigger hero than DAVID, but DAVID is incomparable as he makes up with his humility, ability to obtain the Grace from God, poetic talent and cunning!
In INDRA NAGAR, Bangalore there is a very popular church among Christians by name Full Gospel Assemblies of God, the chief pastor being one Paul Thangiah. He speaks forcefully and i like listening to him! I do not go to his church as fundamentally the beliefs subscribed to by FGAG is contrary to my belief system. However, as a Christian who is open minded and listen to the various interpretations of the Bible, i am not averse to listening to his sermons. Pastor Paul Thangiah is a forceful speaker and appears to believe in the brand of Christianity which places a lot of emphasis on personal epiphany of Christianity.
What is PERSONAL EPIPHANY OF CHRISTIANITY?
Well when Paul of Tarsus, was on his way to Damascus armed with letters for persecution from the Synagogue of Jerusalem, he was struck with blindness and subsequently converted to Christianity and also cured of his blindness through the prayers of one Annanias of Damascus. This personal intervention of Jesus was cited by Paul to be the reason for his choice by Christ himself, for him to become the Apostle of the Gentiles. Good luck to his beliefs! The brand of Christianity which Paul spread through his ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURES is still seen as the model to be emulated by some Christians. Paul Thangiah belongs to that class of Christians who believe in the CHURCH ORGANIZATION more than eternal personal vigilance to be a Christian of DEEDS. This i believe, should also exist, as without an ORGANIZATION there is no way Christianity would be ably represented in POLITICAL FORA. But this Sunday, i heard Pastor Paul Thangiah speak of some junior pastors who are supposed to be working against the Church leadership of his FGAG. Those are internal issues a i have nothing against it, nor should i have and therefore i have no issues against it.
However, he compared those rebellious minded pastors to that of Joab , the Commander-in-Chief of the army of David, the king of Israel. Joab killed Abner, the Commander-in-Chief of Saul. Abner had met David privately, and had assured David of bringing the tribes of Benjamin and others under the authority of David. It is not clear from the Bible, if that was to be brought about through a rapprochement between Ishbosheth and David, or through betrayal of Ishbosheth by Abner. In any case, before such an arrangement could take effect, Joab kills Abner citing avenging the earlier killing of Joab’s brother by Abner. Later, Joab supports Adonijah in his succession efforts, but gets upstaged by the cleverness of Bathsheba and Solomon, is made King of Israel. As per Solomon, his father David at the time of his death had told Solomon that Shimei and Joab should not be allowed to have a natural death, as the former had insulted David while David was fleeing the takeover bid of Absalom and the latter, as Joab had shed blood during peace time by killing Abner.
If there was one person who was loyal to David, it was Joab, as he was firstly a blood relative to David, their mothers were sisters! In Bathsheba’s matter, it was he who carried out the orders of David in executing Uriah, so that David could legitimize his relationship with Bathsheba. Moreover, there is at least one instance wherein Joab sent for David just before taking over a city in a battle, so that David could have the GLORY and not him (Joab). Joab’s advice to David after the death of Absalom is laudable. So to malign Joab is merely falling into the HISTORY WRITTEN BY THE VICTOR. Since Solomon’s elder brother was supported by Joab and as Joab probably had the letter of David sent for setting up Uriah, Solomon’s mother’s first husband, Solomon MUST HAVE BEEN KEEN on eliminating Joab and therefore USED DAVID’S NAME TO JUSTIFY SOLOMON’S ACTS!
Pastor Paul Thangiah uses the symbol of Joab, to describe the pastors who had probably undermined his authority in FGAG. This seems to be without a proper parallel. Pastor Paul Thangiah’s outburst was interesting- at least it showed how offended he was by others’ deeds.
There have been a lot of discussion and opinions strewn about Leaders and Leadership with reference to the recently concluded LIST II elections in the various states of India, especially with reference to UTTAR PRADESH.
LEADER is a post- facto determination OF A PERSON’S LEADERSHIP. Anointment as a leader may legitimize his decisions and also empower him, but to exhibit LEADERSHIP, he should PERFORM & DELIVER. Otherwise, like Humayun in the string of the Great Mughals, would be treated as a mere HYPHEN which connected the other two Great Mughals, Babur and Akbar!
Let me expatiate on this point through the story of DAVID & GOLIATH.
Goliath was a Philistine champion. A person who prided on his skills in a one-to-one battle. He had a spear and sword to offend, a buckler, greaves and a helmet to defend and heckled at the Jewish forces to engage him in a duel. On the other side was the King Saul and his chief of his army Abner. So both Saul and Abner were LEADERS! But they did not want to engage, as they were too big to get into duels with single individuals and expose themselves to the vagaries of a battle. They, though were LEADERS were relying on their POSITIONAL ADVANTAGE to find a person who could win the combat, yet were not willing to engage themselves in the combat.
So SAUL & ABNER went around scouting for a suitably skilled person to defeat GOLIATH. This was extent of the leadership by Saul. He used his KINGLY position to side-step facing a combat. He was also a trained warrior- at least after he became a King, he was trained. But ABNER was in that position as a WARRIOR only, so he should have stepped in and taken GOLIATH head on. Yet he skirted the combat and wanted somebody else to fight GOLIATH and get the Jews the victory. Their LEADERSHIP WAS CONFINED TO STRATEGY NOT ACTION!
Eventually DAVID was chosen to combat GOLIATH, I am sure DAVID must have demonstrated his skills as a slinger and Saul and Abner would have seen the advantage in sending DAVID, as – if David’s skill worked- he would be able to finish off GOLIATH before DAVID came into the range of the spear or sword of Goliath. A good ADMINISTRATIVE DECISION. Saul and Abner were great ADMINISTRATORS, but exhibited poor LEADERSHIP qualities.
DAVID grabs the opportunity. DAVID slings GOLIATH to his death and cuts off the head of GOLIATH with Goliath’s own sword!
DAVID DID NOT RETIRE LEAVING THE VICTORY IN THE HANDS OF THE ADMINISTRATORS! He exhibited LEADERSHIP.The women, show to Saul who the REAL LEADER was: they sang, “Saul got his thousands and David his ten thousands!”
He had earlier refused to wear the coat-mail of Saul . David relied on his own USP – SLING AND SWING THE VERDICT. He did it. That was LEADERSHIP. But still Saul and Abner were the leaders of the Jewish group. They reduced themselves to figure heads!
SIMPLE, TO BE A LEADER YOU NEED A CROWD WHICH RECOGNIZES YOU AS THE LEADER. BUT TO EXHIBIT LEADERSHIP YOU HAVE TO BE WILLING TO DIE FOR THE CAUSE.
DAVID WAS WILLING TO DIE, BUT WON THE BATTLE WITH HIS SKILLS. That makes for LEADERSHIP.
Like what Benjamin Netanyahu said, “IF IT WALKS LIKE A DUCK, LOOKS LIKE A DUCK AND QUACKS LIKE A DUCK, WHAT DO YOU CALL IT? A DUCK. IF IT IS FITTED WITH A NUCLEAR HEAD THEN IT IS A NUCLEAR DUCK!”
So PERFORMANCE (which means FUNCTIONS) matter. Merely calling someone a LEADER is nothing but a feudal technique of management. One should exhibit LEADERSHIP TRAITS to be called a LEADER in a DEMOCRACY.
Let us get our fundamentals right!!
SIN is what we do and think. The definition of Sin varies from religion to religion; from belief to belief, but GUILT depends on the person and the “time” during which he “FEELS” guilty.
So essentially, SIN is based on what one DID or THOUGHT (Jesus says: if a man lusts after a woman, he has committed adultery in his heart) but GUILT is what a person “feels” or “is made to feel about what he did or thought”. Herein lies the difference.
Ashoka the Great killed millions in the war of Kalinga but did not feel Guilty, but somewhere thereafter he FEELS GUILTY, so he was CONVICTED OF HIS GUILT and gave up war.
David overcomes his guilt after committing adultery with Bathsheba till Nathan CONVICTS David of his guilt.
Guilt is a personal conviction, whereas SIN is an ACT..
The best part is that one could SIN and never FEEL GUILTY.
And if we are LUCKY, God will not bring up a person to show us our SINS and make us FEEL GUILTY!!
Christians in their eagerness to believe in MIRACLES make even RESULTS of EFFORTS, which have fructified thru HOPE, to be classified as MIRACLES.
A good example is the story of KING DAVID, who was the second King of Israel and finds mention in the books of Samuel, Kings and Chronicles of THE BIBLE.
For those not familiar with the story of David, let me recount a brief life story of one of the greatest symbols of Jewish History. His father’s name was Jesse and he had 7 brothers, who were all elder to him. Being the last and and ignored by his father Jesse, DAVID was rather consigned to tending to the few sheep which Jesse had. He was from the tribe of Judah.
David’s sculpture by Michelangelo leaning on one leg with a curled up fingers in the nude oozes with manliness. But his left hand is bent at the elbow with a sling slapped on his left shoulder. For me that sling is the SYMBOL of his skill, which eventually led him to strike GOLIATH and save the Israelites from the Philistines. Has it ever occurred to anyone why DAVID should keep the sling on his LEFT HAND and SHOULDER? I have a good reason why Michelangelo made David hold his sling on his left hand – IT SHOWS THAT SKILL OF THE HIGHEST ORDER, SHOULD BE MADE TO SERVE LIFE AND BEAUTY.
Getting back to our theme- David was not a mere shepherd as thought of by some Christians. It was the job assigned by his father and his elder brothers while he was still young. But what did he do while he was ASSIGNED THE ROLE OF A SHEPHERD? He did not fritter away his time chasing shepherdesses and whiling away his time. He developed 2 skills. One was his ability to sling accurately with force and the other was to play the harp. He built up skills during his free time. That was what made God choose him. God can give talents but He sure is not going to multiply it for you. God gave David the talent to be a lyricist (psalmist), a warrior and a musician, but it was left to him to identify what he had received and hone those skills. David sure did that.
DAVID did not have the mentality of a shepherd, he was filled with imagination. His brothers Eliab, Shamma and others scold him saying that he had left the few sheep their father had in the wilderness and had come to watch the war games initiated by GOLIATH. THEY WERE WRONG- DAVID DID NOT COME TO WATCH THE WAR GAMES, DAVID HAD COME TO GO STRAIGHT INTO THE PALACE AND SHARE THE MATRIMONIAL BLISS AND BED WITH MEHRAB, THE DAUGHTER OF KING SAUL. David’s brothers were curry favouring ABNER, the Chief of the army of King Saul, but our David went straight for the jugular- DAVID wanted MEHRAB and become the son-in-law of the King. David did not go to Abmer to display his skills, he found a way to Saul.
Do you think King Saul would have let David take on Goliath without testing his skills as a slinger? NO WAY. King Saul would have given him 20 stones and put a condition that David had to strike the target set by him all the 20 times without fail. Saul was no idiot to let an untested man up in a battle, where King Saul and his people’s liberty were at stake. I am sure, rather dead sure, that Saul would have tested him thoroughly before sending DAVID up as the challenger to the declarer GOLIATH.The stakes were too hig to have been otherwise.
The rest is history. DAVID was no shepherd, he was a super skilled slinger, an accomplished musician and a great charmer of women- more than anything else, he was an ACCOMPLISHER. A FINISHER OF THE TASK UNDERTAKEN.
After him killing GOLIATH, King Saul does not give Mehrab, he doesn’t sulk, but carries on his mission to get to the palace. Gets foreskins and becomes the husband to Michal and makes it to the palace. That is where the action is. His brothers were still polishing the shoes of Abner, but our David had risen to the level of being perceived as a threat to the kingship of Saul. David befriends Jonathan and gets info on the palace intrigues even when he is forced out. David escapes with the help of Michal. So DAVID was no shepherd, he was relentlessly on his path to KINGSHIP. Saul calls his son Jonathan, ” THOU SON OF A PERVERSE WOMAN, DON’T YOU KNOW THAT YOU ARE HELPING DAVID AT THE COST OF YOUR THRONE?” Was David a shepherd? NAY.
Archibald Primrose Rosebery is reputed to have said that he had three aims in life: to win the Derby, to marry an heiress, and to become Prime Minister. He managed all three. There are certain things which cannot be “GOT”, one has to be “PLACED” to enjoy the benefits there. Like Archibald Rosebery, DAVID knew that early. HE worked hard to become a KING and even harder to stay that way. That is no shepherd trait.
Read Psalm 144:1
Blessed be the LORD my strength which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight:
Se the word “TEACHETH”, God can but MAN has to LEARN, that is man’s duty. David learnt the skills and that is what helped him to get there.
Dear Christians, do not believe that God is going to work on the talents given to you, work on it. Prayer is a defence, prayer is a petition but the “will” is God’s- in the meanwhile work on your SKILLS. Miracles do happen in stages also. Get that straight.
There were instances when Jesus told the ones who wanted to be healed “I will, be healed”, but there is also an instance when he made clay out of his spittle and told the man to go and wash in the pool of Siloam. We do not know what is HIS will, in the meanwhile LET US HONE OUR SKILLS. May be we are lucky like Bartimaeus or otherwise, but we cannot keep waiting for MIRACLES to happen suddenly. MIRACLES could be EVOLUTIONARY too in some cases!
DAVID WAS AN EVOLUTIONARY MIRACLE!
Josiah was a king of Judah (the tribes of Benjamin and Judah out of the 12 tribes) during the seventh century BC. WIKIPEDIA has the following to say:
Josiah or Yoshiyahu ( /dʒoʊˈsaɪ.ə/ or /dʒəˈzaɪ.ə/; Hebrew: יֹאשִׁיָּהוּ, Modern Yošiyyáhu Tiberian Yôšiyyāhû, literally meaning “healed by Yahweh” or “supported of Yahweh“; Greek: Ιωσιας; Latin: Josias; c. 649–609 BC) was a king of Judah (641–609 BC) who instituted major reforms. Josiah is credited by most historians with having established or compiled important Jewish scriptures during the Deuteronomic reform that occurred during his rule.
THE BIBLE says the following about King Josiah:
The Book of Job begins with an introduction to Job’s character — he is described as a blessed man who lives righteously. God‘s praise of Job prompts Satan to challenge Job’s integrity and suggesting that Job serves God simply because he protects him. God removes Job’s protection, allowing Satan to take his wealth, his children, and his physical health in order to tempt Job to curse God. Despite his difficult circumstances, he does not curse God, but rather curses the day of his birth. And although he protests his plight and pleads for an explanation, he stops short of accusing God of injustice. Most of the book consists of conversations between Job and his three friends concerning Job’s condition and its possible reasons, after which God responds to Job and his friends, opening his speech with the famous words, “Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me.” After God’s reply, Job is overwhelmed and says, “I am unworthy – how can I reply to you? I put my hand over my mouth.” Many interpretations read this as Job realizing how little he knew when he says to the Lord, “My ears had heard of you, but now my eyes have seen you.” Other scholars and readers, however, find this explanation unsatisfactory, since the problem of Job (the innocent man suffering at the hand of God) is not addressed. Job’s response to God shows none of the anger, passion, or piety he demonstrated in the rest of the story, even when God does not give Job the direct answer he has demanded for much of the book. Then Job is restored to an even better condition than his former wealthy state. Job was also blessed to have seven sons and three daughters named: Jemimah (which means “dove”), Keziah (“cinnamon”), and Keren-happuch (“horn of eye-makeup”). His daughters were said to be the most beautiful women in the land. “Job went on to live one hundred and forty years, and saw his children and grandchildren for four generations.”
In the history of Job, there is REDEMPTION; but in the history of JOSIAH there is an unjustified end. Josiah comes out as a undeserved TRAGIC HERO.
Jesus therefore aptly says at LUKE 13:2 onwards:
2 Jesus answered, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans because they suffered this way? 3 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish. 4 Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? 5 I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.”
So death is unavoidable, but when DEATH OCCURS, let us be prepared. It is not because of our RIGHTEOUSNESS that we get to live long, but because GOD’S agenda CANNOT BE KNOWN TO MAN. Manasseh, despite being the worst offender of the Kings of Judah, ends up ruling for close to 59 years- maybe because of the goodness of his father Hezekiah- but his sons and grandson do not get the benefit of Hezekiah’s goodness as Manasseh’s evil overtook them eclipsing the goodness of Hezekiah.
In my opinion, JOSIAH was self-righteously arrogant. He could have sought God’s will when Necho also invokes the name of God. Maybe the prophets with their urim and thummim (whatever that be!) could have revealed that his fight was not favourable.
HUMILITY and SKILL are more important than RIGHTEOUSNESS! Otherwise i cannot justify David’s successes and the GRACE he obtained from God.
God appeared to David and asked , ” Why should I grant your wish. Give me one reason?”
David said, ” God! I tried keeping your commandments. And if ever i had deviated, that was not out of WILLFULNESS, but out of WEAKNESS -with a generous dose of RECKLESSNESS.”
God said, ” In fact for your sense of humour I grant it to you, more than the reasons for which you claim you deviated.”
David was so pleased with himself that he told God, ” So God have i finally said what You have not heard before?”
God said, “Sure David, I have heard it from someone for the first time. But what amused me was that My creation had thought of what he was not supposed to consider. You have eaten from the TREE OF KNOWLEDGE! Go earn your own bread, and toil!”
The title relates to the Biblical characters who find a place in the Book of Genesis and Judges respectively. The point that is the focus of my blog is the relationship that Joseph and Samson had with their respective women.
Joseph was a slave in Egypt, because his brothers (especially Judah, who had the bright idea that what would the brothers benefit if they killed him, so more as a matter of greed they agree with Judah and sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites) had sold him and he winds up in the Pharoah’s Chief of Guards house and becomes a steward there. The Chief of the Guards is one Potiphar, who has a wife who eyes Joseph and openly and shamelessly makes a declaration of her lust to Joseph and says, “LIE WITH ME.” The story goes that one day when Joseph was alone, Potiphar’s wife tries to seduce him and Joseph runs away leaving his cloak behind, making that cloak a piece of evidence for Potiphar’s wife to bolster her accusation that the slave Joseph was trying to force himself upon her. Potiphar believes her and puts him in the Special Jail meant for the Royal Prisoners (persons who were working for the royalty and fell out of favour with the Royalty for one reason or the other!)
Let us see Samson’s story. He was from the tribe of Dan, not a powerful tribe within the Jewry like Ephraim, Manasseh, Benjamin or Judah, and he was a VALOROUS MAN. A man who with the jaw-bone of an ass, killed a thousand men (Judges 15:15). He had taken many women from time to time but the Bible says that he fell in LOVE with a woman called DELILAH.
Whether she loved Samson or not is a mystery, but to put it a woman’s lib way, “DELILAH LOVED SAMSON IN HER OWN WAY!!” She was however under the payroll of the Philistine Lords who promised her 1100 pieces of silver each for finding out the secret of the strength of Samson and revealing the same to the Philistine Lords. Then one of the most terrible of charades of love unfolds, where Delilah PESTERS him daily for telling him the secret of his strength.
Judges 16:15 And she said unto him, How canst thou say, I love thee, when thine heart is not with me? thou hast mocked me these three times, and hast not told me wherein thy great strength lieth.
16 And it came to pass, when she pressed him daily with her words, and urged him, so that his soul was vexed unto death;
17 That he told her all his heart, and said unto her, There hath not come a razor upon mine head; for I have been a Nazarite unto God from my mother’s womb: if I be shaven, then my strength will go from me, and I shall become weak, and be like any other man.
Samson is caught, after his locks were shaven while he was lulled into sleep by Delilah on her lap, taken bound hand and foot and made a spectacle before the Philistines. He was caught by the guile of the Philistines and the treachery of Delilah. Samson could not take it anymore and his hair had grown (Philistines were so dumb that they did not get his head shaved on a daily basis) and his strength was returning!! So one day while the SPECTACLE OF THE BLINDED SAMSON WAS GOING ON IN A CLOSED THEATRE HE PRAYS TO HIS GOD THUS-
JUDGES 16:28 And Samson called unto the LORD, and said, O Lord God, remember me, I pray thee, and strengthen me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes.
30 And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines. And he bowed himself with all his might; and the house fell upon the lords, and upon all the people that were therein. So the dead which he slew at his death were more than they which he slew in his life.
NEVER ONCE WAS THAT VERSE 28 OF CHAPTER 16 READ BY ME WITHOUT TEARS WELLING UP IN MY EYES WITH PITY FOR THE VALOROUS SAMSON.
The man who cared for none, and had led a life where he had taken STRENGTH for granted , begs God, for REMEMBERING him THIS ONLY ONCE for committing a SUICIDAL ATTACK. From a Jew’s point of view, he had even forgotten that there was a life after Death and through this prayer he seeks a finality not only to his woes, but also to any FURTHER CONSCIOUSNESS. It is the ultimate passage in PATHOS, which out-pathoses even KING LEAR of Shakespeare.
Now these two characters i.e Joseph and Samson are in stark contrast. One FLEES FROM THE TEMPTATION OF A PHYSICAL RELATIONSHIP WITH A WOMAN and THE OTHER WALKS INTO IT WITHOUT HAVING A CLUE AS TO WHERE IT WAS LEADING HIM.
7 And beheld among the simple ones, I discerned among the youths, a young man void of understanding,
8 Passing through the street near her corner; and he went the way to her house,
9 In the twilight, in the evening, in the black and dark night:
11 (She is loud and stubborn; her feet abide not in her house:
12 Now is she without, now in the streets, and lieth in wait at every corner.)
13 So she caught him, and kissed him, and with an impudent face said unto him,
15 Therefore came I forth to meet thee, diligently to seek thy face, and I have found thee.
18 Come, let us take our fill of love until the morning: let us solace ourselves with loves.
21 With her much fair speech she caused him to yield, with the flattering of her lips she forced him.
VERSES 6-18 OF THE CHAPTER 7 OF PROVERBS, defines both Potiphar’s wife as well as Delilah. The consequences of having a physical relationship with women of that type is enumerated in verses 21-23 of the same chapter. So this is the statistical TRUTH. Mostly, if humans were to take to such women, they are likely to end up the way, as mentioned above. As an example to these verses Joseph and Samson could be cited.
But unfortunately, LOGIC does not end here. It goes beyond and tries to apply the formula in respect of every case. So when we apply this formula to the case of KING DAVID, it miserably fails. King David was not only a notorious womanizer, but at least in one case, i.e in Bathsheba’s case was an adulterer and a murderer. That is leaving out the case of Abigail, the wife of Nabal- as it is difficult to believe that Nabal died out of a contrite spirit and not of the conspiracy entered into between Abigail and David the previous night based on their meeting. Maybe Nabal died more out of the knowledge that his wife Abigail had met David on the sly without his knowledge!! As it is Nabal did not have a good opinion of David and in sexual matters he must have had a fairly good idea of David’s proclivities.
But David survives it all, and proves to be an exception. That is GRACE. David had obtained IMMUNITY from the general RULE. That is because he TRUSTED in THE MERCY OF GOD. And at every instance, when he was informed of his wrongdoing, he was not merely PENITENT but also took all reasonable steps to ensure that his GUILT is not made a PUBLIC ISSUE. In fact, if Adonijah had become the King, it would have been quite possible that Adonijah would have made the Prophets and Priests as the witnesses and proved the guilt of adultery between Bathsheba and King David, and got Bathsheba executed for adultery after the death of King David. So King David, while still alive, WISELY declares Solomon, the son of Bathsheba and David as the heir to the throne and protects his own name after his death besides protecting the interests of the co-adulterer. AFTER ALL ONLY A SON COULD BE TRUSTED WITH THE JOB OF PROTECTING THE MOTHER’S HONOUR AND NOT A STEP SON, U SEE!!
If one asks the question, why Samson was caught up in the snare of the woman Delilah but not David, when both of them had led a dissolute life, there is no logical answer to it. Jesus beautifully solves this conundrum in the Gospel of Luke chapter 13 as follows:-
3 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish.
So what Jesus says is that we are still ALIVE by HIS GRACE and let us not squander our TIME by taking individual instances and testing the ESSENTIAL TRUTHS against isolated cases, which have escaped the general laws of RETRIBUTION. Let us make use of the TIME to REPENT and REFORM. As that is the objective of LIFE.
This blogger had no clue that it was WOMEN’S DAY this day, and as usual attended the Church Service this morning. Right from the ushers to the offertory collectors, the job was outsourced to women. All the women were dressed in their best and seemed chirpy.
Surprisingly though, the sermon was by Mr. Herbert Samuel and the topic was CHRISTIAN SOCIETY & DOWRY. The reading was taken from Joshua 15:18-27 (the portion where Caleb’s daughter walks back to her father and obtains a “blessing” in the form of a land with springs of water!)
17: And Othniel the son of Kenaz, the brother of Caleb, took it: and he gave him Achsah his daughter to wife.
18: And it came to pass, as she came unto him, that she moved him to ask of her father a field: and she lighted off her ass; and Caleb said unto her, What wouldest thou?
19: Who answered, Give me a blessing; for thou hast given me a south land; give me also springs of water. And he gave her the upper springs, and the nether springs.
Please read verse 18 which has been reproduced above, it says
“..as she came unto him, that she moved him to ask of her father a field”, it is clear from the above verse that Achsah asked Othniel to ask her father Caleb for a field, even though the Thamizh translation says, that she took Othniel’s leave for asking her father.
Christians have become ROMANTIC CHRISTIANS. They have lost the capacity to look at things the way ther ARE. Instead, they have started reading meanings and implications that are consistent with their existing theories and doctrines. In the realm of Physics Michaelson and Morley, invented ETHER, which helped them put a lot of niggling questions on hold and continue with their THEORIES. But the invention of ETHER was a stumbling block for the evolution of Quantum Physics, which was overcome through elimination by Albert Einstein. It needed a genius as Albert Einstein to remove the bunkum added to physics. Likewise many additions which, in the name of prosperity and development, have been added to Christianity, has indeed harmed the Christian principles.
The TIME has come for Christians to go beyond the purveyors of ETHER and the concept of ETHER. The ETHER of ROMANTICISM which is being intricately woven by the Christian preachers, are to be purged. Otherwise we may be blinded by such doctrines, which become difficult to sustain at the QUANTUM LEVEL.
Coming to our WOMEN’S Day, effort was made to make it seem that DOWRY was evil and society should be purged of it. At least as per the Jewish custom, which is the precursor to the Christian custom, dowry was given by the Bridegroom to the Bride’s father. King David paid 100 foreskins as dowry in return for the hand of Saul’s daughter. The king Saul needed no wealth other than the security of his kingdom, which could be best served by reducing the number of opponents. The opponents were the non-abrahimites, who had not circumcised themselves. So the girl’s father demanded whatever he thought could best compensate for the departure of his daughter from the parental home. Some clever Fathers outsourced their risky tasks to the prospective Grooms- nice policy, either a strong groom for his daughter or a dead person who desired beyond what he deserved!! But those were polygamous days.
It is the policy of the Government that DOWRY should not be demanded by the Groom. Any demand is punishable and in the event of the death of the girl within 7 years of her marriage, a strong presumption in Law is raised that the reason for her death was demand of dowry, by the husband and his relatives. Despite these laws, certain Christian churches silently support the dowry system and to make matters worse take a 10% cut of the dowry, payable as TITHE! So much for Romantic Christianity.
Let the Christians resolve that the property of the family be apportioned at the time of the marriage of the eldest daughter, between all the siblings and that one equal share, of the existing properties, could be either taken by the girl at the time of marriage , or alternatively, take an equal share of all the properties left behind by the parents after their demise.
The DAUGHTERS want an equal share of the property at the time of their marriage, and upon the demise of her parents come again and litigate against the brothers claiming that the sharing was not EQUAL and want more out of the properties that the boy had earned by working shoulder to shoulder with his parents till their demise. The boys, further, do not get the share till the death of their parents and may end up getting their legacy, like Aurangzeb’s son at the ripe age of 65. To avoid this inequity, it is best that both the options are offered to the girl at the time of her marriage and once she exercises her option, that should be treated as final and binding.
Nothing substantial or of substantive import are being preached in the churches. They are a confused lot. In their act of balancing the Word with the social legislation, they have got themselves into the rut of ROMANTIC CHRISTIANITY.
This is some evolution since Emperor Constantine, from ROMAN CHRISTIANITY to ROMANTIC CHRISTIANITY.
Consolidating one’s REIGN and passing on the KINGDOM to one’s own children has been one of the greatest pre-occupations of the Emperors, Kings and Satraps.
Anyone who reads THE PRINCE by Niccolo Machiavelli, would be persuaded that the RULERS down the ages have been the most ruthless in pursuing the abovementioned objective. The title of the blog HEROD & DAVID might be, at the first look, seem as if i am likely to contrast their styles in the pursuance of the said objectives, but on the contrary this blog is aimed at comparing the deeds of the the most loved king and one of the most despised rulers of Israel.
Herod was merely a tetrarch of a part of the dominion of Israel (which was under the Roman rule), but David was a king for the whole of Israel for at least 33 years leaving out the 7 odd years he ruled from Hebron. Further, if Herod had not been the Tetrarch coinciding with the birth of Jesus, he would have merely been a footnote to history.
Herod, as per suspicions available in history, got his brother murdered and married his brother’s wife- as was the custom, to raise the seed of the dead bro! Her name was Herodias and she had a daughter Salome (the subject matter of the play by name SALOME, by Oscar Wilde). One day Salome performs a dance before Herod and naturally, Herod is very impressed with his niece’/step-daughter’s performing art,that he promises to give her anything that she desires. Salome, true to her filial duties, asks her mom Herodias to name the prize. In the meanwhile, there is a Prophet by name John the Baptist, who had been condemning Herod & Herodias’ relationship, therefore Herod had put him in jail.
Salome. as advised by her mom Herodias, asks for the head of John the Baptist. As usual, the ruler cannot go back on his word, so promptly gets John the Baptist executed and serves his head on a platter to Salome.
STRATEGY:Every incident has to be construed as a strategy, especially when the thing sought has no apparent benefit. Herodias must have known how Herod got rid of his brother and was probably afraid that upon the daily insistence of John the Baptist, Herod might repent some day and get rid of Herodias along with his sense of guilt. She did not want the conscience of Herod awakened. Therefore getting John the Baptist killed would, besides stifling the VOICE OF JOHN THE BAPTIST, secure her position in the hierarchy, even after she loses her feminine charms.
The whole Christendom despises Herod and Jesus calls him a FOX.
Let us cut back and see what David did, to secure the kingdom for his off-springs . It was no less lethal.
Saul, the first King of Israel, dies in the battle and his son Ishbosheth ascends the throne, but not for the whole of Israel, as David rules a part of Israel, from Hebron for 7 years. There was a tribe(?)/people from Gibeon who were not a part of Israel but were in the midst of Israel. These Gibeonites were slain by Saul (II Samuel chap.21 ), and in any case were waiting for settling scores with the house f Saul. There was a famine in Israel for 3 years, and David asks God the reason for the famine. Thankfully for David, God says that it is because of what Saul did to the Gibeonites that the famine was upon Israel. Now the time came for the Fox to give judgement on the chicken. The Gibeonites were asked what David shud do, so that they bless Israel and the famine depart. Predictably, the Gibeonites ask of 7 sons of Saul to be handed over to them for them to kill those sons.
David is the sole authority to decide as to which 7 children of Saul to be handed over. David leaves out Mephiboseth s/o Jonathan (s/o Saul) on the grounds that David had sworn to geal mercifully with Jonathan’s house. In any case Mephiboseth was not a threat to David as he was lame in foot and was kept in David’s palace, so that none could rally around him and stake kingship!
David in a masterstroke hands over the two sons of Rizpah and 5 sons of Michal. Rizpah was the concubine of Saul and was a spunky woman. But Michal was spunkier. Michal had been betrothed to David for 100 foreskins ( that means this item could be had only from an uncircumcised non-abrahamite) but later married off to another man. Like a lion that kills the cubs of the lioness that had littered thru another lion, before fathering its own cubs, David eliminates all the children of Michal. Whether they were her children or not, is not clear from the Bible, as it also says that Michal did not conceive- whether after she was brought to David or before is a conundrum!
STRATEGY: Michal was King’s daughter and David was the king, therefore there was every reason for the Israelites to rally around the doubly ROYAL SEED, if any!!! So eliminate them and pave way for his children thru other women only.
Even today justice is given in the name of God. Aurangzeb eliminated his opponent brothers thru the due process of Justice. Dara Sikoh was executed by Aurangzeb, on legal principles.
Susima, the elder brother of Ashoka the Great, also did to Ashoka, what Dara did to Aurangzeb (instigating the father against the son). In due course both Aurangzeb and Ashoka got their brothers executed. But history highlights the fratricide of Aurangzeb and glosses over the fratricide of Asoka.
Likewise, David’s acts of killing the children/grand-children of the previous king Saul is glossed over, but the act of Herod of killing John the Baptist is highlighted in history.
The reason is simple David and Ashoka repented and showed their contrition towards the latter part of their lives. But Herod was arrogant till the end, and Aurangzeb was glorifying his self-righteousness, instead of showing CONTRITION.
“JUDGE NOT A MAN, TILL HE IS DEAD” , says the Wise One.
ACCORDINGLY, WE JUDGE THE REPENTANT ONES FAVOURABLY, BUT THE SELF-RIGHTEOUS AND THE WICKED WE DESPISE , AND ALSO GIVE NEGATIVE PUBLICITY.
David importunes Uriah to go to his house, hoping probably that he would sleep with Bathsheba and hence could pass off the child as the legitimate child of the couple! When his plans failed, he sends a letter to Joab thru Uriah scheming his death. No contraceptives were available, in any case even if some quacky precautions had been taken they were not efficacious. Now, what Bathsheba did none knows.
She had ample opportunity to pervert history- being the king’s mom(Solomon), had attained a position whereby she could control the perceptions of the erudite and the knowledge of the masses! But it could be speculated that she could have threatened David- maybe persuasively that it would not be in king’s interest to be exposed for adultery!
In any case, David had decided to jump from covetousness to adultery to murder! Uriah was a brave fool, not wondering why the king should take such a great interest in him. But what amazes me is that even if uriah did not go to his house, why did not the bitch Bathsheba go and meet her husband who had returned from the front Alive!
A feminist view would be to view her situation sympathetically- that the pregnant dame was carrying the symbol of her fallen status and did not want to present herself with hypocritical chastity (it was exactly the type of hiding, that Adam and Eve went into after eating of the TREE OF KNOWLEDGE, when the Lord came calling in the eventide!).
Coming to Uriah’s refusal to go home- had he got to know that his wife had visited the king in his absence (after all, Uriah was a commander in his own right too! and therefore must have had pals who had hinted). And was it the reason for his refusal to soil his pestle in her mortared unchaste pussy?
None could know the pain- except for Uriah- had he known!
In all uriah , his wife’s child – all dead paved the way for a peaceful interpretation of history.
Winston Churchill once said I HOPE HISTORY WOULD TREAT ME KINDLY- AS I INTEND TO WRITE IT!