OT: Deut. 9:1-10:22
I sincerely hope that no biblical scholars read this blog because I am about to throw a theory out there that would get me laughed out of any scholarly room.
My theory is informed by my less-than-stellar reactions to my readings today. Let me give you a little breakdown of those reactions:
9:4-6--Oops! So much for my idea that maybe the people would have been spared had the Israelites been stronger. (Thank goodness I threw in a caveat of "in this passage" when discussing that theory in yesterday's reading. But still. A bit disappointing.)
9:9--Seriously? Moses fasted from food and water for forty days? Wow! Just like Jesus! I wonder if there were some purposeful corollaries there on Jesus' part.
9:13-14--Moses' recollection of the Sinai exchange doesn't include him negotiating with God, as in the Exodus version.
9:18--Okay, really Moses? You fasted again for forty days and nights? Really? Not only does that sound a wee bit impossible (not that that would rule it out), this also was not mentioned in the Exodus narrative.
9:21--You threw the dust into the stream??? I thought you made them drink it.
9:25--You laid prostrate before the Lord for forty days again? Why weren't all these forty day prostrations mentioned earlier?
Throughout the reading--Wow, Moses. You are really the blameless hero of your own narrative, aren't you? You never do anything wrong.
Okay, so here is my theory. The first five books of the OT are written history, and they are all accurate. Deuteronomy chapters 1-10 are also accurate, written history. They record Moses' speech, a speech that was given in history. And that speech was accurately recorded.
But. Some details of that speech are not accurate. Moses was not infallible or inerrant as he was speaking to the Israelites. And so there are some discrepancies between his words and the written history. That also explains why, in the space between Exodus and this speech, Moses has morphed into the blameless hero in his own mind, despite the fact that he is barred from the promised land. After all, we all tend to write our narratives in our own favor, with ourselves as the main character and protagonist.
So that's my way of reconciling the discrepancies between the Exodus account and Moses' speech.*
*Theories subject to change at a day's notice.
NT: Luke 8:4-21
Quick thought: Jesus' interpretation of the seed here hardly seems fair. According to verse 12, the devil comes and takes the seed away "so that they may not believe and be saved." My goodness. That is quite harsh and sad, don't you think?
Longer thought: "The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by life's worries, riches and pleasures, and they do not mature" (14). Luke's account throws in the "pleasures," which makes it even more applicable to me, especially these last few days. This past week, I have felt very off-focus spiritually. I am a big believer that the Christian life is supposed to be a Spirit-powered, every second kind of thing. I try to focus on God and to worship Him and live for Him every second of the day. But this past week, I haven't done that. I've been indulgent with my free time. I have lacked discipline. And I have not been in regular communication with God through prayer and meditation. My Bible reading is the only thing I have kept up with, and that is largely thanks to you good folks. But it has been done mainly at night, squeezed in before bedtime. And so, I have been caught up in the worries, riches, and pleasures of this life, and I have not matured spiritually this week.
If you get a chance, you might want to send up a prayer for me. Like David said in his sermon a few weeks ago, confession does not equal repentance. I have been aware of this slide for over a week, and yet I haven't turned the ship around.
Verses 19-23--Poor David. Poor, poor David. I truly feel so sorry for the man.
Verses 24-28--Good grief, David! Feeling a little bitter today? "Charge them with crime upon crime; do not let them share in your salvation"? "May they be blotted out of the book of life"? Good lands!
Verses 29-36--Back to good David.
I like how verse 3 sounds, "A man cannot be established through wickedness, but the righteous cannot be uprooted." For some reason, describing the two by what they cannot be was a little artsy and mind-bendy to me. I liked it.