Monday, November 14, 2016

Psalm 11 What can an honest person do when everything crumbles?

11 The Lord is my fortress!
    Don’t say to me,
    “Escape like a bird
    to the mountains!”
2 You tell me, “Watch out!
Those evil people
    have put
    their arrows on their bows,
and they are standing
in the shadows,
    aiming at good people.
3 What can an honest person do
    when everything crumbles?”
4 The Lord is sitting
in his sacred temple
    on his throne in heaven.
He knows everything we do
    because he sees us all.
5 The Lord tests honest people,
but despises those
    who are cruel
    and love violence.
6 He will send fiery coals
and flaming sulfur
    down on the wicked,
and they will drink nothing
    but a scorching wind.
7 The Lord always does right
    and wants justice done.
    Everyone who does right
    will see his face.

Contemporary English Version

I hope that a lot of you start to get the Psalms, the entire Jewish Bible, at a much younger age than I started to get them at.  I strongly suspect that if I'm conscious on my deathbed that I'll regret the time I wasted on other things, I doubt I'll regret this time of trying to read these deeply.

Presented as "the word of God" they are incomprehensible, understood as the thoughts and cries and joys and hopes of very limited and human humans, their profundity starts to reveal itself.  These texts are some which, no doubt, stood out in their insight, their inspiration to those who compiled the books which a fundamentalist, superstitious view of them sees as being a far more unified, far more uniform production.  The frequent frustration and the deep questioning contained in them is the exact opposite of fundamentalism.   They are an understanding of human experience, of human reality that is incredibly deep and important and far more useful than most of the secular verbiage on those topics are.

In the coming years of overt Republican-fascism, they will be as entirely relevant as they always have been in history.

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