Monday, March 14, 2011

Isaiah 14-19

The Facts (Chapter number: Verse)

14:2 - "And the nations will take them and bring them to their place, and the house of Israel will possess the nations as male and female slaves in the Lord's land; they will take captive those who were their captors, and rule over those who oppressed them."

Isaiah 15 - No mention of any women.

16:2 - "Like fluttering birds, like scattered nestlings, so are the daughters of Moab at the fords of the Arnon."

17:1-2 - "And oracle concerning Damascus. See, Damascus will cease to be a city, and will become a heap of ruins. Her towns will be deserted forever, they will be places for flocks, which will lie down, and no one will make them afraid."

Isaiah 18 - No mention of any women.

19:16 - "On that day the Egyptians will be like women, and tremble with fear before the hand that the Lord of hosts raises against them."

My Comments

I tried to do more chapters than normal to make up for the irregular posting last week. Postings may continue to be irregular since we are once against experiencing problems with our internet's reliability. -_- A suggestion for anyone looking, if you are thinking about going with Clear check around your area to see if you get reliable service, because apparently the tower near us just loves to take time off every month or so.

Anyway, even though I read a bit more than normal there isn't much here. Though we do get an interesting insight into the dynamics between a woman's relationship between her and God/husband/men.

19:16 - "On that day the Egyptians will be like women, and tremble with fear before the hand that the Lord of hosts raises against them."

It's right there in black and white. Women tremble at the violence men raise against them. The Egyptians aren't becoming like servants or slaves or children. They are becoming like WOMEN, which entails fearing violence against those who are above you. Taking that further that basically also says that those above women (ie. men) are supposed to hold physical harm and violence over women's heads. Women cannot be expected to naturally act this way if violence against them wasn't a normal part of life. And this verse makes it fairly clear that it is natural for a woman to feel fear under a man/God's hand.

Seriously, why not children or slaves or servants or cattle or sheep or any other myriad examples of groupings that are both male and female?

Because apparently this metaphor would only work with women, which definitely cannot be ignored.

In other news: Here is a video of people sharing their feelings about a Baptist couple's retreat. 10 points to you if you see what is so fucking ridiculous about it.

In other other news: I had the "pleasure" of going to church this weekend, mostly because my dad has started playing bass for a praise band and has been wanting me to go watch him perform. The music was good enough for generic Christian pop-rock fare, but that wasn't the real highlight of the morning.

I have to say, I have never heard a sermon that was as amazing as the one I heard that morning. It was so amazing even my mother was angry about it afterward, and THAT takes talent. This is the woman who wasn't even upset at the mother's day service we went to, wherein the minister actually bitched about his mother during the sermon. I shit you not, he gave a shitty sermon that mostly had nothing to do with mothers, and the only time he did mention mothers was when he decided to just go on a rant about how much he hates his. I wanted to destroy that entire church after that service. Since then I have settled for making it perfectly clear that I will never step foot in that church ever again. So to upset my mom (or give her a headache, as was the case) takes quite a bit of effort.

This sermon was about what would Jesus do. But not what the fluffy, lovey-dovery populace thinks Jesus would do but what the REAL Jesus would really do. The short answer: Jesus would take care of himself and not devote every single hour and every single penny to helping those in need. Jesus would also run over squirrels and never feel bad about it. No, really, I am not fucking kidding. This guy went on for about 30 minutes about how we can't be expected to help EVERY homeless person out there, so don't feel bad about not helping them out with a little change. I mean, really, God knows you got stuff to do and lattes to spend you're money on. You can't help everyone. And if the person in need gets angry with you then screw 'em, they're the dick, not you.

Then there was some bit where he talked about squirrels and running them over. He talked about feeling bad about it and he was really sad about running over squirrels. But THEN he realized what Jesus really meant for him to feel was a complete lack of empathy for nature ('cause, duh, right?) so now he runs over squirrels and doesn't even bat an eye. I mean, come on! If that squirrel was stupid enough to try to run across the road that WE built in front of ITS tree home then that squirrel totally deserves to be flattened in a horrific manner by an unnatural gas powered vehicle, right? The icing on top of that cupcake was the entire rest of the congregation was right there with him and cheering. I kid you not, the entire group of people were basically clapping and yelling, "Yeah! Fuck squirrels! Preach on, brother!"

So this Sunday I learned that Christianity is not about helping others or even spending a small amount of energy feel bad for those who are worse off than you are. Nope, Jesus taught us to help the needy in moderation and to not feel bad if you completely ignore the plight of those less fortunate than us, be it a human being or a squirrel.

You know, because it totally wasn't Jesus who commanded all of his disciples to leave their entire family and ALL of their material goods to follow him and preach his word. Nope, even if that is what Jesus SAID that is so totally not what he MEANT. -_-

I love my mom. After that great sermon when they started passing around the collection plate the guy stopped by her and she started going through her purse and acting like she just couldn't find her wallet or any of her money. Eventually she looked at the guy and was like, "Oops, sorry, I can't find anything. Really, so sorry, go on to the next person. Don't wait for me." She only had a couple of 20s in her purse and she'd be damned if she was gonna give that asshole that kinda money, lol.

I told her it was okay. She already gave to 2 churches this month and she can't be expected to give to EVERY church she visits. Jesus wouldn't want her to give up too much of her money. :P


But don't take my word for it, here is the video of the sermon.

Lent Week 1 Message 3-13-11 Mike Aus from Theophilus Houston on Vimeo.


And thanks to Lurker for asking about finding it online. I would never have remembered the thing was recorded, otherwise. :)

Wednesday (hopefully): Isaiah 20-25


  1. The comment on the Egyptians strikes uncomfortably close to home. I can't remember the number of times I called, or heard another call, some boy "a girl" (or some synonym) as an insult. And thought it was OK to do so. That is this verse in a nutshell. I am ashamed.

    Your sermon stories just boggle me. "Jesus wants you to be happy and comfortable, whatever that takes." Did anybody's arm snap while they were patting themselves on the back?

  2. Oh, man. Is that sermon online anywhere? Because it sounds like it must be heard to be believed the full WTFery of it.

  3. I think we are all guilty of using "girl" as an insult as children. It takes time to understand and fight back against the gender socialization we go through as kids.

    When I was a kid, the boys I played kickball or dodgeball with at recess would often mock me by calling me a girl. I would get so upset at that because I knew being a girl meant being weak and stupid and having to wear dresses and that wasn't me! Oddly enough, I very rarely used girl as an insult because I didn't want to continue the idea that being a girl meant you were dumb and weak. Because being a "girl" was so horrible to me, it took a while for me to realize that I could acknowledge that I was a girl and I still be freakin' awesome, even if others thought that was impossible. Hell, I started my own all girl kickball team just so we could show the boys just how "stupid" and "weak" and "girly" we really were. :P I never really hated being who I was as a kid, I only ever hated the stupid messed up ideas people had about what I could be or do. I never expressed a desire to be a boy nor did I ever want to be a boy (though I'm sure many people thought I did since I was a huge tomboy). I just wanted to be given the same treatment as the boys did and not told that I had to be someone I wasn't just because I happened to be born with a vagina. If that meant rejecting being labeled a "girl" and rejecting the stereotypical things that girls like (ie. the color pink) then that was what I did. Of course rejecting girly things didn't make people stop seeing me as a girl, but for being a child with limited understanding of larger social structures one can't blame me for trying to fix the way the outside world saw me by changing myself.

    Of course, I still have to work hard to get people to see me as a person and not as a woman. But at least I have gotten better at accepting who I am and now have the knowledge to work against gender norms in society. Now a days I don't police myself and my likes and dislikes as I did as a kid, I just let me be me and the rest of society be damned if they try to tell me otherwise. :P

  4. @Lurker: Actually, now that you mention it the minister did say something about the mic before he started and how the mic wasn't for us but for the recordings they put on the internet.

    Lemme see if I can track something down that I can post up here. I'll update the post if I find anything. Because yes, I think it actually has to be heard for the WTFery to be fully appreciated. :)

  5. That is fabulous! You're already in the Club because you've already got God's grace. Let everything else roll off you like water off a duck's back. If you want to be saintly, go ahead - but there won't be anybody gathering at your funeral because you were nice, so you might as well not put yourself out. Take care of your life and God will take care of your afterlife. Just remember to stop and smell the roses while ignoring the indigents.

    That right there is some of your Sophisticated Theology.


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