Thursday, June 15, 2006

Slowly She Creeps Along

Yesterday I finally cracked open the spine of my Bible again and started reading. I picked up with Job and read for 45 minutes--how much time I could spare. I figured something, finally, was better than nothing.

The book of Job always baffles me. Why does God point Job out to The Accuser? (I prefer to translate it that way, rather than the baggage-laden Satan.) God seems almost naive in doing this. What did he expect The Accuser to do? And when God goes for The Accuser deal, he ends up seeming rather whimsical. But these are my perennial questions about Job, nothing new about them for me.

What I did notice for the first time yesterday was Job's wife. Now, I haven't read the whole book now for awhile, so I can't recall if she ever shows up again in the story other than near the very beginning when she says, "Do you still persist in your integrity? Curse God, and die." And Job replies, "You speak as any foolish woman would speak. Shall we receive the good at the hand of God, and not receive the bad?" (2:9 & 10)

Astoundingly, the footnote in my New Oxford Annotated Bible points out regarding verse 9 the following: Curse, literally 'bless,' a euphemism. Job's wife still believed in his integrity (see 4.6 n.) but wishes to shorten his torture.

Wow. I don't know about you, but the only thing I've ever heard about Job's wife is that she tells Job to curse God and die. And she's gotten an awful lot of bad press over those few words she was given to speak. But now I see that she didn't actually say that? My question is, how do translators know that this particular passage is sarcasm? Are you aware of anywhere else in the Bible where such a justification is used? I mean, what if Job's wife truly meant, "Bless God, and die"?

Along with this thought, it occurred to me for the first time that everything Job lost, his wife lost, too. And yet we never hear about it this way. Was it not her children who were killed? Was it not her home that was lost? Was it not also her fortune that disappeared? And was she not having to watch her husband be tortured and waste away before her very eyes? But we hear nothing of her faith, we don't even hear her cry or suffer along with Job. Surely she suffered!

I know these questions are "outside the text." The story is not concerned with Job's wife, but with Job. Even so, I would love to hear the story told again from her perspective.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Falling Behind, but Not Giving Up

Well, dear ones, I have definitely fallen behind here. What with the move and everything, I've just not been able to get back to my routine of reading yet. But I hope I'll get back into the swing of things very soon.

I think I've just finished Esther.

Friday, June 02, 2006


quick post...
I'm finally into Joshua! (they rest of you must be so far ahead of me now... I can barely see you up there on that dusty road we are all traveling on).
Can someone remind me what moses did to not garner God's blessings on letting him into the new land? He had to stay behind on the mountain when he died, and I forgot what he did that was so bad.
(I remember Aaron was sort of punished in the same way for helping to make the golden idol)
Wow... How could Aaron have decided to help make the golden Idol!? It's not like God wasn't clear on this one :)
I also found the section on the blessings and curses for following the "law"... The blessings were about 2 paragraphs, and the curses just went on and on, and were some of the worst things I've ever heard of doing to another human. I almost found it comical, in how each "curse" tried to out-do the previous curse.