Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Who knew....?

Following up on my earlier post about Biblical messages, Damien sends me God's clear teaching about shrimp. Thanks for the hat-tip, brother. Now, I know...

15 comments:

Keith Brenton said...

All these years I've been consoling myself with Jesus' teaching from Mark 7:19 ... but what if Mark's parenthetical phrase was just his interpretation? What if he's wrong? What if I've been pinching the tails and gobbling them down to my eternal destruction?

Bless you, Brother Damien, for showing me the Levitical truth!

Surely the only way I can continue to fill myself with these satanic morsels is to douse them with red sauce made from holy water ....

Michael said...

Ah, Keith, miseld child of this passing world, surely the words of Jesus must be read with the same discernment that allows us to understand that the charge to let the sinless cast the first stone doesn't apply to us. Or that those parables about letting sinners sit down at our table or hookers and traitors making it into heaven or... Well, as I have heard preachers (in several traditions) say with a straight face, "Now, what Jesus meant to say was..." [Variation: "What Jesus is trying to say here is..."] And, as you so prudently pointed out, Jesus doesn't say that all foods are clean; that is the evangelist's take. Or worse, a later copyist's inserted comment.

I admire your ingenuity in suggesting holy water for the hot sauce as a way of rendering clean what Leviticus declared an abomination. It reminds me of the recipe for making holy water: boil the hell out of it.

Also, that some years ago I gave my pagan brother a bottle of hot sauce with a name like Hellfire and Damnation {or Brimstone}, thinking it was what he would expect from his minister-brother. Perhaps such a sauce renders clean foods satanic?

An intriguing book, Dirt, Greed, and Sex: Sexual Ethics in the New Testament and Their Implications for Today, by L. William Countryman, is a great treatment the whole ritual impurity/purity of food/sex and so on issues. He does go into the connection of this with homosexuality, although that is not the main concern of his work at all.

Dave said...

Oh my God! That is beautiful. I've been using that in arguments, excuse me, discussions with the less enlightened. I'm gonna buy a couple of the tee shirts.

Keith Brenton said...

Now I'm plagued with another concern - purely hypothetical, of course - but ...

What should I do if I invite a gay friend to have lunch so I can talk to him/her about Jesus and he/she orders shrimp?

Michael said...

Well, Keith, that's what kosher deli's are made for. (Just talk quietly about Jesus while you're there.)

Keith Brenton said...

Oh, man, I just re-checked that Leviticus citation, looking for some kinda loophole. That proscription's gotta include crawfish, too.

I lived in Shreveport for a year. I am gonna be doin' some serious time in Purgatory for that.

APN said...

I can sympathize with Keith here. Being born and raised on the Texas Gulf Coast, spitting distance from the Louisiana border, whole weeks' worth of food would be comprised of those tasty shellfishies. At least, Keith, Purgatory & Hell won't be too intolerable -- we've lived in the heat and eaten enough spicy Cajun food that we'd probably feel right at home.

But dang it Damien -- stop recommending good books for me to read. I'm going to be in debt for all of Purgatory for all the books that I've been buying thanks to people like you, Steve, and Rick.

Michael said...

N, about the books: Francis Cardinal George, shortly after becoming archbishop of Chicago, gave a talk in a lecture hall at the Divinity School of the University of Chicago. Perched on the beams of the hall are angels holding books. The Cardinal said that this was an error, because in heaven the angels do not read books [all knowledge being infused, I guess.]I turned to my companions and said, "If there are no books in heaven, I'm not going."

Time spent reading is not added to Purgatory; it is time already spent in heaven.

[Maybe there will be plenty of shrimp and crawfish, too, to make up for what we missed (unlikely!) here below.]

APN said...

It's good to know that by literary pursuits, whatever they might be at any given time, won't be counted against me. Is there any way to counter-balance the books that I've read with the shellfish that I've eaten in my lifetime? Can they cancel each other out?

Michael said...

Just saw this news item about a fellow in Georgia who was drinking holy water: ATHENS, Ga. - A man drinking holy water at St. Joseph's Catholic Church was removed from the church by police on Wednesday. The man, Stacy Lamar Bradford, has a history of trespassing at the church, said Tom Rocks, the church's office manager.

Do you think he had eaten shrimp for breakfast and was trying to cleanse his inner self? Maybe he misunderstood the whole discussion about what goes into a man...

And Tom Rocks? What kind of name is that for a Catholic church office manager? Doesn't he know that Peter Rocks?

Keith Brenton said...

Maybe in my concern for my own eternal disposition, I've become too shellfish.

I should be helping others crawdad out of the pits, repent of their shrimps and fall on their knees to crayfish ... even to the last Mafia lobster. Even if they try to mussel me, or try to make me clam up.

And I need to be helping make sure that the Christian bookstores are doing a bisque business.

Michael said...

Okay, Keith, I surrender. That last one was great.

I suppose, on a more serious note, it is not how many shellfish we ate but how selfish we are that will matter on the Day.

APN said...

Thanks for that Keith. I just busted out loud full of laughter here at work reading that. I caught some strange looks from co-workers and customers, but they were well worth it, considering the source of my laughter.

Steve F. said...

[holding nose and running screaming from the building after reading Keith's last post...]

the reverend mommy said...

Steve,
I am so sorry to tell you this -- it's not shrimp. It's figs.
God hates figs. This site will tell all.