A nonbeliever's SECOND reading of the Bible

A nonbeliever's SECOND reading of the Bible
Hunc tu caveto.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Day 8, Chapter 23. Sarah finally dies at the tender old age of 127, a little bit over the age that God said he'd let live. I wonder if she was still hot?

Abraham, on the other hand, lives on to be 175 years old! The rest of Chapter 23 is Abraham bartering with some guy named Ephron over a field. Abe is thinking of using a cave on the field to bury Sarah and possibly use it as a family burial plot. Ephron actually offers the cave for free, but Abraham insists on buying it.

Chapter 24. In Chapter 24, Abraham is beginning to succumb to his age. He asks his head servant to bring Isaac to his old stomping grounds to find a woman to marry. And to make sure the servant does this, Abraham has the servant hold him "under his thigh" to give an oath. There is dispute on what this type of oath is all about. The most interesting is that the oath actually involved holding Abraham's testicles!

Imagine, a man holding the testicles of a 175-year-old man! It's an interesting oath. I'd probably have multiple females swearing this oath to me.
Anyways, the servant goes to a city called Nahor in Mesopotamia. He has interesting way of choosing Isaac's wife, too. He basically waits by a well and the first woman who lets him drink water, and gives water to his camels, will be the lucky girl.
I'm glad my parents didn't use this tactic for my wife. Actually, I'm glad my parents had very little say in who I was marrying.
The lucky girl is a young virgin (they make a big deal about this) named Rebekah. She was basically very hospitable. After asking if he could drink water, she says, "Sure! Here ya go!" And she offers food and water for the camels, too.
The servant is awestruck by her kindness and immediately starts worshipping God. That must've been awkward for Rebekah.
After telling Rebekah's brother about his experience and getting his permission, Abraham's servant returns home with Rebekah. The chapter ends with a touching moment when Isaac is in the field meditating. Isaac opens his eyes and sees the camels coming, and Rebekah sees him. "Who's the hottie?" she basically asks.
The servant says that is the man she's going to marry, and she immediately covers herself in a veil. Shortly afterward, they marry and consummate the marriage inside his parents' tent. Isaac also finally feels better after the death of his mother, because he got laid. Ah yes, the healing power of sex. Even the folks who wrote the Bible recognized its healing powers!
Chapter 25. But wait! Abraham takes ANOTHER WIFE!!! Her name is Keturah. A couple of chapters ago, it said he was succumbing to old age and now he's taking another wife? And guess what? Keturah gives birth to SIX KIDS! Imagine that. An approximately 175-year-old widower, find another wife and fathers SIX KIDS. He's most likely in the low-180s now, unless she had sextuplets.
Abraham finally dies, and leaves his estate to Isaac. To all the kids born from his many concubines, he gives them gifts and sends them away. Apparently, Sarah was the only one that had problems giving birth. Abraham humped quite a few chicks and it seems a lot of them had children; even sons. Unfortunately, they're never acknowledged and Isaac is said to be Abraham's "only son." Very strange customs, indeed.
Later, after some more family lineage stuff that I am glossing over, Rebekah (Isaac's wife) finds out she's pregnant. Apparently, she was barren, but with God's help she gives birth to two boys; Esau and Jacob. When Esau was born, he "first came out red, all over like a hairy garment." I'm guessing that he had a lot of red hair all over his body? And then came Jacob, who was holding Esau's heel.
God didn't like poor Esau. Isaac did, because Esau was a great hunter, and Isaac enjoyed the venison he caught. But God HATED Esau! Wow. That's pretty strange, and there's no reason given as to why he hated him, either. He created Esau, and He hates him. The ultimate Catch-22.
The chapter ends with Jacob tricking Esau to sell his birthright (because Esau was slightly older). Esau came from the field and was feeling faint. Jacob had just finished making ... I don't know - soup? Esau, who felt like he was going to die, gave up his birthright for some "pottage of lentiles" (lentil soup?) and a little bit of bread.
That sucks. Sell away your inheritance and birthrights for a piece of bread and a bowl of lentil soup?
Well, I'm going to put the Bible away until tomorrow. I am mystified at how Christians look to the Bible and swear that it is full of wisdom and that it is the Word of God Himself. If anything, it's a record of ancient and alien customs, of which we should be thankful we no longer practice.

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