Sunday, August 13, 2006

Vegetarian Churches

Have you ever been to a vegetarian church? You know...the ones where they don't eat meat? Actually, I'm not sure if the congregation intends to be vegetarian. It's just that the church serves no meat.
Today, we visited a church and we rather enjoyed it. The sermon was based on the passage in Exodus about the golden calf. Great stuff and he did a good job with it. But when he came upon a difficult passage (the one about Moses causing God to change his mind about wiping out the Israelites) he just basically said this is controversial and we're not going to deal with it. Huh? Good grief! Deal with it! C'mon. We need to talk about this stuff. Did Moses really change the mind of God. You know, the God that's supposed to be omniscient...all knowing and all seeing.

God: "These Israelites have screwed up. I'm gonna kill 'em."
Moses: "No God. Please don't. They'll be good. I'll talk to 'em."
God: "Oh, okay then."

I don't know about you but that sounds like a wimpy God to me. Could it be that perhaps God was testing Moses.

God: "These Israelites have screwed up. I'm gonna kill 'em."
Moses: "Okay. Cool. I'm tired of their whining anyway."
God: "Aha!"

Maybe God just set that up as a little test to see if Moses would extend a little grace. If God is omniscient, he would have known ahead of time that Moses was going to make him change his mind and if that were the case, wouldn't he have just changed what he said before he said it. (Yes, it makes my brain hurt too)
Now, I'm not saying that my little hypothesis is correct. I'm just saying all this to drive home the point that we need to talk about this stuff. We need to haul all the difficult scripture out of the broom closet and hash it out. Don't skip over that stuff because it's hard. It's the hard stuff that makes us smarter and deepens our faith. Let's move past the salad bar and get to the steak.
Mmmmm. Now I'm hungry.

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