The Pokey Finger of God

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Jah Calling

July 26th, 2008 · No Comments · christianity, history

At the root of is a written history of people to whom Yah has spoken. These people, we are told, had direct, immediate, and personal knowledge of God. They spoke with him. He answered. His words became the driving force for their actions.

This is exactly the sort of individual congress with the divine that the Gnostics are always going on about. This simple fact makes it very difficult to see “Gnosticism” as some sort of external antagonizing force, but instead a natural component of Judaism, and subsequently, in Christianity.

Although there are some characteristic patterns, the relationship between Yah and His people changed over the centuries. The interactions were different. People became more familiar, and He became less generous and more demanding over time.

Abraham[1] only has to move near to Yah’s neighborhood and he gets the providencial jackpot. While Yah’s jealous tendencies are first revealed to Jacob[2]. By [3], Yah not only has specific tasks to perform, but a whole slate of rules and regulations that must go along with His worship.

Solomon[4] was the last of the Kings to be called. It was all about honor to Solomon and how things are Really Going to Go His Way Now. The other callings in the Torah fall upon the Prophets, and these calls were of a functional type experienced by Moses. Samuel[5] gets a message, Isaiah[6] gets a blessing and Ezekiel[7] gets a snack: all are required to communicate their sacred message to the peoples of the Earth.

Jonah[8] and Jeremiah[9] both express immediate dissatisfaction with their tasks, but Yah can be very convincing when He needs to be. Again, their messages were in line with those of Isaiah and Ezekiel, even if their own enthusiasm, at first, was not comparable.

In the Gospels, we are told by Luke and John that John the Baptist was called by God[10], but we don’t really get to see the initial encounter, like we do with Paul and Ananias in Acts. Paul[11]  is called by Christ, who has not a message to the world, but a personal one to Paul[12]. Ananias, on the other hand, gets a command to action from Yah[13] — in the Mosaic style — to perform a highly contrived ‘healing’ on Paul.

You can see some of the Judaic traditions of Yahwistic calling in the few examples provided us in the New Testament, but it’s clear that these traditions had evolved over time, if not partially forgotten.

  1. called in Gen 12:1-3, and reminded in Gen 13:15-17
  2. specifically in his second calling in Gen 35:1-15. First calling in Gen 28:11-22
  3. Exo 3, Exo 4
  4. called in I Kings 3:5-15
  5. in I Sam 3:1-14
  6. see Isa 6:1-8
  7. Eze 2, Eze 3
  8. Jonah 1:1-2 and Jonah 3:1-2
  9. Jer 1:4-10
  10. best reference in Luke 3:1-3
  11. yeah, I know it’s really Saul here, but I’m not going to cover that here
  12. Acts 9:3-9
  13. Acts 9:10-15

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