Ezekiel 1: Ezekiel meets God

Five years into King Jehoiachin’s exile, when I was 30, I was down by the Chebar River when I saw God. There was this humongous thundercloud that rolled in from the north, but the center was glowing. In that radiance, there were these cherubim,  and these things were terrifying. They each had four faces–a human one, a lion, a cow, and an eagle–and four wings. Two covered their bodies and two made them fly and each moved by an infinity wheel that sparkled like a jewelry store. Above the cherubim was a crystal floor with a sapphire throne in the middle. On that throne sat God. God looked like a man, but all fire or rainbows from the waist down and molten chrome from the waist up. It had a voice like thunder. You better believe, I kissed the ground.

Isaiah 6: Isaiah’s origin story

So Isaiah became a prophet the year that King Uzziah died. He had this vision of God surrounded by six seraphim. Each of the six seraphim had six wings. Two covered their faces, two their privates, and they flew with the other two. When Isaiah saw this, he cried out, Woe is me! I am unworthy! Ima die, right!

Then a seraph flew down and held a burning coal to his lips and it burned, but it didn’t. Then it said, Now you are clean, mortal!

Then God was all, Who shall I send?

And Isaiah was all, Here I am! Send me!

So God was all, Ok, you can go preach my words. But no one will listen to you.

Isaiah was all, That’s ok! How long shall I preach?

And God was all, Oh, until the Promised Land is a waste, burnt and desolate and all my people are in exile.

Job 33: Elihu continues

Elihu shook his finger at Job and was all, Look Job, I’m no better or worse than you and this is how you sound to me–you claim you’re innocent and God trampels you unjustly and doesn’t answer your prayers. Look. God only speaks to humans in two ways: through prophetic nightmares and bodily pain and infirmity….If the human is lucky, maybe an angel might convince God to spare him. So maybe you should think about what God is trying to tell you.

Job 2: The bet continues

The next time the angels checked in with God, God was all, See Satan, I told you my boy Job wouldn’t curse me. I won the bet!

Satan was all, Don’t do a victory dance yet, God. See, Job still has his health. Take that away, and I’m sure he’ll curse you.

God was all, You’re on!

So Satan caused Job to develop running pustules from head to toe. As he sat picking at his sores, his wife was all, You’re disgusting. Curse God and die already.

Then Job’s three best friends, Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar, came to console Job. They sat in silence for a long time.

Job 1: God and Satan make a bet

Once upon a time, there was a wealthy man named Job who was a devout follower of God.

Now one day, in another dimension or sphere or something, all the angels went to report to God. One of the angels was Satan, and it reported that it had been traveling around Earth. God was all, What do you think about the human Job? He seems to worship me better than anyone else!

Satan was all, Yeah that guy. He only worships you like that because he’s prosperous. If he lost everything, I bet he’ll curse you, just like the rest of them. Continue reading “Job 1: God and Satan make a bet”

II Kings 19

Hezekiah was pretty upset at Tartan’s message, so he sent his butler, his secretary and his stenographer on to the prophet Isaiah for some advice. Isaiah told the lackeys to tell the king that God had his back.

Lo and behold, early next morning, General Tartan broke camp without warning and headed back to King Sennacherb to the front in Libnah. Of course, within a few years, Sennacherb again sent a large army with threatening messages to accost Hezekiah at the walls of Jerusalem. Hezekiah prayed so prettily that God told Isaiah to tell Hezekiah that It would rout the Assyrians, but that in return, the Judeans would have to refrain from sowing for the next two years and live entirely off the forage and volunteers.

That night, an angel came and smote 185,000 Assyrians, causing the rest to flee and for many jobs to be created in Judah.

Sometime later, back in the Assyrian capital of Nineveh, while Sennacherb was praying in the temple of Nisroch, his two sons, Adrammelech and Sharezer, murdered him. His other son, Esarhaddon, became king.

II Kings 6: More about Elisha

This other time Elisha made a lost ax-head float to keep the guy who borrowed it from distress.

Another time, when the Syrians were making war on Israel, Elisha kept giving the king of Israel such good advice to circumvent the Syrians that the Syrian king began to suspect a spy in his camp. But his followers convinced him that it was because Elisha was such an awesome prophet that nothing was hidden from him. So the Syrian king sent a troop to besiege Elisha in Dothan, where he was staying. Everyone but Elisha was freaked out about this, because he knew he was guarded by an invisible army of angels driving chariots of fire. Then Elisha struck the Syrians with temporary blindness and idiocy and led them into the heart of Samaria. The king of Israel offered to kill them all, but Elisha was all, Let them go this time. So peace between Syria and Israel was made.

Another time the Syrians were besieging Samaria, and it had gone on so long that they had run out of food and people were making a fortune selling donkey heads and dove dung to desperate people to eat. One evening, while the king of Israel was walking the ramparts, worrying at the troops at his gate, a woman came up to him and threw herself at his feet and begged for his help, because her neighbor was cheating her! They had agreed share and eat their babies, and yesterday they had eaten her baby, but today, her neighbor wouldn’t produce her baby! This upset the king pretty badly, and in anger, he sent for Elisha, to kill him for not helping end the famine.

I Kings 19

When Ahab told Jezebel that Elijah got all the other prophets killed, she was pissed. She sent him a message saying as Baal as her witness, she would see Elijah dead. This freaked Elijah out pretty badly and he fled into the desert. Eventually he flopped down underneath a broom tree and was all, God, I have done thy bidding. Please let me die now! Then he fell asleep.

Some time later, an angel shook him awake and was all, eat this. So Elijah ate, and then passed back out. A bit later the angel woke him up to eat again and then again a third time, saying, You’ll need your strength because this is the last food you’ll see til Mount Horeb, which will take you, like, forty human days to get there or something. Mortals are so limited.

On Mount Horeb, Elijah crawled into a cave to hide, but God was all, Yo, Elijah, what are you doing on my mountain? Shouldn’t you be in Israel or someplace prophesying?  Continue reading “I Kings 19”

II Samuel 24

Another time, God felt a good smite coming on, so It put it into David’s head to conduct a census to count all the available fighting men–which was a great sin for some reason. David was immediately remorseful and asked God what he could do to make it better. God was all, look I’ll give you three choices. I can curse your kingdom with three years of famine or I can cause you kingdom to be invaded and taken over for three months, or I can cause a virulent three day pestilence. David was all, The first or the last–don’t let me fall into the hands of my enemies!

So God sent three days of pestilence during which the angel of the Lord smote 70,000 men, but when the angel turned toward Jerusalem, God relented and told the angel to stop because It was pretty sure David had learned his lesson.

Now David had been watching the progress of the angel from the walls of Jerusalem, and saw it stop and disappear near the threshing floor of this Jebusite dude named Araunah. Then David went to Araunah and asked to buy the threshing floor. Araunah was all, oh my king, take it for free! But David wouldn’t have it and insisted upon paying good cash money for it. There he built an altar and sacrificed to God.

 

Well that ends it for the Samuels. Tune in soon for the death of David and the ascension of Solomon in Kings!

I Samuel 13: Saul Angers God

If you recall, Israel had been under Philistine domination for quite some time. The Philistines had declared that no Hebrew was to be allowed swords or any other weapons, and they had outlawed Hebrews from being blacksmiths to prevent any weapons from being made illegally. However, Saul was planning an insurrection, so he convinced all the Hebrews to carry their farming implements–plowshares, mattocks, axes, etc–to their local Philistine blacksmiths for sharpening. Saul, and his son Jonathan, had swords, however.

This is maybe 2-3 years after the anointing, maybe 12-13, since Saul, who appeared to be a young man at the anointing, now has a son old enough to fight in battle, so anyway, at some point in the future, near or far, it doesn’t matter, because this is the time of the gods, Saul gathered up an army of 3000 Hebrews to fight the Philistines. He had charge of 2000 in Michmash while his son Jonathan had charge of the other 1000 in Gibeah.  Continue reading “I Samuel 13: Saul Angers God”