Jeremiah 20: Pashur’s had enough

All this was just too much for Pashur the priest. He knocked Jeremiah upside the head with his staff and then gave him a few swift blows on the back for good measure. Guards, lock this man in the stocks, he bellowed. There Jeremiah sat all  night, humiliated and jeered, and probably pelted with rotten food and excrement.

The next day, when Pashur went to have Jeremiah released, Jeremiah hissed, God will kill your wife and children and see that you are carried into exile into Babylon, where you will die a slave!

Then Jeremiah wandered off, lamenting to God, Why have you deceived me? Why have you made me your prophet when nobody listens? When it just brings me shame and humiliation? Every time I deliver your message of violence and destruction, people tell  me I’m an asshole! But when I try to keep my mouth shut, my brain burns. Burns! until your message of death explodes from my lungs! Oh, I wish I had never been born! Why didn’t my mother get an abortion!

Job 3: Job complains

Finally, Job was all, I wish I had never been born. Or that my mom had had a miscarriage. Or an abortion. Like even a late term abortion. Why couldn’t I have died at birth? Why couldn’t she have abandoned me? Thrown me in the trash like that one girl at prom? Left me outside to freeze to death? Starved me? My life is horrible and I wish I didn’t exist.

Nehemiah 13: Postscript

Now I returned to the king in Susa when all was finished.

A few years later, I sought permission to return to Jerusalem to see how all carried on. When I got there, I was appalled! Always Tobiah’s creature, the high priest Eliashib allowed that evil wretch to live inside the Temple! Moreover, the Levites were not receiving their tithes and no one kept the Sabbath! The gates were always open from dawn til dusk and traders plied a brisk trade as the errant children of Abraham bought and sold!

I quickly worked to set all to right, evicted Tobiah, restored the Temple furnishings, appointed new treasurers over the storehouses, and commanded that all commerce and work on the Sabbath cease thenceforth.

Then I went among the people and saw mongrel half-breed “Jews” who couldn’t even speak Hebrew. Horror washed over me. I beat the godless urchins! Then I, again, forbade the practice of miscegenation. I ordered Ezra to make sure that all heathen whores and their unholy brats were promptly divorced, disowned, and cast out.

Remember me, oh God, for all the good I have wrought in your name!

 

And so ends the book of Nehemiah, the account of a minor Persian functionary whose petty, self-aggrandizing memoir somehow has been elevated to the word of a supernatural being that supposedly created the universe. Next time, Esther, the Jewish queen of Persia.

II Kings 11: Murderous grandmother

When Athaliah, Ahaziah’s mother, saw he was dead, she saw her chance to consolidate her own power and become queen. She murdered all of her grandkids as well as all of her late husband’s other male children–except for the infant Joash, whose sister Jehosheba smuggled him out of the palace and hid him in the home of the high priest Jehoida.

When Joash was 7, Jehoida conspired with all the soldiers. He had them guard the boy at the Temple and crowned him king. Then he had the soldiers kill Athaliah and all her followers. He also roused the people to rise up and destroy all the temples of Baal and murder Mattan, high priest of Baal.

II Kings 4: Elisha does more things

One day a widow whose husband had been a follower of Elisha came to him and was all, my husband left me badly in debt, and now the creditors are threatening to take my sons to sell into slavery for it! What should I do?!

Elisha was all, well, what do you have in your house? And the woman was all, Nothing! It’s all been sold! Well, except for a jug of oil. Then Elisha was all, Ok, go borrow as many vessels as you can, and fill them all with oil and then sell it and pay your debts!

Another time, during this bad famine that we’ll learn more about later, Elisha was visiting Gilgal and his servant Gehazi was making stew. One of Elisha’s followers went out to gather herbs and he saw some likely gourds that he put in too. Unfortunately, they were poisonous; however, Elisha miraculously purified it with some flour.  Continue reading “II Kings 4: Elisha does more things”

I Kings 17:Elijah enters the story

Elijah, a prophet from Tishbe, went to Ahab to tell him that God was pissed, so It was going to cause a horrible drought and famine until the time Elijah said it would rain. Then Elijah went to hide out near Cherith Creek because Jezebel and Ahab were searching for him and killing every prophet they came across. The creek gave him water and ravens brought him food morning and evening.

Eventually, though, Cherith dried up. God was all, Yo, Elijah, go to Zarapeth. I’ll arrange for this widow woman to feed you there.

So Elijah went to Zarapeth and sat outside the city gates on the lookout for this widow. Finally, he spied her gathering firewood. He was all, Excuse me, madam, please bring me some water. She sighed and turned to do his bidding, but then Elijah was all, And bring me some food too.  Continue reading “I Kings 17:Elijah enters the story”

I Kings 3: Solomon’s Wisdom

One night God came to Solomon in a dream and was all, I’ll give you one wish, whatever you want. So Solomon wished for wisdom. Then God was so excited about Solomon’s wish that It promised him riches and honor too.

The best example of Solomon’s wisdom is the time he judged between two arguing prostitutes.

See these two tricks lived together because times was hard and hooking ain’t easy and both had babies whose daddies done split. One night Krystal’s baby up and died from SIDS or something so she sneaked over to Chastity’s side of the hovel and traded the dead baby for the live one.

In the morning Chastity started screaming when she found the dead baby. Then she was all, wait a minute. This ain’t my kid. Where my baby at? Krystal you skank ass ho you took my baby didn’t you? This dead thing’s your! Give me back my baby!  Continue reading “I Kings 3: Solomon’s Wisdom”

I Samuel 1: Another miraculous birth

So once there was this dude in Ephraim, Elkanah, and he had two wives. The first wife was Peninnah, and she had a bunch of kids. The second was Hannah, and she was barren. But Elkanah loved Hannah best.

This Elkanah was a devout man, and every year he’d take a family trip down to Shiloh to offer sacrifices to God. The family always feasted on the offering meat, of course, and Elkanah always gave Hannah a double portion.

Elkanah’s preferential treatment irritated Peninnah to no end, and she would take it out on Hannah, teasing and abusing her for being barren. The torment made Hannah really depressed, which only made Elkanah more solicitous. Continue reading “I Samuel 1: Another miraculous birth”