Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Humor in the Bible: "Your people"

In the book of Exodus (or in DeMille's "The Ten Commandments," if you prefer) God plagues the Egyptians, gets his people out of Egypt and across the Red Sea. They come to Mt Sinai, and Charlton Hest--er, Moses, goes up to meet with God and get the ten commandments. While he's gone, the people get nervous, and convince Aaron to build a golden calf (he ran out of gold, or he would have built the whole leg.) Suddenly, it's Mardi Gras in Vegas, and God says to Moses:
"Go down, because your people, whom you brought up out of Egypt, have become corrupt." - Exodus 32:7, (emphasis mine)
Just like some parents, when the child is well-behaved and exceptionally-bright, S/he is "my child!" But when they mess up, they suddenly become the other spouse's child--as in, "Did you see what your child did to the new rug?"

However, Moses appears to tak umbrage at them being referred to as "his" people, when they've screwed up so badly, and reminds God of whose "kids" the Israelites really are.
"Why should your anger burn against your people, whom you brought out of Egypt with great power and a mighty hand?" - Exodus 32:11 (emphasis mine, again)
and again, in the following verse:
"Turn from your fierce anger; relent and do not bring disaster on your people." (yup, still me)
And then Moses gets the authorial/editorial last word in on the subject:

"Then the LORD relented and did not bring on his people the disaster he had threatened." - Exodus 32:14 (you know)

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