Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Ezekiel, Chapters 41-44: Nerds on speed

Chapter 41

Zeke and the tanning victim are on their geeks' neuro-stimulant binge and still measuring stuff. It's almost as scintillating as a genealogy chapter or the various sacrifices in Leviticus. Almost.

Chapter 42

In a thrilling episode, Zeke and Pauly D finish measuring the inner dimensions of the temple and go outside to measure the outer ones.

Chapter 43

God appears and tells Zeke to build the temple, which he thinks will impress the Israelites so much they'll stop worshipping other gods and he'll be able to stop smiting them. Dude! This neurotic neediness is what causes people to not like you. If you'd just relax and be yourself and stop worrying about how many Facebook friends the other god has, people would flock to you and ignore him.

But then god's Ritalin kicks in and he starts giving measurements, too, followed by an outline of the sacrificial schedule.

Chapter 44

God takes Zeke over to the east gate, then says that only the prince can use it, mostly to eat bread. Then he starts giving the rules for who can and can't be present when sacrifices are being made. Namely, people who are uncircumcised in heart, and uncircumcised in flesh (v. 7) are not allowed. Also out: all the Levites except the children of Zadok. The others are only fit to clean the temple and kill the sacrifices. They can only wear linen, absolutely no wool. And even though this is the desert and they have to wear linen caps and breeches, sweating is not allowed.

Other priestly rules: they can't wear their temple garments outside the temple, no wine drinking, hair must be neatly trimmed, they can only eat meat that has been slaughtered, they can only marry virgins or the widows of other priests. We can also tell with this list who was paying kickbacks to Zeke (linen weavers, beer brewers, hairdressers, butchers) and who wasn't (wool spinners, vintners, Gillette, freegans). They can be teachers and judges, but not undertakers unless they're immediate family.

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