Thursday, March 7, 2013

Hebrews, Chapters 9-13: Meat Markets

Chapter 9

You'll remember that way back in 1 Kings, god had the Israelites build a hideously-decorated temple to store Moses' crap in while he was 'between places.' Turns out it wasn't just Moses' stuff, it was also a pot of manna they were saving for the end times and Aaron's stick just in case they, I dunno, needed to hit someone or something. Oh, also all this had been sprinkled with mixed cow and goat blood. No wonder they never picked it up. You'll also remember that most of the priests could only go into the first chamber of the temple, and only the high priest could go into the inner chamber, and he had to bring blood with him, because god is Ron Swanson. But none of that got you into heaven! In fact, it was blocking the way to heaven. Nope, that was the old system, and now Jesus is taking us to an even better afterlife. So now we don't have to sacrifice things, because god is satisfied with Jesus' blood. Also, you can't have a testament without somebody dying.

Chapter 10

God cannot try you twice for the same sin. Since sacrifices are reminders of past sins, they actually offend him now. Jesus forgets our sins, except for those of his enemies, whom he uses as a footstool. Plus, I think whichever one of Moses' sons in law was running the meat market behind the temple is now out of favour. So now believers should encourage each other to do good works while they wait for the end times, and not dwell too gleefully on how the Jews are all going to hell when Jesus comes back.

Chapter 11

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen (v. 1). Seems about right. Also, god created the universe, and what we see is not what we are made of. 

Without faith, you can't please god. Then we get a list of people from the book of Genesis who supposedly pleased god, like Abel, who was murdered. Or Abraham, who was all set to kill his son Isaac on god's whim, a sort of practice Jesus. Or a bunch of nameless people who were tortured and asked for more because it meant a better afterlife. 

Chapter 12

Strip off all that baggage of laws and sacrifices and just sit naked for a while and think about Jesus. And if you get scourged or told off, just know that it's god's way of showing his love for you. In fact, if god isn't abusing you, you're clearly a bastard and not a real son. In exchange for being tortured, you can't have premarital sex or swear. And you will get to climb a mountain. Not a physical mountain, like the one Moses went up, the one where if you touched it, they stoned you to death. No, you're going to god's metaphysical city on a hill, when he destroys the world.

Chapter 13

Be nice to other people, including slaves. And don't go to prostitutes. And be content with your lot in life, so you won't go seeking satisfaction through other religions.

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