Friday, August 29, 2014

Ecclesiasticus, Chapters 28 - 30 : No dinner parties!

Chapter 28

Don't seek vengeance. Rather, forgive and let god take care of it. Also, being angry leads to a lot of fights, so learn to count to ten. Rich and strong people tend to be the angriest, so avoid investment bankers and muscle gyms. Fighting in haste leads to hasty killing. Rumours spark wars and get women kicked out of their houses. In fact, they're more harmful than swords.

Chapter 29

The bible recommends lending money to your neighbours. That's how you know it's a very stupid book you should not pay attention to unless you're like me, a literary nerd. It is aware that there are people out there who are your best friend until you lend them money, but then suddenly have appointments any time you try to collect. It also acknowledges that the most you'll see is half of your money and often all you'll get is ill-will. It even admits that a lot of people refuse to give out loans because of these exact problems. Nonetheless, it advises you to loan the money and be patient and let it not rust under a stone to be lost (v. 10).

It also thinks you should act as a guarantor for other people's loans, even though people have ended up homeless as a result. All you really need is water, bread, clothing and a house, and it's better to be a pauper in a cottage than to eat nice food at someone else's house. So, no accepting invitations to supper, then? Anyway, try to be happy with what you have

Chapter 30

Loving your child means beating him occasionally. Also, when you die he'll kill your enemies, because living in  Papua New Guinea sounds so awesome. Spoiling your son means his bowels will be troubled at every cry (v. 7) and your kid will be wilful. It also means you'll eventually fear him. If you play with your kids, you'll regret it. In fact, don't even laugh with your kids or you'll end up in tears. Give him no liberty and don't give him breaks when he screws up. Keep him busy in the fields so he doesn't have time for fornication.

Health: better to be healthy and poor than rich and sick. Even though chances are, if you're poor, you're also sick. Better dead than bitter or chronically ill. Giving good food to ingrates is the same as putting meat on a grave, because it doesn't do any good to anyone. Keep sweet.

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