Sunday, October 26, 2014

Ecclesiasticus, Chapters 35-37: I hate vaguebooking

Chapter 35

Following the law means making offerings. For example, if you follow the commandments, you've made a peace offering. If you do a good turn, you can save your flour. If you donate to charity, you can skip praise sacrifices. Forsaking unrighteousness allows you to skip atonements. Of course, you still need to make sacrifices, and cheerfully, in proportion to your income.

There's more about not giving corrupted gifts and how god will enrich you seven times over if you sacrifice a goat or whatever, and also about how god loves poor people, widows and bastards in equal proportion to how much he loves rich people. Except of course that in any cult, the richest member is also always the most favoured. And of course bad people will be punished. Unless they're rich.

Chapter 36

Solomon challenges god to let the strange nations (v. 3) see his power. He wants some signs that god is actually up there, preferably in the form of smiting. He'd also like his rival kings' heads chopped off. He also praises righteous women, but urges men to grow hedges around their property, lest said virtuous women forget for a second. Finally, he tells us not to trust homeless people.

Chapter 37

Don't you hate it when a friend turns into an enemy? Also, be wary of consellors, because they're all after something. And don't advise people who are jealous of you, or take advice from a woman who is jealous of your wife. Don't consult with cowards on war. Actually, the ONLY person I'd want consulting me on a war is a coward. The list goes on for much longer, but the basic message is: avoid talking to people with agendas. Which is everybody.  Stop vaguebooking, Solomon, and just spill on whoever betrayed you.

So who should you trust? Yourself, and other godly people. Finally, don't eat too much meat or you might get cholera.

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