Important Disclaimer

Since I currently have several employers/supervisors/churches/etc., please know that none of the words on my blog represent them or their beliefs. This blog is my own creation.

It also does not represent my children's perspective, nor my mother's; they think I am funny, but misguided.
(Quick update: only my mother thinks I'm funny now.)

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Probably Heresy

Plead with your mother, plead—
   for she is not my wife,
   and I am not her husband—
that she put away her whoring from her face,
   and her adultery from between her breasts, 
or I will strip her naked
   and expose her as in the day she was born,
and make her like a wilderness,
   and turn her into a parched land,
   and kill her with thirst...

I will punish her for the festival days of the Baals,
   when she offered incense to them
and decked herself with her ring and jewellery,
   and went after her lovers,
   and forgot me, says the Lord
~Hosea 2:2-3, 13

They say that Hosea stands in for God and Gomer for Israel. They say that Gomer's faithlessness mirrors the faithlessness of God's chosen people. Gomer/the people run off with other lovers/false
gods and Hosea/God responds by exposing her to her children, stripping her naked, and leaving her in the desert to die of thirst.

This is the Word of the Lord!
The Good News of Jesus Christ!

Oh the Lord will punish us for our festivals and our joy!

Oh, I know. I took the theology classes.
But what if we read this wrong?
What if God is Gomer?
What if we are Hosea?
What if the bitterness of this passage is a projection of our own rage that God has other lovers?
And assuredly God does.

What does it mean to love a God who loves the entire world?
What does it mean to be loved by a God who loves the entire world?
What loss of particularity!

How does one know if one is more important than a damn daisy in the field?
If God, upon seeing the daisy, cries out, "How beautiful! Look at the daisy!"
And upon seeing me, cries out, "How beautiful! Look at you!"
How are we to trust such outrageous, promiscuous, non-discriminating love?
And even worse, upon seeing the naked mole rat, God exclaims, "How beautiful! Look what I made!"
And upon meeting rapists, murderers, thieves, and other horrors
every damn morning, God exclaims, "Oh, how beautiful you are!"

Who wants to be loved like that?
And so no wonder we say to Gomer/God, "You are not our people!"
No wonder we cannot forgive a promiscuous God
with her faithless, wandering eye
her restless seeking after ever more lovers on this earth
No wonder we strip that God naked
and leave her in the desert to die of thirst
exposing her before the children with shame and contempt

We will punish her for loving all those others,
   when she offered incense to them
and decked herself with her ring and jewellery,
   and went after her lovers,
   and forgot me, we cry out.

Am I not enough?
Are we not enough?
Why must you love without sense?

And what would happen if we followed such an example of senseless love?
"CHEAP GRACE!" my colleagues sound out
The structures of our society would crumble!
The death of marriage
The church would DIE

One man, one woman for eternity.
Or if you MUST Adam and Steve
or Lilith and Eve
forsaking all others
you and me babe, against the world
I will be your everything, we say to the Lord
and like Cain it is refused

Oh my friends, it is not us who are faithless
That God of ours been running all around
Isn't this our hymn?

Who do you think you are?

We can stay there--surely this is the caution of Hosea and Gomer.
But what if we loved like Gomer?
Ssssh...I am not tearing at your marriage, your love, your faith. Do you.
But what if we loved like Gomer?
And what if, like Hosea, we gave Gomer back her garden?
And what if we reveled in being the daisy, the mole rat, the lowest of humanity
and delighted in God's daily exclamation
"How beautiful you are! Look what I made!"

What then bitterness, or fear, or pain
to be loved like that?

1 comment:

  1. "That God of ours has been running all around..."

    Reminds me of Prodigal Son's older brother, or the laborers hired at 6am. Not fair!


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