Friday, July 13, 2007

The one needful thing

At last a reflection of that elusive word rendered thing or word (dbr). This was, fleetingly, Bob's second thought (and could have been his first and only) that we must remember: to sit at the Master's feet, Mary's part that will not be taken away from her. He thinks (and I agree since we are one) that this knowledge of God in the presence of Christ is the same as the Psalmists' covenant knowledge. Mary is whole even in the presence of sibling rivalry! Of course her 'enemy' has a good point - so let us know that presence of wholeness while also not neglecting the necessary tasks of our lives. (It gives me pleasure as a man to identify with both Mary and Martha. - But they have names so let me tell you, I would wash his feet with my tears and dry them with my hair also, if it were long enough - OK I will use my beard.)

How can the experience be the same? The 'religious' framework is so different. This I hope to address as I read Christianity in Jewish Terms. The introduction sets out completely and graphically (both the positive and the negative) the state of Christian-Jewish interaction from one destruction (70) to another (1940s). The heart hurdles to overcome such high barriers. I hope to set out steps in a pattern that those on all sides of the barriers might be able to see.

The patterns are already implicit. Some bindings must be let go. Can you hear Bach? Laßt ihn, haltet, bindet nicht! - Loose him, let him go. - reminds me of Lazarus also - an ironic twist. But what does Paul say - nothing less than life from the dead. (Romans 11:15 to be read without assumption!) Please note this is not a reference to 'conversion' except that such a word means the same turning and returning that is noted as required for all to the Living God (see Psalm 91 and sing the Shaker song). I note that Paul has a nice metaphor on bread too - holy lump!

Frymer-Kensky and co. note that the greatest temptation for a Jew is Christianity and the greatest for a Christian is Judaism. If the same life is known, then the temptations and the tasks to be done will be different from those contained in our traditional assumptions about religious framework and history.

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