Wednesday, February 11, 2015

By whose power?

As noted in ch. 3, the judgment of the governing deities looms large in the successful fulfillment of a curse. Certainly, the supernatural realm must weigh in first and determine the validity of the request before any curse can be executed. There is no need to suppose the process behind a malediction that depends on an agent operates any differently. Just as one presumes that Šamaš evaluated the petition before he dispatched Girra, so Yahweh must have ruled that Elisha’s request was pertinent. Subsequently, Yahweh sends forth the bears to execute the curse’s punishment. The idea that Elisha “performed” the malediction out of his own supernatural power without divine patronage is hardly supported by the text. If he harbored any such puissance, he would not have had to curse in Yahweh’s name. A direct command would have been all that was needed.— Cursed Are You!, page 191

<idle musing>
Ooohhh...that's good. It's mediated power, mediated faith—mediated by the power of YHWH. It's his divine prerogative to fulfill or not. And it still is. We don't have power in ourselves and we can't strong arm God into doing what we want—even if we say "in the name of Jesus." God is still bigger than we are—sure you know that in your head, but do you live that way?

Of course, there is the opposite extreme, which is just as bad: God is way off there and I'm responsible to live as best I can on my own power. Wrong!

It is the indwelling power of the Holy Spirit that enables us to live a holy life. Period. And we need to listen to him and live by him—theosis, adoption as joint-heirs with Christ...
</idle musing>

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