Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Available to all!

The biblical writers have taken care to avoid the appearance of ritual speech. These narratives instead show characters apparently speaking in their own voices, demonstrating the best qualities of which humans and human speech are capable: justice, courage, initiative, verbal agility, loyalty, self-sacrifice, and compassion for others. The intercessors display these extraordinary qualities to the deity at precisely those moments when YHWH plans to wipe out the population, and thereby fend off doom. Instead of “channeling” the gods or changing reality with their words, these intercessors show a kind of agency that is theoretically reachable by anyone. Herein lies one reason that these stories have been passed down for millennia. Rather than any scripted speech or access to divine power, it is the intercessors’ human qualities that are meant as models for re-use: qualities that can—potentially—pull communities from the brink of disaster in a whole range of circumstances. So it is that these biblical texts have achieved a kind of posterity that the ritual texts have not.—Forestalling Doom page 236

<idle musing>
Well, I wouldn't limit the reason they survived to just that; there is a good bit of Holy Spirit action involved, too! But, a good point nonetheless.

Intercession is available to all. Let's make use of it for the good of our neighbors. Intercede on their behalf—not to "make America great again" or "keep America great," whatever that means (see here). But so that they might enjoy the presence and peace of God in their lives.
</idle musing>

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