Not a favorite passage (twyla)

This is not one of my favorite passages of Scripture. In fact, I find little to like here, really. In the verses preceding, there was a sense of destiny and unity…then we come to this little section.

One of the things I don’t like is the way Peter stands up and talks about Scripture being fulfilled by the betrayal of Judas. While this may be so, it irks me that the two verses he pulls out of his hat, (Ps. 69:25 and 109:8) have no prophetic symbolism that I can see. Just David or whoever complaining about his enemies, as he was wont to do.

Also, the whole guts gushing out bugs me. Matthew says he hung himself. Which is it, then? Did he trip and inadvertently commit hari/kari or did he hang himself? Is the field known as the field of blood from guilt or from guts?

But mostly, what bugs me is the assigning of another apostle. Why was this necessary, I wonder? Is it to keep the magical number 12? So, out of all of these, they pick two men. Then they cry out loud to God to look at their hearts and draw straws. Come on. This is so NOT spiritual. I know is was common in the old days, but can you even imagine this happening at a church business meeting today? Heh. It makes me giggle, actually. And I feel so sorry for poor old Justus. Bet he felt odd. Bet he wondered what God had seen in his heart that made him lose the lottery. Wonder if he got funny, sideways looks.

Anyway, this is my totally unspiritual, grumbly post on Acts 1: 12-26. I’m so glad it gets better really quickly. I’m glad the impotence of lots is replaced with the rush of wind and tongues of fire.

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4 responses

  1. I’ve been to a few church session meetings where drawing starws might have produced just as good an answer as voting — and probably would have been quicker!But yes, you’ve pointed out some real issues here.

  2. Like you Twyla I find this passage quite unpleasant. But it is the part about Judas which I particularly dislike.It seems sadistic to me. The chap I see for spiritual direction suggested to me that when one comes to a passage of scripture one dislikes then to spend time with it and see what comes up…it can be very revealing, speaking to one’s condition in unexpected ways.

  3. Twyla, I like your analysis. Maybe Luke thought writing a gospel was like making a movie … you need special effects (diviniation) and some graphic violence (exploding intestines) to get the audience’s attention :-).

  4. My tendency would be to place this as a later insertion. Let’s face it, much of the gospel is editorial for theological (and even less honorable) reasons. Luke and his editors were human beings, no doubt with many of the same flaws we notice in people (and in ourselves) today. The diamonds shine out of the mud. That’s the way I see the Bible. All this of course only my opinion.

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