Most Christians know the story of Job. In case you’re not familiar, let me refresh you . . .
Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.”
8 Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.”
9 “Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. 10 “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 11 But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.”
12 The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.”
Now this story goes on – Job loses everything, but keeps faith, and in the end God rewards him by giving him more than he’d lost. Never mind poor old Job lost some wives, children, and health, but what about it? “God rewarded him.” I don’t care. I’ve lost people. You don’t forget them. And I think Job no doubt sometimes thought and grieved for those he’d lost. However, that’s beside the point.
The point is: there’s another side to this story, a point to it the Churches don’t spew about and the Preachers don’t tell ya:
This is the story of God Falling Into Temptation – and as part of a bet with the Devil! Everyone knows you don’t wager with the Devil, for chances are you’ll lose! Unless you’re Charlie Daniels, of course! But then God didn’t have a Momma to tell him . . .
Cuz’ face it: God fell into Temptation with a Capital “T”. The Devil was the one who tempted him into doing it: torturing old Job – and what about the people who cared about Job? Didn’t they suffer? Those whose lives were affected? Who sickened and died?
But nooooo, the Church chooses to focus on Job’s stubborn faith and not that the Lord gave into temptation . . . on a bet.
Why else would the Devil been there? According to him, he was just kickin’ around and came up for something to do. God wasn’t even sure where he’d been – he had to stop and ask: “Where’ve YOU been?” Then the Devil turns around and challenges Him to a bet – one that God takes.
Now how is that a Man for you?
Because that’s the other thing I’m getting at.
God is, in my opinion, just like ‘us’. The many faces of God are reflected in the many faces around you, and in the many religions, too. Just a ‘part’ of Him, a myriad of reflections . . .in everyone and everything you see.
One of the things I realized is how bored God must be. I mean, after “ALL” was created and set up, it would run just like mechanical clockwork. He needed something to gum up the works . . .
and so He made Life. Something to keep Him guessing. Something that – occasionally – might mess things up.
After all, life has “free will and indecision” (or decision, what-have-you). It can move things independently, and of its own will. At the very least an earthworm will transport dirt molecules from one section of the yard to another. In an extreme case we might be throw something random like Voyager into the far reaches of space. Or you might just be walk along pushing air molecules (and mosquitoes) aside. Who knows?
I think Life is God’s way of experiencing his Universe.
After all, if you built playground, wouldn’t you play in it? And how else to play? Be a rock? An air molecule?
No. You’d invite (I meant invent, but oh-whut-the-hell) – LIFE. How else are you going to discover the wonderful radicals, the fractals, the patterns – unless ‘you’ can ‘see’ them, experience them, and all the emotions ‘they’ bring . . .
It sounds a little bit like “Science of the Mind” kind of stuff, but I’m thinking . . .
If you really want to “know God” look around. Take a look into stranger’s faces. Remember those words the religions use: “Children of God”. Any of us could be one. Supposedly all of us are. Christ was one. Why not ‘me’? Or you?
I think when He said we were made “in his image” he wasn’t talking about outside. I think He was talking what goes on inside: our ‘soul’ and the ‘beating heart’ – and the mind, too, though perhaps in a lesser degree.
But I sure wish Churches would get this story right, the Story of Job. It’s also about about God’s Temptation. How He’s a lot like us. Pointing out that even HE gave into the Devil’s temptation. And not only made restitution, but doubtlessly forgave Himself.
I could have used that as a child. A lot of children I think could identify with that. Seeing Him in that sort of Light. Knowing it’s “Okay” to fail sometimes. That we all make some mistakes. Even God – sometimes. Maybe.
Because I think when it comes down to it, God is a bit like me and you.