Is it acceptable to compare God with air-conditioning? Is it acceptable to use whatever it takes to get your point across when you try to persuade someone to come to the side of God?
Recently we went to one of our favorite museums in Memphis, Belz Museum of Asian & Judaic Art, to celebrate our anniversary. Check it out, it is really worth it. The reason I mention it here is something I came across in the Judaic part of the exhibition. A lot of pieces in it have biblical origin. My favorites are the bronze reliefs on Bible stories. My husband and I are the people who read all the information that comes with the exhibition items. So, when I was reading one of the information plaques that accompanied one of the relief’s, I noticed that the word “God” was spelled “G-d”, and it made me think of how deep respect of God runs in a Judaic culture.
It reminded me of YHWH of the Old Testament. We do not even know exactly how to pronounce this word because of the reverent attitude they had towards their Creator and not wanting to use His name in vain. It also reminded me of the physical cleaning/washing they did before “meeting” with God (Exodus 19:10-11). Aaron and his sons had to go through ceremonial washing with water before they could serve as priests (Exodus 40:12-15).
Jesus was not upset with the Pharisees for performing ceremonial washings, he disapproved of their emphasis on the outward, rather than inward, forms of religion.
We know that and sometimes are “jumping on” the negative examples in the Bible showing our righteous indignation “how could they have done that… why… not again… isn’t it clear what needed to be done… how it needed to be done…”
Lets not be too hard on the Pharisees… Living in the physical world, isn’t it easier for us to believe in things that we SEE? Isn’t it easier for us to “remember” to live Godly life if we set physical reminders, boundaries, use earthly, familiar examples? Maybe it is not a bad idea to have “a washing” before your prayer once a while. How about anointing with oil?
We call Jesus our friend too often… He makes it possible for us even to have a connection with God, the Father… But He is God…
Is it acceptable to compare God with air-conditioning? Is it acceptable to use whatever it takes to get your point across when you try to persuade someone to come to the side of God? I think so… as long as we remember that HE is GOD and why we are doing it.
Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 9:22 “To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.”
May G-d be with you!