Genesis 28 -- God blesses Jacob!
OK, I'm not surprised.
As one of the footnotes says, "One might ask how God's blessing can be given to such an unworthy schemer."
Yes, one might.
One might also ask why anybody today would want to worship or associate themselves with such a God. Why anybody would wear their worship of such a God as a badge of honor. Why anybody would quote the Old Testament in favor of their own beliefs.
OK, let's say you fear God, and you only obey God because you fear his wrath and seek his blessing. Is this something to be proud of? Is this something you would want to replicate in your children, in your neighbors? This kind of fear and blind obedience? Would you want your children to act like these characters who are rewarded by God?
Why did my parents teach me these stories? I wish I could ask them. I can only imagine they would tell me not to take these stories literally. Not to follow every Church teaching blindly. To use my rational thinking to build my own moral code that evolves with my own experience. But, then, why did we go to Church every weekend and say all the words we were required to say? Why this Church and not another?
I do remember my Dad saying it was important to work for change within the Church. He considered himself a liberal, relatively. So did my Mom. My Mom believed in women's liberation. My parents were not racist. My parents did not raise me to believe that homosexuality is wrong, or that I shouldn't masturbate, or that I shouldn't use birth control. Their faith is a mystery to me. Why should rational, moral human beings remain members of a Church that is patriarchal, undemocratic, and essentially totalitarian? I think my Mom would've said, probably did say to me at some point, "when you are older, you will understand."
I'm older. I don't understand.
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