Full face coverings in Holy Writ. (Side-tracked)

Discussion in 'Faith, Devotion & Formation' started by Tiffy, Aug 12, 2018 at 7:38 AM.

  1. Tiffy

    Tiffy Member Anglican

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    I started out amusing myself by finding all instances of full face coverings in Holy Scripture, of which there are many.

    Moses had a face covering. 2 Cor.3:13-16 Which also provided justification for Christians not wearing them. Ezekiel was commanded to put on a face covering. Ezek.12:6, Here is the whole passage. Ezek.12:1-28.

    It was at this point that I was interrupted in my researches by a far more interesting line of inquiry.

    Ezek.12:2-3. This struck me as being so reminiscent of what Jesus called himself, and so evocative of his oft repeated remark about 'eyes not seeing', 'ears not hearing, and 'hardened hearts', that I figured Jesus must have read this passage and mused upon it's meaning to him and his mission on earth. Matt.8:20, Jn.1:11, he was very much an exile. So I dropped my search for 'burkas in the Bible' and sat down at the feet of Christ, like Mary did, to do some proper listening and seeing.

    Mk8:14-21. This passage has always, until now puzzled me. Particularly Mk.8:18-21. What did Jesus imply that his disciples 'did not understand'? Mark offers us no explanation, as if neither he nor any other of the witnesses to this incident ever understood what Jesus was getting at either. I searched commentaries, searched the internet, and came up with nothing convincing to explain exactly what Jesus implied the disciples had no understanding of. Some however provided helpful background information which 'filled in the picture' a bit.

    Apparently one version of this passage, not included in holy scripture, relates that there was 'not even one loaf between them all', i.e. they were arguing among themselves heatedly as to who had failed in their duty to bring the bread aboard. Blame and counter blame were being 'discussed' and a 'punch up' was about to commence by the time Jesus 'stepped in', twice, to make his point, which was:

    (1) “Watch out; beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod.” - (Two opposing world views, Pharisees vs Herod, implied Sadducees). These two factions were renowned for their implacable opposition to oneanother's points of view.

    (2) “Why are you discussing the fact that you have no bread? Do you not yet perceive or understand? Are your hearts hardened? Having eyes do you not see, and having ears do you not hear? And do you not remember? When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many baskets full of broken pieces did you take up?”

    Now here's the thing: I have never understood the connection between the:

    7 loaves ÷ 4000 = 7 leftover baskets. (When Jesus was around)

    and the:

    5 loaves ÷ 5000 = 12 leftover baskets. (When Jesus was around).

    Until now.

    1 loaf ÷ (however many disciples can fit in a boat) = ( ? ) (When Jesus was around), the maths reveals the answer must be, >12 by any mathematical reckoning.

    (< #loaves) + ( > #people) = ( > #baskets left). 1 ÷ 12? = ( as many as you like)

    So why the heck were they arguing among themselves, blaming each other for only having one loaf of bread between just a boatload of disciples. When they had someone with them who had recently demonstrated beyond doubt the futility of engaging in 'finger pointing', 'blame shifting', 'responsibility dodging', 'scapegoating', or 'fruitless debate and argument'.

    Why did they not simply 'give the loaf to Jesus'? That's what He meant by, "You just don't understand, do you"?

    Gosh! I wish we could sometimes remember to do that when contentious issues in church become dangerously close to feeding us with 'The Leaven of The Pharisees' as our daily bread, instead of the 'Bread of Heaven'.

    Next time you are annoyed at the lack of provisions in the church, or are inclined to look around for some 'failure' to look down on, try to remember we are all in the same boat, and if we involve Jesus, He has a way of turning a 'lack of provisions' into a 'surplus of leftovers'.

    And the smaller the initial input, the greater the provision, in spite of the number in need. (Whenever we involve Jesus).
     

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