In last weeks’ reading of the Hebrew scriptures:

hqdefaultI am into Leviticus, and the beginning of the book and at the end of Exodus there’s a lot of very specific rules as to sacrifices.

In fact, though my inclination is to skip over some of the stuff about goats without a blemish, it struck me that the priests had to be pretty deft with their knives, because the commandments include carving fat away from kidneys and the rules are quite specific as to how to sacrifice the fat (turn it into smoke) versus the meat of various animals.

It’s exhausting (and, let me say it, boring) to read precisely what jewels go where, and what clothes priests are to wear when they sacrifice and where they smear the blood.

There must have been a lot of blood and I can’t imagine how it smelled with the thousands upon thousands of dead animals.

The one thing that struck me was that God always asked for the best, the animals without blemish, the biggest bulls, the best wheat, and if someone tried to pass a second-best off as their best, there’d be hell to pay.

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  1. Whether God actually exists or not is a serious question about which I will not opine. But if s/he does, I hope there is consensus that s/he is concerned with truly significant things. And is NOT concerned about fashion statements.

    From your information about the bible we have biblical instructions about “what clothes priests are to wear when they sacrifice and where they smear the blood.” Really??!!?? So wearing striped bell-bottoms (I had those once, a dark part of my history) gets eternal hell-fire, but the “proper” attire does the trick? Really??!!!???

    So we are talking about a diety with the social attitudes of middle school in-crowd girls? Sorry, but I don’t buy it.

  2. The last straw for me in the Orthodox church was an adult ed session in which the assistant priest was purportedly teaching us about Islam but was really looking for ways to disparage it while upholding the superiority of Orthodoxy. I can’t recall his exact words, but it something to the effect of how much of the Quran is devoted to mundane things like clothing and food preparation. I asked him if he hadn’t ever read Leviticus. If looks could kill…

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