Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Daily Bible Reading - January 6 - Preachers Are Crazy

Today's reading is the flood narrative in Gen. 6-8, along with Mark 3 and Psalm 104. When I was a kid I read a fictionalized version of the story of Noah, in which the people around Noah mocked him as he warned about the coming flood. I don't know if that actually happened or not, but 2 Peter 2:5 does call Noah a "herald of righteousness," and it isn't difficult to imagine the kind of reception he would have received from the people who saw him building a boat in the middle of dry land. What is clear is that many of Jesus' hearers did think He was nuts, particularly those in His own family (Mark 3:21).

In the movie Gettysburg, there is a great line where Gen. Longstreet explains to a British observer that "we Southerners like our men religious and a little bit mad. I suspect that's why the women fall in love with preachers." But in reality, most people - Southerners, Yankees, Israelites or Canaanites - do not like those who preach the truth, precisely because they warn of such peril for sin than they are dismissed as lunatics.

That means it is always going to be a challenge to teach the truth - and it is even more of a challenge to listen to it.

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