Like all of us, upon occasion I wake up with the thought of “What is the greatest commandment, anyhow?” And so we bring it up at breakfast pretending like we really know and are just trying to generate some fun table talk but our teenage kids see right through us and eyes are rolled and then the tears and the drama. You know, right? We then consult our Bible apps or Wikipedia and hit ourselves upside the head and feel like total dopes when we are reminded: first, love God and second, love your neighbors. Well, I am paraphrasing. You could quote Matthew better than I but, for thou heathen readers, let’s go to the Source:
“Then one of them, which was a lawyer, asked him a question, tempting him, and saying, Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.”
But not so fast! Turns out that because of recently discovered scrolls in caves near the Dead Sea, we know that this above passage was taken out of context. Because the Bible was getting way too darned long, some passages were deleted and what had to go was left up to old white men in Rome. They made some odd decisions. One wonders what were they thinking when they let stand the 4,154 “begats” but left off this passage, which has Jesus continuing his teaching on the greatest Commandments:
“Verily I say to you, if thou adherest to these two, thou shall have eternal life but it will be rather boring. There is a third commandment which will bring joy. And face it, we need something to lift us out of lives that sometimes just grind us into despair. How do we go on with all of the racism, sexism, poverty, arrogant Pharisees, wealthy Romans? And what about the lack of sensible controls on stones? Where was I? Oh yes, OK. Listen. Here it is. It’s coming. You thought I would have said it by now, didn’t you? OK, I will stop joking around. The third most important Commandment is:
Thou Shalt Dance
So…get to it! ”
Now today, June 24, 2015, I am an old white man who needs not only to make up for the mistakes of other old white men, but I need to be a good Christian. So, here I go.