Sunday, July 14, 2013

Biblical Math

If I didn't know that global warming was burning the planet into a little ball of charred carbon, I would swear this was the coolest July in NC on record. It felt like Autumn as I stepped outside yesterday morning. The skies were still grey and overcast, though rain only smattered through now and then. I saw two speckled fawns on my morning run. One fawn sighting the day before, two fawns yesterday....If it keeps raining, I might see thirty fawns by the end of the month! The rainy gloom is subtracting summer fun, but the deer seem to be multiplying.

Perfect weather for running and seeing deer. Not so perfect for kayaking. Oh well. So I settled down with my Bible, not daring to venture far in the iffy weather. I am in the book of Judges. I hit a curious passage:
Judges 12:13-14
[13] After him, Abdon son of Hillel, from Pirathon, led Israel. [14] He had forty sons and thirty grandsons, who rode on seventy donkeys. He led Israel eight years.

Why would we need to know that the forty sons and thirty grandsons rode on seventy donkeys? A couple of chapters prior to this, we are told that another judge had 30 sons who rode on thirty donkeys and ruled thirty cities. Is this just a Biblical math lesson? What a strange thing to record in scripture. Of all the valuable things we need to glean, this just strikes me as strange.

The commentary I read claimed that this was proof of the extensive wealth and prestige of the rulers of Israel. It is one of the proofs to me of the truth of the Bible. Little details that seem so insignificant are constantly being mentioned. It has the feel of faithful recording of facts, building a case that will stand the test of naysayers.

Now, fast-forward from the time of the book of Judges to another king and donkey story much later in the Bible chronology. Jesus, one man, rides into Jerusalem to the scene of His sacrifice on a donkey, one donkey. One King, one Son, one donkey....but He saved the WHOLE world!

By evening, it was pouring rain again. I expect I will see even more deer tomorrow, rain-deer, blessings multiplying in the gloom.

And rain fell on the earth forty days and forty nights. (Genesis 7:12 NIV)

Then God said to Noah, “Come out of the ark, you and your wife and your sons and their wives. Bring out every kind of living creature that is with you—the birds, the animals, and all the creatures that move along the ground—so they can multiply on the earth and be fruitful and increase in number on it.” (Genesis 8:15-17 NIV)

And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.” (Genesis 9:12-16 NIV)

-save a dog-

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