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WHO'S YOUR DADDY ?
Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth. (Tit 1:14)
When I was young I would see old men sitting in a rocking chair, situated near the door of the local store, telling tall tales to anyone who would pause long enough to hear him. We no longer find such men (nor for that matter even the store) where we can hear such stories. Instead we now have to enter our schools of higher education if we want to be lied to, and short of this, we can visit our local church or other spiritual institution in order to find such entertainment.
Stories are created and initiated in many ways. For instance, I can hear a single word, or see something as simple as a worm on a leaf (“The Worm and the Thread” as an example), which will stimulate an idea for a story. And, as is the case with so many writers, the Bible is a source of inspiration for a multitude of stories both real and imagined. However, in my mind, the Word of God is not the place where preachers and theologians should go for their fantasies and fairy tales.
Ye do the deeds of your father. Then said they to him, We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God. Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. (John 8:41-2)
Sometime long ago this simple verse stimulated a preacher's imagination and he came up with the idea of adding spice to the story. He (apparently) saw in this statement the possibility that the Pharisees were accusing Jesus of being an illegitimate son. This concept makes for in interesting sermon, so other preachers grabbed hold to it and added it to their repertoire of material, often with additions such as dramatization (“We now who our daddy is, who's your daddy,” and the like).
Jesus said that we're not to add even a jot or a tittle to God's Word. So let's be as were the Bereans, and see if we can discover what is actually being said in this portion of Scripture:
Then said they to him, We be not born of fornication; we have one Father, even God. (John 8:41)
Here we have, not an accusation directed toward Jesus, but a defense made intended to ward off the accusation Jesus made at them.
Did the Jews know that Jesus was not the son of Joseph? Let's see what the Bible has to tell us:
And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven? (John 6:42)
Is not this the carpenter's son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas? And his sisters, are they not all with us? Whence then hath this man all these things?
And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house. (Mat 13:56,57)
The last statement was clearly made among those Jesus grew up with. They made no derogatory comment regarding His birthright.
Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. (Mat 1:19)
Joseph was already Mary's husband. People might have wondered at Mary having what could be conceived as a short pregnancy, but they would have assumed that there was some hanky-panky going on between the two and not that Mary had been playing in someone else's sandbox. If that had been the case, everyone would automatically expect that Joseph would do what he planned to do when he believed this to be the case, that is, to “put her away.”
And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli, (Luke 3:23)
People “supposed” that Jesus was the son of Joseph, not some Roman soldier as I've heard preached:
And Nathanael said unto him, Can there any good thing come out of Nazareth? Philip saith unto him, Come and see. (John 1:46)
They answered and said unto him, Art thou also of Galilee? Search, and look: for out of Galilee ariseth no prophet. (John 7:52)
The worst the Jews could come up with as an accusation that Jesus was not who He claimed to be is that He was from Nazareth of Galilee:
Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also. (John 8:19)
Jesus is the one who brought up the idea that Joseph was not His father. But the people didn't understand His meaning. They asked Him a question many people have asked down through the ages; “Where is Joseph? Why don't we hear from him after that Jesus was twelve and supposedly lost in the Temple?”
A bastard shall not enter into the congregation of the LORD; even to his tenth generation shall he not enter into the congregation of the LORD. (Deut 23:2)
The Jews being a stickler for the law, would have certainly obeyed this one, one that would have prevented Jesus from even coming near the Temple or synagogue, certainly from teaching in these institutions. They would have followed Jesus, not to catch a word in order to disqualify Him, but to shout to all those who were in hearing distance that this man was not even to be in the congregation of the people, nor even His great grandchildren, because He had been disqualified by God Himself, through the commandments of Moses.
Sometimes I wonder if pastors and theologians ever bother to read the Bible for themselves, or if they get all their material from one another.
One accusation protestants like to cast at Catholics is that they believe in the perpetual virginity of Mary, which in their mind is a falsehood. Is this concept, that of her being seen by her peers as a sinful woman, equal to the Samaritan woman at the well, just as bad of a fallacy, and far more damaging to the belief systems of the congregation hearing such fantasies?
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