Jeremiah 51

Evil vs evil. Hard chapter.

God uses Babylon as a hammer to smash things.

There is a section of the chapter that is repetitious like a petulant child “with you I break the old, with you I break the young, with you I break farmers, with you I break soldiers” etc. Bang bang bang bang. For a long time.

But the chapter is also about the utter destruction of the hammer. It’s terrifying. Who is this God?

Wave after wave of swirling poetic prophesy, Babylon was God’s golden cup, full of prosperity and overflowing, a drunken party across the nations. But now, run, save yourself, nothing will be left.

(Actually, the use of drunkenness as a metaphor is not at all simple in the Bible. Worth a look one day!)

God is above all, the creator, the ultimate power. And he prefers Judah, Israel above all.

I quickly read in “his people” ie me too. The chosen. But we are all evil.

It’s evil against evil, the Medes, who’ll be stirred up to crush Babylon, all those Babylon’s crushed. The chosen, the unchosen, God above “doing” it all.

How is God love then? Why make creation include evil?

Crisis of faith, what’s going on? Google to the rescue? (Google above all?)

Weak answers to “why create an imperfect world” – “so God’s love could be shown in Jesus?” Really? A bit Munchausen’s syndrome. Create a crisis so you get kudos for fixing it?

Best answer from Baha’i in a short search (!?!!). God made us capable of asking that question but not capable of knowing it’s answer.

There is an order of creation, levels of enlightenment. Minerals have no life. Plants have life, animals have concsiousness, but we have another level of understanding.

And God isn’t just one step above human, he’s many. We never will get it, until he wants us to. There is an answer, but we don’t know it, yet.

Still a bit lame, but the analogy with other forms of being and their inherent concsiousness worked for me.

Two ways to live: believe there is a God that we can’t fully understand, or conclude that because it doesn’t fully make sense there is no God.

The weakness and the cold despair of the second alternative relative to my experience is always what keeps me coming back to belief.

According to Wikipedia’s helpful “demographics of atheism” article, I’m not exactly brave in that conclusion. It me and between 84 – 93% of mankind, though you’d never suspect it living in Sydney’s hipster suburbs.

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