IF AS IF

Mark 4:26-34, New Revised Standard Version
He also said, “The kingdom of God is as if someone would scatter seed on the ground, and would sleep and rise night and day, and the seed would sprout and grow, he does not know how. The earth produces of itself, first the stalk, then the head, then the full grain in the head. But when the grain is ripe, at once he goes in with his sickle, because the harvest has come.” He also said, “With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.” With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it; he did not speak to them except in parables, but he explained everything in private to his disciples.

The Land of God

In the Land of God

Is As If
Mark 4:26-34

The Kingdom/Realm/Land of God is as if.
Not like,
not is,
but as if.
It is a movement,
from other translations
to this translation,
from analogy/simile/metaphor
to the subjunctive.
From what is
to what could be — if you did/could only.
From the virtual
to how the dream might manifest.
By way of Attorney General,
Jeff Sessions,
our government announced
this week that separating
children from their parents,
Something done by
Egypt,
Rome,
American slave traders,
was in keeping with scripture
(Romans 13:1 {see below}),
stating that because
we are subject to governments
which are ordained by God,
these governments have the right
to punish any who break their laws.
It is too bad old Jeffie
didn’t bother to
read the rest of the passage.
Now, before you get all worked
up about Paul,
consider that
he follows his governmental chauvinism
with a rejoinder in verse 10,
where he states that it is love
itself that is the law
and loving one another is
fulfilling the law.
I understand this as
his way of thumbing of his nose
at the Roman Government through
rhetorical double-talk,
as a shelter to hide the
true meaning of his
homiletical intentions.
Also we need to consider
the things that Jesus said,
and in my last writing I believe
I clearly stated that I will take Jesus’
words and actions
over any other
religious/theological/self-righteous claim
written in the collection of books
we call the Bible.
And if we cannot
find Jesus speaking in verses 1 through 7,
we can certainly hear Jesus
loud and clear in verses 8 through 10.
There is no kingdom in the first.
There is nothing but kingdom in the last.
If I have understood our Mark reading correctly,
I can read the
last part of the Romans text
like this:
The Kingdom of God
is as if
we gave everyone the love God
has given us through Jesus.
The Kingdom of Heaven
is as if
it is now and fully realized
because we truly love our neighbors as ourselves.
The Kingdom of Heaven
is as if
all law was fulfilled in love.
I cannot be convinced by scripture
that cleaving families apart
has anything to do
with realizing the Kingdom.

 

Romans 13:1-10, New Revised Standard Version
13 Let every person be subject to the governing authorities; for there is no authority except from God, and those authorities that exist have been instituted by God. 2 Therefore whoever resists authority resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment. 3 For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. Do you wish to have no fear of the authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive its approval; 4 for it is God’s servant for your good. But if you do what is wrong, you should be afraid, for the authority does not bear the sword in vain! It is the servant of God to execute wrath on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore one must be subject, not only because of wrath but also because of conscience. 6 For the same reason you also pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, busy with this very thing. 7 Pay to all what is due them—taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due.

8 Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. 9 The commandments, “You shall not commit adultery; You shall not murder; You shall not steal; You shall not covet”; and any other commandment, are summed up in this word, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law.

 

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