Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Jesus Pooped

When I first became a believer at the age of 18 I can remember some of my new Christian brothers and sisters sharing their "life verse." I never had a "life verse" as I thought the whole book was probably worth mentioning, but I felt the need to come up with one anyway, just to mess with people (in retrospect, it was probably a bad idea). I decided on Deuteronomy 23:12...
"Designate a place outside the camp where you can go to relieve yourself."
Many of you have heard what is referred to as "the shortest verse in the bible,"
Jesus wept. (John 11:35).
It's actually quite profound if you think about it. God in the flesh cried. He wasn't a Vulcan that suppressed his emotions because it gave him greater control. He cried when he learned of the death of Lazarus, the brother of Mary and Martha. He wept when he saw how upset Mary and Martha really were. He was really human--which also means that he ate, slept, had a runny nose, suckled at his mother's breast, had skin rashes, urinated, threw up...and defecated.

It doesn't sound right, does it? But the other day as I was thinking of the idea of Jesus pooping (why? I don't know), I was reminded of that weird little verse and some of the rest of the chapter. Imagine a passage where both defecation and nocturnal emissions are mentioned in one fell swoop:
9 When you are encamped against your enemies, keep away from everything impure. 10 If one of your men is unclean because of a nocturnal emission, he is to go outside the camp and stay there. 11 But as evening approaches he is to wash himself, and at sunset he may return to the camp.

12 Designate a place outside the camp where you can go to relieve yourself. 13 As part of your equipment have something to dig with, and when you relieve yourself, dig a hole and cover up your excrement. 14 For the LORD your God moves about in your camp to protect you and to deliver your enemies to you. Your camp must be holy, so that he will not see among you anything indecent and turn away from you.

If you have trusted in Christ then you now have the Holy Spirit (also God--but God in the Spirit) living inside of you. It's not just God walking around the camp as in the Deuteronomy passage. He's with you everywhere and he's shared your earthly vessel. He knows what it feels like to weep...to go through puberty...to laugh...and even to feel alone. This is the Jesus that I want to get to know more.

--Big Doofus (Rog)

12 comments:

Big Doofus said...

So, allow me to be the first person to comment on the entry that I wrote. I put it up last night but it's actually something I've been thinking about for a LONG time. I woke up this morning thinking, "This is just too weird--even for me. I may never be allowed to post here again."

Sorry about that, everyone. I hope it wasn't too gross.

soebeck said...

That passage from Deuteronomy was the passage I used for my first sermon. Nothing wrong with that!

scott said...

Poop. Nocturnal emissions. Sure, there are things like that. But the fact that Jesus survived the junior high years is on a whole 'nother level.

When we talk about the humanity of Christ, it's those junior high years that come to mind...

Joe B said...

Let's see now. Survive Junior High or rise from thh dead. Either one is most impressive...

Joe B said...

You know if you go Hebrew-oid (or Septuagint Greek-oid) that phrase nocturnal emmission would just as easily mean bed-wetting. Possibly even taking a leak out the door of your tent rather than going properly. This IS a passage about latrines, after all. Hmmm...

The greek version definitely refers to a flow of something (rhussis,same as the fabled "woman with an issue of blood.") But the Hebrew is even more generic, quareh, meaning an accident.

I'm not sure if the Levitical laws say anything elsewhere about semen, but this passage seems to be about general Yatsa', "that which goeth forth" Poop? Pee? Number Three? Probably. But to show how generic the word is, look back to v9. There the yatsa' is the ARMY that "goeth forth". against the enemies.

A freaky thing I found in the interlinear in v9: Both Hebrew and Septuaging Greek do not say to guard against impure things, but against all evil SPEECH. Ra Dabar in Hebrew, Rhema Poneros in Greek. Speech, too, could be counted as Yatsa', since it also "flows out." There is a similar admonition in Eph 4:29 against any "corrupt commnication", logos sapros. A good lesson: Keep your unclean talk out of the camp, even in the dark of night. If you whisper in the dark, make sure you cover it with earth.

As for nocturnal emissions? Keep that shovel handy!

Joe B said...

Okay, re: semen, I found Lev 15:16-17. "A man from whom there is a discharge of semen, shall immerse all his flesh in water, and he shall remain unclean until evening." Also the lucky woman and and any organic fabric the semen gets on. To me it just sounds like the natural way to cap off a pleasant evening at home, not a punishment.

I wonder whether we are right if we associate "unclean" with "evil" or "sinful"? (I looked up a bunch of Rabbi stuff on the subject, and holy cow, talk about sexually bound up! Sheesh.) But there are things that are pure and good, and innocent, that render you unclean. Like smackin' a little lovin' on mama. Like giving birth. Like aiding in birth. Like burying the dead. God requires these things!

Do these things make God mad? Or do they make you repulsive to God? Does unclean = sin? Could it maybe be more like a reminder of mortality? Blood. Semen. Camp-Poop. Corpse-juice. Mortality cannot be in the presence of God?

What do you all think?

scott said...

"I wonder whether we are right if we associate "unclean" with "evil" or "sinful"?"

Fantastic question. So many people -- me included -- get kind of baffled by so many of the odd O.T. rules. People look at them today as reasons that religion is so ridiculous. But we often forget what life was like 4000 years ago... It was dirty, nasty, and full of disease that would kill you at a very young age if you weren't careful. So a lot of the stuff was really hygiene-related.

I'll admit, though, that some of it is still baffling. Your explanation might be a good one. A 'reminder of mortality.' Because I can't imagine blood or semen being "sinful" to God.

Joe B said...

If anyone wants to see the 613 OT laws, here's a link. I think it's helpful to look at the whole mass of them together, but dang that's a lot of mass!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/613_Mitzvot

void77 said...

Okay, I'm going to go out on a very skinny limb here...

The number 613 is awful close to the number 616, which is another interpretation (I've heard) of 666 in Revelation. What if John was making a symbolic connection between the 613 (+/-) laws and the new covenant/kingdom? What if the "mark of the beast" was more aimed at Pharisees/Sadducees/etc. than it was at an end-world mass-barcoding?

I dunno...I'm not a Revelation expert..Just throwing stuff out there... Maybe I'll call up Swaggart and see what he says! ;)

-E

Big Doofus said...

613 is also the area code for Southeastern Ontario, which includes Ottawa--the capital of Canada. So, somehow the Canadians are all connected with this. I suppose there is a hockey connection as well.

Mr. E said...

Amen Brother Amen. Jesus pooped and probably had "wet-dreams"! Sorry if that seems graphic but if he was a normal kid, he probably did. That makes me feel better about the Jesus I serve. He knows what I feel. He knows anger (righteous anger), he knows embarrassment, he knows sorrow, happiness, grief, fear, and I'm sure at times even boredom. Is that an emotion?

J4Jaws said...

yes he pooped, thats why they used to call it "Holy Shit"......