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Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Bible and Catechism in a year: Day 3

Genesis 3:

The story of the fall.  There is a whole lot in this chapter.  We tend to see this again as a symbolic passage.  The fruit that our first parents took was likely not a physical fruit, but the decision that they could decide just as well as God what was good and evil.  That they could be like God without God...This is the sin of pride.  Immediately they know they've messed up, because they are ashamed, and they hide, but the fruit can't be put back on the tree...

Incidentally, reading the part where the man points the finger at his wife when asked by God if he has eaten of the fruit, Jimmy Buffet crooning "Some people claim that there's a woman to blame, but I know it's my own damn fault" pops into my head. 

Bottom line is both are guilty.  And both are punished, in accordance with their natural abilities.

But God, being both merciful and just, weaves a promise of redemption in with his justice, telling the woman that her seed will strike the serpent's (remember that the serpent represents Satan here...) head.  I find this curious, because if I recall (and I'll be on the lookout as I proceed), seed is usually referred to as a male thing.  Could this be a foreshadowing of Jesus' biological connection to Mary? 

I also think it is interesting that Adam and Eve's names don't pop up until God is giving his judgement.  Before that they are just man, woman, husband, and wife...

Psalm 3:

In this Psalm, we get a powerful song which contrasts worldly foes with the protection and guidance of God.  We also get the cryptic "Selah" which I've never noticed before.  After looking it up, it appears that this Hebrew word in the text indicates an instrumental interlude, a pause to consider what has been sung, and an affirmation not unlike "Amen" 

Matthew 2:

In Matthew's Gospel, we get little detail as to the birth of Christ, but quite a bit about his childhood.  We get the story of the wise men and their gifts. We are able to follow his family's flight to Egypt, the slaughter of the Holy Innocents, and the holy family's return to Israel and settlement in Nazareth.

Matthew goes out of his way to point out where Old Testament prophesies are fulfilled.  This makes it clear that this is a initially a Gospel written by a Jew for Jews. Of course, that doesn't mean that we gentiles can't learn something here as well :)

Catechism 11-17:

Since I mistakenly read this on day one, no commentary here today.

Tomorrow's readings:

Genesis 4
Psalm 4
Matthew 3
Catechism 18-25

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