Muschamp Rd

John 15:13

December 21st, 2006
Leonard Cohen album cover

Today while working outside I received my regular visit from the local Jehovah’s Witnesses. As I’ve written before they regularly stop by my mom’s house to talk to me, because I always take the time to talk to them. Today they showed me the following verse in the Bible:

Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

Though in his version of the Bible “life” was translated as “soul”. The online Bible I consulted had it translated the other way.

People generally appreciate it when you take time to talk to them. However I’m unlikely to convert to their faith no matter how many little books and pamphlets they give me. Another thing they regularly ask me is “Who was Jesus?” Today I answered “A teacher”. But the last two times I’ve also thought of some lines from a Leonard Cohen song:

And Jesus was a sailor,
When he walked upon the water.

Another verse from another song that I’ve quoted before and remembered while talking to the Jehovah’s Witnesses goes as follows:

Oh God said to Abraham, “Kill me a son”
Abe says, “Man, you must be puttin’ me on”
God say, “No.” Abe say, “What?”
God say, “You can do what you want Abe, but
The next time you see me comin’ you better run”
Well Abe says, “Where do you want this killin’ done?”
God says, “Out on Highway 61.”

People always selectively quote the Bible leaving out the parts that are a little on the messy side or difficult to reconcile with official doctrine or their own personal feelings.

A final quotation from a song. It is actually from a Saturday morning cartoon but was covered by the band Frente! It is a happy song, sometimes I sing it because even I know one or two happy songs. The first verse basically goes:

Mommy told me something,
A little kid should know,
It’s all about the devil,
And I learned to hate him so.
She said he causes trouble when you let him in your room,
He’ll never ever leave you if your heart is filled with gloom.

However the best line is from the last verse:

If I forget to say my prayers,
The devil jumps with glee.
But he feels so awful awful,
When he sees me on my knees.

Life isn’t always that simple and bad things do happen to good people. Repeating the word awful was so clever, really good songwriting.


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