Left Behinds

The anti-andrewsullivan.com. Or, the Robin Hood (Maid Marian?) of bright pink Blogger blogs.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Conversations I, an Atheist Jew, Had With God About How Jesus Was Crazy and a Big Jerk, Part I

God: First thing you have to understand is that I don’t and never did have a son. Ask me why.

Me: Why?

God: Because I don’t have any genitalia, neither a penis nor a vagina. Ask me why.

Me: Why?

God: Because I don’t fucking exist. [Laughs uproariously for a while, in a mountain-trembling way.] Boy I love that joke.

Me: Yeah. Good one.

God: Woo. The balls on that Jesus, though: there have been plenty of nutjobs who thought they were prophets; a few less but still a fair number who said they were the Messiah; but only one motherfucker ever went around telling everybody he was Me. You’d think he’d be worried people would notice the difference.

Me: How so?

God: You’re a great straight man, you know that?

Me: Thanks, I guess.

God: There’s no punch line coming this time.

Me: Okay.

God: You know what story I really love about Jesus? The one about the fig tree.

Me: I don’t know that one.

The next day as they were leaving Bethany, Jesus was hungry. Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to find out if it had any fruit. When he reached it, he found nothing but leaves, because it was not the season for figs. Then he said to the tree, "May no one ever eat fruit from you again." And his disciples heard him say it.

In the morning, as they went along, they saw the fig tree withered from the roots. Peter remembered and said to Jesus, "Rabbi, look! The fig tree you cursed has withered!"[Mark 11:12-21]

You get it? The fig tree didn’t have fruit, so he was like “Fine, be that way.” It wasn’t fig season! Do you go around cursing the Farmer’s Market when they don’t have peaches in December?

Me: I don’t really like peaches. The fuzz sets my teeth on edge.

God: Everybody’s a critic.

[Addendum]: For an explanation of what the story of the fig tree is really about (hint: it’s more fucked up than I’m even letting on) go here. I figured if I was going to start this series, I might as well do it on Christmas.


  • At 3:18 AM, Blogger Solomon Grundy said…

    This is like a particularly boring Aesop's Fable.

    One funny thing about the interpretation of the fig tree as a symbol of Judaism is that the action is just as capricious and petty in the expanded interpretation. If anything, it's even crueler.

    Did you see the Frontline special about early Christianity this week? It was really good.

    One of the things I learned (p.s. I went in knowing nothing about early Christianity) was that Judaism was very diverse when Christianity was developing. There were many Jewish sects that shared various traits of Christianity (the nutty apocalypse stuff, for instance), but Judaism consolidated and those sects died off.

    According to the Frontline special, what made Christianity so successful (in terms of reproducing itself) was not anything having to do with Jesus, but something Paul innovated: giving up circumcision and in general making it so much easier for Gentiles to convert than in any of the other Jewish sects.

    My impression was also that Jesus (if he existed, which he probably did) didn't go around saying he was the son of God, that his mother was a virgin, etc. All that mythology was added later to the story.

    Also interesting is that Mary Madgalene (one of many Marys) was originally an important, upper class Apostle, not a prostitute. That redeemed prostitute story was invented much later by one of the rival Christian sects.

    Sorry if I'm doing a brain dump. All of this is brand new information for me, so in that respect it's kind of interesting.

  • At 3:23 AM, Blogger Solomon Grundy said…

    Oh btw I meant the fig tree was a bad Aesop's tale, not your dialogue (which is amusing). Heh, just wanted to make that clear.

  • At 3:07 PM, Blogger Antid Oto said…

    Interestingly, there's another version of the fig tree fable in Matthew. In that one the fig tree is in leaf, meaning it's past the fruiting season, not too early, as in the interpretation I linked to. No idea what that's supposed to mean. Probably, because Matthew cribbed from Mark, he just fucked it up a little.


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