( – promoted by Turkana)
(Also posted at Truth & Progress)
There are a lot of Christians in this country. And they spend an awful lot of time griping about things. Some of them think Jews should leave the US if they don’t feel like celebrating Christmas. Which doesn’t make a whole lot of sense if you think about it.
God tells them these things through a special hotline. I get a lot of prank calls too, but I usually just hang up.
Milk and honey on the other side, hallelujah.
But here’s the part I really don’t get. They have their own holy river, the Jordan. And while Christianity isn’t the majority’s religion in that neck of the woods any more, they still have considerable sway. You’d think they could throw a little weight around in the neighborhood, what with God IM-ing George Bush and all.
So why do they sit by in silence as the Jordan River dies? This is the sacred stream in which Jesus was baptized, according to Matthew and Mark and all Christian tradition. It has featured in Christian art since there has been any.
In the last sixty years, over 90% of its flow has been diverted. Half of the remaining flow by the time it reaches the Dead Sea, in the years that it does, is sewage and industrial effluent. An Israeli scientist has remarked that it is only sewage that keeps the Jordan flowing at all.
Would we accept such desecration of the Western Wall? Of the holy places of Islam? Why the uncharacteristic silence on this topic from such a noisy bunch?
Of course there are answers. I think the main one is that everyone is responsible – Israel for the first major dam, and Jordan and Syria for later claims. Everyone, and thus no one in our ridiculous cartoon Manichean world.
That’s really the funny part: hell must be empty now, since these particular Christians I’m talking about don’t hold the new elect of “development” responsible for their conscious actions. As long as the profits flow, all is forgiven in the twinkling of a banker’s eye, verily it is ignored.
Judgement is reserved for those born gay, or brown, or born into this week’s blacklisted faith tradition, or god forbid choosing one for themselves, or following their own consciences.
The River Jordan. Not cold or wide or chilling the body any more. What it does to the soul I don’t care to speculate. But there is no milk or honey on the other side, because there is no other side.