Saturday, December 05, 2009

Proverbs 31 1-8

1 The sayings of King Lemuel—an oracle [a] his mother taught him:

2 "O my son, O son of my womb, O son of my vows,

3 do not spend your strength on women, your vigor on those who ruin kings.

4 "It is not for kings, O Lemuel— not for kings to drink wine, not for rulers to crave beer,

5 lest they drink and forget what the law decrees, and deprive all the oppressed of their rights.

6 Give beer to those who are perishing, wine to those who are in anguish;

7 let them drink and forget their poverty and remember their misery no more.

8 "Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.

Typically when Proverbs 31 is mentioned there is the later part about a virtuous woman. I'll look at that later, but there is my favorite part before that, which I have highlighted.... Wooo Hooo!
Reading this in a meritocracy and democracy is hard. For one, no kings. Presidents, prime ministers, and random local politicians who make their jurisdictions like little fiefdoms yes. So, this is saying our leaders should be teetotalers? Sober, maybe, in the idea that the leaders shouldn't be oppressive. However, the drink of spirits isn't a problem it is the intoxicating drink of power that is oppressive.
Now for the completely non-Baptist part, "Give beer to those who are perishing, wine to those who are in anguish," or "Give strong drink to the one who is perishing,
and wine to those in bitter distress." Now I do like and disagree with this. Like for the pro-drinking part, disagree because the ones in anguish need to rise up and fight. In the meritocracy the poor, the anguished need to be sober as well in order to move from their state of poverty. But the perishing.... yeah, get them the good bottle of booze.
Lastly, though this gets close to something I'd like to avoid writing about. Rights and oppression are seen in terms of poverty and destitution. I'm going to leave it at that.

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