Go Down, Moses (#52)
MOSES: Lord, I do apologize for bothering you so late in history, but they’ve sent me back with the
commandments. The general view is that they ought to be revised and amended.
GOD: Very thoughtful. You say it’s the commandments that are the problem?
MOSES: Yes, Lord. Most feel they are really outdated, and they are not allowed in schools anymore. For example, your first commandment where you demand exclusive allegiance. People feel this isn’t appropriate in a society that tolerates almost everything.
GOD: Well, Moses, how would you feel if your wife was loyal to you one day a week and ignored you the other six days?
MOSES: That’s not the same thing.
GOD: Isn’t it? What relationship can survive on one day’s attention in seven?
MOSES: Perhaps you have a point, Lord. Anyway, what about the second commandment? No graven images? Put you first? Before work and family? Also, there’s a complaint that you’re always asking for money for your church.
GOD: Moses, don’t forget I am the author of all material blessings. All I ask for my work is one tenth of a person’s income. If a person can’t give that, he’s put his money before me. His money is then an idol, a graven image, even a god. Carry on, what’s next? And don’t drop those tablets because I’m not making another set.
MOSES: Well, Lord, how about swearing? What you call “taking your name in vain.”
GOD: My commandment stands. How would you feel if one of your children used your name to curse someone?
MOSES: Really, Lord, you keep making it so personal.
GOD: But, Moses, it is personal, isn’t it?
MOSES: Ah, yes. Well, then, one day a week for rest and worship? Is that still really necessary? I mean, not many of us are raising sheep in a desert, and people are really busy.
GOD: I agree that life has become hectic. My people need rest and change, fellowship with each other, and a chance to focus their lives. So I set aside a special day for these things. It seems to me you need this more now than Israel did in the desert.
MOSES: I hadn’t thought of it that way.
GOD: No, that’s apparent. How do they feel about honoring father and mother, and all those in authority?
MOSES: Well, that’s slipped a bit. You see, everyone is more or less looking out for himself.
GOD: Moses, you may have noticed that society doesn’t work very well when no one honors and respects others. What have they done about my command to not kill?
MOSES: We were hoping for an amendment to that. You see, we’ve got these medical procedures called abortion and euthanasia. And we do tend to drink and drive a bit--but those are mostly accidents...as are the occasional shootings.
GOD: I’m beginning to get the picture. I can imagine what they think about adultery, stealing and lying.
MOSES: They were hoping you’d leave those commandments out.
GOD: No Moses, I am not going to change. My commandments were given to protect and promote happiness, not restrict it. They are asking me to stop caring about them.
MOSES: But what am I going to tell them, Lord?
GOD: Go down, Moses, and tell them: He who loves me will keep my commandments.
- by Michael Cassidy