Category Archives: Religion

The TL:DR Bible: Matthew 9-10


Chapter 9:

Jesus goes back to Capernaum and they bring a paralyzed man to him.

Jesus: “It’s cool, Bro, your sins are forgiven.”

Scribes: “Whoa, there, Blasphemer.”

Jesus: “Dudes, I could have told the guy to get up and walk-“

Paralyzed Man: “I kind of wish you had.”

Jesus: “But so you guys know I can forgive sins too, you, get up and walk.”

Ex-paralyzed man: “Sweet.”

Jesus leaves and sees Matthew at the Tax Collector’s booth. “Come on, Dude,” he says. Matthew closes up shop and leaves with Jesus. Matt throws a big party for all of his friends: other tax collectors and sinners.

Pharisees: Why are you hanging out with them?

Jesus: Everyone needs love, man. Especially the outcasts and sinners. Don’t be so religious, man. Be compassionate.

Disciples of John: Hey, how come you guys don’t fast?

Jesus: Because I’m here. When I leave, they’ll fast.

Jairus: My daughter’s dead. Come and bring her back to life.

Jesus: Okay.

A woman grabs his cloak to be healed.

Jesus: It’s cool. You’re healed.

They arrive at Jairus’ house. Jesus brings the little girl back to life.

Jesus heals some blind men and asks that they keep it to themselves, which seems odd because bringing a little girl back to life seems like he’d already be pretty famous.

Jesus casts out demons. Jesus spends his days teaching and healing people. But there are so many people out there, He wishes He could have some help.

 

Chapter 10:

Meet the twelve apostles. Most of them aren’t important to the stories.

Jesus: Go take my message to the people. But only the Jews. No Gentiles or half-breeds. Tell them the kingdom is coming. Heal people, raise the dead, cast out demons. Don’t bother taking anything with you, the people will support you. And if they don’t, God will get them.

This next passage sounds like it was adapted later after Jesus’ death.

“You guys will be like fat juicy lambs in a pack of wolves. They’re going to arrest you and whip you and you’ll be brought before kings and governors. Don’t worry about what you’ll say. The Spirit of God will talk through you.”

“You’ll be betrayed by family and sent to death. Everyone will hate you, but continue the mission. You won’t finish preaching to all the towns of Israel before I come back.”

They did finish. They went to the uttermost parts of the Earth.

“You’ll be treated like I’m treated. Badly. But don’t be afraid of them. Be afraid of God who can burn you forever in hell. He’s watching you. Over you, I mean. He’s watching over you.

“I didn’t come to bring peace, but to divide families and friends.”

But the angels said, “Peace on Earth…”

“Who are you going to believe? Me or some random angel? Anyway, if you love your family more than Me, you’re not worthy to be My disciple. But if anyone receives you, they will be rewarded. Now who’s ready to go out there and get some persecution!”

Disciples: You know… uh… I just remembered… we have a thing… Peter? Didn’t you say we had a thing with the… nets…? But you know… after that. Totally on board with the persecution thing. Yea, persecution! Just let’s go do the thing first….

The TL:DR Bible: Zechariah 1-6


Chapter 1:

Zechariah: God got angry with our ancestors because they didn’t listen to the other prophets I sent them and repent. So you better repent and listen to me.

People: Okay, we repent and we’ll listen to you.

Then Zach sees a vision of a guy on a red horse who stands in the middle of myrtle trees with a bunch of horses behind him.

“I have got to remember which plant I smoked,” Zach said.

Angel on red horse: “These are the ones God sends out to patrol the Earth.”

“Everything’s cool,” the patrolmen… patrol-horses… patrol-angel-horses replied.

Then the angel said, “Hey, God, how long are you gonna be pissed off at Judah, eh? Why don’t you cut the kids a break?”

“Yeah… okay,” God said. “I’m going to reestablish Jerusalem and make you guys rich.”

Then Zach sees four horns.

“Oh, those are the horns… that scattered Judah, Israel, and Jerusalem. And those guys are coming to chase them away and overthrow the nations that scattered you guys.”

 

Chapter 2:

Then Zach sees a guy with a measuring tape.

“What are you doing?”

“I’m going to measure Jerusalem,” he said.

And another angel appears. “Hey, other angel, go speak to that guy and tell him Jerusalem will be a city without walls because God will be a wall of fire around it.”

“Everyone come back to Judah and leave Babylon,” says the Lord, “I’m totally going to plunder the nations that plundered you. And everyone shut up before the Lord. He has a headache.”

 

Chapter 3:

Then Zach sees Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the Lord, and an accuser is standing at his right hand accusing him.

“I accuse!” said the Accuser.

“Of what?” God said.

“Something…”

“Shut up. Bailiff? Take those filthy clothes off the defendant and get him some party clothes. See?” said the Lord, “I’ve taken away your iniquity. Now, put a clean turban on his head.”

“Are you sure, Lord? That headwear is mighty ‘foreign’.”

“Yes, I’m sure. Now everyone, if you guys do what I say, we’ll get along fine and we can hang out. And Josh? He’s cool. I’m going to bring in my servant, the Sprout. And look at the cool stone I’ve put in front of Josh. It has seven eyes. And I’m going to have it engraved with “I’m going to take away your sin in one day and give you peace.”

“I really have to remember which plant I smoked,” Zach said as he drifts off to sleep.

 

Chapter 4:

“Hey,” an angel said. “Get up. Look around.”

Zach sees a lampstand with seven oil lamps on it and seven spouts belonging to seven lamps above it and two olive trees on either side.

“What the heck is this?”

“This is God’s message to Zerubbabel, “I’m going to make you great, so that you can conquer and destroy mountains and make them plains. He has built the foundation of this house and his hands will finish it.”

“What about the trees and lamps and stuff?”

“Those are the anointed ones that stand by the Lord.”

“Sure… why not?”

 

Chapter 5:

Then Zach sees a flying scroll.

“That’s the curse that God is sending so that all the thieves and hypocrites will be killed by having their houses burn down.”

And there were no more thieves or hypocrites ever again.

Then Zach sees an ephah… which Wikipedia tells me is about 23 liters of grain… and the angel lifts the lid off of the pot and sees a woman sitting in the middle of the grain and he says, “This is evil!”

So he throws her back in the pot, sets a lead weight on top of it and two more women with stork wings come and take the pot away.

“Dude… whoa… so where are they taking her, man?”

“Out to Shinar, where they’ll build a Temple for her and she can sit on a pedestal.”

You know… Ezekiel seems sane and reasonable next to Zechariah.

 

Chapter 6:

Then Zach sees four chariots with different colored horses.

“What are these things?”

“Those are the four spirits of heaven. Two are going north, one is going south, and one is really jonesing to get out there and patrol the Earth.”

“Go patrol the Earth!”

So they patrolled the Earth.

“Those guys heading North have appeased my wrath,” said God. “Now, go take an offering from the exiles.”

Seriously… what the hell?

“Take silver and gold and make a crown and put it on the high priest’s head and say, “God is going to send a man named Sprout and he will build the Temple of the Lord and He will be a priest and a king. This crown will be a reminder to you guys so when it happens, you’ll know that I am the Lord, but you’ve got to obey me completely.”

The TL:DR Bible: Jeremiah 32-35


Chapter 32:

Jerry is in jail. Jerusalem is under siege by Babylon, and King Zedekiah has arrested him for saying that the Babylonians would take the city and kill the king and cart everyone off to Babylon.

God has another object lesson for Jerry. This time Jerry’s uncle shows up with a piece of land that is currently worthless as the Babylonians are trampling it, but Jerry is told by God to buy it anyway as proof of his faith that God will bring the Jews back. So Jerry buys the land and has his friend put the deed into safekeeping so one day it can be redeemed, even though Jerry will be dead by then and God has commanded him to live a life of celibacy… Kind of poor planning there…

God and Jerry have a conversation about everything we’ve been talking about for the last 31 chapters.

 

Chapter 33:

God says Jerusalem will be restored with Judah again. He prophesies that a Messianic king will appear from David’s line and David will never lack a man to sit on the throne of Judah and the priests will always offer sacrifices to God forever, but loophole! If the Jews break God’s covenant, then he has taksie-backsies rights on that prophesy, so there, Mr. Skeptic.

 

Chapter 34:

Jerry said, “Hey, King Zedekiah, the city will be overthrown and you’re going to have to look the King of Babylon in the eye and explain to him why you rebelled and then you’ll be carted off to Babylon.”

Maybe that gets to the king, because he orders the release of all of the Jewish slaves and the people all agree to that, but then decide that they really like having slaves and go back on their word.

So God says, “Hey! When I made the rules for owning people, I specifically said Jews go free after six years! You can keep the Gentiles and their children forever, but Jews go free! And you didn’t do that. In fact, none of you ever did that… which… really, I guess I should have seen that coming being God and all and just told you not to own people, but come on! So now I have to kill you all.”

 

Chapter 35:

“Jerry.”

“Oh, no.”

“Time for another object lesson. I want you to invite these guys over to dinner and offer them some wine.”

“Sigh… okay. Hey, guys, want some wine?”

“We don’t drink wine because one of our ancestors said, ‘don’t drink wine, live in houses, plant crops, or grow fruit.’ We’re nomads and we’re only here because of the Babylonians.”

“See? They obey this dead dude, but Judah doesn’t obey Me!”

“Yeah, we get it…”

“Oh, and because you guys listened to your dead dude, I’ll make sure Nebuchadnezzar doesn’t kill your whole family. You know… at least one of you will be left to stand before Me forever.”

“Uh… hooray?”

The TL:DR Bible: Isaiah 5-7


Chapter 5:

God: So you guys are a like a vineyard that I planted and built up and toiled in expecting good fruit, but you’ve only produced crap. I wanted justice and righteousness from you, but all I find is bloodshed and the cries of the oppressed.

So I’m going to let others destroy your nation.

Woe unto the greedy and the rich who accumulate more and more. I’m going to cause you to lose money. Woe unto the revelers and drunkards. I’m going to send you into exile. Many of you will die. Your country’s beauty will be destroyed. Her people will be abased. Foreigners will eat in the fields that belonged to the rich.

Woe unto the mockers of God, the false prophets, the proud, the drinking champions, and the corrupt. It will soon be as if they were consumed with fire. God has already begun striking our land and he will not stop.

He will call on another land to come and invade us.

 

Chapter 6:

After King Uzziah died, I had a vision of God. God was seated on a throne. Six winged angels flew around him, covering their faces and feet and crying out about His holiness and glory. The temple shook at their voices and filled with smoke.

I said, “I’m screwed. I’m a mortal man, a sinner, and I’ve seen God.”

So one of the angels took a burning coal from the altar and seared my lips. “You’re good now.”

God: I need a messenger. Who will go talk to the people for me?

Isaiah: Uh… why do you need a messenger?

God: What?

Isaiah: Well, you’re God. The Big Kahuna. The Supreme Deity. You can do anything. Couldn’t you just talk to everyone in Judah the way you’re talking to me now? I’m pretty sure if they saw you and your glory and six winged angels, they would probably stop with the whole Ba’al worship stuff.

God: Uh… yeah… but I’ve… uh… I’ve got a thing. Why don’t you go instead?

Isaiah: Uh… okay, but I’m just a guy… you’re God… anyway, I’ve got things of my own, how long will this last?

God: Oh, you know, just until no one listens to you, I get angrier and I lay wasted to your nation.

 

Chapter 7:

So in the days of the evil king Ahaz, the Arameans come and attack Jerusalem, but couldn’t breach the city.

God: Hey, Isaiah, go talk to King Ahaz and let him know that those jerks in Aram and Ephraim aren’t going to win the war.

Ahaz: Okay.

God: You want a sign?

Ahaz: No, that’s okay.

God: You’re really pissing me off. Fine, I’ll give you a sign anyway. A young woman or virgin will give birth to a son and she will call him Immanuel. Before the kid can tell right from wrong, these armies will be broken and head home.

Me: Wait, so a child called Immanuel will be born now? And it will be a sign to King Ahaz that God is with them still? So why do we take this prophesy to mean something that happens like 800 years later?

Apologist: It’s called dual fulfillment. It means that sometimes prophesies are fulfilled more than once.

Me: Okay, and this idea comes from where? *After I do much googling to find an answer, the best I can find is “Look over there, a squirrel!”

Isaiah: God will bring on you bad times, King Ahaz. There’s going to be famine… and people will come along and shave your heads and your legs… and mean will eat curds and honey… but your vineyards are going to fail, so no more wine for you.

The TL:DR Bible: Job 8-10


Chapter 8:

Bildad (Job’s other friend) said, “God is just, so you and your sons must have sinned against Him. Repent. Pray and seek God, man. Then God will restore you. Look at what the writings of our fathers say. God doesn’t let the evil prosper, nor does He afflict the righteous.”

 

Chapter 9:

Job said, “Okay, sure. But how can a man be right before God? If I wanted to argue my case before Him, will He answer? No. And if He were to pass by me, I can’t see Him. If He destroys me, who can say, “What are you doing?”

“If I were to call and He actually answered, I couldn’t believe that He would listen to me. He hurts me without cause. He is the powerful one, and though I am guiltless, He will declare me guilty. The wicked and the righteous both die suddenly; there is no difference between their ends. God mocks the despair of the innocent and the Earth belongs to the hand of the wicked. God must ordain it so, because if not Him, then who?”

“Now my days are quickly passing. I cannot even fake joy, because of all my misery, for I know that God will not acquit me, so why should I bother trying to appease Him? Even if I were to wash myself, He will still kill me.”

“I have no advocate with Him! There is no lawyer to please my case and make intercession with Him. If there were, I would speak and not be terrified of Him.”

 

Chapter 10:

“I hate my life. So I’m going to complain and vent to God. “Would you just TELL ME why? Is it right for you to reject me and favor the wicked? I’m not guilty. You know I’m not guilty and yet, I’m still suffering at Your hand! You made me and now You would destroy me? If I were evil, and I had done wrong, I could understand this, but I haven’t done ANYTHING! And yet you still seek my pain. Why did you bother to let me be born? I should have died in the womb. My life is a breath compared to You and You could not leave me alone for its short span? Leave me alone, so I can have some measure of comfort before I die and descend into nothingness. “

The TL:DR Bible: Job 3-7


 Chapter 3:

Job finally speaks:

“I wish I had never been born. Seriously, stillborn children and miscarried fetuses are luckier than me. At least they don’t understand the concept of pain and then I could have enjoyed the peace of the grave where kings and criminals are all at rest in the nothingness there. Why am I still alive? Seriously, I wish I were dead. Life is pain. Food is a burden. I will never know happiness again.”

 

Chapter 4:

Eliphaz speaks to Job:

“Can I talk to you, Job? You’ve helped many, let me help you. If you fear God and live righteously, you’ll have hope! Innocent people don’t suffer. No one can be pure before God, not even angels. He gives them performance reviews. You’re suffering for your sin.”

 

Chapter 5:

“People suffer for their sins. So, you know, seek God and be happy that he’s punishing you! God will deliver you.”

 

Chapter 6:

Job replies, “Seriously? God is the one who has done this to me. I wish God would listen to my entries and just kill me. But in all of this, I still haven’t said anything bad of Him, nor have I forsaken His ways. Seriously, what you just said was worthless, like a mirage in a desert. So show me, friend, where have I sinned? Show me my hidden sins and I’ll repent of them.”

 

Chapter 7:

“Man’s lot is cruel in life. A life of constant labor and then death. My days are worthless. I lie down, I wonder when I will rise again. I’m covered in running sores. I have nothing and I will not rise again. Life is short, empty, and painful. So I will not shut up about it. I’m going to spill my guts and shout my grief at the heavens.

I have no peace in waking, I have no peace in sleeping, for You, O Lord, plague me with nightmares, so that I would choose death. My life is short enough, can’t You just leave me alone? What am I to You? A speck of dust on this world. I wish You would stop noticing me. How have I sinned against You? What have I done that I deserve this from Your hand? Why won’t you forgive me for whatever I’ve done? I will be dead soon enough.”

The TL:DR Bible: Job 1-2


Chapter 1:

I LOVE this book.

I love it on more than one level. As an early treatise on the problem of evil, it’s pretty poignant in its portrayal of a man who did all the right things and lost anyway and his demands for an answer as to ‘why’ from the universe.

Read literally, it is insane.

Right away, we’re introduced to Job. Job is a rich guy, but Job is also a good guy. He does the right things. He has a large family: seven sons and three daughters. He has land. All the kids have their own houses, and when he hears that his kids have had a party, Job goes the extra mile and kills an animal for each of them just in case they got drunk and did something stupid that made God mad.

Meanwhile, in heaven, God is having the quarterly performance reviews for His angels.

God: Okay, Gabe, don’t spend that 3% raise all in one place. Ha ha… sigh… I hate these things. It’s so boring. Jesus, who’s next?

Jesus: Looks like Lucifer.

God: Well, I guess he’s always good to stir things up. Send him in.

Lucifer: If it isn’t the big boss man.

God: Lou, haven’t seen you in a while. What have you been up to?

Lucifer: Oh, just walking around down there on the Earth looking at those hairless apes you breathed consciousness into.

God: Oh, hey, have you seen that guy, Job? He’s the most righteous man that’s down there. There’s no one like him.

Lucifer: I bet you if you let me ruin his life, he’d totally curse you.

God: I’ll take that bet.

Down on the Earth, Job is hanging out on his front porch.

Messenger 1: Dude, some raiders killed all of your slaves and took the donkeys and the oxen.

Messenger 2: Job, God sent FIRE FROM HEAVEN to kill all the sheep and ALL THE SLAVES you had watching them.

Messenger 3: Raiders took the camels and killed all the slaves you had watching over them.

Messenger 4: Uh, hey, Job, all your kids are dead.

Job gets up, shaves his head, tears his robe, and worships God.

“Well, I came into this world with nothing, I will leave it with nothing. God gave me everything and He has taken it all away. Blessed be His name.”

 

Chapter 2:

Back in heaven, God continues to give performance reviews.

God: Okay, Mikey, keep up the good work and I’ll see you in three months.

Jesus: Dad, Lucifer is back.

God: I told you, when we’re in the office, call me, “Mr. God.”

Jesus: Okay, Mr. God. Lucifer is back.

God: Send him in. Hey, Lou. What have you been up to now?

Lucifer: You’re supposed to be omniscient, you tell me.

God: Have you seen Job?

Lucifer: Well, if you were omniscient, you would know that I have. Frankly, you’d also know that he wasn’t going to curse you and we wouldn’t have had to have this bet. It’s not like You have to prove anything to me anyway. But if you must know, yes, I’ve seen Job, and I bet that if you let me give him a painful disease, then he’d curse you.

God: Okay, challenge accepted.

Lucifer: Are you really sure you want to do that? I mean, if you write this down in your book, you’re going to look even worse than me.

God: I said, challenge accepted.

Down on Earth, Satan gives Job itching, painful, running boils that crust over.

Job’s wife: Just curse God and die, would you? He obviously hates you.

Job: Don’t be foolish. God can do whatever He wants with me.

Then Job’s three friends come by to visit him and comfort him. They don’t recognize him when they see him and weep. They tear their clothes and throw dirt on their heads and sit down with him for three days.