1. SubscriberAThousandYoung
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    21 Apr '07 00:14
    In the story of Lot, Lot bargains with God about how many righteous men it will take to save Sodom and Gomorra (sp?). Why would God and Lot do this? God was supposedly omniscient, so Lot couldn't surprise God by finding more righteous men then God thinks are there. However the story seems to imply that Lot thinks he can show God that there are more righteous men than God thinks which both Lot and God should know is impossible.

    Then, God sends angels to check! Why would he do that? He supposedly already knows the answer!
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    21 Apr '07 01:15
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    In the story of Lot, Lot bargains with God about how many righteous men it will take to save Sodom and Gomorra (sp?). Why would God and Lot do this? God was supposedly omniscient, so Lot couldn't surprise God by finding more righteous men then God thinks are there. However the story seems to imply that Lot thinks he can show God that there are more r ...[text shortened]...
    Then, God sends angels to check! Why would he do that? He supposedly already knows the answer!
    It wasn't Lot, it was Abraham.
    You've got the story all wrong anyway. Go back and read it again.
  3. Standard memberreader1107
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    21 Apr '07 01:19
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    In the story of Lot, Lot bargains with God about how many righteous men it will take to save Sodom and Gomorra (sp?). Why would God and Lot do this? God was supposedly omniscient, so Lot couldn't surprise God by finding more righteous men then God thinks are there. However the story seems to imply that Lot thinks he can show God that there are more r ...[text shortened]...
    Then, God sends angels to check! Why would he do that? He supposedly already knows the answer!
    I take the story to show the value of praying for others, intervening on their behalf. Much prayer (conversations with God) in the Hebrew Scriptures involve prayers for self, prayers of angst, or smiting requests. Offhand I can't think of another OT reference in which someone requests a good thing for someone else. I could be wrong of course.
  4. Standard memberwittywonka
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    21 Apr '07 02:36
    Originally posted by reader1107
    I take the story to show the value of praying for others, intervening on their behalf. Much prayer (conversations with God) in the Hebrew Scriptures involve prayers for self, prayers of angst, or smiting requests. Offhand I can't think of another OT reference in which someone requests a good thing for someone else. I could be wrong of course.
    Although I haven't read the story in a while, I agree; I think the story is a metaphor. But that's just my opinion.
  5. Hmmm . . .
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    21 Apr '07 02:47
    Originally posted by reader1107
    I take the story to show the value of praying for others, intervening on their behalf. Much prayer (conversations with God) in the Hebrew Scriptures involve prayers for self, prayers of angst, or smiting requests. Offhand I can't think of another OT reference in which someone requests a good thing for someone else. I could be wrong of course.
    Actually, I think it goes even further than that: Abraham actually argues with his God. In the context of the Judaic covenantal relationship, this is exactly what a tzaddik—a just man—is supposed to do.

    Genesis 18:25 “Far be it from you to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous fare as the wicked! Far be that from you! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do what is just?"

    Rabbi and scholar Abraham Joshua Heschel poignantly translated the last line of 18:33 as, “And Abraham is still standing there.” Because we often forget that the children of Sodom were destroyed too...
  6. Hmmm . . .
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    21 Apr '07 03:071 edit
    Originally posted by wittywonka
    Although I haven't read the story in a while, I agree; I think the story is a metaphor. But that's just my opinion.
    Well, I think they’re all stories—which, as you have said, we have to wrestle with. Even stories that may have actually happened—I tend to think that their metaphorical and allegorical content is more important. Just as I suspect that your story is more than a list of biographical/historical details...

    That is why I have always liked the rabbinical dictum that one must bring her/his own “torah” to the Torah—and out of that engagament, new Torah is generated.

    ________________________________________

    One Shabbos afternoon, Reb Reuven called me into is study. He was sitting behind his desk and motioned me to take the chair across from him. A volume of the Zohar was lying open in front of him.

    “Do you know what the Zohar is?” he asked.

    “Of course,” I said. “It is a mystical commentary on Torah written by Moshe deLeon, a thirteenth century Spanish kabbalist who....”

    “Nonsense!” he yelled at me, half rising out of his chair. “The Zohar isn’t just a commentary; it’s a Torah all by itself. It is a new Torah, a new telling of the last Torah. You do know what Torah is, don’t you?”

    Suspecting that I didn’t, and afraid to invoke his wrath a second time, I waited silently, certain that he would answer his own question. I was not disappointed.

    “Torah is story. God is story. Israel is story. You, my university-educated soon-to-be a liberal pain in the ass rabbi, are a story. We are all stories! We are all Torahs!...Listen, Rami,” Reuven said in a softer voice. “Torah starts with the word b’reisheet,* ‘Once upon a time!’”

    —Rabbi Rami Shapiro, Hasidic Tales

    * Conventionally translated “in the beginning” or “with beginning.”
  7. Felicific Forest
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    21 Apr '07 12:11
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    In the story of Lot, Lot bargains with God about how many righteous men it will take to save Sodom and Gomorra (sp?). Why would God and Lot do this? God was supposedly omniscient, so Lot couldn't surprise God by finding more righteous men then God thinks are there. However the story seems to imply that Lot thinks he can show God that there are more r ...[text shortened]...
    Then, God sends angels to check! Why would he do that? He supposedly already knows the answer!
    Oh those fundamentalists, taking everything literally .....
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    21 Apr '07 13:21
    Originally posted by AThousandYoung
    [Then, God sends angels to check! Why would he do that? He supposedly already knows the answer![/b]
    You assume that the angels were sent for God to check out the people rather than revealing to Lot and the rest of the readers of the story the wickedness of the people. When the angels entered the city the men of the city lusted after them and followed them to Lots house and demanded that Lot surrender his guests so that they could rape them. The angels merely brought to light, so to speak, the level of wickedness the people had attained so as to help explain their subsequent judgement and destruction via the hand of God.
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    21 Apr '07 14:30
    Originally posted by vistesd
    Well, I think they’re all stories—which, as you have said, we have to wrestle with. Even stories that may have actually happened—I tend to think that their metaphorical and allegorical content is more important. Just as I suspect that your story is more than a list of biographical/historical details...

    That is why I have always liked the r ...[text shortened]... iro, Hasidic Tales

    * Conventionally translated “in the beginning” or “with beginning.”
    That is a great one.
    Now the same applies to the story of Genesis, the story of crucifixion, the story of resurrection ….

    Far be it from me to suggest that these stories are not true, but each one of them should be used as a light that will lead us in our life.
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