For I read the Bible through a lens, squinting - 1 Corinthians 13:12

Intermission [draft]

The Lord called to Moses again saying, ‘Go back to Pharaoh and tell him to let you come worship me in the wilderness.’

‘Wait a bloody minute!’ yelled Moses. ‘This is getting ridiculous! You know he’s not going to let us go, because you hardened his fucking heart! You’ve got me running in and out of Egypt like a fucking idiot. You’re having me ask Pharaoh the same question over and over even though you know he’s not going to agree. And you’re sending these stupid plagues, which are just cruel and pointless, just to throw your weight around! When are you actually going to do something to free us!’

Moses’s face was growing red with rage. He continued, ‘Meanwhile, my people are still slaves! They’re being whipped and forced to do hard labour, and the only plague that they haven’t had to endure along with the Egyptians was the fucking flies! Seriously, it’s not Pharaoh keeping my people in Egypt, it’s you!’

Moses stood shaking and breathless.

The Lord was silent for a moment, and then he asked, ‘Are you finished?’

Moses was too out of breath to speak, so he just nodded.

‘No other accusations to hurl at me?’ huffed the Lord.

Moses shook his head.

‘Fine,’ sobbed the Lord, and he ascended into a cloud, which drifted off drizzling as it went.

Moses was dumbfounded.

Later that day, Moses arrived back at the camp that he’d set up on the outskirts of Egypt. His wife and sons, whom he’d brought with him from Midian, were staying there. ‘You won’t believe what just happened,’ he told his wife Zipporah.

‘Oh?’ she replied.

‘God wanted me to go back to Pharaoh, yet again, and I got pissed off and had a go at him.’

‘Yikes!’ cried Zipporah. ‘How did he react?’

‘He started to cry and stormed off in a cloud!’


‘Yeah,’ replied Moses. ‘I really didn’t expect it. He’s like a petulant child!’

‘But he’s still God. We need him on our side if there’s any hope of freeing your people.’

‘I know, I know,’ groaned Moses. ‘I just don’t understand what his deal is. He’s supposed to be a god, the God, and yet, he’s preoccupied with pulling petty pranks. He doesn’t seem to care about the people getting hurt in the meantime.’

Just then, Aaron entered. ‘Why the hell is there a cloud crying in the desert?’ he asked.

‘I had a fight with God,’ replied Moses sullenly. ‘I gave him a telling off.’

‘You what?’ exclaimed Aaron. ‘Oh, for fuck’s sake!’

‘Yeah, but he’s fucking around while our people are still enslaved by the Egyptians!’

‘He can do whatever the fuck he wants!’ snapped Aaron. ‘He’s the Lord!’

‘Oh, you would side with him, you bloody kiss arse! I’ve noticed how he keeps letting you start the plagues while I have to speak to Pharaoh, which I said I didn’t want to do!’

‘You moron!’ rebuked Aaron. ‘Don’t you see why he has me doing the miracles and you speaking to Pharaoh?’

Moses shook his head.

‘You’re his guy! Yes, I’m getting to do the magic tricks, but you have the authority, it’s you who is speaking on his behalf to Pharaoh.’

‘That didn’t occur to me,’ sighed Moses. ‘But it still doesn’t explain why he’s dragging his feet getting the Hebrews free.’

Aaron took a deep breath. ‘I don’t know,’ he said. ‘Maybe you should ask him.’

‘Yeah, like he’s going to speak to me now!’

‘You really are an idiot, aren’t you?’ laughed Aaron. ‘Why do you think he’s crying over you?’

‘Because he’s a fucking child!’

‘No,’ replied Aaron. ‘Because he likes you. Your opinion matters to him. If he didn’t give a shit about what you thought, he would have smitten you for talking to him like that. Believe me, I’ve seen it happen.’

‘Hmm. But I can’t just go out there and shout at a cloud.’

‘Listen, I’ve got an idea. Do you know what God likes more than anything in the world?’

‘Making Pharaoh suffer?’ offered Moses.

‘No,’ chuckled Aaron. ‘He loves it when people put on a big barbecue for him. He can’t get enough of the stuff! So, what if we take a bunch of animals out to the desert, we sacrifice them, and grill him up some eats!’

So, Moses and Aaron went out to the desert near to where the cloud was floating, and they made sacrifices to the Lord. Then they built a big fire and cooked up the meat. And the Lord smelled the sweet savour.

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