Our monthly meeting for Food Fellowship and Faith met on Wednesday 15th
42 people sharing fellowship over a meal and then our minister Hilary talked about “Bad Girls in the Bible”.
Those who ask why they should read the bible as it’s boring obviously haven’t read some of the accounts of the ‘Bad Girls’
The standard was set by Eve who was the 1st but it should be noted that whilst she did do as the serpent asked she was very inexperienced and had no role models.
Jezebel was another famous member of the Club who came to a horrific end. The wife (she was not named) of Potiphar certainly earned her place.Joseph of Coat of many colours fame was a slave of Potiphar. By hard work and intelligence Joseph was made overseer of Potiphar’s Household. Potiphar’s main interest was food and took no interest in any way of his wife. His wife was lonely rich and bored who came into regular contact with Joseph due to his position.
In the culture of the day female slaves were deemed to be at the disposal of their Masters to use in any physical way they liked. Potiphar’s wife decided to make an early attempt to claim equal rights and had her sights firmly set on what Joseph an attractive intelligent young man had to offer.
Potiphar’s wife made her feelings very clear to Joseph and made various attempts to seduce him, this left Joseph in a delicate situation with the choice of betraying Potiphar or offending his wife.
Matters came to a head when one day when they were alone his Mistress stripped off Joseph’s robe and he fled from the house naked. Joseph was accused of rape and he was imprisoned. In reality in the custom of the time, had Potiphar believed that Joseph was guilty he would have been executed.
The questions we discussed with regards to Potiphar’s wife were.
- Joseph had done nothing wrong. What does it feel like when you’ve been blamed for something you didn’t do? How do you handle unfair and false accusations?
- We know the rest of the story.. Joseph became a leader in prison and through his dreams helped the nations during a time of drought and famine. How does God use bad situations for good?
The story of Judith is from the Apocrypha so we never hear it read in Church.
As an introduction Hilary mentioned a Painting in Florence which was one of the most disturbing she had seen. Paintings of Judith beheading Holofernes is one of those things you wish you hadn’t googled but can’t help checking them out all the same.
Nebuchadnezzar dispatched Holofernes to take vengeance on the peoples who had not assisted in the war. Nebuchadnezzar won but was determined that those who did not fight with him should pay.
The leader of the children of Ammon warned Holofernes not to go against the Israelites this angered him and his followers.
They laid siege to the Jewish City of Bethulia cutting off all supplies of food and water. Judith was part of the community and prayed regularly. When the inhabitants were at the point of surrender Judith prayed and asked God to help her lie to Holofernes.
By the pretence of having deserted her people she made contact with Holofernes and befriended him by praising Nebuchadnezzar and himself and proposed a scheme for overcoming the Israelites. Judith stay’s in his tent for 3 nights and seduces him. On the 4th night Judith asks her maid servant to prepare her bed once again in his tent. Holofernes comes back drunk and in his stupor Judith takes his Sword and chops off his head.
Judith was able to smuggle Holofernes severed head back to Bethulia and arranged to have it hung on top of the gates. When his men realise whose head is being displayed in this manner they flee and City is saved.
The questions discussed with regard to Judith were:
- If one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter is Judith a good girl or a bad girl? Why?
- Judith is a virtuous woman but also a murderess and the basic message of her story is that the end justifies the means. Does it?
Food, Fellowship & Faith
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