Random Firings of Neurons

The rest of your life is going to be spent getting back up after life has knocked you down again. You might as well just get used to it.

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Location: Round Rock, Texas, United States

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

On King David: The Real Life of the Man Who Ruled Israel

Have you ever seen a book on a subject that you were really interested in, by an author whose name you recognized, but, couldn't remember why? I have, which is why I wasted spent money on King David: The Real Life of the Man Who Ruled Israel, by Jonathan Kirsch.

You see, David is my third favorite person from the Bible (behind You-Know-Who, and Saul of Tarsus), so, I was rather interested in reading more about him. And I recognized the name Jonathan Kirsch from somewhere, but, I couldn't place where. And now I know.

You see, it appears that Jonathan Kirsch is a theologian who "feels" that the Bible is just a collection of rules and regulations, created by Man, to keep Man in line. Or, at least that's what I gathered from the 20 or so pages I managed to gut through and read. In the first 20 or so pages of King David, "Reverend" Jesse Jackson is held up as an expert on Biblical theology, Bill Clinton and John Kennedy are held up as better people than David, and much verbiage is spent defending the pecadillos of Bill Clinton and John Kennedy. Not quite what I was expecting in a book on King David. While it is certainly true that King David wasn't the most, um, saintly of men, David was a far better PERSON than either Bill Clinton OR John Kennedy, simply because David at least TRIED to do God's Will, and sometimes, fell short of the mark. Bill and John didn't even make the attempt.

Another theory that Kirsch flings about in his book is that David was gay. He bases this assertion on David telling Jonathan that David loved Jonathan "more than a wife". Now, I haven't done a whole lot of research into Kirsch's life, but, I would venture to guess that he has never served in the military, ours, or anyone else's. Because, if he had, he would have immediately recognized the expression of affection from one warrior to another, both of whom had shared some dangerous times together. Read any personal account of some of the great battles in history, and you will ALWAYS find at least half of the soldiers involved express sentiments that deep, or even deeper, towards their brothers-in-arms. Relying on someone else for your personal safety, EVERY SECOND OF YOUR LIFE, will bring out those feelings. Shakespeare understood that, Julius Ceasar understood that, Alexander the Great understood that, LtGen. George Patton understood that, and LtGen Lewis Puller understood that. But, Kirsch, not being a military type person, doesn't seem to understand that. So, I'm not even going to dignify his theory with anything resembling a rebuttal.

The third theory that Kirsch advances in his book is that the Bible is nothing more than an excuse to celebrate David. Poppycock. David was the first REAL king of Israel, but, he wasn't the first king, and he wasn't even the first ruler. In fact, he wasn't even the most important person to the Israelites. He certainly was important, but, Moses was FAR more important than David. Moses wrote the Pentateuch, yet David only wrote a portion of Psalms. Heck, David's son, Solomon wrote more of the Torah/Bible than David did, and Jews today follow the rules of Moses and Solomon more than the follow the rules of David. In fact, I have talked to Jews recently who didn't even know that the David of "David and Goliath" and King David were the same person! So, I call "shenanigans" on Mr. Kirsch for this one, and I wish he receives the appropriate punishment.

After saying all that, I have to say that I am doing something I rarely ever do with a new book...and I'm not even going to attempt to finish it. I am, right now, considering how to dispose of this book properly. It goes against the very fiber of my being to burn it, yet, I don't want it polluting my bookshelf, and I certainly don't want to give it to anyone, lest they actually believe the crap put forth in this waste of $15, so, I'm at a loss. Putting it in the trash has sprung to my mind, but, that's only slightly easier for me to do than burning the darn thing.

Overall rating: Two middle fingers, extended straight up.

Semper Fidelis: Always Faithful, to God, Corps and Country