Reclaiming YHWH

/ 25 October 2010

Read this (it’s a brilliant piece from a HS teacher of religion). A taste:

The early Christian Church was a mix of Jews and Gentiles, so it would make sense that the Christian God became a mixture, too. When Jews, who believed in YHWH, asked pagans to believe in one God, Greeks picked their most powerful god- Zeus. The problem is that the Jewish YHWH and Greek Zeus deeply contradicted each other. YHWH is humble, self-emptying, abundant love. Zeus is a self-contained, muscular, sexual, manipulative, controlling male. YHWH is relation with, Zeus is domination over. Zeus deals with creation like an appendage, YHWH is deeply in, with and through all of Creation. Our Church today is worshipping a very Greek influenced God. Zeus is winning. We have lost touch with YHWH as we read the Hebrew Scriptures less and less. Art from Western Europe, which makes up our mental prototype for God, is actually Zeus in part because one cannot draw YHWH. This reinforces our idea of a God as Zeus. We are hard wired for Zeus because he is easier to understand, more like us. And we yearn for simplicity. If we don’t start making the vulnerable, relational YHWH God accessible, we are going to keep losing young people.