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Monday Mornings: St. Elizabeth Seton - The Poetical Books

Logos Bible Study

Monday, April 8, 2019 at 9:30 AM - Monday, June 24, 2019 at 11:30 AM (PDT)

Monday Mornings: St. Elizabeth Seton - The Poetical...

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St. Elizabeth Seton - The Poetical Books Jun 24, 2019 $85.00 $0.00

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Scripture’s poetical books include: Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Songs. As we read through the Hebrew Scriptures (or the Old Testament), Genesis through Esther, we encounter a linear narrative: a straight chronological journey from creation thorough the post-Babylonian captivity era (483 B.C.). And the fundamental lesson we learn as we read through these books is this: “If you do what God says, all will go well; if you don’t, it won’t.” It’s as simple as that!
But then we turn the page from Esther, and we run headlong into Job. Job is the most righteous man alive, and yet his life is a disaster! In the Christian canon, Job is a recapitulation back into the time of Abraham, and Job calls into question the clear lesson we learned in the books that precede it. Job is far more than a philosophical discourse on why bad things happen to good people; it is a gripping drama, filled with anguish, bitter recrimination, searing anger and ultimately, resignation. Job is a major, world-class work of literature. Victor Hugo wrote of it: “Tomorrow, if all literature was to be destroyed and it was left to me to retain one work only, I should save Job.” In this course, our encounter with Job will be memorable, indeed.
The Psalms then follow, 150 poems (actually songs, for they are meant to be sung) that explore the vast gray area between the “blessed” man and the “godless” man, a dichotomy set up in Psalm 1, which St. Jerome called “the gateway to the Psalter.” The Psalms are the beating heart of Scripture, and like Job, the Psalms are world-class literature, prayed daily by Jews and Christians alike for over two millennia.
The next three books—Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Songs—are attributed to David’s son, king Solomon. Proverbs is a “collection of collections,” sayings of the wise (Solomon and others) that address daily life: advice on love, relationships and marriage; work, play and piety; anger, grief and joy. Most are 2-line, witty sayings: “Better a meal of vegetables where there is love/ than a fattened calf with hatred” (15: 17), or “Better to live on a corner of the roof/ than share a house with a quarrelsome wife (21: 19). Ecclesiastes is Solomon’s bitter lament at the end of his life. After being acclaimed for his wisdom and acquiring vast wealth and power, Solomon writes his epitaph in Ecclesiastes: “Meaningless! Meaningless! Everything is meaningless” (1: 2). The Song of Songs takes us back to Solomon’s youth, to his first great love. Jews read the Song of Songs as an allegory of God’s love for Israel; Christians as Christ’s love for the Church: frankly, though, the Song of Songs is an erotic love poem, burning with passion . . . and not a little lust!
The Poetical Books promises to be a great course!

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St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic Church
6628 Santa Isabel St.
Carlsbad, CA 92009

Monday, April 8, 2019 at 9:30 AM - Monday, June 24, 2019 at 11:30 AM (PDT)

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