The List of Believer’s Sins to Avoid




We are not the Chosen People today!  So I am free from all those restrictive commandments and laws and rules AND snipping!  Just tied up with all those other cultural bindings of perhaps Rome, or the “pagan” stuff of myth and superstition!  I seem to like rules.

But I digress …

Mark 6:17-29  Sandwiched between: A Prophet Without Honour … Jesus Sends Out the Twelve … John the Baptist Beheaded … Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand … Jesus Walks on the Water …

‘It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.’

Us Gentiles have some odd customs but, it seems, not so different from those of the Chosen People!

Herod and Herodias … ?  Sounds like a double-act – more biblical baddies, this one “baddie and baddier”.

Herod went and done the dirty – and Herodias wanted the dirtier (or maybe her mum did – it’s all the same thing really).

And then here comes the teaching of the “The List of Believer’s Sins to Avoid” …

First the sin of power corrupting (is that on the list?), then the sin of lust (that must be on the list), then the sin of sexual depravation, AND the sin of deceit (although that last one is really splitting-hairs because here comes the BIGGIE! … the Sin of Murder AND the murder of one of God’s Chosen celebs!  And that sin is a BIGGIE SIN!

Except “murder” was a common currency in those days.  Killing to get what you wanted a universal.  Not just “a certain people” or a “certain rules” thing.  Jesus lived and breathed that “currency” – ALL of the dusty peeps lived AND breathed that currency.

‘It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.’

And ANOTHER universal: “Love” that says I must show you how much I love you (in return for you getting down and dirty with me later!!) … Transactional “love”.

‘Ask me for whatever you wish, and I will give it.’

And yet ANOTHER universal: “Transactional Anything” is a contract – and breaking a contract is a bad thing (universally) – which says we cannot be trusted (universally) – so we come to saving face (another universal): keeping “our mask” (of who we need to show the world we “really are”) firmly in place.

“The king was deeply grieved; yet out of regard for his oaths and for the guests, he did not want to refuse her.”

And the consequence?

“He went and beheaded him in the prison, brought his head on a platter, and gave it to the girl. Then the girl gave it to her mother. “

I am guessing that Herodias was truly insatiable all that night long.  Just as I am guessing that Herod’s libido was more down than up that Very Long Night!

Another universal “mismatch” still current.



As a Gentile – free of all the Chosen People’s deeply ingrained culture of rules and regulations – what do I hear … What do I take from these words written to convince me “to believe” … ?

That The Chosen People are as f****d-up as the rest of us.  Perhaps that, as with all rules and regulations, I will find loopholes to suit my needs if I choose.  And that being a Chosen One is no guarantee of a long and peaceful life.  That the currency of sudden death is universal – and no “belief” in the world (or of above) changes that.

And then this

We are ALL connected.  We ALL make choices good and bad.  And “believing” does not make me immune from that.  Believing is one thing – but “living and loving” is why.  Because loving and living transactionally (no matter my beliefs) always comes with a bill … always a debt to pay off … because “loving and living transactionally” is THE  essence of …

“There’s no such thing as a free lunch”  (or a free f**k)

Which leaves me and you a choice of Love that is NOT transactional – Love that is without condition – Love that is disconnected even to “original sin” – even to “Chosen snipping” – disconnected from any of the rules and regulations we “love” so much (because they keep us from taking personal responsibility?).

Love, I believe, is always the answer whether you are “Chosen” or “unclean”. 

And “the rest” …

That’s just window-dressing to invite me to live and “love” transactionally.


“Hey you … where’s my reward in that?” 



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