God and His Ghost-Writer

“Hey, Dave.
Umm… can I talk to you for a second?”

“Oh, hey God.
What’s going on?”

“Oh, y’know.
Nothing. The Usual.
Life.”

“So… whatsup?”

“Well, umm… Dave
I just wanted to ask you about some of the things
you uhh… wrote for me, here.”

“You mean in the Bible?”

“Yea, yea that’s it.
I mean, thank you for writing it for me,
I mean, I would have done it myself but uhh…
y’know what with Creating the Whole World
and everything else, I uhh…
just didn’t really feel like
explaining to humanity
how to act like good people.”

“Oh yea, sure. Listen, God
you don’t have to tell me.
I’m just happy to have a job.”

“Right, so anyway…
Dave, umm… yea I just want to ask you about
a few parts here uhh, y’know.
Nothing major.”

“Sure God, what’s going on?”

“OK, so… right.
Umm, you’ve got Abraham and he’s going
to kill his son Isaac.
Which is cool, I mean it adds a little
drama, a little suspense to ehh… Genesis?
Is that what we’re calling it?”

“Yea, it means beginning.”

“Ahh, OK.
That is appropriate.
But umm yea, could you explain to me again
how exactly this story uhh…
makes sense?”

“God, what do you mean?”

“No, no no. Don’t get me wrong.
It’s great… but uhh… what does it mean?”

“Well… it means that Abraham is a man of faith,
because he “hears you” tell him to kill his son
and so he is willing to do that most awful
deed, to suffer that great loss,
out of his faith and love for you.”

“OK. Right, umm… I hear what you’re saying,
Dave. Umm… but doesn’t that mean
that I would have asked Abraham
to kill his son?”

“Yea…”

“Right, OK. So, umm… well here’s the thing.
I’m just not sure that’s something
that I would do, y’know?
I mean, why would I ask him to kill his son?”

“Well, you’re testing his faith.”

“Right, right. I get that,
but uhh… is that really testing his faith?
I mean, if he’s willing to kill his son
doesn’t that go against the whole uhh…
don’t kill people thing?”

“Well, umm… yes, I suppose it would.
But, y’know, remember that’s going
to happen later with Moses and the Exodus,
this is still only Genesis we’re talking about.”

“Of course, of course.
But umm, still. Y’know, Dave
umm… wouldn’t we want the commandments
I give to Moses to be consistent with
the actions of the other “good guys”
in the Bible, y’know like Abraham
who is the patriarch of the Israelites
i.e. the Chosen People?”

“What do you mean?”

“Well, I’m just saying.
Look, I mean, I don’t want to encroach
on your writing. Y’know, again, I appreciate
what you did, but umm… there’s just a few
things that are a little confusing to me.”

“Could you give me another example.”

“OK, sure. Well, why are there two
accounts of creation? One from water,
is it? Or darkness? And then the other
from the desert?
Does that make sense
or am I missing something?”

“Well, God… did you read the author’s
note I provided you.”

“Umm… yea, but shouldn’t the text
make sense on its own?”

“Well, the text is a narrative
supported by an oral tradition.”

“Right, no. I get that.
I just thought… well, y’know what
don’t worry about it.
It’s great. Thank you!”

“Are you sure?
I mean, I can make some changes
if you want…”

“No, no no. It’s OK.
We’ll umm… just come out with some
sequels later on, maybe a New Testament…
maybe a Koran. Well, do you think
that would be too much?”

“I mean, I can write it for you, but ehh…
maybe if you have the New Testament
like a “fulfillment” of the Moses stuff
it will work, right, like umm…
people can read the former back
into the latter, y’know.
Life fulfilling prophecies and stuff,
but yea, I don’t know if people
are going to go for a third
work really… that’s a little much.”

“Alright, well y’know what?
Let’s just throw it out there
and see what happens?”

“Are you sure?”

“Yea… why not?
I mean, I can always just destroy
the world anyway, so…
it’s no big deal.”

“OK, God. Well, that sounds like a plan.
So, if anyone asks you,
you know how to answer their questions
like “Does Moses splitting the Red Sea
mean miracles exist?”
or “Why was Noah drunk?”
or umm… “What’s going on with
the super-long genealogies?”"

“Yea… don’t worry about it.
It’s fine. They’ll figure it out on their own
and if necessary I’ll just give them
some inspirational feeling
of light or something.
And worse case, I can always say
I wrote it stream
and talk about the merits
of “letting it happen,”
y’know the artistic process
the pen moving
according to the dictates of my pure mind,
something like that.”

“OK, cool man.”

“Yea, alright. Well, thanks Dave.
I’ll uhh… let you know the next time
I need you.”

“Hey God?”

“Yea, Dave?”

“Thanks.”

“No Dave… Thank YOU!”