the tentmaker

daily thoughts on the common lectionary

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Location: Sharpsburg, Georgia, United States

"...because he was of the same trade, he stayed with them, and they worked together — by trade they were tentmakers." Acts 18:3. Tentmaker is a title taken by bi-vocational pastors. As such, I am both a pastor and a project manager. I am a pastor of a local congregation of moderate, accepting and affirming people who worship in the Baptist tradition. We call our church "Hope Memorial Baptist" and we are about 40 in number. I am also a project manager of major construction projects for the State of Georgia. My home and church is in rural Coweta County, between Peachtree City and Newnan, with a mailing address of Sharpsburg, Georgia.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Who was the model for Proverbs 31?

Proverbs begins with "The words of King Lemuel." So who was King Lemuel? This name is not found in any of the lists of kings that have been found thus far by archaeologists. It is as though Lemuel was unknown to history. Except, that the Anchor Bible Dictionary says that in some ancient Jewish texts, Lemuel was a name used for Solomon. So, perhaps Proverbs 31 was, historical criticism aside, written by Solomon himself.

Now Proverbs 31 is about the ideal woman, an archetypal woman, if you will. In other words, she is not real, but the kind of woman a young boy, or even a young man, imagines his mother to be. Young boys and men don't really know what their mothers are like except as they experience them in the interaction of mother and child. So a mother's past history is usually not known.

OK, who was Solomon's mother? What kind of woman has history painted her to be? Was she a saint? Based on the description of her in Proverbs 31, what kind of mother do you think she was?

I think history owes Bathsheba a great apology, don't you? And now, don't you think that if God could use Bathsheba for His purposes, he can use you too?


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