IIn reading a translation of a Gospel According to Mark by Rhoads, Dewey, and Michie, I heard some of Chapter 10 in this fashion —
Jesus has just freed children from cages overseen by those learning to be guided by his way. And putting his arms around them, laying his hands on them, he was blessing them all.
And as Jesus was setting out on a next way, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what should I do to inherit life eternal?”
He hadn’t heard Greg Brown’s song, “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy,” which won’t be composed for another 2,000 years – “This longing for an afterlife has damn near wrecked this place.” And Jesus began, “Why do you call me ‘Good’? No one is good when they are separated. You know the tradition of moral values: Don’t murder, act adulterously, steal, lie, or defraud, and honor your mother and father.”
The man affirmed to Jesus, “All these I have kept in youth and since.”
Intently, Jesus gazed upon the man, loving him, and saying, “You lack only one assurance. Go, sell whatever you have – set the past free. Go, give to the poor – invest in their tomorrow. And heaven will be revealed in that day – your New Day. And wherever you are, you will find my arms around you, too.
And the man left sorrowing – dejected and still caged for he had the best property.
Looking around, Jesus said to those practicing a way of mercy, “How hard it is for those who possess possessions to enter a Living Day.”
Those hearing this were amazed and befuddled.
Jesus continued, “Children in need of release, enact intention as you enter this day. Anticipate the receiving and giving of mercy. It is easier to thread a camel through a needle than for someone possessed by possessions to enter the heaven of a New Day.”
They were stunned to silence and to muttering, “Then what can be relied on to measure worth?”
Intently, Jesus gazed upon them, loved them, and said, “What was impossible yesterday will not be impossible forever, for everything is possible in a New Day.”
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G*D still has its place as a marker of presence larger than can be articulated. It also carries unhelpful images along with it that limit its usefulness. In this instance, G*D has been translated as “New Day.” Thought?