I received this in my e-mail today. It has a zip attachment that I did not open. I worry that there are people who would believe it.
Your package has been returned to the FedEx office.
The reason of the return is – Error in the delivery address.
Please print out the invoice copy attached and collect the package at our office.
When I was an undergrad in college, I was majoring in political science, and there weren’t a lot of women in the field. You’d think that would be heaven for a young woman, but many of these political scientists had political aspirations, or an ax to grind, and were constantly standing up and making speeches. It was annoying; I needed some balance, so I took on another major, in English Literature, to give my academic life some balance.
It’s not like that was without its own problems; English Lit was full of these really OLD women, like in their thirties, who had come back to school to earn or finish up a degree, and they took it seriously. Aarrgh! Didn’t they know that this was university? This was supposed to be fun? Having those women in class competing for grades forced the rest of us to work harder . . . not such a bad thing.
One of the things you learn in studying Lit is that there are things that are important, or the author wouldn’t include them. As I read today’s Old Testament reading from The Lectionary, I found myself reading as literature, asking “where is the significance?” “why was this story included?” The Hittites are so very gracious to grieving Abraham; they sound like loving friends. Abraham insists on paying for the land, the cave where Sarah would be buried. Why was it so important to pay for the land? Was it so that there would be no question later as to whether the land was his?
23 Sarah lived for one hundred and twenty-seven years; this was the length of Sarah’s life. 2And Sarah died at Kiriath-arba (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan; and Abraham went in to mourn for Sarah and to weep for her. 3Abraham rose up from beside his dead, and said to the Hittites, 4‘I am a stranger and an alien residing among you; give me property among you for a burying-place, so that I may bury my dead out of my sight.’ 5The Hittites answered Abraham, 6‘Hear us, my lord; you are a mighty prince among us. Bury your dead in the choicest of our burial places; none of us will withhold from you any burial ground for burying your dead.’ 7Abraham rose and bowed to the Hittites, the people of the land. 8He said to them, ‘If you are willing that I should bury my dead out of my sight, hear me, and entreat for me Ephron son of Zohar,9so that he may give me the cave of Machpelah, which he owns; it is at the end of his field. For the full price let him give it to me in your presence as a possession for a burying-place.’ 10Now Ephron was sitting among the Hittites; and Ephron the Hittite answered Abraham in the hearing of the Hittites, of all who went in at the gate of his city, 11‘No, my lord, hear me; I give you the field, and I give you the cave that is in it; in the presence of my people I give it to you; bury your dead.’ 12Then Abraham bowed down before the people of the land. 13He said to Ephron in the hearing of the people of the land, ‘If you only will listen to me! I will give the price of the field; accept it from me, so that I may bury my dead there.’ 14Ephron answered Abraham, 15‘My lord, listen to me; a piece of land worth four hundred shekels of silver—what is that between you and me? Bury your dead.’ 16Abraham agreed with Ephron; and Abraham weighed out for Ephron the silver that he had named in the hearing of the Hittites, four hundred shekels of silver, according to the weights current among the merchants.
17 So the field of Ephron in Machpelah, which was to the east of Mamre, the field with the cave that was in it and all the trees that were in the field, throughout its whole area, passed 18to Abraham as a possession in the presence of the Hittites, in the presence of all who went in at the gate of his city. 19After this, Abraham buried Sarah his wife in the cave of the field of Machpelah facing Mamre (that is, Hebron) in the land of Canaan. 20The field and the cave that is in it passed from the Hittites into Abraham’s possession as a burying-place.