Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Metaphor Abuse Watch: God as Father

Thinking about the trinity got me to thinking about metaphors that become so overused that they get reified. Take God the Father and God the Son. Sure, Jesus was begotten of God, ergo God was His Father in some sense, but how far do we take the metaphor of fatherhood/sonhood? Fatherhood signified something altogether different back in the day in a patriarchal Middle Eastern society than it does now. Fatherhood is alll over the place for modern folks. For me, a father was an absent, distant figure. Is God like that? A stepfather, a surrogate father if you will, was a brutal judge out to destroy me. Is that how God is? The ideal father was a TV dad like Ward Cleaver or Mike Brady. Is God a TV dad? For me, if God were a kindly uncle like some I had, that would be a God I could get behind.

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