24 November 2009
I was on my way to the seminary when I was stuck in a traffic jam.
Apparently, there was a vigil at the Boy Scout Rotonda in Timog Quezon City, people mostly ‘lefties’ that I’ve known in my past life at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines are congregating in the area with their flickering candles in a ceremony of solemn luminosity that spells out the word: ‘justice’ in the brick-layered pavement of the rotonda.
Little did I know that what I saw as an obstruction on the way to ATS was a reaction to what is now known as the bloody Maguindanao, massacre. Unaware of the significance of the vigil I proceeded to class –and then as if by divine intervention our class of the Book of Exodus endowed our study with this staggering message: God heard, God remembered, God saw, God knew.
It has been said that Genesis is the book of beginnings, and as an individual who is embarking on a new beginning I would like to use the word – serendipity to describe how timely the study of the book was for me as I start my life as a theology student at Asian Theological Seminary.
I have always believed that I already know the book –after all, I could no longer count how many times I have finished reading and hearing about it, and how many times I have studied it at church. After all –most of the Bible lessons that I’ve heard as a kid or have watched in Superbook are there: Adam and Eve; Cain and Abel; Noah’s ark; Abraham sacrificing Isaac; Rebecca’s marriage with Isaac; Jacob and Esau; Joseph the dreamer etc.
Re-reading Genesis has jolted me out of my ‘born again Christian’ complacency, that has been borne out of my belief that I already know all that there us to be learned from the book as I have already studied it a number of times at church. But as I have said earlier, reading it again in light of its original context has opened my eyes to God’s story that seems to be intricately related to me and how I live my life as a human being, especially if I were to relate it to its overarching theme that I consider as: creation, fall and reversal.