Another snippet from the dubious gospel of Thomas…
This is Thomas 72-75.
We can call this doubtful banter.
In fact, Henson has this footnote on this exchange:
“Jesus enjoyed this kind of banter where one person throws a proverb or witty saying at the other. He did not aim to win the game, but to establish the truth by means of a dialogue (His dialogue with the Syrian woman is a good example of his cheerfully losing the contest! see Mark 7:24-30).”
Talk about an oddity.
Playful banter consisting of tossing witty sayings and proverbs at one another with the goal not being to win a debate or crush an opponent or make your point, but to experience truth through the dialogue even when (especially when!) it means “losing.”
I love the unpredictable flow of this exchange. I mean, it starts with an almost identical set up to what we read in Luke 12, but then it veers off in another direction on what seems like an odd tangent, and then that tangent is seized and the conversation turns and lands in another place entirely.
I found myself wondering, “Where is this going?” And seeing the final move, it made me smile. What a nice turn.
What if our conversations were more like playful dances than intense debates? What if we did experience more such playful banter where the point is not winning but enjoying mutual, verbal swaying movements of truth, where there is no winner, only shared joy?
Good doubtful wisdom for social media forums like Facebook.
Good wisdom for life.