More Balanced and nice critique of Roberto:
Use of rabbis. Some of you might not care about this; I do. Rob has an annoying habit in sermons and in books. He equates rabbinic writings, which are sources from the 3d to 9th Century AD, with Judaism of both the 1st Century (Jesus’ and Paul’s worlds) and the Judaism of the day of Moses. And he reinterprets things in the Bible through those rabbinic sources. At times in his uses of the rabbis it just happens that the rabbinic information is something found also for the 1st Century or ancient Israel (but rarely). He tells us fun things, scintillating and titillating things that average folks don’t know, and they go “aha, so that’s what’s going on, the covenant formula is actually about sitting under the chuppah of a Jewish bride and groom. How neat to know this.” His 7th chp is about “under the chuppah” and explains Israel’s relationship to God as what takes place under the chuppah — the prayer shawl stood up with four poles and under which the couple formed their union. Problem is, no, it isn’t accurate; that prayer shawl and chuppah stuff is later and had nothing to do with Exodus and Deuteronomy and the covenant formula of YHWH’s relationship to Israel. (Unless there is evidence for a couple wedding under a chuppah back then that I’ve not seen.) We are dealing in Exodus/Deut with a treaty formula from the Ancient Near East, not with the later specifics of a rabbinic marriage custom or with the sexual union that occurred under the chuppah. The whole chp for me is misconstrued through that rabbinic lens.
Along this line of using ancient sources, I don’t like that Rob chose to say that there is a “spark” of the divine in each of us. Why? That’s from the Gnostics and it means something quite different to me because of its use by them. In other words, for me “this” (the spark) is not “that” (God’s image). That language is from a different world altogether than “image of God” in Genesis 1.
Read it all here