Monthly Archives: July 2015

The Vibe of the Pearly Gates

The Pearly gates make their appearance in a vision to the disciple, John, who by now is an old man on the Greek island of Patmos. The vibe of the dream is that John is being given a guided tour of Heaven by an angel. Heaven is a city that stretches for 1400 miles and, according to measurements taken by John during his vision, is as wide and high as it is long. The walls of the city are 200 feet thick and made of the precious stone, jasper, and the buildings and streets are made of gold. The foundations of the city are successive layers of precious stones – jasper, sapphire, agate, emerald, onyx, ruby, chrysolite, beryl, topaz, turquoise, jacinth and amethyst. The city has twelve gates, each fashioned from a single gigantic pearl, and it is these that give Heaven its much-loved nickname. Tradition (though not the Bible) tells us that these are manned by Peter who, when we are dead, looks up our names on a celestial database and makes a snap decision on the spot as to whether we are allowed in or not. Those who don’t make the grade are sent packing to spend eternity to be prodded by demons with pointy sticks and everyone else is allowed in to make themselves comfortable in the city that they will call home for eternity.

General vibe of the Pearly Gates: Heavenly turnstile

Factvibe: The image of Peter as a heavenly porter originates in medieval Germany.

Apparently, the gates of heaven are made of vibes such as this

Apparently, the gates of heaven are made of vibes such as this

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The Vibe of the Pope

Despite not appearing in the Bible, the vibe of the Pope, aka il Papa, the Vicar of Christ, Pontiff and Bishop of Rome has its roots firmly in Bible times. In fact, Jesus’ ally and disciple, Peter becomes the first Pope, despite not changing his name to Pius, Benedict or Innocent, nor living in a palace lined with gold and Renaissance art. The Pope is strictly an employee of the Roman Catholic church which believes him to be the divine successor to Peter. The Catholics believe that Peter and Paul founded the first churches in Rome and that Paul served as Rome’s first bishop. After Peter’s execution in around 67AD, Linus becomes the second Bishop of Rome and so begins a tradition of Roman bishops running the church. Aside from the much publicized hell-raiser popes during the time of the Borgias and a slight glitch during the Middle Ages when there were two popes who couldn’t decide who should be in charge, the Papacy has continued to do Peter’s work, not just in Rome but worldwide. In fact, today’s popes pull the kind of huge crowds that the Bible suggests turned out to hear Jesus speak. A holy vibe with a tall hat, that lives in Italy.

General vibe of the Pope: God’s rep on Earth

Factvibe: The first Bishop of Rome to give himself the name ‘Pope’ was Heraclas in AD232

A Popemobile: Simply add Pope

A Popemobile: Simply add Pope

The Vibe of Nicodemus

Nicodemus has a head to one side, quizzical eyed ‘are you kidding me?’ vibe. As a Pharisee, he is a member of the local Jewish middle classes, probably a businessman, and enjoys a seat on the local council known as the Sanhedrin. Despite the Pharisees opposing Jesus and seeing him as a threat to their vibe, Nicodemus senses that Jesus might be special. Not wanting his fellow Pharisees to see him, he visits Jesus under cover of darkness and quizzes him. Jesus appears to answer in riddles and tells the curious Pharisee that, in order to experience the Kingdom of God, he needs to be born again. Nicodemus assumes that Jesus has lost the plot – how can a grown man crawl back inside his mother and be born again? Jesus explains that being born again has nothing to do with gynaecology but is instead a spiritual transformation. Obviously impressed with his tête-à-tête with Jesus, Nicodemus later stands up for him when the vibe among the other Pharisees begins to turn nasty. Nicodemus’ final role in the story of Jesus is a sadder one. After the Pharisees have got their way and Jesus has been executed, Nicodemus helps another wealthy believer, Joseph of Arimathea, to bury his body in a tomb owned by Joseph. He brings with him 35 kilos of perfume and spices, clear evidence of the value, respect and love he has for the dead man, and evidence too that, despite being a Pharisee, he believes that Jesus might actually be the Son of God. An ‘is he, isn’t he?’ vibe followed by an emphatic ‘he is’.

General vibe of Nicodemus: Conversion

Factvibe: The famous verse John 3:16 is spoken by Jesus to Nicodemus

Birth - a vibe which Nicodemus wrongly assumes he has to go through again.

Birth – a vibe which Nicodemus wrongly assumes he has to go through again.

The Vibe of Methuselah

Methuselah’s vibe is, quite simply, a very old one. Methuselah is born, and lives. And lives. And lives. Aside from Jesus who, the Bible tells us, lives forever, Methuselah is the longest living person in history. If being old is the goal, Methuselah wins. He makes the most ancient person living today seem like a spring chicken. Aside from being exceptionally old, little else is known of Methuselah’s vibe. He is the son of the mysterious Enoch, the man who God takes with him to Heaven whilst he is still alive, and grandfather to Noah. Had Methuselah’s vibe not finally expired a week before the flood, there’s a chance he might have been given a rocking chair on the Ark. Still, nine hundred and sixty nine years isn’t a bad age to reach and after the floodwaters subside, God decides that people shouldn’t live much more than one hundred and twenty. A long vibe with an even longer and extremely white beard.

General vibe of Methuselah: Super supercentenarian

Factvibe: The first mention of Methuselah being a name for a large wine bottle is in André Simon’s Dictionary of Wine in 1935.

The 6 litre vibe of Champagne named after the Bible's oldest Grandpa

The 6 litre vibe of Champagne named after the Bible’s oldest Grandpa