Solomon vs. Ruth, or Maybe Esther

Joe Biden reminds me of Solomon, whereas I associate Sarah Palin with Ruth, or maybe Esther. Let me explain.

I realize that comparing Joe Biden to Solomon is problematic, since Biden doesn’t always think before he speaks, violating several Solomonic proverbs. But he’s reflective, like the Solomon we encounter in Ecclesiastes. I can think of two examples: in last night’s debate, he told how he learned not to judge others when he discovered that his political enemy, Jesse Helms, had adopted a boy with cerebral palsy. And, in the Katie Couric interview, he talked about his favorite movie, Chariots of Fire, which inspired him to stand by his convictions, whatever the consequences.

I identified with Biden there, since I’m somewhat of an introspective introvert. I saw a lot of depth as he discussed his own personal growth.

Palin, by contrast, strikes me more as a “just do it” sort of girl. What I’m learning from my weekly quiet time is that Ruth didn’t spend a lot of time contemplating her navel. She saw that her family was hungry, so she went out to the fields to glean some barley. She took action. She was also big on relationships, since she stuck with Naomi no matter what. And that’s what I get from Palin: she doesn’t talk much about personal growth, but about relationships and getting the job done.

She also reminds me somewhat of Esther. Esther was rather passive at first, in that she basically did whatever Mordecai told her. But when she got her own voice, watch out! She wanted to kill everyone who sought to slaughter her people. That’s why Martin Luther thought the book was so bloodthirsty!

Sarah Palin, similarly, strikes me as someone who cares about the well-being of the people. At times, she’s rather passive and has to be coached on what to say. But when she gets her own voice, watch out! She can wow people. She’ll even fire those she thinks she can’t work with.

Of course, some may also say that Palin is like Ruth and Esther because she tries to manipulate people to get what she wants–through her folksy charm, her winks, her “gonna” and “gotcha,” her beauty. Ruth used a strategy to get Boaz to marry her, and Esther came up with her plan to save the Jewish people. But whether people acknowledge this similarity will depend on if they like Sarah Palin.

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
This entry was posted in Bible, Candidates, Daily Quiet Time, Esther, Politics, Religion, Ruth, Sarah Palin, Weekly Quiet Time. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Solomon vs. Ruth, or Maybe Esther

  1. Bryan L says:

    She strikes me as a Delilah. Deceptive and evasive.


  2. James Pate says:

    Delilah was pretty straightforward. She tried to undermine Samson’s strength. It’s just that Samson was plain dumb. He liked her winks.


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