Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A Boy Called Lad

Indonesian version: Bocah Tak Bernama

Often I read this story in Gospel of John, but if I studied it over again, there are new details that fascinated and surprised me.

The story of Jesus fed 5.000 men (besides women and children—a discriminative counting) has many interesting details

First, an interpretation about were five loaves and two fish which distributed by Jesus really surfeited them? Otherwise, was actually—as interpreted by some scholars—Jesus meant to teach the how to give thanks and sharing to the Jews (it is rumor that Jews are stingy). Since in fact they have their own foods, they keep it for their self, but when they saw Jesus distributed five loaves and two fish, the crowd impulse their hearts to sharing each other. In addition, as they shared all their stock, in truth, there were enough food for all of them and remain of twelve baskets full of foods. Whatever to any interpretations, all of them are miracle, whether five loaves and two fish for more than five thousand people or impulse heart that cause by Jesus action and drive them to share all their food until they have plenty of foods (note for last interpretation: if each people have their own food, is the disciple did not recognize this and give response like,” Two hundred pennyworth of bread is not sufficient for them, that every one of them may take a little”?).

Second, mass euphoria who forced Jesus to be king after they filled as well as Jesus respond to them by departed from the place where the miracle happened; help me to understand the meaning of leadership.

Third, the newest one; an existence of boy who was never mentioned his name until the end of the story. A boy called lad in King James Version Bible who has five loaves and two fish. A boy’s initiative (or his family or families who sent him, depend on where we see it) that did not has a selfish mind and allow his stocks being shared become a trigger a miracle that remembered by Christ’s disciples.

There is interesting comparison. Read carefully Andrew’s opinion when he was faced by fact that there were only five loaves and two fishes, "There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?”

Andrew’s math logic is good and I think the boy can compare that seven pieces of food cannot filled more than 5.000 stomachs too. However, boy’s faith can defeat Andrew’s pessimistic thinking; because there is Jesus. Anything impossible can be happened.

No record commendation from Jesus to that boy (or families). Probably it happened because the author of gospel did not remember if Jesus ever mention about this boy or actually he fade in the middle of crowd away from disciple eyes. No record if he or his families ever joint in first century church. Even so, in fact they became member of the church, but not a member of leadership thus they never record in the Gospel.

I do not know what major thinking in boy’s mind. What is clear is that until now we do not know his name. Therefore, thank you for your kindness, no name boy. Your generosity (or your family) becomes my faith fervency.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Indonesian Social Discrepancy

Indonesian version: Indonesia Oh Indonesia

The end of last year, Forbes launch a list of world richest. I am not very interesting with that because it does not too touch my life. However, they also present list of 40 Richest Indonesians. They placed Sukanto Tanoto as the wealthiest man in Indonesia with $2 billion assets who as rumor has it bring the chief editor of prominent Indonesian news paper flung away from his position because the owner of this newspaper was disgusted with his close relationship to that wealthiest. Sukanto Tanoto was purportedly has problem with Government of Indonesia about his company’s taxes. Two levels below are kretek cigarette tycoon: Budi and Michael Hartono. Later, Putra Sampoerna. The 2007 richest, Aburizal Bakrie, was down into ninth.

That list does not touch on me too. However, the list has bothered me when I sum the 40 richest assets, i.e. $20 billion. It means they held 5% of Indonesia’s Gross Domestic Product. I imagine if they donate all they have, it means there are 15 million unemployed (or it means 60 million people) will have proper life for a year. If we give 15 million unemployed a job, it will cut almost 50% unemployment problems in Indonesia.

There are more interesting facts. If the 40 richest donate their money to government, although it is impossible, it is suited with 20% Indonesia’s National Budget. It means twice of National Educational Budget which mean all children in school age from Elementary School until University.

They are not wrong with their all richness, but they get it all through the fair method. Nevertheless, there is big discrepancy in Indonesian economic system. We have the same opinion that this country has Pancasila as a foundation, but actually we adopt a pure capitalism as an economic system: “He, who has a lot of money, will be richer; he who has nothing goes away.”