Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Keep looking--I'm sure it's in there somewhere

From The Colbert Report last week, with the Bush administration's Mary Matalin as guest:
Colbert: First question: Why are you wearing a cross? You know Jesus preached social justice. Makes you look like a commie.

Matalin: Yes, he did. He also preached, teach them how to fish. Not give them a fish, right? You don't work, you don't eat.

Colbert: He said, "I will make you fishers of men." I don't think Jesus said, "If you don't work, you don't eat." I think that was Cool Hand Luke.

Rather than Cool Hand Luke, methinks the crazy lady with the huge cross is getting Jesus mixed up with Confucius--though the old adage "Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day; teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime" is more likely a generic proverb than anything Confucius said.

Poking around the Net leads me to conclude that lots of people think it comes from the New Testament, though that saying is pretty darned un-Jesusy.

Take this Yahoo query:
What verse in the bible says this:?

Give a man to fish and he will eat for a day, teach a man to fish and he will eat for a lifetime

I know its in there. I need it for my bible study group.

Likewise here. And a bunch of people arguing over it here. And a few people here.

As the Bible says, "A little knowledge is a dangerous thing." Or, wait ... was it Samuel Butler? Albert Einstein? Ben Franklin? George Carlin? Pogo?

Oh, never mind--someone said it, and that's what counts.


John said...

Quick, which is more ironic: that so many Christians now hate pretty much everything Christ stood for, or that someone had to ask where this quote espousing "no handouts" came from, rather than LOOKING IT UP THEMSELVES?!

Don't think about it for too long though, or your head will explode.

Qaro said...

My son said "Give a man a fish and he'll eat for a day. Give a fish a man and he'll eat for months!" : )

Preston said...

Well said. I real love Colbert he real shut Mary Matalin down. I real felt she real did not know the scripture she was referring to (her fumbling gave her away), no real surprise there, even though she is very good at her day job. Let’s face it, she is very smart so if she real knew the subject she would have hit this with a response “out of the park”. Instead, she said very little. Too funny.

Talley Sue said...

Colbert is a pretty solid Catholic, so I think he'd know that what Jesus of Nazareth REALLY said was,
"They're hungry? Don't send them away to fend for themselves. YOU give them something to eat. Oh, you don't have enough? See who's actually got something, and give it to me, God and I will make it big enough for everyone."

So, yeah, sort of a commie.