Questions abound today. Every scripture reading today leaves me with questions bubbling up. Honestly, half the time I am not sure what God is saying to me by the time I write a Morning Reflection. Questions come, and by the afternoon hopefully some answers from scripture follow.
Today it is a flurry of strange readings.
In Leviticus we hear of the grave price of disobedience of the Sabbath and Kosher laws, that leads not just to death, but God piling the carcasses of the people on an altar! It is often difficult to figure out what God is up to in this Wilderness Survival Guide, which forbids tattoos, clothes of mixed fibers, eating shrimp, and then requires the stoning of disobedient children. It was a book to help that small band of followers make it though the 40 years of desert wandering alive.
In Matthew, on the heels of the Pharisees asking Jesus about the greatest commandment, he has a question for them that leaves them dumbfounded. He asks about the Messiah and whose son they think it is. They answer David. Then he asks “How is it then that David by the Spirit calls him Lord?” They have no answer for him.
The Ephesians passage seems to help me find some peace about the first two readings: “He has made known to us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure that he set forth in Christ, as a plan for the fullness of time, to gather up all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.”
Paul has a way of reminding us that we have one foot on earth and one foot in heaven. Things of this world are not going to make sense! But that does not mean we ignore them or cast them aside, but help to see them in context. (See how that was helpful in Leviticus too!?) The goal with everything, including Kosher laws, is to ask the purpose of the Law and not lose sight of them – but whether they bring us closer to God and to neighbor.
What does God want from us? These days we are threatened with poverty around the world. What are we supposed to do? Shut ourselves off from world hunger and homelessness? Horde all our money for ourselves? Build fences? As families break apart how are we to read the Law in a way that can help people see their way forward into true family values?
What is God’s will for us in this dark time, so that we may help usher in the fullness of time? How have we answered the questions of this generation and yet missed a key component? What is that key component?
Is the Church called to stand up and flex its political power? When are we to sit idly by, and when are we to step up and take on the principalities and powers?
Deep in the cracks of our scriptures today, these questions seep to the surface and they beg to be asked. I leave these answers for you.