Monday, August 17, 2015
a healthy dose
All of our readings today need a healthy dose of what MLK says above, which is of course based on Jesus.
Nehemiah is channeling his inner Paul, being a jerk. Man, he talks about how great he is, how he realized all of his friends and neighbors were sinning (but not him) and so he let them have it! He even pulled their hair and beat them. And he told God to remember their sins... but to remember how good he (Nehemiah) was for telling everyone off.
Sounds like he could have used some "love your enemy" and some of the fruits of the Spirit in his life.
Then Paul says some odd things about women in the NT reading... basically saying that men are made in God's image, so he reflects God's glory, and so he should worship with his head uncovered. But women are made to reflect man's glory (not God's, I have to ask?) and so she SHOULD cover her head while she's worshiping. Because isn't it clear (Paul asks) that women have long hair for a reason, and cutting it is shameful? Well... I'm not sure how applicable Paul's teachings about this subject are today... and if you think this is heresy :) then listen to what Paul says in today's reading: "If someone wants to argue about this, I simply say that we have no other custom than this, and neither do God's other churches." He admits the weakness of his argument.
Then the Psalm. "Destroy my enemies, and humiliate them. But love me and bless me because I did them no wrong, and yet they snarl at me."
So to all of these, the words of MLK reflecting Jesus speaks eloquently. Speak the truth in love, Nehemiah, Paul, and David. Don't ask for God to remember your goodness and their evil, but seek God's forgiveness for everyone.
Thank You, God, for Your Word, which illuminates the rest of your Word.