Archive for the ‘Revelation 22’ Tag

Devotion for Tuesday After the First Sunday of Advent, Year C (ELCA Daily Lectionary)   3 comments

King David

Above:  King David as a Byzantine Emperor

Image in the Public Domain

Washing Our Robes and Bearing Spiritual Fruits

DECEMBER 4, 2018

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The Collect:

Stir up your power, Lord Christ, and come.

By your merciful protection alert us to the threatening dangers of our sins,

and redeem us for your life of justice,

for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 18

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The Assigned Readings:

2 Samuel 7:18-29

Psalm 90

Revelation 22:12-16

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So teach us to number our days

that we may apply our hearts to wisdom.

–Psalm 90:12, The Book of Common Prayer (1979)

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Earlier in 2 Samuel 7 God had said to David via the prophet Nathan not to build a magnificent temple, contrary to divine wishes.  No, God said, God would make David the founder of a great dynasty.  David would not build a literal house for the Ark of the Covenant, but God would make a metaphorical house of David.  The monarch was overcome with gratitude.

That was all well and good, but the Davidic Dynasty became an instrument of exploitation of the people.  The monarchy became the definition of national identity.  The former model, in which God was the national sovereign, was no more.  One reason for the change of the narrative and its opinion of monarchy was political.  The Biblical authors, who were myriad, disagreed with each other frequently.  Thus, for example, the prophet Samuel’s warning against monarchy came to coexist with texts affirming monarchy.

Nevertheless, the consistent witness of the Old and New Testaments for social justice–frequently in the economic realm–resounds down the corridors of time and reminds us that we do not live in the fully realized Kingdom of God.  Society is not an abstraction.  No, it is simply people.  We make society what it is, so we can change it.  May we improve it, respecting the image of God in others and ourselves.  May we love our fellow human beings–especially those who differ from us–as we love ourselves.  May noble intentions lead to positive results for the benefit of people, the common good of society, and the glory of God.  As I mentioned in the previous post, abundant grace is available to empower us to accomplish the purpose of having a proper, respectful, and awe-filled relationship with God and bearing the related spiritual fruits.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

AUGUST 10, 2015 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF WILLIAM WALSHAM HOW, ANGLICAN BISHOP OF WAKEFIELD AND HYMN WRITER; AND HIS SISTER, FRANCES JANE DOUGLAS(S), HYMN WRITER

THE FEAST OF EUNICE SHRIVER KENNEDY, FOUNDER OF THE SPECIAL OLYMPICS

THE FEAST OF SAINT LAURENCE OF ROME, ROMAN CATHOLIC DEACON AND MARTYR

THE FEAST OF SHERMAN BOOTH, ABOLITIONIST

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https://blogatheologica.wordpress.com/2015/08/12/washing-our-robes-and-bearing-spiritual-fruits/

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Devotion for December 22, Year A (ELCA Daily Lectionary)   2 comments

B_Facundus_254

Above:  The New Jerusalem

Good News and Bad News

DECEMBER 22, 2019

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The Collect:

Stir up your power, Lord Christ, and come!

With your abundant grace and might,

free us from the sin that hinders our faith,

that eagerly we may receive your promises,

for you live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 19

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The Assigned Readings:

Isaiah 33:17-22

Luke 1:46b-55

Revelation 22:6-7, 18-20

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The readings today contain good news and bad news.  God will scatter the Assyrians who would conquer the Kingdom of Israel.  Yet we know that the Chaldeans/Babylonians will defeat this realm in time.  Revelation 22 is no less mixed:  The righteous will rejoice in their deliverance by God, who will build the new world order after having obliterated the old one.  Many people are invested in the world order God will destroy; woe to those who mourn its passing, Revelation says.  And, in the Magnificat, the lowly and the hungry have good reason to rejoice, but the the powerful and the rich have understandable reasons to lament.  Oppressors who refuse to cease oppressing will pay a steep price for their persistent sin.  A familiar hymn tells us:

We gather together to ask the Lord’s blessing;

He chastens and hastens his will to make known;

The wicked oppressing now cease from distressing:

Sing praises to his name; He forgets not his own.

–Translated by Theodore Baker (1851-1934)

Among the major themes in the Gospel of Luke is reversal of fortune.  There we find the Magnificat.  A few chapters later we find the Beatitudes and Woes.  (Those are just two examples.)  That theme and the other readings for today point to the same reality.  Sometimes divine deliverance of some is judgment upon others who have not ceased from oppressing and distressing.  They had opportunities, which they rejected.  This principle makes sense, for bad news for Herod the Great was good news for many other people, was it not?

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JULY 5, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT ANTHONY MARY ZACCARIA, FOUNDER OF THE BARNABIES AND THE ANGELIC SISTERS OF SAINT PAUL

THE FEAST OF SAINTS ADALBERO AND ULRIC OF AUGSBURG, ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOPS

THE FEAST OF H. RICHARD NIEBUHR, UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST THEOLOGIAN

THE FEAST OF WILLEM A. VISSER ‘T HOOFT, ECUMENIST

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http://blogatheologica.wordpress.com/2013/07/06/good-news-and-bad-news/

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