It took a year to read the Bible, then almost 9 months to read the Apocrypha. Now, I'm going to try to offer reflections on the Narrative Lectionary. But, I won't be posting daily--at least, for a while.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Judgment is Coming, a Reflection on Psalm 98

In this week's gospel lection, Jesus tells them about destruction that is coming and what their response should be, "This will give you an opportunity to testify....I will give you words and a wisdom that none of your opponents will be able to withstand or contradict." He tells them that even their families and friends may betray them. The lesson from Malachi also faces the reality that believers may undergo pain and destruction.

From Luke and Malachi, we also get assurances that the Lord will be with us through our times of loss and pain.

Psalm 98 is a call to all of us to give thanks to the Lord who has done marvelous things for us, whose love has remained steadfast and faithful. And not just us few gathered in worship centers many weeks a year. All the earth is to sing praises to the Lord. All the earth.
Let the sea roar, and all that fills it;
the world and those who live in it.
Let the floods clap their hands;
let the hills sing together for joy
at the presences of the Lord

Psalm 98 has appeared in the lectionary several times this year--including last week. What makes it particularly appropriate in this penultimate week of the Christian year is its attention to the eschaton, the time of final judgment:
for he is coming to judge the earth.
He will judge the world with righteousness,
and the peoples with equity.

We might consider how pleased or how irritated we are with the thought that the Lord is interested in everyone, not just the people who are in our particular denomination. We also might consider whether we are living lives that encourage our being comforted by the idea of judgement with righteousness and equity.

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