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, August 21, 2014

Reflection on readings for August 21

For the Lord loves justice
and will not forsake the faithful ones.
(adapted from Psalm 37:28a)

Job 1:1-3:26
After reading Deuteronomy, we may think we know the formula to success--do what God told us and things will work out right; don't do it and we will surely suffer. Then, we read the Book of Job.

Job has done everything he was supposed to do. For a while, it looked as if the formula was working for him. He had a big family and a lot of wealth.

Then things fell apart.

The Adversary (in Hebrew, ha-satan) contends to the Lord that Job was a good man only because he had lots of blessings (Job 1:6-12). Then when Job still did not sin even after losing his possessions (1:13-22), the Adversary argued that Job would change his attitude if he himself was injured.

The Lord agreed to this test. The Adversary afflicted Job with a painful skin ailment. Job's wife urged him to blaspheme God.

He wouldn't.

Instead, he said, "Should we accept only good from God and not accept evil?"

After receiving devastating news and living through its aftermath, Lawrence Kushner wrote When Bad Things Happen to Good People that explores the theological underpinning of this question and how it worked out in his family's life.

1 Corinthians 14:1-17
Advice on getting people to come to your church: They're going to understand what you're saying only if you are intelligible.

Psalm 37:12-29
Differences between the wicked and the righteous; difference between their outcomes.

Proverbs 21:25-26
The craving of the lazy person is fatal,
for lazy hands refuse to labor.
All day long the wicked covet,
but the righteous give and do not hold back.

Prayer for Today
: O Lord, console us in times of difficulty.  Direct us to your will. Open us to sharing with others our knowledge of you. Amen.

No comments: