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.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Punishment or Mercy, a reflection on 2 Esdras 7:102-140

Ezra asked, "On the day of judgment, will the righteous be allowed to intercede?" Citing scripture that gives example of religious people praying for sinners: Abraham, Moses, Joshua, Daniel, David, and Hezekiah, he asked, "If they did it, why, in this time of more unrighteousness and corruption, can't we pray for the ungodly?"

Uriel told him in the current age, the strong can still pray for the weak, but the Day of Judgment will end mercy.

Ezra said that it would have been better if either Adam had not been created at all or that, having been created, he had been restrained from sinning. "What good is heaven to us if we can't ever do enough to get in?"

Uriel replied, "It's up to you how you end up. Remember what Moses said, Choose life for yourself, so that you may live." Ezra dwelt on the history of abundant mercy that God had exhibited.

Is Uriel's comment that it is up us how we end up reassuring or frightening?

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