Sunday, June 13, 2010

Trinity 2: A Devotional Commentary

Proverbs 9:1-10 Wisdom has built her house. She has carved out her seven pillars. She has prepared her meat. She has mixed her wine. She has also set her table. She has sent out her maidens. She cries from the highest places of the city: “Whoever is simple, let him turn in here!” As for him who is void of understanding, she says to him, “Come, eat some of my bread, Drink some of the wine which I have mixed! Leave your simple ways, and live. Walk in the way of understanding.” He who corrects a mocker invites insult. He who reproves a wicked man invites abuse. Don’t reprove a scoffer, lest he hate you. Reprove a wise man, and he will love you. Instruct a wise man, and he will be still wiser. Teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning. The fear of Yahweh is the beginning of wisdom. The knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. 1 John 3:13-18 11 Do not be surprised, my brethren, if the world hates you. We know that we have passed out of death into life because we love the brethren. Whoever does not love his brother remains in death. Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that eternal life does not remain in a murderer. This is how we know what love is: that he laid down his life for us. We too should lay down our lives for the brethren. But if someone is well-off in worldly possessions and sees one of the brethren in need and yet refuses to help, how does the love of God remain in such a person? My little children, let us not love only in word or speech, but in deed and truth. Luke 14:16-24 But Jesus replied, “A certain man gave a great banquet and invited many people. At supper time, he sent out his servant to tell those who were invited, ‘Come, for everything is ready now!’ But they all began to make excuses. The first told him, ‘I have bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please have me excused!’ Another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen and I must go try them out. Please have me excused!’ Another said, ‘I have just been married, and therefore I cannot come!’ That servant came back and reported these things to his lord. At this, the master of the house became angry and said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the city, and bring in the poor, the maimed, the blind, and the lame.’ The servant said, ‘Lord, it is done as you commanded, and there is still room!’ The lord then told the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel people to come in, so that my house may be filled! For I tell you that none of those who were invited will taste of my supper.’”

A "certain man" invites the all the rich and successful people to come to his feast. But the rich and successful refuse to come and many of their excuses are entirely reasonable--one of the guys just got married! This "certain man" gets very angry that these people will not come and so he plots revenge in the oddest possible way. He invites all the lower class folks to come to the party. But there is still room and this "certain man" doesn't want to see any empty places, so he invites the scum of the earth--the prostitutes and the drug dealers and the murderers. And all these low-lives gladly come. They don't have anything better to do. They don't have any previous engagements to attend to. Why pass up a free meal? And so this "certain man's" house is filled with the scum of society who have nothing to offer him and they know it. And the rich and successful will not partake.

And so it is with Christ. Christ invites us to partake of the feast. We feast on His very body and blood. He gives us the medicine of immortality. We have nothing to offer Him. We are dead in our sins. If we were more important, if we were alive, we might be convinced that there is something more important we could be doing. But we're dead and we know it. Christ did not come for the living, but for the dead. The living are excluded from the feast. The feast is for the dead. The feast is not for the righteous but for sinners. We do not come to the feast to show how good we are but as a confession of how bad we are. And Jesus is good. Jesus feeds us His own body and blood for the forgiveness of our sins.

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