Lashing Out in Desperation and Fear   1 comment

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Above:  Mosaic of Jesus Healing the Two Blind Men, Mosquee Karie, Constantinople, Ottoman Empire, 1892

Image Source = Library of Congress

(http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2003688255/)

Reproduction Number = LC-DIG-ppmsca-03713

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The Collect:

Bend your ear to our prayers, Lord Christ, and come among us.

By your gracious life and death for us, bring light into the darkness

of our hearts, and anoint us with your Spirit, for you live and reign

with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

Evangelical Lutheran Worship (2006), page 28

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The Assigned Readings:

Isaiah 60:17-22

Psalm 146

Matthew 9:27-34

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Some Related Posts:

Isaiah 60:

http://adventchristmasepiphany.wordpress.com/2012/02/24/devotion-for-december-31-lcms-daily-lectionary/

Matthew 9:

http://adventchristmasepiphany.wordpress.com/2010/09/14/sixth-day-of-advent/

http://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2010/12/21/week-of-proper-9-tuesday-year-1/

http://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2011/09/06/week-of-proper-9-tuesday-year-2/

http://ordinarytimedevotions.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/devotion-for-october-7-8-and-9-lcms-daily-lectionary/

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The Lord shall reign for ever,

your God, O Zion, throughout all generations.  Alleluia.

–Psalm 146:10, Common Worship (2000)

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James D. G. Dunn wrote in Jesus Remembered (2003):

The point is this:  within Jewish prophetic/apocalyptic tradition there was some sort of recognition that the partial fulfillment of a hope did not nullify or falsify that hope.  Instead the earlier hope became the basis and springboard for a fresh articulation of the same hope.

–Page 481

Neither immediately Post-Exilic Judea nor the Hasmonean kingdom nor Roman-occupied Palestine resembled the positive future promised in Isaiah 60.  Yet, in Matthew 9, there were powerful works of God via Jesus, who healed two blind men and a mute man, the latter of which spoke afterward.

…and the people were amazed and said, “Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel.”

–Verse 33b, The New Jerusalem Bible (1985)

The cultural assumption regarding the causation of many conditions held that evil spirits were responsible.  Thus the Gospels assign blame for muteness, epilepsy, and metal illness to demonic possession and describe many healings as exorcisms.  This is not my understanding of reality, for modern science informs my thinking.  Yet my worldview is not a major issue here; that of the characters Matthew 9:32-34 is.  Within that context some Pharisees accused our Lord and Savior of exorcising demons by means of an alliance with Satan.  That alleged logic makes no sense even with a certain cultural milieu.  No, that that allegation was an example of striking out in desperation and fear.

As we wait for a complete fulfillment of the hope of Isaiah 60, what do we fear wrongly?  May we refrain from calling that which is of God evil, no matter how much it threatens our status and ego.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

NOVEMBER 27, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT JAMES INTERCISUS, ROMAN CATHOLIC MARTYR

THE FEAST OF HENRY SLOANE COFFIN, U.S. PRESBYTERIAN THEOLOGIAN

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Adapted from this post:

http://lenteaster.wordpress.com/2013/11/27/devotion-for-the-twenty-fifth-day-of-lent-year-a-elca-daily-lectionary/

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Posted January 14, 2014 by neatnik2009 in Isaiah 60, Matthew 9, Psalm 146

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One response to “Lashing Out in Desperation and Fear

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  1. Pingback: Devotion for the Twenty-Fifth Day of Lent, Year A (ELCA Daily Lectionary) | LENTEN AND EASTER DEVOTIONS

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