“The Trampling of My Courts”
“When you come to appear before me, who has asked this of you, this trampling of my courts?”
– Isaiah 1:12 –
I was lost and alone,
behind these bars of steel.
Afraid of what was ahead of me,
with no one to appeal.
Proper 13C / Ordinary 18C / Pentecost +11
What is the point of prison?
Hosea 11:1-11 or Ecclesiastes 1:2, 12-14; 2:18-23
Psalm 107:1-9, 43
With over two million men and women incarcerated in America today, and millions more under custodial supervision, it is perhaps time to ask ourselves, what’s the point?
Psalm 52 or 82
Amos is one of the most relevant books of the Minor Prophets, and one of the least known. Sequestered at the tail end of our Old Testament, these books sit seldom used. Called “minor” only because they pale in length compared to Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel (doesn’t everything). These are not minor words from God. Some of our great treasures, like words to “do justice and love mercy,” or the timeless tale of Jonah and the fish, come from these books. It is from Amos that Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King quoted when he cried for “justice to roll on like a river.”
“The Office of God”
In this Psalm of Asaph, the psalmist rightly talks about who is actually in control of everything and those who abuse God’s office of being a Judge and diviner of justice will one day have to answer for their doings; including those who sit as appointed officials in our government.
“Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness, considering thyself, lest you also be tempted.”
This verse is the essence of what being a follower of Jesus Christ is all about, but the hardest to execute among each other. I know, I myself, find it hard to exact the same kind of forgiveness that I expect to get for my shortcomings and give it to someone else.
“The Manner of the Spirit”
In this passage, Jesus is on his way back to the Holy City and he stops by a Samaritan village on his way there. The Samaritan villagers give him unwelcoming gestures to leave their village because they know where he is headed. For those of you who don’t know the times, Jews and Samaritans had a very strong dislike towards each other. The Jews thought them to be lesser than them because the Samaritans’ fellowship with God got watered down over the centuries.
1 Kings 19:1-15
“That Still Small Voice”
I hold this passage of God’s holy word very dear to my depraved heart. That still small voice that came to Elijah on that mountain came to me during a life-altering moment in my life. I was in solitary confinement and literally fighting against spiritual wickedness in my cell.
1 Kings 21:1-21a
“Remember the Power”
It can be so easy to forget the simple fact that God is in charge. And by “in charge” I don’t simply mean the director of the course of events as they naturally unfold. I mean that God is the One with whom you check your opinions and actions and the One who is indeed the Sovereign Ruler.
1 Kings 17:8-16 [17-24]
“Respond to Power”
Our prophet Elijah receives word to wait out a time of drought at the home of a widow and her son in Sidon. The nation suffered, while the widow prospered. We know there’s an abundance of blessings to be experienced when we seek the LORD. But are we ready to respond when the LORD seeks us?