Lectionary Scriptures and Comments

A new peace? 122910

Coat of Arms of North Korea

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Dec 29

Psalm 20

Jeremiah 31:15-22

Luke 19:41-44

 

Psalm 20

Prayer for Victory

To the leader. A Psalm of David.
1 The Lord answer you in the day of trouble!
The name of the God of Jacob protect you!
2 May he send you help from the sanctuary,
and give you support from Zion.
3 May he remember all your offerings,
and regard with favour your burnt sacrifices.
Selah
4 May he grant you your heart’s desire,
and fulfil all your plans.
5 May we shout for joy over your victory,
and in the name of our God set up our banners.
May the Lord fulfil all your petitions.
6 Now I know that the Lord will help his anointed;
he will answer him from his holy heaven
with mighty victories by his right hand.
7 Some take pride in chariots, and some in horses,
but our pride is in the name of the Lord our God.
8 They will collapse and fall,
but we shall rise and stand upright.
9 Give victory to the king, O Lord;
answer us when we call.*

Jeremiah 31:15-22

15 Thus says the Lord:
A voice is heard in Ramah,
lamentation and bitter weeping.
Rachel is weeping for her children;
she refuses to be comforted for her children,
because they are no more.
16 Thus says the Lord:
Keep your voice from weeping,
and your eyes from tears;
for there is a reward for your work,

says the Lord:
they shall come back from the land of the enemy;
17 there is hope for your future,

says the Lord:
your children shall come back to their own country.
18 Indeed I heard Ephraim pleading:
‘You disciplined me, and I took the discipline;
I was like a calf untrained.
Bring me back, let me come back,
for you are the Lord my God.
19 For after I had turned away I repented;
and after I was discovered, I struck my thigh;
I was ashamed, and I was dismayed
because I bore the disgrace of my youth.’
20 Is Ephraim my dear son?
Is he the child I delight in?
As often as I speak against him,
I still remember him.
Therefore I am deeply moved for him;
I will surely have mercy on him,

says the Lord.
21 Set up road markers for yourself,
make yourself signposts;
consider well the highway,
the road by which you went.
Return, O virgin Israel,
return to these your cities.
22 How long will you waver,
O faithless daughter?
For the Lord has created a new thing on the earth:
a woman encompasses* a man.

Luke 19:41-44

Jesus Weeps over Jerusalem

41 As he came near and saw the city, he wept over it, 42saying, ‘If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. 43Indeed, the days will come upon you, when your enemies will set up ramparts around you and surround you, and hem you in on every side. 44They will crush you to the ground, you and your children within you, and they will not leave within you one stone upon another; because you did not recognize the time of your visitation from God.’*

The New Revised Standard Version (Anglicized Edition), copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

The scriptures today frighten me. They are militaristic and speak of death and destruction.

 

‘If you, even you, had only recognized on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes.’ (Lu 19:41).

 

Does this apply to us and to Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, and North Korea? And to others also? Are we failing now to recognize that there is a way to peace, and we’re missing it?

 

In saying this however, I am not speaking to the government. Instead, I am speaking to individual human beings, here in the US, and around the world.  Are we missing what Jesus taught and commanded and are we missing what he intends for us in this world? I think so.

 

I think it is my fault and yours that the wars go on, and that the US, my country is sickened with empire.

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