Lectionary Scriptures and Comments

Archive for December 28, 2011

Rachel, Rachel 122811

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Psalm 148

Jeremiah 31:15-17

Matthew 2:13-18

 

Rachel, Rachel 122811

 

Both the verses from Jeremiah and Matthew in today’s readings talk of Rachel and her tears.

 

The original statement from Rachel is in Jeremiah, which then is quoted in Matthew. Each express the grief of losing one’s children to slavery, in Jeremiah, and to death at Herod’s hands in Matthew.

 

This type of grief is one we don’t expect to experience. We are, we think, immune to the grief a mother would experience at the loss of her babies to slavery and exile, or to murder at the hands of a crazed king.

 

Still, we can feel what Rachel feels at the loss of our children and teenagers to drug and alcohol abuse, to gang warfare on the streets, to bullying in our schools, and poverty and disease at home.

 

Still, the Psalm tells us what to do and how to do it…..1Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights! Psalm 148:1. The Lord is still our Lord, protector and peacemaker.

 

Pray for peace

(brother) Bill

 

Psalm 148

1Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord from the heavens; praise him in the heights!

2Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his host!

3Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars!

4Praise him, you highest heavens, and you waters above the heavens!

5Let them praise the name of the Lord, for he commanded and they were created.

6He established them forever and ever; he fixed their bounds, which cannot be passed.

7Praise the Lord from the earth, you sea monsters and all deeps,

8fire and hail, snow and frost, stormy wind fulfilling his command!

9Mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars!

10Wild animals and all cattle, creeping things and flying birds!

11Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth!

12Young men and women alike, old and young together!

13Let them praise the name of the Lord, for his name alone is exalted; his glory is above earth and heaven.

14He has raised up a horn for his people, praise for all his faithful, for the people of Israel who are close to him. Praise the Lord!

Jeremiah 31:15-17

15Thus 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. 16Thus 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; 17there is hope for your future, says the Lord: your children shall come back to their own country.

Matthew 2:13-18

13Now after they had left, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream and said, “Get up, take the child and his mother, and flee to Egypt, and remain there until I tell you; for Herod is about to search for the child, to destroy him.” 14Then Joseph got up, took the child and his mother by night, and went to Egypt, 15and remained there until the death of Herod. This was to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet, “Out of Egypt I have called my son.”

16When Herod saw that he had been tricked by the wise men, he was infuriated, and he sent and killed all the children in and around Bethlehem who were two years old or under, according to the time that he had learned from the wise men. 17Then was fulfilled what had been spoken through the prophet Jeremiah: 18“A voice was heard in Ramah, wailing and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children; she refused to be consoled, because they are no more.”

The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 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.

 

 

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