Psalm: 33
Gospel: Matthew 3:1-12
Reading from the Church: an excerpt from The Dogmatic Constitution of Vatican II (scroll down to the second reading).

Christ the  Architect


 

For the word of the Lord is upright,
and all his work is done in faithfulness.
He loves righteousness and justice;
the earth is full of the steadfast love of the Lord.

By the word of the Lord the heavens were made,
and all their host by the breath of his mouth.
He gathered the waters of the sea as in a bottle;
he put the deeps in storehouses. (Psalm 33:4-7)

There’s a lot of talk tonight about God’s word. What is God’s word? Is it the Bible? Is it the stirring of the Holy Spirit we hear in the silence of our hearts? Is it the Word made flesh in the person of Jesus? Or is it something else entirely?

I would like to suggest that it might be a combinaiton of all three :D. As inheritors of the Christian tradition some 2000 years after its beginning, we are reliant on the Word of Scripture to know God’s plan of salvation for us. That being said, I am not a huge fan of arguing for Biblical inerrancy or reading passages out of context to justify our own biases :P.

I think the Word of God dwells in us. In our hearts and minds as he promised through the prophet Ezekiel (Ezek. 36:24-26, 28b) and also reminds us that God’s living word is continually spoken and interpreted in the here and the now :D.

Ultimately though, our source for the Word must come from Jesus Himself. As the Word who became flesh for us…his life, death, and resurrection becomes the lens through which we must view all of Scripture.

Earlier this year, I struggled with reading a particularly violent passage in Exodus. It seemed that God was relentless in his punishment of sin and iniquity…leaving no room for forgiveness.

As the conversation thread unfolded on Facebook…..a fellow classmate and friend of mine (who is now rector of Trinity Parish in Lucan and St. James, Clandeboye) responded with the following comment:

This is the word of the LORD”, but it is merely a partial revelation of the complete Word. And for that reason, I don’t have problems with the response, ‘Thanks be to God’, because I am truly thankful that God reveals himself to us in multiple, surprising ways. This is much different from saying that God reveals his purposes in condoning the slaughter of thousands of people. But it keeps us engaged with scripture, even when all we can say is “how can this be?”

This constant act of questioning, discovering and interpreting the Bible through the WHOLE revelation of God rather than just snippets of the Lectionary was really thought-provoking for me and changed the whole way I approached reading the Bible….especially those parts I find difficult or downright incomprehensible.

Let us remember that God speaks to us in a variety of ways…..and that–especially during this season of Advent–that we remember to leave the doors of communication opened. Chances are we will be challenged, astonished, disturbed, and moved by what we hear. 😀 +

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