Thursday, August 12, 2010

Upside-down and backwards

My Bible reading has brought me once again to the start of the New Testament, and I sat down to read Matthew 1 and 2 again.

It amazes me how far off we human beings often are in recognizing and following God's real plan and His real work. And among the greatest and most unlearned truths of the Bible is that those who claim most loudly to know, trumpet, and guard God's Truth are most likely to not only be the furthest from it, but also actively at work against it. 

Matthew reminded me of that this morning while I read that "boring" list of Jesus' ancestors, and what happened to and around Mary and Joseph, before Jesus was born. And it came to me all over again:
  • God really does have everything already planned out. He always has, and always will. If something is a surprise, it's only to us - not to Him.
  • God really does do things His own way - even when it makes no sense to us at all, and even when it violates human laws or goes against human authority. 
  • God's actions in the world often provoke evil reactions like angry confusion, vengeful hatred, repressive attempts at more control, and even mass murder among those - both religious and non-religious - who put themselves and their own will and understanding before God's. 
  • God invites people that "Good Religious People" chase away or block from "His" churches and temples, because His real places and power human beings can't control.
  • To keep doing God's will, and acting only within His parameters, sometimes we ourselves have to act outside of what's legal, comfortable, or smart according to human values and rules, just to keep from participating in evil ourselves.
What does Matthew's introduction to Jesus speak to you?

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