Bread – Condemned

October 26, 2012


Readings for Friday, October 26, designated by the 1979 Book of Common Prayer: *; Rev. 9:13-21; Luke 10:38-42; Psalms 31,35

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There is nothing easy in today’s Bread. In Revelation today, the following is reported: “By these three plagues a third of mankind was killed … The rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands nor give up worshipping demons and idols of gold and silver and bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk, nor did they repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.” Rev. 9:20-21.

How can we see a third of mankind killed and not recognize that this is caused by our sin, by our disobedience, by our lack of faith and belief in God? How can we see the events of war, of immorality, of pestilence, of loss, of anger, of selfishness without falling our knees asking for forgiveness?

And yet we are told that, at the end of the world, when a third of mankind has perished, the remainder of mankind remains stiff-necked, refusing to repent, refusing to turn away from their race toward their own death, refusing to recognize, believe in, honor and worship the God that created them. We see an entire meltdown of the condemned.

What do these people not repent of? The answer is (1) the works of their hands, (2) demons and idols, (3) murders, (4) sorceries, (5) sexual immorality, and (6) thefts. When you think about it, this is a pretty complete list of what is going on in our world and our own lives. We are the ones who revel in our wealth, our edifices, our economy, our military, our power, our sexuality, our ability to beat the other person. We are the ones who worship idols of power, influence, wealth, position, education, titles. We are the condemned, unless …

Unless what? More “good” works? More religious ritual? More spells and incantations? More chasing after fools’ gold?

No, we instinctively know those are the wrong answers. What is not instinctive but is true is that we are condemned unless we repent and turn toward God, truly believing in Jesus Christ raised from the dead, accepting the gift of salvation from death in our sins, and letting Jesus take over His rightful place as lord of our lives.

Why don’t “the rest of mankind” turn from their sins when confronted by their wages for sin, which is death? I don’t know.

But I know this. You can cast your lot with the “rest of mankind” and be condemned or cast your lot with God and be saved. Today.

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*Today’s readings designate Ecclesiasticus, sometimes called the Wisdom of Jesus Son of Sirach. This is not a book contained In the canonical Old Testament, but instead belongs to that body of work called the Apocrypha or Deuterocanonical Books. These books are accepted by some Christian denominations as useful, but are rejected by other denominations. I have not included this reading today because of these controversies. However, if you want to read it, the reference for today is Ecclus. 11:2-20.

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© 2012 GBF

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