Bible Reading Blog — April 27, 2016

27 Apr

TODAY’S READINGS — Nehemiah 11-13 & Luke 6:27-36

The words of Luke 6:27-36 are among the most often excused and glossed-over words in Scripture. We always try to find a loophole to turning the other cheek or lending freely or living enemies. I believe there are two reasons for our hedging on these verses . . . we underestimate our sinfulness and we underestimate the transforming power of the gospel.

We offer excuses for not following the way of life unfolded in Luke 6 because we are fundamentally self-centered. We want to be served, we want what we want, we believe what we have is ours to do with what we want. So when we are confronted by the words of Jesus in Luke 6, our default position is to balk at them, sometimes even dressing up our resistance with words like “discernment” or “wisdom.” And indeed, it is clear that Jesus did not heal everyone, did not give to everyone, etc. But it is a matter of approach to life. And that approach to life which is open-handed rather than close-fisted can only happen through the transforming power of the gospel. The whole basis of this life of freedom and forgiveness is the fact that we have received mercy from God and should therefore freely give mercy. But what an unusual way to live. The way of love, really, but so often seen as the way of the doormat. In a culture of rights, in a culture where authority is both abused and resisted, this is indeed a counter-cultural way of living which actually could transform not only individuals, but communities.

2 Responses to “Bible Reading Blog — April 27, 2016”

  1. Lynn D April 27, 2016 at 1:01 pm #

    Being called a “doormat” certainly has a negative connotation in our society. However, in reading your blog it occurred to me that a doormat can be considered from a different perspective. A doormat is chosen and placed to welcome guests into a home. It remains flat and consistent so that it doesn’t cause one to stumble. It is weather-beaten and soiled, yet protects what is underneath and the path beyond. It remains in place humbly waiting to welcome the next guest to cross the threshold. A doormat serves, and serves beautifully.

  2. jsf08 April 28, 2016 at 8:20 am #

    Counter-cultural in a world that makes such a big deal of “my rights.”

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