• Steven Marsh

Secure and Firm in the LORD: a Reflection on Psalm 122, Deuteronomy 9:23-10:5, Hebrews 4:1-10, and J

So much is being written today about ISIS, as it should. The Islamic State is claiming the new Caliphate and is a movement working toward the purist form of Islam. Although I denounce its militarism and violence, I understand. Purity is a common thread in most religions.

From my perspective as a Christian, Jesus’ call for his followers to be peacemakers drives my desire for purity in Christianity and purity for me rests in a solid belief and practice in remembering, living, and telling the way of Jesus.

The psalmist depicts an image of a person being secure and firm in the Lord. The psalmist’s image is that of the heart. The person who is secure and firm in the Lord is that person whose “heart” is focused and rests in God.

Moses is a great biblical character. And in Deuteronomy, Moses depicts a people that are doing anything but focusing and resting their hearts in the Lord. They like us want what they want when they want it. The people of God are selfish and jealous. They too get moody, angry, petty, and demanding. Moses demand the people repent and get right with God; the One who loves them most and truly has their best interest in mind.

Life is a process with demands, joys, pains, criticisms, opportunities, challenges, moments of craziness, infidelities, and hurts. Yet, life is the journey, not the solution. Life requires endurance and perseverance when aligning one’s life with Jesus.

God loved first and continues to love first. We cannot undo God’s love for us. God loves us even when our total depravity has full control. God loves and does not condemn. We were and are already condemned before God loved first and loves first.

Purity is important. But purity must be a matter of the heart. Behaviors stem from the center of our being. Let’s work on the heart.

God remove hate from my being. Remove jealousy, envy, and mean-spiritedness as well. Begin the process of making my security and firmness of identity rest in you, Lord. And may that be true for my friends reading this post as well.

Scripture readings are taken from the two-year daily lectionary cycle which follows the liturgical calendar and begins on the First Sunday of Advent.

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