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October 20, 2020

“No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, ‘Know the Lord,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the Lord; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more.” Jeremiah 31:34

Each year, the appointed readings for Reformation Sunday are the same, including this passage from Jeremiah (the full reading is 31:31-34). These prophetic words of hope get at the core of what God is up to through Jesus Christ, and they challenge some of our classical understandings of who God is. We are so steeped in Ancient Greek philosophical categories that we tend to view God through lenses that are sometimes challenged by the biblical witness. This passage is one such example. We think of God as omnipotent. Here God says God is forgetful.

To be sure, we risk running off into the speculative. Doesn’t God always know everything? Well, maybe. I don’t know. But the gospel is not about the speculative, it is about the proclamatory. God, for the sake of Jesus Christ, will forgive and forget your sins. God will not keep them in the divine back pocket to use against you later. They are forgotten by God so that we can begin to remember. No longer will we need to teach who God is, for we shall simply know.

We cannot penetrate the mysteries of the divine, but we can know what God has revealed to us. In Christ, our sins are simply no more. Remember the Lord. In a world rife with sin and brokenness, cling to this promise today.

Be well, friends. You are loved.

Forgetful God, surely you could have held my sin against me forever. Instead, in Christ, you have forgiven me. A new future opens up! Help me to know you ever more deeply. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Image: Erika at WittenBurger Grill und Bar, July 7, 2014. Yum. Photo by me.

From → COVID-19

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