Text: Luke 12:49-53
One of the VBS kids said something profound in the way only children can. The second day’s bible point was: God’s Word is Comforting. In quizzing the kids the next day what that main point was, one stood up, emphatically waving his hand in the air saying I know, I know. And when called on said – “God’s Word is comfortable.”
Comforting vs. comfortable. “I’ve not come to bring peace on earth, but division.” That isn’t comfortable, but it should be comforting.
In the background I continue to be amazed how often the appointed lessons for the lectionary match up with the life together in the church. Either as a reflection on events or as preparation for struggles upcoming. Of course that is the chicken and the egg problem. Since these texts are usually read first on the Sunday the prior week as I’m locking up the church, they impact the entire week. It might be just as easy to say that I’m obsessed with them for the week and so everything becomes about them regardless. But without going completely mystical – there are weeks that events over-ride the texts appointed. What I am amazed at is how infrequent that happens. When I read – “I’ve come to bring division” and saw the picture on the bulletin (flowing lava with those words) last Sunday, I said we’ll see. It didn’t seem promising. By Tuesday – divisions and events of all kinds had happened that made this sermon a easy write.
I was probably too tough in the law section. Not that these activities are not true, it is just that the people of God assembled are not really the ones to which it applies. But the text of the day, especially the OT Jeremiah 23:16-29, demanded the rough exposition.