The scripture reading today is Luke 12:57 (NRSV).
“And why do you not judge for yourselves what is right?”
Figure It Out Yourself!
Commandments . . . are they a pain, or blessing? Last weekend in worship, we read St. Luke’s version of the Beatitudes (6:20-26): explicit Blessings to follow and Woes to avoid. This weekend, Jesus continues to tell the disciples what to do—more Instructions for Life (6:27-38). These commandments may not be the easiest directives to follow, but clear instructions they are! God’s preferred ways are revealed. Epiphany!
In today’s much later verse (chapter 12), Jesus does not come close to micromanaging anyone’s behavior. In verses 54-56, an exasperated Jesus says that, in mundane matters like the weather, ‘you have eyes, you have brains, and you figure things out’. It seems like the crowds around Him either had a ‘willful ignorance’ about more crucial matters, or else they just acted as if they really were clueless—taking no responsibility for their behavior.
At this point, Jesus refuses to give them any more commandments. If He had, I can imagine it running something like this: “Open your eyes! Grow up! Figure it out yourself! You have enough instructions. I’ve told you. Our Torah and Prophets have told you: Do justice! Love mercy! Walk humbly! Trust God! Act (even sin?) BOLDLY!”
Dear Jesus, You have given me the tools I need to do the right things. Today, give me the courage. Amen.
Pastor Jim firstname.lastname@example.org
Pray for those who struggle with indecision—from young parents and children, to the elected and appointed elders with whom we have entrusted public responsibility.