April 14
‘He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.’ Micah 6:8
Bible reading: Isaiah 22:1-14 (Go to the Bible passage)
Of course, we can celebrate and say that everything is going well. Of course, we can carry on with our services, just like the people of Israel carried on with their sacrifices and their joy and revelry (:13), but then we must also abstain from all sobriety and blind ourselves from reality!
We can of course say that the young people of today are not that bad, and who would dare deny it? We can say that they still truly believe, even though it is in their own way. But when we are really honest, we have to admit that genuine trust in God is found sparingly. We do not even notice that we grieve the Holy Spirit with all our activities by which we try to maintain ourselves without God. Yes, we are exactly like Israel in those days.
When God withdrew His hand from Jerusalem, an enormous outburst of activity took place. Weapons were carefully inspected; who is to call that a sin? The walls were fortified; who is to call that godless?
But He, Who has taken away our peace, God, Him we do not seek. We sing our old spiritual hymns and we make new ones: modern, engaging by their catchy rhythms, but very often noncommittal; and they have success! But we do not realize that God calls us to weep and to wail in humble repentance. ‘No way,’ we say, ‘God teaches us to look after ourselves.’ So with novelties and some ‘old wine’ we continue our services of worship as a valuable, culturally appropriate tradition. And wishing to banish all misery we say: ‘Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die!’
And God says: ‘Till your dying day this sin will not be atoned for’ (:14).
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