Sunday, August 9, 2015

Trinity 10

Luke 19:41-48 - Trinity Ten - August 9, 2015
 A Meditation on Divine Wrath
The book of Lamentations, which is the 25th book of the Bible, was written by the prophet Jeremiah who also wrote our Old Testament lesson this morning.  Jeremiah was a faithful prophet, who, like every faithful prophet or preacher, had the very unfortunate task of preaching about the impending wrath of God upon the impenitent.  It’s no fun to preach wrath and the threat of hell.  What pastor wants to preach about how God is angry with sin?  To sinners?  Especially when he himself is a sinner?  It’s a burden of the calling, I suppose.  But sin does make God mad.  So it must be preached.  God does send those who don’t repent to eternal hell.  So it must be preached.  God really does threaten to punish, to the third and fourth generation, those who hate him.  So Jeremiah preached it.  And unlike most preachers, Jeremiah lived to see the day when God’s threats were realized – when everyone was forced to acknowledge that he was right the whole time.  This brought no joy or sense of I-told-you-so to the prophet, only sorrow.  Jerusalem was sacked with him in it; and God permitted his people to be carried away by heathen enemies into captivity.  Reflecting on what he witnessed, Jeremiah writes,