September 22, 2013

Jeremiah 8:18-9:1 1 Timothy 2:1-7 “There is a Balm in Gilead” Jeremiah is often labeled “the weeping prophet,” and there is no passage that warrants that label for him better than today’s passage in which he cries and laments over the situation of the people of Judah. The problem is that the people of Judah are refusing to change their ways and turn back to God. Jeremiah has denounced the confidence they have put in the temple and sacrificial rituals automatically to save them, but they will not listen and continue to provoke YHWH to anger by their idols. God has promised punishment, but even this does not change their perpetual and unrepentant backsliding. No matter how many times the prophet warns them, they won’t seem to listen, and so Jeremiah weeps in frustration and despair. There are times when we also might feel like weeping when we look around at our world today. The last few months have certainly included many tragic events that may have given us cause to weep for the poor people of our world: – the collapse of an unsafe garment factory in Bangladesh which killed and injured thousands of workers, – the derailment of train cars of oil which caused the explosion and fire in Lac Megantic, killing over 40 people, – the recent use of chemical weapons in Syria, killing thousands of people, – the bus/train accident in Ottawa a few days ago in which 6 people were killed, – the terrible shootings … Read more »