Sunday, January 29, 2017
You Know What Is Required
Micah 6:8 He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God?
The king had become ignorant of what would please God. He had determined to appease God by offering sacrifices but this is not what God wants. It had all be made clear in the covenant and therefore the king’s ignorance is inexcusable. God wants a holy people who reflect the character and nature which would be revealed in Jesus Christ, that is, obedient and spiritual people who will do justice.
John Wesley says, “He—God hath already told you in his word, with what you ought to come before him. To do justly—To render to every one their due, superiors, equals, inferiors, to be equal to all, and oppress none, in body, goods or name;…To love mercy—To be kind, merciful and compassionate to all, not using severity towards any. Walk humbly with thy God—Keep up a constant fellowship with God, by humble, holy faith.” (Wesley)
God does not want sacrifices, God wants the covenant people to reflect the very nature of Christ in their being. This is the good and it is what is required of God’s people; to be engaged in acts of justice, to love kindness and to remain in fellowship, day by day, and moment by moment, walking with God. It has been spelled out clearly for us to understand what it is that is required. Now, we must wrestle with how that is put into practice.
We have all experienced injustice in our lives; things that seem far outside our own control. Living outside the US for many years there have been many times that I needed someone who would help me. I’ve stood for hours trying to hold my position trying to get into an embassy to try and get a visa. I’ve spent hours pushing my way through immigration lines, hoping for a friendly face at passport control. I’ve had my car pulled over and a machine gun shoved in my face as the “officials” tried to confiscate my vehicle. It is in those moments that we pray that someone outside of our situation will speak up and become the voice that we do not have. We have our eyes open looking for someone to show compassion and justice.
We must begin by bringing ourselves to a place of intimate fellowship with God. In this space our hearts will break for the things that break the heart of God. Then, it is the Lord who will send us forth into a world that is struggling and in desperate need of a Savior. And we may just be the one who intercedes, showing mercy and justice in the moment of someone's need.
Lord, break my heart today. Amen.