Reflections: September 15, 2021
Wednesday of the 15th Week after Trinity
By Harrison Goodman
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. In the beginning, God spoke: Let there be light. And all of creation bent itself to His will. It was good, for a little while. Not so much now. Sin breaks stuff. Maybe we can point fingers at Adam or Eve (it was Adam’s fault) and say that wasn’t your fault, even if it is your burden. The truth is, those words that sling blame don’t fix it. They can’t change creation for the better, just lament the state of it.
God still speaks with words that accomplish something, not just for Adam’s sin, but also for yours. Now He uses your pastor. "In the stead and by the command of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I forgive you all your sins." And all of creation bends itself to His will. Your sins are forgiven before God in heaven. And it is good.
With words He reshapes creation. He’s not done talking. It’s good, because you’re not done sinning. That’s not ok. Your sin breaks stuff, too. It leaves you wrecked with guilt. It leaves you alone. It leaves you set against the people you’re given to love, and the people given to love you. Understand that the words you use to sling blame, to excuse your sins, to justify yourself, and to accuse your neighbor don’t fix anything. They can’t change creation for the better, but still do plenty to make it worse.
So we hear God speak words that grant peace. He absolves your sins through your pastor. He absolves your neighbors’ sins, too. He even lets you speak the words “your sins are forgiven you” that point to the place where all sin was brought to nothing. We point to the Cross and say Jesus forgave us there. He spoke: "It is finished." Sin isn’t allowed to destroy anymore. What our sins break, He promises healing for in the resurrection. It is very good.
Today, we have to wait in the world broken by our sin, but we wait for the resurrection already started in Christ who burst from the tomb. We wait for something already begun. And while we wait, we wait with words that shape creation to what God promises it to be. And it is good. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
The words which absolution give Are His who died that we might live; The minister whom Christ has sent Is but His humble instrument. ("'As Surely as I Live,' God Said" LSB 614, st.6)
-Rev. Harrison Goodman, is the pastor of Mount Calvary Lutheran Church in San Antonio, TX.
He is also the content executive for Higher Things.
He is also the content executive for Higher Things.
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