Daily Lectionary: Deuteronomy 9:1-22; Matthew 11:1-19
You shall fear the Lord your God. You shall serve him and hold fast to him, and by his name you shall swear. He is your praise. He is your God, who has done for you these great and terrifying things that your eyes have seen. (Deuteronomy 9:20-21)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Those who say there is no God are without fear of the Lord. People who try to adjust God to fit their ideas of what a god is and isn’t have no fear of the Lord. Anyone who can’t bring himself to think of God the way He really is, as He is in Jesus of Nazareth, has no fear of God—in the manger, on the donkey, on the cross. This man Jesus Christ is our God. This One, highest heaven, peace and glory. God hidden in Him who weeps over Jerusalem. The One who comes at midnight. The One who comes as Bridegroom. The One who comes in glory as Judge.
When we have God figured out, someone like Jesus is really very repetitive, or at least a possible embarrassment to the way we have taken things in hand and are running them. But to separate God and Jesus, to insist that God is not like that, is to tear the great and terrifying work of God at Calvary apart. If we insist that God didn’t bear our sins for us then we will answer for them before God apart from Jesus. There’s nothing more terrifying than that. You can only know God rightly, God as God FOR YOU, when He is wrapped in your sin.
Therefore, “Bless the Lord, you who fear Him.” Bless the Lord who comes so that you don’t have to suffer the worry of what you should do next; how it goes with you and your God; how you should praise Him; what you ought to believe about Him; how to trust God to be God for you. Jesus, Lord God, Lamb of God, Son of the Father, who takes away the sins of the world is your God. When you trust that in Jesus, God is most truly God FOR YOU, this is true fear of the Lord your God. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Praise be to Him who, Lord Most High, The fullness of the God-head shares; And yet our human nature bears, Who came as man to bleed and die. And from His cross there flows our peace Who chose for us the path He trod, That so might sins and sorrows cease And all be reconciled to God. (Praise Be to Christ, LSB 538:4)