Friday, March 06, 2009

Friday in the First Week of Lent

For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who is not partial and takes no bribe, who executes justice for the orphan and the widow, and who loves the strangers, providing them with food and clothing. You shall also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. (Deuteronomy 10:17-19)

Just after reminding the Israelites that they were special and chosen, Moses goes on to say that God is not partial and loves strangers and the chosen must love strangers too. Strangers are also translated as sojourners and resident aliens.

There is a lot of heated rhetoric about aliens in the United States. While social and legal issues need to be discussed openly and honestly, most of what one hears is thinly veiled xenophobia and racism. A lot of nativist sentiment is abroad in the land (ironic, since we are mostly a nation of immigrant roots).

It seems that the passage cited above, and many like it, are rarely invoked in the discussion. Pity.

I reproduce the Collect of the Day with the proviso that I understand flesh (in the Pauline sense) to be that which opposes itself to God and not as the body. I reject spirit-matter dualism. Yin and yang are complements, not oppositional.

Lord Christ, our eternal Redeemer, grant us such fellowship in your sufferings, that, filled with your Holy Spirit, we may subdue the flesh to the spirit, and the spirit to you, and at the last attain to the glory of your resurrection; who live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

--the BB

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