How we treat others matters. Who do we reflect?
God called Israel to be partners in the journey toward restoration of this broken earthly kingdom. The purpose for everything they did was to point others to “I am.” But, unfortunately, the reflection became tainted with sinful characteristics. Greed. Lust. Pride. Coveting. Oppression. Cheating. They compromised their identity and It wasn’t a good look.
God reminds them:
“For I brought you up from the land of Egypt,
and redeemed you from the house of slavery;
and I sent before you Moses,
Aaron, and Miriam.
O my people, remember now what King Balak of Moab devised,
what Balaam son of Beor answered him,
and what happened from Shittim to Gilgal,
that you may know the saving acts of the Lord.” Micah 6:4-5
What they did:
What God wanted:
“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly[a] with your God” Micah 6:8
Being shaped into God’s fuller reflection involves some contorting. We adapt to the posture of sinful choices. Until we realize, like the Israelites, that God loves creation too much to leave us misshapen.
N.T. Wright writes about the distinctive way that people viewed early Christians, “They picked up their rule of life from the Jews, via Jesus of course. The Jews had those texts, those scriptures, which kept on circling back to the belief that there was one God who had a special concern for the poor, the sick, the outcast, the slaves….Their communities, by and large, practiced a kind of extended family life. The early Jesus followers got hold of that, but extended it to the increasing and increasingly diverse, “family” of believers. People watched. Wanted in. Sought to replicate it.
He has shown us what is good. Lord, shape us into your people.
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