New Perspectives on the Way of the Cross | February 21 to March 20

Daily Devotional August 3 2021

Psalm 78:1-39; 2 Samuel 7:18-29; Acts 18:12-28; Mark 8:22-33
So why would Jesus sternly order the apostles not to tell people He was the Messiah? Um, because they don’t understand what that means, that’s why.
They’re right on Him, but wrong on what that means. When He says Messiah, He means suffering servant, paschal lamb, fragrant offering poured out. When they say it, they mean conquering hero. They’re right, and they’re wrong, as is shown today when Peter first acknowledges Jesus as Messiah and then jumps down His throat for daring to say that the cross is an inevitability. Jesus tells them to stop talking about Messiahship because He hasn’t yet got them straight on what that means, and it’s dangerous to say the right words but mean the wrong things.
Do we ever do that, use the right words but mean them wrong? Ever say ‘love’ and mean ‘like?’ Or say ‘justice’ and mean ‘punishment?’ Maybe we come to a hard place in our lives and say we ‘trust in God’ but mean ‘everything will turn out well for me because I’m a good person and God owes me a favor.’ Which is really more a trust in my own goodness than in God’s providence, if you think about it….
It’s better, if we don’t know what the words really mean, to not use them. That’s what Jesus is saying here. That we sometimes have to re-learn what the words mean before we start tossing them around.
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Steven Wilson

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Grace Church is the oldest Episcopal parish in the four states area.
Rooted in worship of the Risen Christ, we draw our understanding of His commandment to love one another from Holy Scripture, reason and tradition—and we encourage our membership actively to seek a deeper personal relationship with Christ, a relationship founded in love of God and of neighbor.

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