Wednesday, March 16, 2022. Good morning! Hope you are well today. Yesterday we have been talking about expectations towards human history. We saw that the bible is expecting severe problems for mankind on a regular basis. But at the same time, the New Testament also puts our activity into a perspective of final justice. The wars and hunger within this world is not the end of history, not the end of what is to come!
Take your inheritance …
In the gospel of Matthew, chapter 25, Jesus talks about justice. He talks about the expectations of God, how humans should act. When God entrusts gold to each one of us, he wants us to use this gold actively. A story is given about two good servants, who make more out of it. And there is one servant, who mistrusts the master and hides the gold. He is on a path of destruction.
But what is the gold Jesus talks about? What are the criteria which he uses to judge? What is it he is searching in mankind? It is explained just a moment later in the following story from Matthew 25:
‘When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. 34 ‘Then the King will say to those on his right, “Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was ill and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.”
Inheritance of Mercy …
It is mercy which is the gold of God. It is acts of mercy, of solidarity, of help, of passion. It is truth and service, dedication, love of your neighbor. These are the actions which the other parable talks about when it is said “Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his wealth to them.”
The way New Testament treats actions needs some attention. It is not that you could “earn” your way into heaven. The situation is different. God is opening the door. He is giving his wealth into your hands, without your activity. It is by his mercy. He wants faith, trust, open ears! He wants us to join his ways, to take from his character, which is full of truth, love, passion and dedication.
Faith is not an empty word. It is not only about saying, something is true. Yes, it includes the insight that God is real, that Jesus brings Gods mercy into this world. But it is more. Faith means to take the gold and let it grow. It means to change, to be transformed, to act. (Roland Potthast)