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Tag: repentance

Curse Like a Christian

“Consider this, you who forget God, or I will tear you to pieces.” (Psalm 50:22) George Herbert (1593 – 1633), poet and priest, says in The Country Parson, “a pastor is the deputy of Christ, for the reducing of man to the obedience of God.” Blessing and cursing are part of the job. Neglect of God is never benign. God charges the parson to rebuke evil, though it provokes hatred, because hatred improves upon contempt. Herbert cites a formula from the prayer book for learning how to curse. I thought I was pretty familiar with that book, but had never come across that. On the hypothesis that namby pamby later Anglicans had removed it, I looked up the edition current in…

Ordered Grace

Had lunch in an Amish farm kitchen a while back, with some Quaker pastors. Our Amish hostess had 12 children, 61 grandchildren, and counting. She looked remarkably cheerful for someone feminists would say is oppressed and reduced to baby making. The topic of shunning came up – which the Amish practice according to Mt. 18. Our hostess described one of her sons-in-law who abandoned his wife and seven children – “because he preferred a pick-up truck to his family.” His name was removed from the book containing the names of all the Amish community members within a square mile. The community pitched in to help the abandoned wife and children. A local Quaker pastor recently convinced the man to return…

The Grace of Letting Go

Not every Lazarus is a Prodigal and vice versa. The prodigal’s father let his son envy the pigs that he might save his life. Well meaning people kill and destroy when they take responsibility for others’ irresponsibility and treat all as victims.  To treat all sufferers as Lazarus robs the prodigals among them of the one thing they have left of value –  the chance to come to themselves.