Many churches throughout the world use a Bible reading schedule called a "lectionary." It's just a fancy word meaning "selected readings." Posts like this reflect on the readings for an upcoming Sunday or other Church holiday, as found in the three-year lectionary.
Our Old Testament reading this week is from Ezekiel 18. In the beginning of the passage God forcefully rejects the idea that we are merely a product of our ancestry. Rather than allow for the younger generation to be ruined by the troubles of the older generation, God says he is the owner of each generation. The young do not have to be condemned by the judgment lodged against the old.
This alone may raise the hackles of many in our day. We certainly understand that our ancestors had a good bit to do with the way things are for us. And truly we shouldn’t be dismissive of those troubles. A family may be ravaged for several generations by the suffering of one. Yet God’s perspective is that we are not entirely ruled by our forbears. God is able, by his mercy and grace, to redeem us from even the dysfunctional upbringing we may have had.
The passage then speaks to a different situation. Most of us have said, or at least we have thought, “That person will never change. Why bother?” God has a different perspective in the matter. He shows that while we might not be ready to allow for people to change, He is not limited in the same way. He is the God who allows for repentance, forgiveness, and restoration.
No person is an island. However, each of us is able to stand or fall before God in just the same way. He has made his forgiveness available to each in Christ. In him we can stand.
If this brief meditation was helpful to you, I hope you will check out the other materials on our website at www.WittenbergCoMo.com and consider supporting us.