16/01/2017 12:00 pm
Merciful God, out of love
you made a covenant with your people.
Empower us to resist
all forms of discrimination.
Let the gift of your loving covenant
fill us with joy and inspire us to greater unity.
Through Jesus Christ, our risen Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit
now and forever. Amen.
|2 Corinthians 5:18||God reconciled us to himself|
|Genesis 17:1-8||God makes a covenant with Abraham|
|Psalm 98||The world has seen the victory of God|
|Romans 5:6-11||God reconciled us to himself through Jesus Christ|
|Luke 2:8-14||Proclamation of the good news|
Reconciliation has two sides: it is fascinating and terrifying at the same time. It draws us in so that we desire it: within ourselves, with one another, and between our different confessional traditions. We see the price and it scares us. For reconciliation means renouncing our desire for power and recognition. In Christ God graciously reconciles us to himself even though we have turned away from him. God's action goes beyond even this: God reconciles not only humanity, but the whole of creation to himself.
In the Old Testament God was faithful and merciful to the people of Israel, with whom he established a covenant. This covenant remains: “the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable” (Rom 11:29). Jesus, who inaugurated the new covenant in his blood, was a son of Israel. Too often in history our churches have failed to honor this. After the Holocaust, it is the distinctive task of the German churches to combat antisemitism. Similarly all churches are called to bring forth reconciliation in their communities and resist all forms of human discrimination, for we are all part of God’s covenant.
How do we as Christian communities understand being part of God’s covenant?
What forms of discrimination do our churches need to address today in our societies?