First Reading: Jeremiah 31:31-34
31The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah. 32It will not be like the covenant that I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt—a covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, says the Lord. 33But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34No longer shall they teach one another, or say to each other, “Know the Lord,” for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, says the Lord; for I will forgive their iniquity, and remember their sin no more.
In his video series called “Alpha”, Nicky Gumbel talks about our relationship with God being more than just knowing God, but loving God. He compared to his relationship with his wife. He said he could go to the library and get a book out about his wife. In it, he could read about her, what she likes, doesn’t like, what she is good at, what she looks like. He said he could find out a lot of information about her,
But knowing is different than loving. Love is not just knowledge. Love is relationship. It is communication. It is an intimate connection.
I believe that is what Jeremiah is talking about here. God wants to be in relationship with us. God wants to be with the ones God has created and loves. Nicky Gumbel calls it an 18 inch conversion – from the head to the heart.
This coming Sunday is Reformation Sunday. We recall Martin Luther’s actions that were instrumental in the beginning of the Protestant Reformation. Luther struggled to find a compassionate God. He could only see a God who punished us for our sins, and always demanded us to live as righteous children. But he found that to be nearly impossible. It wasn’t until he found a gem in scripture (that will be in Thursday’s blog!). He found a gem that opened his eyes to God’s grace and love. He found that we are righteous because God is the one making us righteous. God’s doing, not ours.
Luther found a gem in that book of knowledge that led him to a relationship in God’s loving embrace. That is what God wants for you and me. God loves you. Always has. Always will.
Let us pray: Almighty God. Help us to move from head to heart, knowing that we are known and loved by you. We pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen