The readings for today are Genesis 38 and Luke 10:38-42.
In Genesis 38 there are some very distasteful events that are brought to light. These events were bound to happen as the people of God lived in the world (with the Caananites) as opposed to living a separate existence in Egypt, where they were despised and kept separate. I am dismayed to read of the sexual content of this chapter – the spilled semen and prostitution – and the clear hypocrisy of double standards. But this account has a purpose in the wider context of Genesis. The interruption of the story of Joseph’s time in Egypt is necessary to show the continuation of Judah’s family line with the birth of Zerah and Perez. Later (in Chapter 49) Kingship will be associated with Judah’s line – it is through Perez that the Davidic dynasty emerges.
The contrast between Judah and Joseph is clear. Judah seemed to have done what he thought was right out of fear (v.11) and was quick to judge Tamar when he thought she had sinned (v.24). Joseph was pressured by far greater temptations, did what was right out of his respect for God (39:9). Again, we see that when Joseph was later reunited with his brothers who had sold him into slavery, he freely forgave them (45:4-8).
The application for each of us is pretty clear. It is one thing to be “good” by the standard of our culture. It is something else entirely, out of our love from God, to rise above those standards to be truly righteous. If we place these stories of Judah and Joseph side by side, they remind us that God uses the person who is totally committed to Him. It seems as though the “Judahs” do have roles in God’s plan, but the “Josephs” find truly significant places.
The message for us is to do the right thing…..not because of any legalism……but because we have an overwhelming respect for God.”
Our second reading today is from Luke 10:38-42. “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.” (vs.41-42)
There has been much speculation regarding what was the “one thing” Jesus was talking about. Was Jesus telling Martha, so flustered and upset as she rushed around preparing a meal for Jesus and his disciples that she was doing too much? “Just a sandwich, Martha, not a smorgasbord”. We don’t know for sure, but there are times when we need to stop and ask ourselves, “Are we doing so much that we don’t have the time to sit at Jesus’ feet and learn”?
Too busy for Jesus, is too busy…..no matter who you are or what you are doing.
Have a great day,