This Week

No Justice, No Peace

FOURTH SUNDAY AFTER EPIPHANY

Micah 6:1-8

Psalm 15

1 Corinthians 1:18-31

Matthew 5:1-12

Prayer of the Day: Holy God, you confound the world’s wisdom in giving your kingdom to the lowly and the pure in heart. Give us such a hunger and thirst for justice, and perseverance in striving for peace, that in our words and deeds the world may see the life of your Son, Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord.

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.” Matthew 5:9.

“He has told you, O mortal, what is good;
   and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
   and to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8.

Jesus calls his disciples to peacemaking. But the peace to which Jesus refers is not the peace so many of us long for. It isn’t the kind of peace we imagine would follow if black folks would just stop harping on slavery and Jim Crow and let bygone be bygones. It isn’t the kind of tense peace that follows after Mom tactfully changes the subject when Uncle Ned makes a crude and sexist remark about a neighbor at Thanksgiving dinner. The peace of Jesus is not the kind of peace those of us in safe, affluent and homogenous communities experience when we crow about how God has blessed us, even as a substantial part of the world experiences want. The peace of Jesus is not ecclesiastical tranquility achieved by a system that permits some of its congregations to discriminate against LGBTQ+ folk and the rest of its churches to identify as “welcoming” to ensure they don’t wind up sitting in the wrong pew.

Peace without justice is no peace at all. Read more