Posted on in Blog by The Rev. David Marshall
When Jesus heard that John the baptizer had been arrested, he went to Galilee and began his public ministry by calling the first disciples (Matthew 4:12-23). In the face of injustice, and even personal threat, Jesus began publicly proclaiming the coming of God’s kingdom.
There always seems to be some sort of injustice or suffering to be confronted. When I was a small child, there was the civil rights movement. When I was an adolescent, there was the Vietnam War. When I was a young adult, there were the battles over human sexuality, which are still going on today. There were refugees then and there are refugees now. I had relatives who decried, using hateful language, the immigrants that they blamed for most of the problems in their lives.
How does God want us to respond to the injustice and suffering we face in each generation? Jesus responded by announcing the coming of God’s reign. When confronted by the violence and injustice of both the Roman occupiers and King Herod, Jesus invited people to put their trust in God and live as though God is in charge.
Jesus was smart about how he confronted injustice. After John’s arrest, Jesus went to Galilee. There he was far enough away from the centers of power to begin a movement based on God’s love that would ultimately challenge Rome and change the world. He also called 12 disciples right away to help.
We too can be smart, and Godly, about how we respond to and confront injustice and suffering in our world. St. Mark’s Cathedral, our cathedral in Seattle, is setting a great example with their statement of commitment and action, and their many works. On Friday, January 20, St. Mark’s will join St. James Cathedral, Temple De Hirsch Sinai and other faith organizations to hold an interfaith prayer service at the temple, 1441 16th Ave. in Seattle, at 6 p.m. We are not alone in seeking justice and peace. We are not alone in our desire for the sacred. We can make a difference.
Yours in Christ,