Sermon - October 18, 2020 - St. Martin's In the Desert

Sermon – October 18, 2020

Lord, we pray that your grace may always precede and follow us, that we may continually be given to good works; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

Today we hear the results of impatience and selfishness. The people of Israel have been saved from slavery and are being led to the land God promised them. But they are not satisfied with the time it is taking to get there. They see through their impatience a delay in what they were promised so they turn away from their faith. Moses is made aware of their precarious acts and what God has determined will be the punishment for their actions. How disappointed could Moses have been after all the effort and blessings God had provided and now the result of their acts spelled destruction for them all. But Moses, rather than just standing by and watching this take place spoke to God to ask forgiveness for these acts. He reminded God of His promise. Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, your servants, how you swore to them by your own self, saying to them, ‘I will multiply your descendants like the stars of heaven, and all this land that I have promised I will give to your descendants, and they shall inherit it forever.’” And the Lord changed his mind about the disaster that he planned to bring on his people. Moses had faith that empowered him to act on behalf of those who chose the wrong path. His courage and love kept the path toward salvation and peace available for us even after we make wrong decisions. Todays gospel reminds us also that when the invitation is made to come and enjoy the celebration of Gods acceptance we can either accept and enjoy or choose to ignore and become lost in the social distractions layed before us. In this time of pandemic, social injustice and deepening fear for the future we are faced with the decision. Do we, as Moses did, reach out to ask for our brothers and sisters a second chance of God’s forgiveness and love or do we ignore the issues and close our eyes to the loss of their souls. We are the path God provides for all of His children and hopes they will select. And our efforts are what informs and reminds those seekers of the path leading to redemption and love.

My prayers for us all today is that even when we are uncertain of the outcome, our efforts shall always be directed towards the path affirming God’s love for us and is something we can bravely share with all those we touch.

Rev John