Tuesday, December 16, 2008

2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16

Advent 4 – Year B

2 Samuel 7:1-11, 16

David, safe from his enemies around him, but unsafe from enemies within – both his past and his offspring – belatedly recognizes his ego has taken precedence over his "altar-ego". Of course he tries to make up for that error in prioritizing. It comes to no avail.

Yet altar-ego G*D sets up a throne in perpetuity. In today's world of scandal one wonders what sort of bribe that took.

Were David's family, kingdom, and throne permanently secure? If you say, "yes", what scale of measurement are you using?

When this is overlaid generations later on Jesus, what is it that is being carried forward?

If you were so convinced that your own family, accomplishments and place were permanently secure, what change would that make in your relationships (old and new)? Is this conviction a power that corrupts or sets free?

There is a sense in which David's peace was external to the political and power arrangements of the day? Sealed off in a specimen jar, David's peace turned out to be a passing thing. Even before he was dead, cracks in his family, kingdom, and throne were becoming evident and would eventually break apart. This leaves us with the difficult lesson of engagement with current realities and to work through all the pains and confusions of incarnation, joys of healings, disappointments of betrayal, and uncertainties of death and resurrection before claiming a satisfied mind. Our usual process is to make the claim first, proclaim eternity for this moment, and always see that fall away all too soon. In Advent we need to look at our realities, not just our warm fuzzy Santa wishes.

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