Monday, October 25, 2010

Luke 19:1-10

Pentecost +23 - Year C

Luke 19:1-10

Definition of being human ("son of Abraham"): generous toward the poor (at your own expense), honest in relationships within the community (cultural and physical environments), and quick to respond with repentant actions when astray.

We are quick to define people out of their humanity when they are not in accord with a majority or otherwise lack power. We have historically defined people out according to their theology, their clan, their education/status, their gender or orientation, their racial/cultural heritage. Here we hear that humanity has to do with basic community infrastructure of generosity and honesty and intentionality to abide by such. No matter how many above strikes someone has against them regarding their thinking or behaving or being, if they meet these criteria they are in.

It is difficult for us to abide the simplicity of generosity and honesty (both - they can't be traded one for the other) or an ease of return to our common values. We seem to want to make repentance as difficult and painful as possible, but here we see preemptive mercy at work in defining the work of what it means to be human ("Son of Man") - finding and inviting a restoration of ourselves to ourselves.

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