Rabbi’s Reflections – Friday, September 1, 2023
(Early) Shabbat Shalom,

A N N O U N C E M E N T:  This Sunday, September 3rd, we will have our semi-annual Shomair work day.  From 2-6PM we will clean and reorganize our building inside and out.  As the saying goes, “Many hands make light work.”  Please plan to be with us to lend a hand.  We all want to be proud of our facilities, and this is how we show it.  See you Sunday at 2.

One In Messiah part 51 – Romans, part 162

Romans 11:22 Notice then the kindness and severity of God: severity toward those who fell; but God’s kindness toward you, if you continue in His kindness; otherwise you too will be cut off! 

What I “notice” is the emphasis that this verse provides to yesterday’s RR.  Paraphrasing: if you don’t “continue in His kindness;… you too will be cut off!”  So much for what is called the “once saved, always saved” doctrine.  But today I want to focus on what Paul calls “the kindness and severity of God.”

What is the “kindness” of God?  The Greek word “Chrestotes” is used exclusively in Scripture by Paul.  It is a fruit of the spirit (Galatians 5:22) that means “goodness, excellence and uprightness.”  It is about God’s love for us, and not about what we deserve.  Like all fruits of the Spirit, it is a gift of grace.

This “kindness” is contrasted with “severity.”  Paul uses the Greek word “apotomia” which comes from the concept of falling off a cliff.  This is the only place it is used in Scripture.  Putting these two concepts together, “kindness and severity” brings to mind the idea of “falling from grace.”

Here is a word to the wise… be careful, don’t get too close to the edge of the cliff.  Psalm 91:11 For He will give His angels charge over you, to guard you in all your ways. 12 Upon their hands they will lift you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.  God does not want us to stumble and fall, He wants us with Him.

Matthew 11:28 “Come to Me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”

And that’s Shabbat Shalom my friends.

Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)
Fri 1 Sep 2023 15th of Elul, 5783
De 28:7-29:1[28:69] Amos 8-9 2 Ch 12 Heb 11:20-40 (Ac 7:1-29)