September 13: entitlement

Entitlement. The word does not appear in today’s readings, but it was the first word that came to mind as I was reading from Ezekiel. Entitlement does not have a positive connotation to me. It means privilege, ownership, guaranteed access. Ezekiel speaks about a people who felt that way about God. God was their God. They were the chosen people. God gave them the land of Israel through the promise and covenant made to Abraham. God would act on their behalf. They were entitled. It no longer mattered whether they were faithful, because they were entitled. It was a horrible place to be, because they were the last to recognize what they had become.

“You are my sheep… and I am your God.” Ezekiel 34:31. I wonder how often I/we get that turned around. You are my God… and you God must act accordingly. I’ve never said that in so many words and neither did the sixth century BC people cast into exile. But we have acted that way.

When I read Revelation 18, the parallels with Ezekiel become obvious. Never had a people had so much only to fall so far. That’s what happened to Babylon and what happened to Rome. If only faithfulness to God had been at the center of life in the 6th Century BC and the 1st Century AD. Once again, I hear the call from scripture to be sure the main thing in my life is the main thing. “You are my sheep… and I am your God.” And today, I renew my focus.

Today’s readings: Ezekiel 33-35; Revelation 18; (and Day #5 in the 21 Day Challenge to read the Gospel of John)

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