I am tempted to title this week’s sermon “Bovine Manure” for that is the value we might give to presumptions that particular casualties, disasters, accidents, diseases, … reflect God’s wrath and judgement against a particular group of sinners.
He asked them, “Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. — Luke 13:2-3 (NRSV)
“Bovine Manure” is also the prescription for those that do not produce good fruit.
He replied, ‘Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig around it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.’ ” — Luke 13:8-9 (NRSV)
Garden work, especially when involving Bovine Manure is not fun. Rewarding in the long term, but not an enjoyable way to spend a warm Saturday. Yet if we are to be useful Christians, we are called to deep introspection of our lives with the addition of appropriate nutrition (reading, prayer, fasting, fellowship, and acts of charity) so we may yield dramatic improvements in our lives and in the lives of those with whom we work and play.
I will have more to say about Luke 13:1-9 on Sunday, February 28th, at Temple Terrace Presbyterian Church.