Friday after the Last Sunday after Trinity Sunday
Scripture: Jeremiah 14:7-9 (NKJV)
7 O LORD, though our iniquities testify against us, do it for Your name’s sake; For our backslidings are many, we have sinned against You.
8 O the Hope of Israel, his Savior in time of trouble, why should You be like a stranger in the land, and like a traveler who turns aside to tarry for a night?
9 Why should You be like a man astonished, like a mighty one who cannot save? Yet You, O LORD, are in our midst, and we are called by Your name; Do not leave us!
Often our sins oppress us, if we take the time to examine our lives according to the Ten Commandments and the Law of Love. Daily we fall short of loving God above all things and our neighbor as ourselves. We in no wise deserve anything from the Triune God. Jeremiah’s prayer in today’s reading teaches us the penitential nature of the Christian life. Our own iniquities testify against us, both before God and in our own hearts. Our backslidings into our favorite sins are many and often. The Lord would be just if He were to turn His face from us because our many sins and be “like a stranger in the land and like a wayfaring man who turns aside to tarry for a night.”
Luther, explaining the fifth petition of the Lord’s Prayer, wrote something similar: “We pray in this petition that our Father in Heaven would not look upon our sins, nor deny such petitions on account of them; for we are worthy of none of the things for which we pray, neither have we deserved them; but that He would grant them all to us by grace; for we daily sin much, and indeed deserve nothing but punishment.”
Although God would be just if He were to turn His face from us, He does not. Jeremiah says “Yet You, O Lord, are in our midst, and we are called by Your name. Do not leave us!” God has promised to be in the midst of His Church. He calls sinners by His Name by baptizing them into His Triune Name. And where His Name is, there He is also with every grace and blessing.
We pray: Heavenly Father, thank You for not treating us as our sins deserve, but forgiving us for the sake of Christ. Amen.