Tag Archives: Psalm 119

Teach me, O Lord

Leviticus 19:1-2,9-18
1 Corinthians 3:10-11,16-23
Matthew 5:38-48
Psalm 119:33-40

What a great set of readings.  Leviticus has the Ten Commandments, Corinthians describes us as God’s Temple, Matthew has us loving our enemies, and Psalm 119 (the letter H of the alphabet Psalm, the longest at 176 verses) starts, “Teach me, O Lord.” 

We need to learn from God, not from men, though we learn from God through men, men of God.  From Lev 9-10, we learn that God expects us to give a fair share of everything to the poor and from v. 15 to judge everyone fairly.  Generally, Americans think that smacks of socialism, so it is a hard sell.  Yet, that is God’s word.  How should it work?  Instead of paying Lawrence J. Ellison, CEO of Oracle Corporation $96,160,000, why not pay him $160,000 and spread the $96 million among the other employees?  Why should Mark G. Parker get $35.2 million from Nike when there are thousands of workers for the company making $5 a day?  You get the idea.  In the world of humans, greed rules, but God commands generosity.

Notice in Lev 19:18 the verse quoted by Jesus that has a way of making us uncomfortable.  If I choose to follow Jesus, I must give up the ways of the world.  Negotiate a contract that gives you a living wage and pays the rest to other workers; or take the ‘extra’ money and give it to a charity that actually helps people in need (for feeding people, Action Against Hunger and Bread for the World Institute have great ratings).  Why not give it all to your church?  Most of that goes to keeping the doors open.  That is good and we need to support it, but it is not the same as helping the poor, healing the sick, etc.

Be righteous and do good.

Mike Lawrence