Lumen Fidei: The Faith of Israel

After Abraham, the biblical narrative moves quickly to Israel–a people and a land.  Both are not yet realized, and a long journey into personhood and place occurs.  Trust is at the heart of Israel’s development, but it is marked with moments of temptations to default on that trust, and actual experiences of doing so.  God gives Moses to the people to guide them and mediate their relationship with God.

Once again, we see our story in Israel’s story.  We journey unevenly, with temptations and defections marking our pathway.  We need a mediator, and God provides one in Jesus.  Without Moses, Israel would have perished in the wilderness.  Without Jesus, we would die in our sin.

Through it all we join with Israel in battling the original sin–to stop trusting God and begin trusting in ourselves.  We make our own gods and worship them instead of the true God.  Singular trust is shattered into the never-ending quest for one thing after another to give us what God alone was meant to give.  Brokenness and fragmentation replace unity and oneness.  We need salvation (wholeness).

So, the biblical narrative is filled with priests and prophets who call the people of God back to faith–to trust–to singular devotion.  Where the invitation is accepted, the light is rekindled.  Where it is rejected, we are in darkness still!

About Steve Harper

Retired seminary professor, who taught for 32 years in the disciplines of Spiritual Formation and Wesley Studies. Author and co-author of 42 books. Also a retired Elder in The Florida Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church.
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