Daily Reflection
August 21st, 2004
Sue Crawford
Department of Political Science and International Studies
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The glory of the Lord will dwell in our land.

“At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.” (Matt 27:51)  The tearing of the temple curtain at the moment of Christ’s death is one of my favorite biblical images.  There are many stories of the awesome power of the presence of God in the “holy of holies” in the temple.  The presence of the glory of God there is so overwhelming that only certain people can enter the holy of holies and then only if appropriate preparations are made.  The first reading for today reveals some of this awesome power, a power that causes the earth to shine and that causes humans to fall prone.  The reading from Ezekiel is a portion of a long description of a vision Ezekiel saw of the temple during a period of exile.  The passages for today include a glimpse of the awesome power of God and the promise of God to be present in the temple; to make the temple His throne, where He will set His feet, and where He will dwell among the children of Israel.  

While the reading from Ezekiel stresses the awesome power of the glory of God, the Psalm stresses other manifestations of the presence of the glory of God, namely peace, justice, kindness, and salvation.  The teaching of Jesus in Matthew stresses the need for greatness and authority to manifest itself in service and stresses the problematic consequences that result when it doesn’t.  Through word and example, Jesus shows us the glory of God evident when in a life spent for others.  Jesus teaches us how to behave when the glory and authority of God dwell within us and then makes the ultimate sacrifice to make it possible.  Praise God for the awesome glory of God now dwells within and among us.  Pray that peace, justice, salvation, kindness and truth are truly at hand; that we will humble ourselves and serve one another to allow the glory of God to work through us. 

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