These two passages are from my suggested scripture readings for yesterday, 29 April, but I find them interesting nonetheless. Both of these selections from Ezekiel and Revelation speak of being presented with a scroll, being commanded by God to eat the scroll, with the scroll first tasting sweet. Yet, Revelation speaks of the scroll turning the author's stomach sour.
To me, the image of eating the scroll from God is akin to keeping God's word posted on our doorways and in our hearts. Both statements are essentially a call to meditate on the word of God both day and night. To my ear, though, devouring the scroll is an extension of Jesus' prayer "give us this day our daily bread" as we are called to feed on God's word daily.
When I think of the Revelation 10 passage, I see some semblance of my own life. Yes, I do know the word of God is sweet to the taste, but sometimes the challenge of following it can turn my stomach sour by either anger or fear. I look back on these experiences as moments of God's grace, mercy, and a call for growth.
I must say that I see this happening now. The United States has many residents who are Christian, who feed on the sweet words of God, and yet the challenge to follow them seems to have soured many stomachs.
1. God calls us to care for the aliens among us (Lev. 19.33-34), and yet we wrestle and call each other names in striving for a humane and compassionate policy on immigration.
2. Though it may be easy to demonize the supporters of Arizona's "Papers, please" law, Christ asks us to love one another, especially our enemies and those who disagree with us. I am waiting to see this.
This is what I mean when I say I believe the tenor of contemporary political discourse to be unbiblical. We find the words of God's mercy, compassion, patience, and forgiveness to be sweet, but yet the challenge to share these gifts with our enemies seems to sour our stomachs.