Friday, September 07, 2012

"Houses Are for Occupancy"

From: The Unhappy Hipster
At First Presbyterian Church in Jackson, Minnesota, I've been preaching through the gospel of Matthew. The sermon text this week is Matthew 12:38-50. Here are verses 43:45 (Jesus is speaking):
“When the unclean spirit has gone out of a person, it passes through waterless places seeking rest, but finds none. Then it says, ‘I will return to my house from which I came.’ And when it comes, it finds the house empty, swept, and put in order. Then it goes and brings with it seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter and dwell there, and the last state of that person is worse than the first. So also will it be with this evil generation.”
About these verses, scholar and commentator Dale Bruner writes:
Empty, neutral, externally Christianized people sooner or later find their little passions - from civic clubs to sports, from politics to parlor games - insufficiently fulfilling. For our own good, therefore, Jesus summons us to 'Fill the house!' to join the church and to take her worship services seriously, to appropriate our filling by the Holy Spirit given to us in Christian baptism, and to become Jesus' disciples in the world of our work. For our empty, swept, tidy houses will be filled sooner or later by something, because houses are for occupancy.*
Emphasis added.

The question for the week: With what will you be fulfilled?

[Bruner, Matthew: A Commentary. Volume 1: The Christbook, 579.]

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