Necessities of Life

to be blessed

Poverty, Blessings, Afterlife

Notes, Outline, Sketch

Outline 3

  1. Blessing as bodily requirements, from Creation onward
    1. God created, provided blessing upon blessing: clean air, clean water, food aplenty, clothing as needed, shelter sufficient,
    2. In many and various ways through the generations, people of God understood that these necessities of life were blessings from God.
  2. Mistakenly turned blessings from gifts into evidence, that only those with abundance are blessed, others not.
    1. Justified injustices, ignoring suffering, entitlement
  3. Luke: Blessing to the common people:
    1. poor, hungry, weep, reviled on J account
    2. This is the corrective that Liberation Theology brought/brings to any theology, entitlement theology, prosperity theology … which claims that abundance in this life is a sign of blessing and lack is a curse.
    3. The poor, hungry, mourning, reviled will receive all they need.
  4. We make another Mistake: turned on it’s head:
    1. that only those who lack are blessed and
    2. either that the rich are completely lost and unwelcomed in the KoG or
    3. that nothing in this world matters
    4. This last leads off again to
      • God will provide, rich need only enjoy for they are obviously blessed
      • poor, hungry, homeless, mourning, reviled deserve their circumstance,
        • others need do nothing to provide for their want.
  5. Luke woes:
    1. should keep prosperity gospel for persisting or the rich finding an excuse not to share their blessings with those in need:
    2. Woes: rich, full, laughing, spoken well of
    3. Afterlife: eternity
      • those without will be provided for in abundance
      • those with over abundance now, will have nothing
      • Corrective of Liberation Theology, God has a preferential option for the poor
  6. Then a further mistake we too often make:
    1. Since again all on this earth is nothing, everything that counts will be in life after death.
      • We can either suffer injustice quietly
      • or We can allow others to suffer injustices quietly
  7. Rather for Jesus, No excuse for injustices, for not sharing what we have with those in need
    1. God created, said it was good.
      • Good includes air, water, food, clothing, shelter
    2. God intends for all people to enjoy the basic necessities of life
      • those with over abundance: an extra responsibility to provide for those without.
      • Luke: ‘Or else, woe to them’ very real!
  8. What then is the blessing that Jesus provides to the common, poor, hungry, mourning, reviled people gathered on the plain?
  9. Dorothy Soelle provides an addition to the necessities of life:
    1. meaningful labour
    2. love: an ability to love and the opportunity to be loved.
    3. Jesus’s blessings, for those without air, water, food, clothing, shelter, is for the afterlife:
  10. More pointedly Jesus does not just promise that they will receive abundance, their fill, and laughter in the afterlife: they will receive it here in this life.
    1. Theirs is the KoG, here and now
      • They are blessed in ways beyond the physical necessities of life:
      • They are blessed perhaps with meaningful labour
      • They are blessed perhaps with the ability to love and to be loved, and to know it
        • People do not live by bread alone, but by the Word of God
      • That Word: calls us to a vocation: a meaningful work for our lives
      • That Word calls us to a love: a love as God gives to us: a love for neighbour, self, and all others: especially our enemies; and to love God with all our heart mind and strength.
  11. Common, Poor people on the plain are blessed, not just with the physical necessities of life, but the living water of life, water that never runs dry:
    1. which is to love God with all our hearts, minds and strength, ourselves, our neighbours, and especially our enemies
  12. What does this mean for us?
    1. Promise: God is for us: poor or rich, hungry or fed, mourning or joyful, reviled or spoken well of
    2. A Call to rich, fed, joyful, well-spoken of:
      • to be good stewards of blessings given us, they are for us to be able to share them with others
      • to provide care for the hungry, mourning, reviled
      • warning: that being rich can bring us to reject God’s claim on us.
  13. As always: God claims us as God’s children, not based on the abundance of our blessings, gifts given by God to us;
    1. God claims us, poor or rich, hungry or fed, just or unjust, loving or not,
    2. God claims us by Grace
  14. Question is how can we respond:
  15. Wise to know the water that we are planted into: the living water of Jesus, that Jesus gave the Samaritan woman at the well
  16. While other waters can dry up, and we are drying up qualifiers the world over with our over consumption, Jesus’s love, grace, and wisdom never run dry.
    1. And it always keeps surprising us: with change we do not welcome, with challenges we may not want
    2. but also with rewards we could not imagine were possible
    3. For with God all things are possible.