Arts & Essays

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Last week, we fussed over which set of clothes to wear for work.

Ancient, weird, violent, brilliant, surprising, mysterious. These adjectives describe Leviticus in Bell’s recent commentary, Blood, Guts, and Fire: The Gospel According to Leviticus.

Being human is amazing, and exhausting, and mysterious, and earthy, and complicated, and dirty, and so very humbling and educational.

Communication is, in its deepest and most profound sense, more than simply a transmission of information. It is communion.

Along the muddied banks of the Jordan, thin reeds the color of sage reached toward the sky, bending gently in the breeze. A silver mist clung to the water’s surface, and as the sun pierced the clouds, the haze glistened in the morning light. I would have preferred solitude, being alone with my thoughts and reflections. But there were other travelers standing along the water’s edge this morning. They had come, like me, to pay homage to this sacred place, and all that had transpired here.

If the hireling does not have the trust of the sheep he must harass and coerce them into moving where he wants them to go. They are listening for the voice of the master. If they do not hear it they will not be compliant.

There is no need to divide our church into “real” Adventists and “non-compliant” Adventists. We are ONE with differences. To separate out or shame those whose differences offend us is to allow our personal fears to override the uniting power of God’s love.

God has a penchant for the lowly and insignificant. If current culture dismisses your value, God does the opposite.

Indivisible, despite its weaknesses, takes the mask off. It shows the costs of war on the human soul and psyche. And it says that healing is possible, but it may take time.

How are we Adventists to think of ourselves now?...The compliance vote has laid bare a divide in Adventism. If it is eventually bridged it will only be with time and courage and honesty. Are we a religion of fear and coercion or one of confidence and community?