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And I shall abide in the house of the Lord for ever.

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posted by Luminosity 7 alias John Hewitt 7 on Thursday 1st of April 2021 09:19:56 PM

In a Jewish funeral (a tradition followed by most Christian ones as well), Psalm 23 is recited: "The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want. He has me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside the still waters. He revives my soul; He guides me on paths of righteousness for His glory. Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no harm, For you are with me. Your rod and your staff do comfort me. You set a table in sight of my enemies; You anoint my head with rich oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, And I shall abide in the house of the Lord for ever." The Psalms are the Hebrew hymnbook, the songs that inspired and encouraged amidst the fiercest opposition throughout history. Whether it was the Babylonian exile and the destruction of Solomon's great Temple (586 BCE), or the Roman Wars of the first century of the Common Era which led to the destruction of the Second Temple in Jerusalem (70 CE). And down through the last 2,000 years until the Shoah and the near destruction of an entire people. "Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death..." This is not hyperbole, but the historical truth of a people. "I will fear no harm, For you are with me." Even death is defeated by Eternal Life. As a devout Jewish man who became the greatest Christian Apostle declared, "O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?" As the Angel of Death was defeated in the first Pesach (the story of the escape from Egypt which gives true meaning to the term "Passover") so Death has no power over the faithful either. The grave cannot hold us. This Eternal Hope has sustained an entire people. As visitors to the Jewish section of the cemetery sit in this resting place (not the same one we saw yesterday by the way), they are bathed in light. But it is light filtered by shadows. In this life we often see more of the shadows, but shadows can only exist because there is the Light!

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  • Published 01.20.22
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