Harsh Words from Jesus to the Present Generation

This meditation is based on a passage for July 7, 2010 in the Daily Lectionary Year 2 from the Book of Common Worship for the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) (1993).

Text: Matthew 23:27-39

Reflection and Question: This is the voice of Jesus at His most angry and desperate in the face of the religious establishment. He echoes John the Baptist as He hurls the epithet, “You brood of vipers!” at the Scribes and Pharisees. For centuries we avoided the message in these words by using them against the Jews. We do well to accept that Jesus’ words are meant for us — we are the present generation who ignore the prophets God sends. And we can admit this because of the wonderfully loving image also included here: Jesus as the brooding hen. When did you shun a sage sent by God?

Prayer: Jesus, our hearts warm to Your exclamation, “How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings!” Yet, we confess, so many times we have been unwilling to come. Forgive us; ask again. Amen.