Blessed… I Just Don’t Get It

Now as the Pharisees were gathering, Jesus asked them, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?” “David’s son,” they replied. He said, “Then how is it that David, inspired by the Holy Spirit, called him Lord when he said, The Lord said to my lord, ‘Sit at my right side until I turn your enemies into your footstool’?  If David calls him Lord, how can he be David’s son?” Nobody was able to answer him. And from that day forward nobody dared to ask him anything (Matthew 22:41-46, Common English Bible).

All my life I have struggled with math. I can do basic arithmetic but higher math, I just don’t get it. I have been heard to say, many times, “Math was invented by demon possessed people, out to drive us all nuts.” I also say, in full knowledge of its truth, I doubt I would be able to use the titles Dr. or Rev. if it wasn’t for my wife and her understanding of algebra and her ability to tutor me. Do do realize that I didn’t have to take a math class in grad school. A fact for which I will always be grateful.

While I didn’t take math in grad school, I did have my fair share of theology. I can safely say, at least some of it, I didn’t get. While taking one class I was required to read The Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals by Emmanuel Kant. I read the book ten times. I couldn’t then, nor can I tell you now, about anything I read. Fortunately in is a very short book. I cannot understand for the life of me why theologians think they need to write in a way that those who might read it can’t understand it. Kant certainly wasn’t the only author during seminary with whom I struggled to understand.

When I read the lesson today, I feel like I am back in seminary. I just don’t get it. I have read the lesson many times in my life. In preparing for this post I have read it several more. Perhaps I am a bit lacking here. Perhaps with this story I have, as my father told me many times (he understood math and didn’t understand why I didn’t) built a wall that prevented me from understanding.

Jesus’ logic is as follows, The Christ can’t be the “Son of David” because David said, “the Lord said to my Lord…If David calls him Lord how can he be David’s son?” I don’t need to go further with this because I am confused already.

But Jesus is a descent of David. We believe Jesus to be both fully human and fully divine. Would that not make Jesus a “Son of David?” At the same time, he is also the “Son of God.” I am confused by the denial of the human part of the Christ.

The lesson concludes by telling us that from that point, “no one dared ask him anything.” I can say, I get that part. I don’t know that the Pharisees were as confused then as I am now, but I would be afraid by asking more questions I would just deepen the hole in which I find myself.

I can’t help but lean on Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 13, “Now we see a reflection in a mirror; then we will see face-to-face. Now I know partially, but then I will know completely in the same way that I have been completely known” (1 Corinthians 13:12).

To what can you say, “I just don’t get it?”

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Joy and Thanksgiving,

Copyright 2017, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

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