Sally wonders whether bankers, who have been forgiven debts of billions of dollars, will now forgive the debts of small borrowers in difficulties, or whether they will play the part of the unforgiving servant in Jesus’ parable, Matthew 18:23-35. It seems from the report Sally links to that our Chancellor of the Exchequer is taking the part of the king in that parable, but I wonder if he will be able to enforce his will as firmly as the king did.
In my reading through Isaiah I came this morning to this passage, which I feel may be a message for the church in Britain (and maybe elsewhere) today:
You have forgotten God your Saviour;
you have not remembered the Rock, your fortress.
Therefore, though you set out the finest plants
and plant imported vines,
11 though on the day you set them out, you make them grow,
and on the morning when you plant them, you bring them to bud,
yet the harvest will be as nothing
in the day of disease and incurable pain.
Isaiah 17:10-11 (TNIV)
Here is my comment on these verses, taken from the comments on Isaiah which I have been posting at qaya thoughts:
Human attempts to import new ways of producing fruit will look promising but ultimately come to nothing.
If the church is to produce any real and lasting fruit, it needs to avoid relying on imported techniques, and to remember God himself and rely on the growth which he will bring.
In a quiet cul-de-sac near my house (Baddow Hall Avenue), on the road verge, there are some old apple trees. This year they have produced a bumper crop of apples. Yesterday morning, as I walked past on my way to church at 9 am, the road was covered with apples which had fallen during the night. They were lying on the concrete, bruised and some already pecked at. By the time I walked home at 1 pm* many of the apples had been completely squashed by passing cars. Some remained intact in the gutter. But it seems no one wanted to pick them up to eat, or even to take the abundant undamaged fruit still on the trees – we all prefer to pay for shiny supermarket fruit.
Proverbs 10:5, Matthew 9:37-38, 21:28-32, John 4:34-38.
At Soul Survivor Jim Yost said something like “Don’t pray for revival. Revival is already here. Pray instead for labourers to bring in the revival harvest”.
* Our service doesn’t really last four hours. I went early to pray and stayed late to talk.