3rd Friday after Easter

Psalm 105:1-22, Romans 1:18–32, Ezekiel 20:39–44

They were given over. let them loose. Whether it was the Israelites or , let them loose.

The world is a very bad place. People hate. People steal. People lie. All sorts of things and behaviors are just wrong. let it be.

When writes to the Romans there is obviously an echo of ’s s to the Israelites (via Ezekiel). “Okay. Have it your way. There is an open offer of the good , just come with me.”

In our current culture, there is a heightened to Romans 1:26—27. However, the True and harsh reality is that this is only a piece of the puzzle. It only a square on the twisted and -filled quilt that makes up humanity. Look at all the other issues. Are you guilty of none of these?

Yet, despite being freed to do wrong (to ourselves, , and ), there is still an open door. Even when tells the Israelites, “fine, go,” there is something more. They—not bulls, not goats, not sheep, not lamps, not doves, not wheat, not wine, not —will be ’s pleag aroma. So much of the sacrificial system had “pleag aroma” attached to it that this is not insignificant.

The Israelites would one day return to in , even though they willingly walked away. calls each of us, too, the same way.

1) Why did let people go do what they wanted?

2) Most parents would not willingly allow their children to go astray. Why do you think appears to? Does really willingly allow this?

3) In general, is poorly misunderstood and poorly used. How do you see that reality around you?

Pastor Ian

By Pastor Ian

Ian is an ordained Elder in The Church of the Nazarene, and is currently serving as the Online Campus Pastor at Generations Community Church in Marysville, WA, USA.