Wednesday, March 5, 2008

A Kingdom for Losers

I was reading today the story of King David's anointing. His predecessor Saul was tall and handsome, built like a warrior, yet couldn't carry through the tasks appointed to him. When it came to choose a successor, the temptation was to go for someone else with the same impressive features but this wasn't God's plan. We are told that God sees people differently to how we see them - looking at other qualities than physical appearance.

A quick scan of the scriptures demonstrates amazing consistency in this theme. Again and again God chooses imperfect people to be the vehicles of salvation. Moses couldn't speak well, Jeremiah was too young, Peter denied Jesus, Paul persecuted Christians. David was just a boy when chosen to be the next king and he turned out to be a terrible spouse and father, a manipulator and a murderer - and also the greatest monarch that Israel ever had.

Jesus invitation to be a part of the Kingdom of God is open to everyone. It is striking in its inclusiveness of those who never get invited to anything else: prostitutes, tax collectors, lepers, the mentally ill, the poorest of the poor. It's a celebration of those rejected by society which exists as a challenge to us all.

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