The Rev. Noah Van Niel
St. John the Evangelist
October 15th, 2017
Pentecost 19 (Proper 23 A): Exodus 32:1-14; Psalm 106:1-6, 19-23; Philippians 4:1-9; Matthew 22:1-14
Of all the exceptional capacities human beings have, one of the most unique is our inherent capacity to be religious. From the earliest discoveries of human civilization, to the Egyptians, to the Native Americans, to the people of Israel, to the Greeks and Romans, to the East and to the West and the North and the South human beings share the conviction that there is something more to this world than what meets their senses, they share the drive to explore it, and the desire to worship it. Our capacity and inclination to worship is part of being human.
Like most deep desires, this desire to worship can be a good thing and a bad thing. It’s good in that our questing spirits drive us to discover of God and experience God in our lives. In fact I see the common human desire to worship the divine as a powerful argument that God exists, how else could you explain such commonalities across such wildly different times and places? But the impulse to worship can be a bad thing when that impulse is directed away from God, for then it can lead us down some wayward paths. Our human need to worship can often lead us into the realm of idolatry. Continue reading