Thus the kingdom was secured in Solomon’s hands.
I Kings 2:46b
Power can be a dangerous thing. What started as a peaceful transfer of power soon turns into a bloodbath in order to protect the power received.
As a fan of the Godfather I’ve been wanting to speak about this scene for a while. Each time I watch it brings new insight into why the scene is so powerful. The church and its liturgies parallel to the human condition and its need for divine grace.
Our sin and the need for grace shows us that we have some choices to make. We either renounce the forces of wickedness or we don’t, repent of our sin or we don’t, accept Christ as Savior or we don’t.
Yet the human condition is such that time and time again our hunger for power and control guides us to the wrong decisions. We take our destiny into our own hands and hope that God blesses it somehow.
The biblical text for today is the ancient version of this video. King Solomon wanted to make sure that he remained in control so he went on a spree to eliminate his enemies. And just like in the Godfather, the writers seem to suggest that somehow this behavior and God’s intention were one and the same.
In our daily life we might not have people killed to be in control. Yet we do, with words we say, actions we take, attitudes we have, we send a message that somehow the God we serve is ok with the ways we choose to live our lives.
Then Sunday after Sunday we gather together and tell the story of faith. In telling it we remind ourselves that we do have these tendencies and we once again, renounce, repent, and accept. Our baptism calling us back, reminding us that we are cleansed, that we belong to God, that all people are God’s children. That real power is the power of the sacrificed & resurrected Savior . . .