Peace on Earth and in Our Lives *
In pursuit of the truth – www.cinopsbegone.com – Friday, December 31, 2010
“Peace! The biblical term shalom, which is usually so translated, implies more than the absence of armed conflict; it means the right order of human affairs, well-being – a world where trust and friendship prevail, where neither fear nor want nor treachery nor dishonesty is found.
“Yet the song of the angels first lays down a precondition, without which there can be no lasting peace: (God’s glory) This is the message of peace at Bethlehem: peace among men results from God’s glory.
“Those who are concerned about God’s glory first of all. God’s glory is not some private concern, left to the personal choice of the individual; it is a public affair. It is a common good, and wherever God is not honored among men, there man as well will not remain honorable.
“The reason why Christmas affects the peace of man lies in this: because it has restored God’s glory among men.”
O Lord, my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot in your hands (Ps 16:5)
“The background of this Psalm verse is the ancient image of the cup containing the lots for each man, and God holding these lots. Yet in this image two different conceptions about the meaning and challenge of time collide, conceptions that even nowadays will determine our struggle for the future.
“The pagan world view was also familiar with the image of lots, but with entirely different premises: the world is game of luck governed by the one rule - blind chance… The Bible has transformed this frightening image… But this cup with the lots is held “in your hands”, in the hands of eternal Wisdom and eternal Love.
“Because the cup is in his hands, the only losing lot would be the refusal to accept at all the lot from his hands… To draw our existence out of this time, to acknowledge this time as our true time, and out of this awareness to model this our world – such is the call of this Psalm verse… And so then, we put this new year, the new time and our future, into the hands of God: do accept us, and grant us your blessing!”
Happy New Year!
George H. Kubeck, *Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, “Co-Workers of the Truth” Meditations Daily, Dec. 29th and 31st.