February 26 Num. 15-18 & Hebrews 1-2


We hear again about God’s mercy on all his people. “Then the priest shall make atonement for the whole Israelite community; and they will be forgiven, since it was inadvertence, and for their inadvertence they have brought their offering: an oblation to the LORD as well as their purification offering before the LORD. Not only the whole Israelite community but also the aliens residing among you shall be forgiven, since the inadvertent fault affects all the people.” What strikes me most about the word inadvertent is that it means you did not plan. I know we can after long thought chose to sin. But most of our sin comes from a lack of Godly planning so that our sin is mostly inadvertent. We are frail. More than condemnation we need mercy. For the Israelites, the priest was to help the sinner make atonement. Good priests do the same today. I have been blessed to never have a judgmental priest when I made my confessions. Never in 57 years of confessing. I know that others have. The Lord God wanted the Israelites to know the way to remain in communion with God and the community. That is the same today.

Hebrews opens with these favorite lines, “In times past, God spoke in partial and various ways to our ancestors through the prophets; in these last days, he spoke to us through a son. . .” We are privileged to know (which means to love) the words of Jesus. The whole message is before us, with us, around us, in us. Read – pray the poetic words of Hebrews 1:3-13 again. Hebrews also says, “therefore, he (Jesus) had to become like his brothers in every way, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest before God to expiate the sins of the people.” Jesus way, the way of the Church is mercy.

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