Thursday, April 4, 2024

God of Mercy

If the abandoned restaurants in my town have any lesson to teach us, it's that one place is not as good as any other for a Rally's (or a Firehouse Subs or a Long John Silver's or a....). It doesn't matter how much the people like your food; if it's not easy to get into and out of your location, they aren't coming. 

And if house-hunting for my grandmother has taught me anything, it's that one neighborhood is not just as good as any other. Sometimes, the houses are too close together. Other times, the association fees are too high. In other cases, maybe there's a history of crime somewhere. 

As they say, location, location, location. 

Given this truth, where do you think might be the best place to build the Temple of the Lord?

In Jerusalem, of course. Duh. But that's the answer we give in hindsight, already knowing where the Temple of the Lord was built; the people of Israel had to think about this a little bit more critically.

Many years before Israel even started gathering the gold and bronze, the dust and clay to build the Temple, there was a plague. Of course there was a plague; it seems there was always a plague in Israel. But in this particular plague, there was a spot where the plague stopped. David rushed to get to where the Lord's angel of death put his sword away. He sped to a place between the plague and the people and there, he built an altar and offered a sacrifice to the Lord. 

The Bible tells us that on that very piece of ground, the plague stopped. Not one more Israelite died. 

And, the Bible tells us, it was on that very piece of ground that the first Temple was built. 

Of course it was. Because what better place is there to build the House of the Lord, the Temple, the place of worship...than the place where the Lord's anger stops and His mercy begins?

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