No Justice, No Peace (Matthew 10:34-39)

Sunday’s “sermon” came from a variety of voices, unified in speaking a hopeful and anti-racist message. In addition to viewing several brief videos, we heard from many of our own. Jose Thomas shared about his encounters with racism as a Black Dominican, Panamanian, Mexican, American. Judy Kaye spoke on behalf of the CFC Book Group, who recently discussed The Color of Compromise. Norma Silliman read the Sierra-Cascades Yearly Meeting of Friends’ “Minute for Black Lives,” a statement approved at SCYMF’s Annual Sessions earlier this month. Kendra Purcell introduced and shared a video about Juneteenth. Jazmin Miller spoke about what it means to become anti-racist and how to care for yourself and others in the process.

The following is a brief (8 min) reflection on Sunday’s scripture in which Jesus presents a seemingly anti-peace message. Have a listen…

Matthew 10:34-39 (NRSV): Not Peace, but a Sword

34 “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth; I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.

35 For I have come to set a man against his father,
and a daughter against her mother,
and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law;
36 and one’s foes will be members of one’s own household.

37 Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38 and whoever does not take up the cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Those who find their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake will find it.

Queries:

What does following Jesus look like right now in regard to racial injustice—for me as an individual and for the communities of which I am a part?

How might God be calling me to practice anti-racism? What about CFC?

What have been, are, or will be the signs that the kind of peace that matters to Jesus is emerging among us?

What does it mean for me, in light of this conversation, to “take up my cross”?