Thursday, September 24, 2009


The Shabbat between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur is called Shabbat Shuvah--the Sabbath of Return. There are two special haftorah readings* for this week which have to do with repentance. Some excerpts:

Hosea 14:1-2

Return, O Israel, to the LORD your God.
Your sins have been your downfall!

Take words with you and return to the LORD.
Say to him: "Forgive all our sins and receive us graciously,
that we may offer the fruit of our lips.

Micah 7:18-19

Who is a God like you, who pardons sin
and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance?
You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy.

You will again have compassion on us;
you will tread our sins underfoot
and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea.

On Shabbat Shuvah, Micah reminds us of something crucial during this season of repentance: Where is God in all of this? Delighting to show mercy.

Yeshua told a famous parable about return: the story of the prodigal son. The point of the parable is that God's response to us when we make to welcome us back to Him.

To read more about Yeshua's parable, I invite you to check out my first contribution to The Set Table--a commentary on Yeshua's parable of the prodigal son.

May you find shalom as you make your way back to God on this Shabbat Shuvah.

*Hosea 14:2-10, Micah 7:18-20

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