I’m preaching tomorrow from Matthew’s gospel and Jesus calling Peter to forgive seventy seven times or more likely, seventy times seven – more than he can count.
I’m reflecting on 10 years passing since the 9/11 attacks in New York and Pennsylvania and asking what the forgiveness option might have yielded. Who knows? But it seems to me that it beats the alternatives…
Here is an excerpt from tomorrow’s sermon…
“Everyone was angry and affronted and a call for forgiveness would have been seen as weakness, and nations are not allowed to show weakness are they. Well, that is the rhetoric… I wonder what the laying down of ‘strength and might’ in the face of attack, would have meant.
I suspect that something like that would change the world… that was, after all, exactly what Jesus taught, and did.
Instead, a variety of sources, including the Associated Press, estimate the civilian
deaths in Iraq from 2003-2006 stands somewhere between 90,000 and 111,000. The death toll from the 9/11 attacks was 2,751. Afghanistan is another story altogether.
I do not believe anyone who thinks they are winning anything when that is the result of trying to seek justice for the deaths of 9/11.”
I found this statement from the Rev. Dr. James H. Cooper’s (of Trinity Church in Wall Street, New York City) preaching notes:
“Let’s try to make this anniversary more like a season and not just a day.
Let’s look back ten years and remember. Let’s also look ahead ten years, considering
how we might make the world better, and remembering that as God loves us and
forgives us, so too do we love and forgive.”