“Look to my coming on the first light of the fifth day, at dawn look to the east.” This is Gandalf’s promise to his questioning companions as he rides away in the movie inspired by J.R.R. Tolkien’s, The Two Towers. It has become a tradition in our family to watch the whole Lord of the Rings’ series every Christmas holiday. The Two Towers is the second, and I find darkest, of the series. There are so many parallels to life here on earth; I believe Tolkien had the creative gift of imagination and understanding of the depth of good and evil that is part of life now, and especially as we move towards the end of the age.
When reading and reflecting over the scriptures today, the words, justice, righteousness and wisdom stand out. There are times when the enemy seems to be winning, and everything seems so hopeless, and our hearts cry out for justice. The platitude, “Can’t we all just get along?” does not satisfy. We need and long for our powerful king of kings to come in “Brightness with hailstones and coals of fire and lightning and rout our enemies.” It is the same cry that David prayed, living in dark caves, hiding from Saul and his men.
The root word of both justice and righteousness are the same. They cannot be separated, and are part of the character of our holy God, Yahweh, the great I AM. God is patient, but there will come a time, just like in ancient Israel and in the parables in Matthew, when God’s righteousness demands justice. “Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people producing its fruits.” Matthew 21:43.
In the last passage today, we read of Job defending himself to his so-called friends, who have gone on and on about what they think they know about God and his justice ― that Job must have sinned to have all the disasters come upon him. Still, Job clings to his integrity and righteousness and cries out for God to hear him (Job 27:5,6). It is in the middle of Job’s defence that this treasure verse is found: vs. 28 “and (God) said to man, ‘Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to turn away from evil is understanding.’”
Today may we cry out to God for justice and righteousness and wisdom as we continue to “look to the east” for his return!
Mom, wife, teacher, thoughtful follow of Jesus