Archive for January 2009
“Follow Christ and God will See You Through,” Epiphany III, January 25, 2009: preached at Bethlehem Lutheran Church, Oakland, California
Epiphany III, January 25, 2009
Jonah 3:1-5,10 Psalm 62:5-12 1 Corinthians 7: 29-31 Mark 1: 14-20
Follow Christ and God will See You Through
Let’s hear our prayer for today again: Almighty God, you sent your Son to proclaim your kingdom and to teach with authority. Anoint us with the power of your Spirit, that we, too, may bring good news to the afflicted, bind up the broken hearted, and proclaim liberty to the captives: through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
We can look through a window provided by Mark’s words and see Jesus doing that. Proclaiming the Kingdom the way God sent him to do. When John was arrested, Jesus stepped right in and proclaimed the good news. “The time is fulfilled. The reign of God is at hand. Repent and believe the good news.” The good news referred to a victory for the King in Heaven. It is like the victory that our President Barach Obama celebrated last Tuesday. What a moving experience we had watching his inaugural with thousands of others in the Oracle Coliseum!
Now repentance and faith are required in spite of the opposing events that transpire. John was arrested and he would later be beheaded. We also know that Jesus would end up on the cross. But the good news is that the victory belongs to God. This belief requires that we exercise our faith, even in the face of evidence to the contrary.
Jesus’ preaching flings a net over the fishermen, whom he chooses as his disciples: Simon, whom he called, Peter, Andrew, and then the sons of Zebedee, James and John. They were not poor. They must have had a business, because James and John left their father Zebedee in his fishing boat with the “hired men.” They drop their fishing business and follow Jesus. If you remember the rich young man whom Jesus loved. He was too attached to his wealth to give it up and follow. His attachment to Jesus did not match his attachment to his wealth.
To understand this story, we need only think about Obama’s new administration. Hilary Clinton, Timothy Geithner, Tom Daschle, Eric Holder, and all the others that President Obama is gathering around himself, have dropped everything and are following him. And the way his name, “Barach” means the “blessed one,” we pray for God’s blessing upon him and them, because as one commentator said, “We have again given a Black man the worst job in the country.” Thus in spite of everything his new administration is up-against, we exercise our faith, and lift our prayers up to God.
Even republicans like Robert Gates are dropping everything and answering President Obama’s call to serve. He is also sending George Mitchell to reconcile Hamas, the Palestinians, and Israel. Then he is sending Richard Holbrooke against the Taliban to Afghanistan and Pakistan to deal with the conflict over there. What an exercise in faith they need! What feelings the aftermath of this latest war in the Gaza strip has stirred up, I can’t even imagine. And as to the Taliban, when the new government of Pakistan sent twenty-five peace makers to them, they beheaded them all. What faith their missions require! At Bethlehem we don’t need quite that much, but we also need a great deal of faith to believe that we can grow and thrive doing God’s will and mission in this place.
We do not only have this new administration in Washington, however, because we proclaim the good news of the heavenly administration of Jesus Christ. That makes Bethlehem Lutheran Church and our exercise of faith here very important, because through prayer and our worship, we have an attachment with the almighty power of love and reconciliation. The one in us is greater than the one in the world. Whereas the power of our president is limited, Christ, the Son, who rules us from the Kingdom of Heaven and forms the beloved community around us, has a power that is not limited. And we are called to follow this Christ, who has the power to change our curses into blessings. Because what are the wars we are in, the attacks of 9/11, Hurricane Katrina, and our economic melt down, but very real curses that have fallen upon us. Following Jesus, we all become Barach-blessings, who live out of a hope against hope, exercising our faith, dropping everything between us and God, and proclaiming the victory of our God to the afflicted, the broken hearted and the languishing captives.
What an exercise in faith we need! Believe you me, the big names who follow Obama need the same exercise in faith, and need to hear the good news of the victory won, where Christ can change our curses into blessings.
Look at Jonah. God sends him on a mission to Nineveh to fling a gospel net around that city, which was the capital of Israel’s enemy, Assyria and it was known for its brutality the world over. This capital city is so populated that it becomes a three day walk just to get through the city. Jonah preaches God’s Word and to his dismay, the people repent and believe him. Even though Jonah cannot give up hoping for Nineveh’s destruction, God forgives them. When they repent and God sees that they have turned from their evil ways, God changes his mind about the calamity that he said he would bring upon them. You can see how important it is for us to get up, dust ourselves off, follow Jesus, and proclaim the good news to the afflicted, bind up the broken hearted, and proclaim release to the captives.
Let me recall President Obama’s preacher Jeremiah Wright. I attended a revival in Philadelphia where I heard him preach three times. He is a powerful servant of God. You and I know that he did not say “God bless America!” But still if we really repent and believe the good news of Jesus Christ, God will change our curses into blessings. If we do not believe and do not repent, then we can expect more calamities. Jeremiah Wright is no Benedict Arnold. A general in the Revolutionary War, Benedict Arnold delivered West Point into the hands of the British. Jeremiah Wright does not deliver us into the hand of our enemies, but into the hands of the living God – and that is no betrayal. That is the most secure place for us to be. Especially when our new president proclaims a new openness and transparency instead of secrecy; let us repent! He denounces torture, let us repent! And at least he is closing Guantanamo and our secret prisons, let us repent! He is not yet proclaiming liberty to the captives, but at least a humane treatment for them is in the offing. He also wants to change the mindset that gets us into all these wars. Thus I believe President Obama is setting the joy of repentance afoot among us, and in that way we can get to God’s heart, and pray that God spare us from further bloodshed here and abroad, from our economic melt-down, the coming recession or depression it is bringing, and other inevitable calamities that can befall us.
So you see how Jonah hits the target right in the bulls-eye: if we repent and believe like the people of Nineveh, then we will be spared further calamities.
We want to hear the call of Jesus and follow after him. Obama’s hope is empty, if God alone is not our rock, our salvation, our fortress, that is, our security, shelter and safety. I am now in the Psalm. Trust God at all times, pour out your hearts to God in prayer. Whether we are rich or poor, if we are poor we are but a breath, if we are rich and famous, we are but a delusion. We are nothing without our hearts set on Christ to follow him. Don’t have confidence in extortion! Like the extortion of oil from other countries. Don’t set vain hopes on robbery. The Psalm does not mince words! It is one thing to rob a bank and another if bailed- out bankers want to rob us. “Should your riches increase, do not set your heart on them” says the Psalm. Our hearts have to be set on following Christ. Money and possessions are false gods. Do not set your hearts on them. When we put God first, then our hearts are not set on our money and it is not the end of the world when we take a hit in our pensions and income. But it is hard when the bills pile up and you don’t know how you are going to pay them. But God will provide.
When we are following Christ, we are attached to him, our hearts are set on him, and then we can have a greater detachment from the things of this world. St Paul says, have everything as if you don’t have it, because the present form of the world is passing away. (Ours is too. Let’s not fool ourselves.) Paul is saying the same thing as Jesus, just the other way around. If the Kingdom of God is at hand, then the form of this world is passing away. And following Jesus, we rejoice at the good news. But people are everywhere losing their jobs, their houses, their pensions, what have you. This requires an exercise in faith. But when we repent and believe, the beloved community becomes near at hand. Again, our faith at Bethlehem is very important, because we follow the One who changes curses into blessings, when we proclaim the good news to the afflicted, bind up the broken hearted, and proclaim liberty to the captives.
Let us exercise the faith in which we trust in God, set our hearts on and attach ourselves to Christ and follow after, because that will make all the difference. “Seek ye first the kingdom of our God and God’s righteousness and all these things,” our jobs, a living wage, our houses, our pensions, prosperity in our business, “will be added unto us.” But when we place these things first, then all these things will be subtracted from us, which is happening right now in a mounting and multiplying way.
Thus you see how important our exercise of faith is here in Bethlehem to all the hope this new administration has proclaimed. Let’s set our hearts on our rock of salvation, Jesus Christ our Lord. He can change any curses into blessings. Let us repent and believe the good news. God will not requite us according to our works. God is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love! (Psalm 103.8 )
We follow you, Oh Christ, and you hold our right hand. You give us counsel and receive us with favor. Whom have we in heaven but you and there is nothing on earth we desire other than you. Our flesh and heart may fail, but God is the strength of our hearts and our portion forever (Psalm 73: 23-26).
Let the nets of the holy Gospel capture us so we follow Jesus Christ our Lord and proclaim the good news to the afflicted, bind up the broken hearted, and proclaim liberty to the captives! Amen.
A Study of Dilemmas Dr. Peter Krey for Critical Thinking
1. If God is perfectly loving, God must wish to abolish evil
and if God is all-powerful, God must be able to.
But evil exists.
∴ God cannot be both omnipotent and perfectly loving.
(If p, then not q) and (if r, then not q)
q, therefore not p v not r.
Here it is (P → not Q) & (R → not Q)
In notation: Q
—————- ∴ not P v not R
Now unless we are Christian Scientists, we will not hold
that evil does not exist. Thus we have to grasp the dilemma by
the horns. This expression means that we have to refute only one
of the conjuncts and the conditional premise falls and then we
can argue that the dilemma may be valid, but because the
conditional premise is false, the conclusion need not be true.
Thus for example we could argue that although God is all-
powerful, God restricts his/her power voluntarily to allow for
∴ we are not forced to accept this very negative
2. If a student is fond of learning, s/he needs no stimulus and
if s/he dislikes learning, no stimulus will be of any avail.
But any student is either fond of learning or dislikes it.
∴ a stimulus is either needless or of no avail.
(If p, then q) and (if not p, then r)
p v not p, therefore q v r.
Here it is (P → Q) & ( not P → R)
In notation: P v not P
—————— ∴ Q v R
Now by challenging the disjunctive premise we can claim it
to be false and thus go between the horns of the dilemma.
We argue that students have all kinds of attitudes to
learning: fondness, dislike, and indifference. Thus the
conclusion is not false, but the argument does not constitute
adequate grounds for accepting the conclusion.
3. The third way to give a rebuttal to a dilemma, which is a very
devastating kind of argument, is to oppose the dilemma with a
Protagoras tutored Euathlus in the study of law, and not being
able to pay tuition, Euathlus promised to pay from the earnings
of his first case. But then he never practiced law. Protagoras
had to take him to court for his money and his charge took the
form of a dilemma.
If Euathlus loses his case, then he must pay me (by the
judgment of the court); if he wins this case he must pay me (by
the terms of the contract). He must either lose or win the case.
∴ Euathlus must pay me.
Euathlus countered Protagoras as follows:
If I win this case, I shall not have to pay (by the judgment
of the court); if I lose this case, I shall not have to pay
Protagoras (by the terms of the contract). I must either lose or
win the case. ∴ I do not have to pay Protagoras.
If L, then P (by judgment) If L, then not P (by contract)
If W, then P (by contract) If W, then not P (by judgment)
———–L v W L v W
————∴ P ∴ not P
Had you been the judge, how would you have decided?
A Constructive Dilemma:
(If p, then q) and (if r, then s)
p v r, therefore q v s.
——- Here it is (P → Q) & (R → S)
In notation: P v R
—————— ∴ Q v S
A Destructive Dilemma:
(If p, then q) and (if r, then s)
not q v not s , therefore not p v not r .
Here it is ————- (P → Q) & (R → S)
In notation: not Q v not S
———————– ∴ not P v not R
Philosophy of Religion, Diablo Valley College , Dr. Peter Krey July 20, 2004
David Hume lays some heavy skepticism on people who believe in God. He writes in Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion:
Our ideas reach no farther than our experience:
We have no experience of divine attributes and operations:
I need not conclude my syllogism: you can draw
the inference yourself.
Now after the first shock of reading such an argument, the question arises whether it is valid. First, it came as a relief to notice that there were two negative premises, and Hume may have been counting on the fact that few people know the rules that determine the validity of syllogisms. None are valid with two negative premises.
But that proves too easy a solution, because the first premise really needs to be translated into a positive universal.
No ideas are thoughts that reach farther than experience.
All ideas about divine attributes and operations are thoughts that reach farther than experience.
Therefore no ideas are ideas about divine attributes and operations.
Symbolized it becomes
No I are E. ———-EAE Figure II
All D are E ———-Valid Syllogism: Cesare.
———-No I are D.
Thus the only way to disagree with Humes‘ skepticism is to challenge his premises. The fact that there are a priori ideas show that they can come before experience and be independent of experience. Thus his first premise is untrue, and therefore the conclusion does not follow.
In another translation:
All ideas are representations of experience.
No divine attributes and operations are representations of experience.
Therefore no ideas are about divine attributes and operations.
The conclusion flies in the face of so many ideas about divine attributes and operations. Just think of the many ideas about the economic and immanent Trinity. Because the syllogism is valid, a premise has to be untrue. It is the second premise: many religious people experience a healing or renewal of their lives brought about by the grace of God.
Christ Lutheran Church
El Cerrito, California
Reformation Sunday – October 25, 1992
Far be it from me to preach an anti-Catholic sermon today, or any Lutheran triumphalism. The Reformation represents a challenge to us in the whole church proclaiming Christ to a world in crisis. The 16th Century Religious Renewal is trying to provoke a 20th century religious renewal or we can almost say a 21st century religious renewal. And what does religion mean? It means relationship, relationship with God, relationship with each other.
For us today, Christianity does not lay down beside other world religions very easily to be just one of many world religions. And our faith will refuse to adjust to secularism, whether the Marxist variety or our own practical agnosticism, not to say atheism. For all of that, just look at how Godless you and I are. We don’t have to speak of atheists anywhere else.
And our faith in Jesus Christ is not like some old man lay down to die. When hearing professors talk in the university, they talk as if our faith were a quaint antique of the past. In East Germany they called Christianity an unscientific superstition…but Marxism itself has turned out to be a great delusion.
I believe the rumors about Christianity’s demise have been greatly exaggerated (to use Mark Twain’s words). That old man who dies, rises up in glorious resurrection…and the story starts all over again.
The gospel of Christ is surging with renewal, like a powerful mountain growing up out of the sea, only the tip of which we now see, but rising higher and higher and showing the inadequacy of all other religions and the futility of all secularism without God and God’s Christ.
Let’s turn to the gospel lesson for Reformation Sunday. Let’s place ourselves under these words, let them break on our ears, and let them light up our minds, so with Christ burning in them, they can light the path before us today.
What will we consider? We ride in God’s Word like a time-machine when we continue in it. The truth will set us free. The truth who is Christ. The truth as opposed to lies. These words from the Gospel of John are beautiful because they can refer to things of the world and to things of the church and God. But I want to show how our lives receive a new basis in Christ and a new birth of freedom is in store for this world. Let us get on with the mission of Christ. Let Christ start with you and me.
If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples. Those are two conditions that come before: You will know the truth and the truth will make you free. So we have to read our Bibles to ourselves, to our families, to our children, here before the congregation. But we don’t stop there with the reading. The word is a vehicle. “Search the scriptures for in them you think you have eternal life, and they bear witness to me. And yet you refuse to come to me for life” (John 5:39).
You see, the word is like a time machine in which we can travel back through time or ahead in time. But more importantly, the Word of God is a time machine in which Christ can travel into our time and be with us in our lives.
John uses philosophical terms: you will know the truth and the truth will set you free, but you and I know that John proclaims Christ as a person is the truth. Jesus says: I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father but by me. So Christ is the truth. Christ is the liberator who sets us free.
All the humanists in Luther’s day renamed themselves with classical names, like Agricola, Melanchthon, Oecolampadius. Melanchthon, for example, means “black earth.” Melancholy comes from the word “black.” Interestingly enough, Luther was no real humanist, but used Humanism for the gospel. He was called Eleutherius, which mean the “liberator” or the “free one.” He was not comfortable with it though, and perhaps because he knew that Christ is the real eleutherius, the liberator and savior of us all, and not Luther. Whom the Son sets free, is free indeed. Yes, the truth shall set you free.
Thank God that these words also apply to the world and are not church-bound. I thought the town meeting format for the second presidential debate was superbly designed to confront the candidates with truth. The truth needs to be spoken to power, and those who have the courage to speak the truth need their right protected to speak it. That Perot can get in there and blurt out some pretty truthful observations is something that makes democracy strong. And once the truth is heard, you can bet that it will work toward more freedom.
But it is easy to harp on politicians. Real renewal starts with you and me. How much truth are you willing to bear about yourself? How much truth am I willing to hear about myself? If you are like me – little shutters go down over my ears, and I just stop hearing what someone says to me. Why? because I cannot bear it.
In my own case, I have a high threshold of physical pain, but a very low threshold for inward pain. I’m not sure if it’s emotional pain, psychological pain, or spiritual pain. All I know is that learning some things about myself is very painful. And if you are like me you avoid these painful learning experiences, and end up all comfy and cozy with a lot of lies. So often we refuse to go through our growing pains.
But Christ comes to us in a way we don’t expect. We know how God should come to us. We would like God powerful and almighty, ready to save us on our terms. But Christ comes weak and vulnerable. Luther says, as a baby, like a worm in a crib, and then gets nailed to a cross. That’s not how I want God to come to me. God is outrageous! And then Christ was rejected by his own.
But you and I know that a baby can wrap all the grown-ups of a whole household around its finger. And a baby is a bundle of love. So in Christ, God speaks the truth to us in love. We can dare to draw close to Christ. Christ helps us bear the cross of truth better. Christ speaks the truth to us in love. That love makes the heaviest cross light, and makes us willing and able to bear it.
That goes for even dying with Christ. The love of God makes that possible for us. God was in Christ. And “no one can see God and live.” Once Dietrich Bonhöffer said: “When Christ calls us, he bids us come and die.” That is freedom. In the words of the great spiritual: “Free at last, free at last. Thank God almighty, I’m free at last.”
So there is pain, suffering, and a death we die in Christ, which frees us from sin. Our old self dies and we become alive to God. Sin therefore loses its power over us. Sin has power over our old selves, which are selfish, based on lies, and can’t give up all the illusions we hold so dear.
What I’m describing is your liberation in Christ. That’s how the Son sets us free from sin. We hear the truth. We encounter the living truth in a love encounter. It’s a rendez vous with the one who loves us, and holding us, lets us die, so that we rise up new beings filled with grace and truth, flesh of his flesh and bone of his bone, raised up to become alive to God and what pleases God. And the powers of sin cannot reach us there.
If the Son of God sets you free then you are free indeed. It is important to celebrate democracy, town meetings, the freedom of speech and other freedoms. But all these are empty if we do not have the freedom from sin, the relationship with our eternal home. The slave does not stay in the house forever, but the new born sons and daughters of the Father in Heaven, made free by the Son of God, are those who say in the words of the Psalm: “Surely Goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the House of the Lord forever.”
With what thoughts do I leave you for reformation 1992?
The truth will certainly make you and me free, and it can even be spoken by a politician. And I believe Christ would smile upon a town meeting. The truth might work people over, but they become the better people for it. Let’s get into the truth like that.
We can draw closer to Christ, who will speak the truth to us in love. Slowly lies will stop being the basis of our lives. We will escape lies and the violence lies foster by the painful death we die in Christ. But then with illusions behind us, we will look into realities which are filled with promise and new hope. They will be the gracious realities of Christ.
That is a religious renewal for today. And it will also grasp the whole little world, this little earth, and make it quake, so that it goes into labor, and a new heaven and earth are born out of it, and a new birth of freedom takes place among the people dwelling in the household of God, beholding all his glory, filled with grace and truth, knowing, loving glorifying and enjoying God forever. Amen.
 Agricola in German his name was Bauer (farmer) and Oecolampadius, means a “light in the house.” I do not know what his name may have been in German.
Running the Race
Running a race, running a race,
Don’t let me trip and fall on my face.
Don’t let your runners tumble over me
and steal away your victory.
1/ Believe, believe! We’re not forsaken.
God’s renewal is in the making.
Oh Lord, strengthen your congregation.
Doubt is such a great temptation.
2/ Don’t give up the Gospel treasure
for some selfish, sinful pleasure.
Looking back is sheer disgrace.
Oh Lord, come and set our pace.
3/ We don’t need another scandal,
We’ve got all that we can handle.
Grace alone clocks a record time,
Let’s all cross the finish line.
Pkrey 12/3/94 for 1 Cor. 9:24-27.
Thomas Aquinas and the Natural Law
St. Thomas Aquinas (1225- 7th March, 1274), the Angelic Doctor, the Prince of the Scholastics, corpulent and silent, he was called the “dumb ox“ in his day. He wrote (among many other works) the Commentary on the Sentences (1253-7), the Summa contra Gentiles (1261-4), and the Summa Theologiae I and II (1266-71) and III (1272) which was left unfinished at his death.
He followed an invariable sequence of objection, solution, and argument of the medieval disputation, without registering a difference between the most trivial insights and most supreme truths. But an architecture arises out of his systematic thought comparable to the cathedral of Salisbury.
Crucial teachings of St. Thomas:
Reality is rational and the rational is real.
What is natural is rational and what is rational is natural.
Grace does not destroy nature but perfects it.
William F. Lawhead provides a helpful diagram for Thomas Aquinas’ Natural Theology, his truths known by faith, his comparison by analogy for God versus his Natural Philosophy and the truths known by reason for the concerns of the world:
Aquinas, in his great synthesis is trying to join the empirical and natural tendencies of Aristotle with the Neo-Platonic, the very transcendental other-worldly tendency Christian Theology had entered. Aquinas also argued that not man, but the Divine Intellect is measure of all things and all human inclinations should be governed by reason. “Wherefore, since the rational soul is the proper form of [human beings], there is in [everyone] a natural inclination to act according to reason: and this is to act according to virtue.”
In his introduction to his reprint from Summa Theologiae, entitled St. Thomas Aquinas: Treatise on Law, Stanley Parry, writes “the three laws – eternal, natural and human – are not three independent rules of action, but one rule progressively specified.“ Like Aristotle, Thomas was able to categorize laws as if they were biological. First the definition: law is a rule or measure of human acts; law is the director of human acts.
Natural law is a participation in the eternal law.
What do you make of my almost biological classifying of law?
Kingdom: ———- Divine Law
———-phylum: ———– eternal law
———-class: ————— natural law –
———-order: ————— human law –
———-family: —————canon law or spiritual law ———-law of the nations
———-genus: ————— Catholic canon law —————— civil law
———-species: ————– local episcopal law —————— common law
———-subspecies: —————————————————- private vs. public
Note that positive law is written while oral law is not.
Aquinas held that because we were created by God to live a certain way, we can reflect on human nature and discover certain natural guidelines that help us actualize our human potentialities. He calls the latter natural law in morality. Since human nature remains basically the same form culture to culture and century to century, the precepts of the natural law are universal and self-evident to reason. What is good is in accordance with reason and is defined as being in conformity with the natural law of morality:
1. There is a natural tendency among all creatures to preserve their life.
2. All animals seek to preserve their species and care for their offspring.
3. Since we are higher than the beasts, we have an inclination to fully realize all our rational human capacities. This leads to the obligation to seek the truth (for Aquinas, including the knowledge of God) and to follow all the precepts necessary to live harmoniously in society.
People blinded by passion, bad habits, and ignorance are unaware of these natural laws and “every will at variance with reason, whether right or erring, is always evil“ (ST 1-2.19.5).
The Four Laws
1. The eternal law is the rational order that the ruler of the universe established for the creation. All of nature follows these rules blindly, while we have the capacity to obey or disobey them.
2. The natural law is the law available to reason that governs human moral behavior.
3. The divine law is given by revelation. It goes beyond natural law and guides us in achieving eternal happiness. In following this law the natural virtues are surpassed by the theological virtues of faith, hope, and love, which are attained only by God‘s grace.
4. The human law is instituted by governments. For it to be legitimate it must be rooted in God‘s eternal law. “In temporal law (civil law) Aquinas is quoting Augustine, there is nothing just and lawful but what humans have drawn from the eternal law“ (ST 1-2. 93.3).
David Knowles, The Evolution of Medieval Thought, (New York: A Vintage Book, Random House, 1962), p. 255 and 256.
Stanley Parry, ed., St. Thomas‘ Treatise on Law, a Gateway Edition, (Washington, D.C.: Regnery Gateway, 1992), p.62.
Ibid., p. ix.
 William F. Lawhead, The Voyage of Discovery: a Historical Introduction to Philosophy, (Stamford, CT: Wadsworth Thomson Learning, 2002), p. 171, 178-180. The following as well as most of the diagram above come from Lawhead’s chapter on Aquinas. Lawhead’s diagram comes from page 171.
Some Words of Faith to speak to yourself for strengthening:
“In returning and rest you shall be saved, in quietness and confidence shall be your strength” (Isaiah 30:15).
“Thou dost keep in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee, because she or he trusts in Thee” (Isaiah 26:3)
“Even youths will faint and be weary and the young will fall exhausted. But those who wait upon the Lord God will renew their strength: they shall mount up on wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint” (Isaiah 40:30-31).
“For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord will give grace and glory. No good thing will God withhold from those who walk uprightly” (Psalm 84:11).