Today’s Reading 1 Chronicles 1:1 – 9:44
We all know the feeling of waiting in line at the amusement park. Will we make it? Is this the year? What will happen if I can’t get on the ride? The waiting can been overwhelming it seems. Yet, we will all wait it is a must.
The moment when you finally make it up to the front of the line is when you first see them. They are big and opposing. They seem mean and angry. They are the gatekeepers. They are the ones who make you stand against the sign to see of you are tall enough to make the cut. They are the arbiter if you are allowed to enter.
As we read the chapters this morning, we see gatekeepers being assigned. They are assigned with protection of the temple. Ensuring that all the valuables of the temple were safe was the main role of these gatekeepers according to what we read this morning. However, something interesting happens later. By the time we get to 2 Chronicles the roles of the gatekeepers changes. They are now also assigned with keeping the unclean out.
Keeping the unclean out. It seems reasonable…or does it. After all, those gatekeepers in the front of the ride line might not be our friend when we are smaller but they are tasked with keeping us safe. But how about if their roles expanded. How about if they got to choose who is in or out based on clothing, skin color, age, sex, sexuality, etc. Who are the “deserving” for the ride?
The gatekeepers keeping people away from the God of Abraham just seems wrong. The God of Abraham was a God of freedom and hope. The Israelites desire to give God a home so they could keep God close had unintended consequences it seemed. If you can keep God in a box of sorts than perhaps you can then decide who gets to visit. Who is worthy. To do that we need gatekeepers.
The question becomes now, who are the church gatekeepers? Are we still trying to keep the unclean out? Who are the unclean? How many people walk towards the church doors fearful of the looks of the self appointed gatekeepers?
Are you a gatekeeper? Do you know any gatekeepers? Does God need your protection from the “unclean”?
I think not!