religious blindness

“Elijah does come and get everything ready. I’m telling you, Elijah has already come but they didn’t know him when they saw him. They treated him like dirt, the same way they are about to treat the Son of Man.” [Matthew 17:11-12 MSG]

The three disciples have just witnessed the appearing of Elijah on the mountain.
They are walking back to the others and have questions about what they just saw.
These ask about the prophet and the scripture in Malachi that says:
“I will send you Elijah the prophet before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes.”
Jesus points to John the Baptist indicating that he spoke in a prophetic manner.
He goes further and identifies the Baptist as a modern day Elijah.
Interesting how he alludes to the way that John was rejected and killed.

This is not how everyone thought that the prophet Elijah come.
I imagine all believed that Elijah would be received and acclaimed by the Jews.
No one thought that Elijah would be rejected by religious folks and murdered by a king.

Jesus says that he will receive a similar fate at the hands of religious people.
I wonder if this is a message that God wants us to consider?
The idea that a prophet would come and be rejected is a troubling thought.

Who amongst us could ever imagine that we ourselves might reject God in the flesh?
Maybe the message is about how a narrow religious view can obscure our spiritual eyesight?
Perhaps such a view blinds us to the voice and presence of God?

I cannot get past my own dogma Lord. Open my eyes to your appearing.

... this devotion is part of the Red Letters series. Click here to read more.

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