Shalom is a blessing, a manifestation of divine grace.

My jewish Learning

A couple of weeks ago, I finished reading Learning to Speak God from Scratch by Jonathan Merritt. I may have written here that some ideas were turned on their heads.

One of them was a definition of sin that I found helpful and restful.

To Merritt, shalom means “the way things are supposed to be.” And, “We might conclude that sin is whatever contributes to life being less than what God intends.”

Under this definition, sin is a sickness, a problem, and a failure to live by the ethical words that promote life. It’s like a stain, a weight, and in some way, a debt. It is brokeness and messiness and mistakes. Sin is a death dealer and a life stealer.

This definition frees us to affirm that God hates sin. Not because God is an angry rule-maker. But becaue God loves us without constraint. God wants each of us to live the abundant life. God wants peace for us. God wants shalom for us.

learning to speak god from scratch, jonathan Merritt

Why on earth would I choose to write about sin, on a day of rest no less?

True rest realizes that in a broke, messy, mistake-filled world that steals our life and joy, God hates these things and desires for us an abundant life.

God wants shalom for us.

So he whispers to us on days when we need it most for us to give up the life-sucking ideals and sins that so easily beset us, for a shalom that only he can offer.

Rest in that today. ❤