(My lectionary-based reflections are typically posted about two weeks before the Sunday scheduled for the Bible lessons. But with Ash Wednesday this week, Iâ€™ve tossed in an essay to honor Lentâ€™s official beginnings.)
Which is not true, since statements with â€œnobodyâ€ or â€œeverybodyâ€ (therefore meaning absolutely no one or including every single person) are rarely accurate.
But itâ€™s true enough!
Ah, what does â€œnobodyâ€ care about?
Ash Wednesday and Lent.
With Ash Wednesday on February 13, Easterâ€™s official preparations begin. Lent is an artificial creation of the Christian church to help believers â€œcleanseâ€ themselves before arriving at the celebration of Jesusâ€™ resurrection. Traditionally this cleansing, this getting â€œright with God,â€ has emphasized personal sacrifice.
But it is an artificial creation. For Christians, there are no Biblical mandates to set aside the 40 non-Sunday calendar days before Easter for personal sacrifice. In fact, thereâ€™s no real â€œdateâ€ for Easter in the Bible either. And further, note how that second sentence in this paragraph was so confusing? Go ahead, say it out loud: Â 40 non-Sunday calendar days before Easter. Huh?
Who cares! Who can understand all this add-on junk for Jesus? Continue reading →