Enjoy Life, Enjoy God

Dale Patterson


October 21, 2010

The word "social," has several meanings. One is the idea of a gathering of people to chat, kibbutz, compare dress, enjoy good food and drink usually in a handsome setting. But there are other meanings.

"Who among us can live with the devouring fire? Who among us can live with everlasting flames?"
Those who walk righteously and speak uprightly, who despise the gain of oppression, who wave away a bribe instead of accepting it.
- Isaiah 33:14,15 NRS

Isaiah, the prophet, has very little use for the aforementioned meaning of the word, "social." Social for Isaiah is how we live amongst one another. The Word of God is not too concerned about our parties, and table settings, but very much concerned about how we live together. So words like "fairness," "righteousness," and "justice" resurface over and over again in the prophet's words.

I'll apologize a wee bit for picking on Martha Stewart; I realize her "deal" is not that of a prophet. But Isaiah teaches you and me something Martha overlooks. If our table and homes are gorgeous, if these matters are "a good thing" to quote Mistress Martha but the way we treat our neighbor (Who is our neighbor?) is out of order, then it's in truth terrible taste and a travesty. Isaiah understands "social" the way God understands "social."


Dale Patterson