A Message from Pastor Kaji

November 2nd,2023 Categories: Weekly Letter
Dear Church:
I am so thrilled for worship this coming Sunday! A number of people who have been discussing church membership with me are finally taking the step forward to formally join our incredible congregation. Sometimes it can take someone years before they reach a point of comfort and trust with a church. I am so honored – and I know you will be too – that they are now ready. God is incredible. And so are you.
I hope that you will join us for worship this Sunday as we accept this fantastic group of people into membership. I know that it would mean so much to them – and to me – to see your faces. Also, if you know anyone who is considering membership in our church, please do have them reach out to the church office so that I can meet them! You are our very best evangelists.

As for our text, this reading from the story of Solomon‘s accession to power, which was assigned by the lectionary this week, is a fascinating study in ancient Judah’s political machinations. It arrests me that, even now, thousands of years later, who will sit at the seat of power in Jerusalem, or the Holy Land in general, continues to be such a source of strife. I highly recommend that you take a look at the text before Sunday, because it’s complex. What I think you most need to know is that Solomon’s brother was trying to trick him. This text is one of the most illustrative in helping us to know why people call Solomon wise. I think my question is: what can we all learn from Solomon’s wisdom here?

I can’t wait to see you in church. God bless you all.

Pax, Christi, 

Pastor Kaji

1 Kings 2:10-24 (Year A, p. 518-519):
10 And David lay with his mothers and fathers and was buried in the city of David. 11 The days that David reigned over Israel came to forty years: In Hebron he reigned seven years and in Jerusalem he reigned thirty-three years. 12 Thus Solomon sat on the throne of his father David and his rule was extremely well-founded.
13 Then Adonijah son of Haggith came to Bathsheba, Solomon’s mother. She asked, “Is it in peace that you come?” He said, “Peace.” 14 Then he said, “I have something to say to you.” And she said, “Speak.” 15 So he said, “You know that the realm was mine and all Israel set their expectation on me to reign; however, the monarchy has turned and become my brother’s, for it was his from the RULER OF ALL. 16 And now I am asking one thing of you; do not turn me away.” And she said to him, “Speak.” 17 And he said, “Please speak to King Solomon—he will not turn you away—that he might give me Abishag the Shunammite as my wife.” 18 Then Bathsheba said, “Good. I myself will speak to the king for you.”
19 So Bathsheba went to King Solomon to speak to him about Adonijah. The king rose to meet her and bowed down to her; then he sat on his throne, and had a throne brought for the king’s mother, and she sat on his right. 20 Then she said, “One small request I ask of you; do not turn me away.” And the king said to her, “Ask, my mother, for I will not turn you away.” 21 Then she said, “Let Abishag the Shunammite be given to your brother Adonijah for a wife.” 22 Then King Solomon replied and said to his mother, “Now why would you ask Abishag the Shunammite for Adonijah? Ask for him the monarchy for he is my elder brother and the priest Abiathar and Joab son of Zeruiah are for him!” 23 Then King Solomon swore by the HOLY ONE OF OLD, “Thus may God do to me and more, for against his life has Adonijah spoken this word. 24 Now therefore as the AGELESS ONE lives, who has prepared me and placed me on the throne of my father David and who has made me a house as God promised, today Adonijah shall be put to death.”