Comments on Jeremiah and Ezekiel
Rev. Richard Rohr, in his daily meditations for April 29 and 30, 2012, writes about the world, the flesh and the devil as sources of violence in our contemporary society as they were in all of past history. In dealing with the world, Father Rohr reminds us that this one is the most invisible. We are almost entirely focused on the flesh and individual “sin.”
It is much more difficult to see the evil in our culture and our establishments and our systems. This is what the prophets were good at, and probably why they are and were mostly ignored. Jeremiah hated this role. He knew God chose him for it, but that didn’t keep him from disliking what he had to say and do. Everyone considered him unpatriotic because he was calling into question what the society at that time felt was the only way to speak and act.
An article on global warming and “The Climate Fixers” by Michael Specter in the May 14 issue of The New Yorker reminds us of the relevance of these two prophets. Depending on which political party you follow, the effects of CO2 emissions on the planet are either to be dismissed or are dire prophecies of the end of the world as we know it. Still, the New Yorker article introduces several people and organizations that are working on solutions to global warming, and offer some reason for hope.
And both Jeremiah and Ezekiel offer hope– Ezekiel in his famous passage concerning the dry bones. Believers throughout the ages have placed their hope in the Lord, and have put this hope against all the doomsayers of every age.
However, that does not mean that we do nothing, and simply let causes of global warming go unchallenged. In our American culture which is based on capitalism, it may be the religious people who have to call attention to the evils that capitalism can allow, and be the people who say NO, even when profits and shareholders and boards do not permit corporations to control their emissions nor their seeking for greater income.