Elijah got up, ate, and drank… He walked to the mountain of the Almighty Judge, Horeb. He came to a cave, where he took shelter. The אמֶר/word of the Personal Name came to him, “Why are you at this opening, Elijah/My God is the Personal Name?” Elijah answered: “I am hot, hot for the Personal Name, the Almighty Judge of the great procession of heaven. The Israelites abandoned your Brit, destroyed your altars, and murdered your prophets by the Horeb. I alone remain. They seek to take my life.”
In America, we see two camps locked into mutual combat, conservative and liberal. Each one says, “I alone remain, and they seek to take my life.” The conservatives speak of the HHS Mandate. “I alone am left, and they use this mandate to take my life, my liberty, my ability to choose.” The liberals use conservative opposition to the mandate using the same words. “They are against us poor people having health care. Some 45,000 people die each year from a lack of healthcare, including 8,000 babies in the first year of life, of which half are pre-born. The conservatives are out to get us.”
Elijah caused fire to consume the sacrifices of Baal. God never told Elijah to do this. Elijah has upset the king, and now the king is out to get him. Nothing causes people to be out to get you like paranoia. There is no force more likely to start a fight than mutual paranoia. This is Elijah, and this is our conservative/liberal debate.
We pledge Allegiance to a Republic. Our Blessed St. Augustine, whose picture adorns our Reno Cathedral in Book 2 chapter 21 of his City of God quotes Scipio who destroyed Carthage:
As among the different sounds, which proceed from lyres, flutes, and the human voice, a conductor maintains a certain harmony, which a cultivated ear cannot endure to hear disturbed. He elicits this in full, absolute concordiam by the modulation of voices unlike one another. Where we allow reason to modulate the diverse elements of the state, we obtain perfect concord from the upper, lower, and middle classes as from various sounds. What musicians call harmony, is concord in matters of state, the strictest bond and best security of any republic, and which by no ingenuity can be retained where justice is extinct.
St. Augustine agrees that running a state is about harmony/הרמוניה/αρμονία. In matters of state, he calls this concordiam. Elijah is not the only prophet left in among those who struggle with God. We all struggle with God in our own way. Deuteronomy 6:20:
When your son asks you, “What do these witnesses, customs and “from the lips” (of Almighty Judge) mean?”you will tell him, “We were once menial labor of Pharaoh in the land of Oppression. The Personal Name brought us out of Oppression with a strong hand… The Personal Name gave us Mitzvah to do all these customs, looking to the Personal Name, our Almighty Judge, so we may live the satisfying life we have today. This is our charity/ justice/צְדָקָה before the Personal Name, our Almighty Judge; to guard this whole Mitzvah he enjoined on us.”
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”
This Mitzvah brings the tradition of the four sons. The Russia son and the wise son
are the sons under discussion. The Russia son/puts himself first, as does Elijah, the conservatives and the liberals. He asks, “Why do you do such things?” He puts himself apart from the community. The wise son asks, “Who do we do such things?”
You may set over you a king whom the Personal Name, your Almighty Judge, chooses. Someone from among your own kin you may set over you. You may not set a stranger over you who is not kin. He will not have a great number of horses; nor make his people go to Oppression to acquire horses. Do not go back that way again. He will not accumulate silver and gold.
We are all to be one nation/born together by heritage if not blood, under Almighty God, with liberty and justice for all. The king is orchestra conductor, no more and no less, one of us. Our prophets, religious leaders are one of us. They are human beings, no more, no less. Our leaders in private enterprise are human beings, no more and no less, one with us. They are not to acquire silver and gold.
“Economy” comes from “οικονος,” house. The Canaanite fertility god בעל, was the god of Carthage that Scipio defeated. Hannibal means charity of Baal. The Hebrew word for husband, as provider of the house is בעל. Our national house only has one provider. There is only one head of our house/our economy, God.
At our Cathedral, God asks, “Why are you here?” “Are you here because people are out to get you?” In the City of God, Book 4 Chapter 15, St. Augustine reminds us, if we have a gripe against our neighbor, he also has one against us. We are wise to inquire what our neighbor’s grievance is, and reconcile with him. Jesus tells us the same in Matthew 5:32-26.
“The אמֶר/word of the Personal Name came to him: Why are you at this opening, Elijah/My God is the Personal Name?” “אמֶר” means “Word,” and Lamb in Aramaic. On our Reno Cathedral mural is the Lamb and the four rivers of life. The אמֶר asks, “Why are you here?” If we are here because we are oppressed, we need to ask why. If we are here to receive nourishment from the four rivers of life, welcome to the Eucharist.