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The Rev. Anthony Robinson The Rev. Anthony Robinson
The Rev. Anthony Robinson is a minister in the United Church of Christ, author of 12 books, and president of Congregational Leadership Northwest in Seattle, WA.

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Congregational Leadership Northwest, Seattle, WA


Tony Robinson: "Log in Eye" Syndrome

October 02, 2013

"Why do you see the speck in your neighbor's eye, but do not notice the log in your own eye?" - Matthew 7:3

Boy, do I find irritating the Israeli insistence on building settlements on disputed, formerly Palestinian, territory. Knock it off, will you. Give peace a chance.

Then this summer I read historian Richard White's book, It's Your Misfortune and None of My Own: A New History of the American West. I learned a lot.

Including that we Americans were pretty into building settlements on other people's land ourselves, and calling it "progress," "civilization," and even "providential design."

In the 19th century there was a huge influx of immigrants from the U.S. into the then-Mexican territory of Texas. Illegal immigration from the U.S. to Mexico. Yeah, us.

In other parts of the West, Indians lost their homelands not because they had sold them or given them away, but because the U.S. government allocated their lands to its citizens for their settlement. Settlements.

I still wish that today's Israel would back off on settlements on the West Bank. But maybe we should be a little less self-righteous, a little less sure that we would certainly never do anything like that. Because, well, we have.

Yes, there is a place for a word of advice and correction to someone else. But there's a big difference between saying, "I've made mistakes and can maybe share something from what I've learned," and saying, "We the righteous will set you straight."

Prayer

Remind us again, Holy One: the world does not divide between saints and sinners; but between saints who know themselves to be sinners, and sinners who believe themselves to be saints. Amen.

 

Taken with permission from UCC's StillSpeaking devotional. Visit UCC.org


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