This was a difficult passage to reflect on; it makes God seem angry and vengeful. We know that God loves us and that we are forgiven for our sins because Jesus died for the forgiveness of sins.
What it brings to mind for me are memories of being a child in my parents’ home. Growing up, I knew that my parents would always love me and forgive me no matter what I did. That didn’t mean they didn’t get angry with me, and it didn’t mean that I had no rules. I had plenty of rules, and there were consequences if I crossed the line. I had a healthy fear of breaking the rules and tried to stay out of trouble.
We were adopted into the family when we were baptized. Much like in my house growing up, God has rules for us, God’s children. When we sin, we hurt our relationship with each other, and in turn we hurt our relationship with God. Although we know that our sins are forgiven, we should have a healthy fear of sin and try not to hurt our relationship with each other or with God.
God of forgiveness, help us to recognize sin and to do our best to love one another. Amen. — GB