Bringing the Text to Life

The Speaking Absence John 2:13-22

God, the "Speaking Absence," transforms our empty spaces into holy places.

Who can escape it? We wake up to it--ringing, buzzing, radio-blaring alarms jolt us out of our sleep. We walk out of doors to it--the din of phones and cars, the chattering of kids and colleagues, the roar of crowds and traffic, all day long. We work to it--the "furniture music" of Muzak.

We even play to it--the endless white noise of TV or stereo. Ever notice how many hikers take their "Walkmans" into the wilderness with them? Are we afraid there won't be enough to listen to in the stillness of a night spent far away from the sounds of civilization?

The people of ancient civilizations were also fearful of being alone in a wild and unpredictable world. These men and women created a host of gods who could be safely located in available shrines and temples. It was important that these gods have both faces and voices. Temples were decorated with elaborate statuary and pictures of what the god looked like. Oracles spoke the god's message to those who paid the right price or curried the...

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