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PoP CULTURE


When many of you arrive for worship on Sunday morning, you greet one another as you gather

inside.


Being a small church, a good number of you are probably able to say hello to almost everyone.


Then when the service begins, I invite everyone to "Greet one another in the name of the Lord."


Why a second greeting?


Admittedly, my phrasing of that invitation misconstrues what the "greeting" actually is, but I'm

not really inviting the congregation to a second greeting as such.


I'm inviting the congregation to share God's peace with each other and thereby be at peace with

one another.


Jesus says, "So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has

something against you, leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your

brother, and then come and offer your gift." (Matthew 5:23-24)


How much more so ought we to be reconciled to one another before we participate in the Lord's

body and blood?


This peace-making became a standard practice in the early Church.


In several New Testament epistles, an instruction is made to "greet one another with a holy kiss

(or "kiss of love").


More than a simple greeting, this was an exchange of Christ's peace and forgiveness between

sinners.


It eventually became a liturgical element in the Divine Service before the Lord's Supper was

received.


The greeting as the service begins is an opportunity to be reconciled to those you haven't gotten

along with, to wish the Lord's blessings in encouragement to one another, and to show your love

for your fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.


May the peace of Christ dwell in you richly!


Pastor Travis Lauterbach