Sunday, April 18, 2010

Meditation for Worship: April 18, 2010

Psalm 30
Rev. 5:11-14
John 21:1-19
Joshua 20 (sermon text)

For today's meditation, I sought to give a Christian response to the Buddhists' confession of the Three Jewels.

Driven by fear, people go for refuge to many places—
to malls, schools, banks, theaters, the outdoors.

Driven by confusion, people go for refuge to many teachers--
celebrities, self-help books, technology.

Driven by guilt, people go for refuge in many distractions—
work, sports, games, fashion, food.

Lord, we admit our helplessness and sinfulness.
Today, we celebrate your power to lift us from the depths.

We take refuge in Jesus Christ,
We take refuge in His Word.
We take refuge in His Church.

This indeed is the safe refuge, this the refuge supreme:
Not that we have found it in ourselves, but that You have found us.

Now, Lord, through Christ’s righteousness
Help us to feed His lambs, and tend His sheep,
So that we all might follow Him, and rest together in You.


NOTE: Buddhists are said to "take refuge" in, or to "go for refuge" to the Three Jewels (aka the "Three Refuges").

Chinese (Mahāyāna)
南無帰依仏 (to the Buddha for refuge I go)
南無帰依法 (to the Dharma for refuge I go)
南無帰依僧 (to the Sangha for refuge I go)

Driven only by fear, do men go for refuge to many places — to hills, woods, groves, trees and shrines.
Such, indeed, is no safe refuge; such is not the refuge supreme. Not by resorting to such a refuge is one released from all suffering.
He who has gone for refuge to the Buddha, the Teaching and his Order, penetrates with transcendental wisdom the Four Noble Truths — suffering, the cause of suffering, the cessation of suffering, and the Noble Eightfold Path leading to the cessation of suffering.
This indeed is the safe refuge, this the refuge supreme. Having gone to such a refuge, one is released from all suffering.
— Dhammapada 188-192

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