My reflections on reading the great Old Testament prophets (specifically from my reading of Jer. 7 today):
When Israel turned away from God and then became a nation of ruthless and indulgent people who ignored the poor and destitute, God did not send a philanthropist to inspire others to feed the poor. Rather, he sent prophets to proclaim God's justice upon the wicked and to offer grace to all who would respond in faith. There would be no outward change without an inward transformation; this transformation cannot be done without God's redeeming love and power.
The solution to poverty is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The solution to weak marriages and failed relationships is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The solution to wicked and evil people (like me!) is the gospel of Jesus Christ. O, that we would be people who believe in the gospel, preach the Gospel, and then by God's power alone, live the Gospel.
I pray this to be true today in my life and in the life of my friends, my family, and my fellow students and professors at Denver Seminary.