Posts Tagged ‘Nicodemus’

I Do Not Understand 3-12-17

In this sermon, taken from John 3:1-17, I explore the odd encounter between Jesus and Nicodemus. A grammatical situation reveals the truth, that often we lack the ability to understand what God is up to.

You can listen to the audio of the sermon here:
https://soundcloud.com/revdalen/i-do-not-understand-3-12-17

You can also follow along with the text of the sermon here:

Grace and peace to you in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Amen

Just out of curiosity, is anyone out there fluent in Spanish? I am not…I know just enough to be dangerous…and I truly discovered this fact during my final year of seminary as I spent two weeks in a congregation with a large Hispanic population.  Throughout the course of the time that my small group of classmates and I were in the congregation, we met with many different individuals for conversation…and that would always include one of the two pastors present for the purpose of translation…but we all attempted to communicate with one another directly in one another’s language, at least as much as we were able.

Now for me…my one year of Spanish my sophomore year of high school didn’t do a lot of good…and my ability to communicate in Español was pretty much limited to introductions. Time after time we would go around the table introducing ourselves…and each time I would say Mi llamo es Scott…which literally means “My name is Scott.”  Now, grammatically, there was nothing wrong with what I was saying…but after hearing several others from my group introduce themselves I started to pick up on the regular way for a person to say it. Soy Scott…now saying it this way literally means “I’m Scott.” (pause) Again, neither one is technically right or wrong…they are just two ways to say the same thing.

Now the polar opposite situations happens in today’s gospel lesson. Rather than hearing two different ways to say the same thing…we begin to discover one way of saying two different things…but first, let me set the stage.

We’ve moved into John’s gospel…where we’ll remain for the rest of the season of Lent…and perhaps that’s not a bad thing…maybe its fitting during this season we usually consider pretty dark as we move towards the cross…and if you’re familiar with the major theme here in John’s gospel it’s the idea of light and darkness…and the contrast between the two…we hear this theme all over John…as the narration of different stories continues to give us little clues about the state of things…telling us the time of day or that an encounter happens at night.  (pause) And in our story for today…that bit of narration is right out there.

There was a Pharisee named Nicodemus…a leader of the Jews…He came to Jesus by night, calling him Rabbi…seeking something. Now this all happens in Jerusalem…and of course we’re pretty early in the whole story. Jesus has been baptized…he’s publically performed his first miracle…or sign as they’re called here in John…and he’s made his way into the capital city for the first of 3 Passover celebrations…he’s already caused a major stir in the temple when he started cracking a whip and throwing a bunch of tables around…and since then he’s just been around the temple…performing more signs and teaching. And this is where we pick up.

Nicodemus is one of the big wigs…not only is he a Pharisee, but he’s also a member of the Jewish ruling council.  He’s kind of a big deal…and if we were to compare him to a present day figure, we’d probably call him a Seminary professor with 3 or 4 different PhD’s. This guy…he knows his stuff…anything having to do with Jewish culture or their religion, or their faith, or their understanding of the law…he’s your guy…Nicodemus was the 1st Century Jewish equivalent of Google…if you had a question you went to him…not the other way around.

And perhaps this is why its so strange that we find him seeking out Jesus in the first place. Maybe the council sent him…or maybe he was just curious…but either way…here in the middle of night…in the midst of darkness…Nicodemus comes searching…calling Jesus Rabbi.

Now there’s a lot of back and forth in this story…as the teaching moment begins as a dialogue between the elite Pharisee and the traveling Rabbi…and the first thing that Jesus does is point out the error in the way that the council perceives him. We know that you are from God because no one can do the signs you do apart from him.

And Jesus response…you don’t get it. You can’t see the kingdom of God…you can’t perceive it unless you are born from above…and with this statement…Jesus and Nicodemus are off to the races…they engage in a lively debate around the idea of being born. (pause)
But here’s the problem…remember how I talked about 2 ways to same thing in Spanish…well here…we find 1 way to say 2 things…Jesus says “born from above.” But Nicodemus hears “born again.” (Pause) And it raises the question of just how that happens.  Well, funny enough it has to do with the original language…the very language that Jesus and Nicodemus would have been speaking to one another as they sat there debating…keep in mind they’re speaking the same language, but Greek gets funny right here…and the word that Jesus uses to say “from above” also means “again.”

Let me give you an example…desert…I say that and I might be talking about a delicious sugary post-meal treat…or I might be talking about leaving you high and dry in the midst of your need. Same word…two different meanings…and the same thing has happened between Jesus and Nicodemus.

Now the conversation goes back and forth…Jesus offering explanations…Nicodemus asking more questions…but seemingly getting nowhere as he tries to understand what Jesus is attempting to teach him.

But maybe that’s not so out line in the first place. Jesus talks about being born from above…whatever that means. Nicodemus is thinking more about the physical reality of what Jesus has said…and logically speaking…it just doesn’t work…to be born again? How can that happen…no one can enter the womb and be born a second time. I know how biology works…and that’s not how biology works.

And so after some back and forth Nicodemus finally throws up his hands and utters his final words of this story. “How can this be?” (Pause) You know there was another time when a person asked that very same thing…when an angel appeared to a young woman and said You will have a child…and this girl, maybe you’ve heard of her, she goes by Mary…asks How can this be, for I am a virgin?

In both cases…Mary and Nicodemus, they’re thinking about these things in terms of the physical…what can we see, what can explain…but the kingdom of God…this new reality that Jesus is bringing into the world…its not physical…its something else…something that we can’t quite put our finger on…and I’m guessing that often times as we consider what this book (hold up a Bible) has to say to us…we can’t quite put our fingers on it either…and like Nicodemus we end up asking “how can this be?”

Now Jesus seems to respond to that question today…offering up what I’ve long considered to be a rebuke…at least until quite recently. Nicodemus, you are a teacher of Israel and yet you do not understand these things.” I always thought Jesus was coming down on him…but what if Jesus is simply making an observation…that even the most highly educated…even the one who by all human understanding should be the one to get this…even you CAN’T understand.  He goes on too…if you can’t fully grasp earthly things…how could you be expected to understand heavenly things?

Now a couple different things happen at this point…Jesus goes on teaching…and in the end offers up one of the most well-known passages of scripture…reminding us that because of God’s perfect sacrificial love for the ALL the world, he gave his son, not to condemn the world but to save it…all of it. (pause) Jesus lays out this vitally important, and very deep…DEEP truth…and Nicodemus has faded from the story. (pause)

Quick side note, remember when all this is going on?  Night time right? In the midst of darkness…and its still dark…and it would seem that Nicodemus remains in the dark…lacking understanding…not finding what he’s been looking for…for Nicodemus, the light bulb hasn’t gone off yet…Now I’ve long wondered if he ever “gets it.” Because here today…it looks like a no.

But his story isn’t over yet either…and he pops up 2 more times…the next time we see him…his kind of passive aggressively defending Jesus to the council…saying that its not lawful for them to condemn someone without a trial…not really picking a side…but cling to technicality.  But then the last time he pops up…at the cross…helping deal with the dead body of Christ…out there in the open…in the midst of the daylight for all to see. (pause)
Admittedly, Nicodemus is often criticized…because here at least…he just doesn’t get it…and he remains in darkness…in the lack of understanding…but I think its because he comes looking for Jesus instead of the other way around.

Maybe its because I’m Lutheran…but it seems to me that anytime we go looking for Jesus…when we go searching for God…we’re gonna miss the mark…because we look in the wrong places…and it is God who finds us. That’s what Jesus’ presence in our reality is all about…that’s why, out of his perfect sacrificial love for the world, God sent Jesus into the world…and that event…the whole aspect of Jesus’ in our reality…something they call the incarnation…that’s about God coming to find us where we are…in the midst of the darkness…not the other way around.

Now the amazing thing about the incarnation is that we need every aspect of it to even begin to makes heads or tails of this whole Kingdom of God thing. You’ve heard me talk about the life death and resurrection of Jesus Christ…and we need every aspect…his perfect life gets us nowhere without his cursed death on the cross…and we need the death, because you can’t have a resurrection without it.

And if the ongoing example of Nicodemus shows us anything…its that we need all aspects to even begin to understand. He didn’t get it until after the death of Christ…when he publically displayed that he was a follower of Christ…but even his closest followers, the disciples…even they failed to understand what was happening until the resurrected Jesus showed up again….and to be perfectly honest…even that was lacking.

Because here’s the thing about faith…we are clinging to the promises of that which we cannot see clearly. Scripture gives us tiny glimpses into the truth that Christ has brought into the world with him…but we cannot fully understand in this life.  The apostle Paul reminds us that now we see as in a mirror dimly…but one day we will see face to face.

One day…but, we’ve got to get through death before we reach that day…because it is only when we join with Christ in the resurrection…and we have put aside all these human limitations…only then will we truly comprehend the glory that Christ has made possible.

And so in the here and now…its okay for us to admit that we don’t understand…to ask the question How can this be? And then to realize that we probably won’t come up with a satisfactory answer…but rather to cling to the hope we find in the promise that because of God’s perfect love for us…we will not perish, but will have eternal life. Amen.

 

You Mean I’m Not In Trouble 5-31-15

This morning’s sermon is based on John 3:1-17. This is the night time encounter between Jesus and Nicodemus. I explore the changing perspective of hearing this as a rebuke to an honest teaching exchange.

You can listen to the audio of the sermon here:
https://soundcloud.com/revdalen/you-mean-im-not-in-trouble-5-31-15

You can also follow along with the text of the sermon here:
Grace and peace to you from God our Father and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ…Amen
Is there any certain sight that you dread to see? Something that almost turns your stomach as soon as you spot it? (pause) I can certainly think of one that got me in my younger days…specifically between the ages of 16 and about 22. (pause) Red and Blue lights flashing in my rear view mirror. (pause)
I will state it for the record…that in my early years of driving…I was a little too familiar with those lights…because I got pulled over with a fair bit of regularity…until a letter from my insurance company warned me of my personal risk…of high risk insurance rates…at which time I developed a much lighter foot, coupled with a much stronger tendency to set the cruise control at a reasonable speed.
And for many years that has served me well…with just one exception, back in August of 2013 when I came up the entrance ramp down by Hy-Vee in Council Bluffs just a little too fast and met a police officer sitting in the median right there at the curve…you all know that spot don’t you? (pause) And sure enough…a moment later…there were the blue and red lights flashing right behind me.
And ever since then, I’ve been very careful to watch my speed as I come around the curve on I-80…knowing that the next time I let it creep up above 60…I’ll meet another officer sitting there waiting…and admittedly its affected me…and I see evidence of this every time another vehicle comes flying past me on that stretch and I utter the words over and over again. “LET THERE BE A COP THERE…LET THERE BE A COP THERE”
And then on the instances when there is an officer sitting there…the chant turns to “GET ‘EM….GET ‘EM…GET ‘EM.” And recently…just about a month or so ago…I got my wish when a speedy driver went flying past the officer sitting there in that spot…and I saw the officer swing his cruiser around and fly up behind that other car…and the lights…came…on. (pause…then big response) “YES!!!!!!” I don’t know just why it is…but ever since that day back in 2013 when I was pulled over at that spot, I’ve wanted to see someone else get it too…full disclosure…I’ve been fascinated with seeing someone else get busted….and maybe…just maybe…I’m not the only one. Because isn’t that human nature? We’re kind of fascinating with seeing someone ELSE…get into trouble aren’t we? (pause)
Now admittedly, this is the attitude that I have brought into today’s gospel story throughout the course of my history with it. Nicodemus…coming to visit Jesus at night…and in the midst of the encounter…Jesus seems to give him his come uppance…Nicodemus…one of the leaders of the Pharisees…one of the leaders of the religious bigwigs…sneaks off in the dead of night…in total secrecy…to try and wrap his head around just who this Jesus guy really is…but he has to be secretive…because he’s got a reputation…and who knows what would happen if all his cronies knew what he was up to. (pause)
So that’s the setting…this guy who by all rights should get all this stuff…should understand it…and should see the truth within it…goes all covert in the dead of night…and if you’ve heard me talk about John’s gospel before, you’ve likely heard me reference the importance of light and darkness…how light equals believe, and understanding…and even relationship…while darkness equals disbelief and sinfulness…and here’s Nick, operating under the cover of darkness…figures.
And you know what…within the context of John’s gospel we’ve got another example of someone doing bad stuff at night…perhaps you’ve heard of him…this Judas guy…who towards the end of the gospel goes out into the night to betray Jesus…and so knowing this…don’t we sort of expect the tense confrontation here between Jesus and Nicodemus?
Does anyone else approach this passage expecting a rebuke…expecting Jesus to really put Nick in his place…to rip him a new one? Or is that just me? (pause) I’ll own it…each and every time I’ve approached John chapter 3 in the past…I’ve gotten a little cynical…thinking to myself. “This guys gonna get it. Here it comes.” And then I read the back and forth as Jesus and Nicodemus debate and discuss…and in my mind they’re getting a little more heated with each statement and question and counter point…until finally Nick has heard enough and he utters the ultimate question “How can these things be?” (pause) And finally…finally…Jesus…turns on the flashing red and blue lights… “YOU ARE THE TEACHER OF ISRAEL…and even you don’t get it.” (pause…then big response) “YES!!!!!!” (pause) And just like I revel in seeing someone else get pulled over…I revel in seeing some uppity dude get fully owned by Jesus. (pause)
That is…until this week…until this time…because this time…I didn’t read it that way…and I’m not even sure why that is…but for some reason…this time…it came across a little differently…and instead of looking down my nose at Nick…I think I found myself relating to him…because what Jesus is talking about…its some pretty heady stuff.
Maybe its because today is Holy Trinity Sunday…the one Sunday every year when we focus on and celebrate all three aspects of the Triune God…Father, Son, and Holy Spirit…and if you’ve been downstairs in the discussions around the trinity…and specially around the Holy Spirit…you’ve heard me say that its…pretty darn confusing…and I’ll play the card of “that’s one of our divine mysteries that we Lutheran love so much” simply because we don’t have good explanation for how it all works…or what it all means.
And don’t worry, I’m not going to bore you right now with trying to offer any sort of explanation…because sometimes we just have to accept that what God’s up to in the world…and for that matter…God…is simply beyond us…and all we can do is admit that…and ask God to help us…and the really amazing thing about all this…is that I think Jesus FULLY realizes this.
Because Jesus doesn’t simply debate Nicodemus and then rip into him for not understanding…rather Jesus is trying to explain how the Spirit acts within the hearts and minds of individuals…making relationship possible…and making us heirs with Christ to the promise of eternal life. (pause)
You see…Nick came at this in the right way…regardless of his intentions or his sneaking around in the darkness of night…he comes to Jesus and calls him…rabbi…teacher…and in this one simple address, Nick admits that Jesus is one who’s authority is greater than his own…that Jesus is one that Nick can learn from…and then their debate simply shows us that Nick is trying to understand…but that this amazing truth is beyond him…and likewise it is beyond us…and Jesus admits it to us…
The wind blows where it chooses…and you hear the sound of it…but you DO NOT KNOW…where it comes from or where it goes…So it is with EVERYONE…who is born of the Spirit. (pause) And right after Jesus tells us this…he says the words that I no longer hear as a rebuke, but rather as evidence…You Nicodemus, you are a teacher of Israel, and this is beyond your ability to understand… (pause)
How many times have we read scripture and been confused by it? Or witnessed difficult things in life…disease and death…hardship and suffering…and we fail to understand it…and we wonder what is God up to in the world…what is going on? Just what is the Holy Spirit doing in all this? (pause) And we get nowhere with those questions.
And perhaps in those times…when we feel like we’re butting up against a wall…maybe, just maybe it feels like we’re in trouble…like God is mad at us…or that we’re not worthy of this amazing gift, because if we were we’d have it all figured out…and we sit there staring in our rear view mirror, shaking in our boots…and wondering just how much trouble we’re in…what we’re in store for…and expecting the worst.
That was my situation on that day back in August of 2013…knowing full well that I was driving too fast…and expecting a ticket…but then the officer came up to my window…having already run my plates and my driving record…and he gave me verbal warning…told me to go ahead but slow down….He might as well have been telling me to go forth and sin no more…not because of anything that I had done…but simply out of his good graces. (pause) and all I could think to myself is “You mean I’m not in trouble?” (pause)
And isn’t it wonderful that we have a God that loves us so much…that loves each and every one of us so much…a God that loves the world so much that he gave his only begotten Son so that whoever believes in him may not perish but have eternal life…that whoever believes in him may not be punished…they are NOT in trouble.
This is what Jesus is telling us today…even those born of the Spirit…even those who believe that Jesus IS the son of God, lack understanding about just what God is up to…and that…is okay…because we don’t have to understand it…we don’t have to be able to explain it…because God has already done it…and the father sent the Son, not to condemn us…but to save us…
And so today, perhaps all we can do is thank God for the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives…here in the world…and through the power of the Holy Spirit we declare that Jesus is the son of God…sent by God in the world to redeem it out of love for us…and though we might not understand how it all works…and maybe it seems too good to be true…we can look to the Lord and say…You mean I’m not in trouble? And then we respond the only way we can…by saying thank you.
Amen.

Where Did He Go? 3-16-14

This week’s sermon came from the story of Nicodemus visiting Jesus at night, found in John 3:1-17. In the sermon I explore the difficulty of the truth that Jesus presents, and how some people will turn away from it, needing time to come to grips with what Jesus is telling them.

You can listen to the sermon here.
http://soundcloud.com/revdalen/where-did-he-go-3-16-14

You can also follow along with the text of the sermon here. As usual, disregard the indications to pause and the weird punctuation…gotta remind myself of that somehow.

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.
As many of you have learned, I grew up in a small town, not unlike Underwood. But there was one major difference between Underwood and him home town…the size of the school. My entire school, k-12 was less than 300 people. As I think back, I can remember pretty much every room in that school because I was in them at one time or another…but for some reason, there is one room really stands out in my memory. The boys bathroom in what was at the time, the junior high wing.
Now, there is nothing special about the bathroom…no reason that it should still be visible in my memory 17 years after leaving the school for the last time, but I can still see it. A large wooden door…dark red floor, pale blue walls…quite the combination…you walk through the doorway and around a corner, past 3 or 4 toilet stalls to the back wall where there are 2 sinks and 3 urinals. Can you see it? Picture it for a moment.
Now the kicker. This is junior high. Some wise guy thinks he’s funny and flips the lights off as he walks out the door…complete darkness…Great…Needless to say, this situation happened to me…more than once during my time there…but I never panicked. I knew the layout of the bathroom…I knew where the light switch was. All I had to do was carefully feel may way through the darkness and I’d find my way out…sounds simple right? I always thought so, but reality was a little harder. I remember one time in particular when I decided against the normal “feel my way along the wall until I hit the corner, turn and find the light switch” technique. I thought to myself that I knew how to walk out. I don’t need any lights…I don’t need any illumination. As I took a few tentative steps in the right direction…I thought to myself about two more steps then I better put my hand out to find(BAM!!!)… the wall. I guess my “knowledge” was lacking there wasn’t it?
This theme of groping in the darkness blares out of our lesson for today. The story opens with Nicodemus…or as I like to call him Nick…now this guy is a Pharisee…and he’s apparently impressed by Jesus and seeking him out…in the dead of night.  Why at night? Come on Nick!…you’re a prominent guy, why all the secrecy? (pause here) Oh…I see…you’re not quite sure about this guy you are going to see…and not only that, your Pharisee cronies wouldn’t think too highly of it. Okay, I get it…Nick’s got a reputation to uphold…and he’s not overly excited to visit with Jesus during broad daylight when everyone can see what he’s up to.
Regardless of his motivation for the night time visitation…and regardless of the circumstances that led him to Jesus, we should, in the very least give him a little credit. He’s seen the man, and he knows what he can do…Rabbi clearly you are from God because the stuff you are pulling off is impossible…Now, I’m a smart guy. I’m a Pharisee and I’ve got it together, but…I’m still a little confused? Can you shed some light on all this for me?
Now we know how the story goes don’t we? Jesus starts firing off truth for our old pal Nick, who tries to show off how brilliant he is…but it doesn’t quite work out…epic fail…He’s just groping in the darkness…darkness as deep as the night of our story.
Jesus continues to teach him, living up to the very name that good old Nicky used in the first place…Rabbi…Teacher…but it is hard truth…it is confusing…and Nick finally admits his lack of understanding with a simple, yet very profound question…How Can This Be?
Jesus doesn’t miss a beat here, but lays out a pretty strong “religious accusation.” You are a Pharisee…you of all people should get this.” He might as well be saying “See…even the Jewish big-wigs fall short. With all their rules and restrictions and piety, and yet here they are…alone in the bathroom with the lights off, groping around trying to find a light switch.”
But you know what…I think we can probably relate can’t we? Think about it for a moment…Nick comes at night…confused, but curious…lacking understanding about just who Jesus is and what he stands for…but Nick is seeking this understanding…and not only that but he’s seeking it from the source…he wants to drive out the darkness of his confusion with the very light of the truth itself…Jesus…but what he experiences is confusing…its hard…and I think that sounds really familiar.
Because sometimes, when Jesus starts teaching…he lays out some pretty strong truth…and he does exactly that in this story. But in doing so he says a lot of stuff that really doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. For instance, Jesus says that no one can enter the kingdom of heaven without being born from above…Nick’s confused and asks how can someone be born again?
Now it doesn’t really come through very well here in the English, but in the original language it’s the same word used by both men…above or again…same word…which raises the question…did Jesus use it intentionally just to be confusing? Or is this just another example of how the truth about the kingdom…a truth that Jesus knows and understands…is just down right difficult for us to grasp?
Whatever the motivation of Jesus for using confusing language, we simply recognize that it is, in fact confusing…confusing for Nick…and confusing for us today…and so, like Nick, perhaps we find ourselves asking the very same question…Jesus…How can this be? Or to put it quite simply…WHAT ARE YOU BABBLING ABOUT!?!
But in the end, Jesus does stat to move things towards a pretty good conclusion…and in my opinion, he lays out the very center of the entire Biblical message. For God so loved the world that he gave his only son that whoever believes in him may not perish, but have life eternal. (pause) In the midst of some pretty heady stuff…he drops that wonderful little nugget.
But…now at this point…where’s Nick? Did anyone notice that he disappeared by this point? Sure enough…by the time Jesus gets to the really good stuff, he might as well be talking to himself. But there’s a reason for that. As Jesus is teaching, laying out these uber-truths, he is bringing illumination into the world. And it is…intense. After groping around in complete darkness, the lights just came on and they are blazing. Has that ever happened to you?
One of my favorite times of day is a brief moment of quiet that I experience between taking the kids to school in the morning and heading across the parking lot to the office for the day. I grab a cup of coffee, step into the living room…and plop down in a chair that faces the big bay window on the east side of the house…but one thing that I’ve noticed is the second I sit down in that spot is the morning sunlight blinds me…utterly and completely…I can’t see anything because the light is so intense.
I think that good old Nick experienced the same type of thing in his initial encounter with Jesus. Here he is, groping around in the total darkness of his disbelief, and then the full power of the Son hits him full in the face. It’s too much for him. He can’t take it and has to turn away…at least for awhile.
This isn’t the last we see of the man. Later on in the story, we see him…and he’s changed. He defends Jesus within the Pharisee’s, the very people that he feared finding out about his initial encounter with Jesus…though admittedly in that part of the story, his defense of Jesus is simply based on a technicality within the Law…He’s making progress, becoming a little more bold where Jesus is concerned…but he’s still holding onto his old way of thinking.
But then later on…towards the very end of the Gospel…we see Nick pop up a third time…and this time, he assists in the burial of the crucified Jesus…can’t get much more public and exposed than that…assisting in handling the body of the very enemy the other religious leaders had killed.
So what happened? Did he just need some time? Did his eyes need some time to adjust? Maybe so…Maybe Nicodemus simply needed time to come to grips with the life changing illumination that Jesus was giving him…and that…sounds pretty familiar.
Think about your own experience. Was your conversion instantaneous? Or when the full light of the Jesus the Son of God was shining in your face, did you need a little time to come to grips with just what you were facing? For many, the light of Christ may be just as blinding as the utter darkness that I faced all those years ago in the bathroom.
This is the reality of the gospel that we have each been called to proclaim. It is a hard truth and many that hear it will turn away. Like Nicodemus, they might disappear for awhile. We cannot control that….but we shouldn’t condemn it either…because the story of Nicodemus…his journey through life towards faith in Christ mirrors he human experience…one that we all have…one that we all experience. So remember this…when the people are blinded by the light of Christ,  they may just need some time for their eyes to adjust. May it be our prayer that they do…and that they are able to see the truth, and hear the good news that Jesus himself proclaimed…The son of man has not come to condemn the world…but he has come to save it…and to save you…Amen.