Rachel Weeping


From Kelly Brown Douglas’ Stand Your Ground: Black Bodies and the Justice of God: “’A voice was heard, weeping and loud lamentation, Rachel weeping for her children, she refused to be comforted, because they are no more.’ It was the time of Jesus’ birth. After discovering that he had been betrayed by the wise men, Herod demanded that “all the male children in Bethlehem and in all that region who were two years old and under” be killed. Herod was standing his ground of power. It is in speaking of the edict from Herod that the Matthean Gospel writer speaks of Rachel, who centuries earlier was weeping for her lost children…it is fitting that her weeping is recalled at the time of Jesus’ birth, not simply because Bethlehem is weeping over the loss of its children, but because the Christ child is born. Into the midst of a mother’s deepest pain and suffering God is present in the world bringing hope. One thing is made clear as Rachel’s weeping is juxtaposed with the birth of Jesus: there is no power that can stand its ground against God, not even the power of death.”



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