There is an interesting concept called synchronicity. This is a phenomenon that sees a repeated pattern in events that makes them almost seem destined. Eastern religions pick up on the phenomenon and say that it is the universes way of get us to swim in the stream. I’m not sure about that and might call it hokum but…I have been very interested in the events that are recorded in Genesis 14 and 15 and the great victory that Abram had over a powerful king. He rescued his nephew and his family and basically took a lot of plunder. When the king of Sodom who had lost all of these things in the first place came to him, Abram said that he wanted none of the booty, not even a latch of the sandals. In one sentence we have translated what is a rather lengthy concept in another language as “I don’t want you to be able to say that you have made me rich”. What was really going on was a conversation that said “since God enriches I promised Him that I don’t want any of your stuff. I just want my family back but I don’t want you to be able to say that you enriched me since God is the one that does that”.
This is also the place in the Bible where we meet the strange figure of Melchizedek who is a type of Christ. This is the first time in the Bible that the “tithe” is mentioned.
The reason I have been interested in this is that after this great victory Abram seems to go into a deep depression. Clergy depression is a great big issue in this world, but we don’t tend to think of the great heroes of the faith having that problem. This is also the first time that the words “don’t be afraid” are used in the Bible. So I am interested in the whole situation with Abram. He gets down in the dumps after a great victory, not a big defeat. It is also fascinating that that is where God comes and meets him. “Don’t be afraid Abram, I am your shield and great reward”.
So for a few weeks something about this story has popped up in unexpected places. My interest in the conversation brought me to a Latin Vulgate translation of Genesis 14:23 which says that a common proverb or motto came out of this passage. The motto is “Ditat Deus” which means “God enriches”. So cue the “Twilight Zone” music. I had the news channel on when I went to get a cup of coffee. The channel was in the courtroom at the Jodi Arias trial. The jury was deadlocked, people were crying and the camera went to the seal of the Great State of Arizona and what do you suppose the States’ motto was? You got it. “Ditat Deus”. Strange or ordained? Coincidence or Synchronicity?