"How good and pleasant it is when brethren live together in unity!"
— Psalm 133:1
I have looked at this biblical verse many times, and my eye has always landed on that word: unity. It is a powerful word. It is a healthy word. As the psalmist describes it, it is a good and pleasant word.
But then I looked at the rest of the verse and found myself asking: Why is it good and pleasant when “brethren” live together in unity? What about the rest of the world? Does the psalmist not care about others? Is it a bad thing when people who aren’t “brethren” dwell in unity?
Of course, I think asking who my brethren are really misses the point of the whole thing. Cain clobbered his sibling because he saw Abel as a rival for God’s affection; he saw Abel as an “other” and not as a “brother.” How sad...