There is very little either complicated or interesting about poverty. Poverty has been man’s condition throughout his history. The causes of poverty are quite simple and straightforward. Generally, individual people or entire nations are poor for one or more of the following reasons: (1) they cannot produce many things highly valued by others; (2) they can produce things valued by others but they are prevented from doing so; or (3) they volunteer to be poor.
Most merciful God, we confess that we have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done, and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We are truly sorry and we humbly repent. For the sake of your Son Jesus Christ, have mercy on us and forgive us; that we may delight in your will, and walk in your ways, to the glory of your Name. Amen
In the long and difficult effort of spiritual recovery, the Church does not separate the body from the soul. The whole man has fallen away from God; the whole man is to be restored, the whole man is to return.
I am not quite sure of Ridderbos’ sacramental theology, yet in his commentary on John he remarks that the early church viewed John 9 as highly sacramental. He writes that the narrative of the blind man in the Pool of Siloam played an important role in the early church’s practice of baptism. To be clear, Ridderbos is a bit skeptical about its liturgical use, but affirms the role this account played in developing early church baptismal and liturgical practices.