Friday, March 31, 2017

Today's readings and meditation

FIRST READING (Wisdom 2:1,12-22)
Ungodly men reasoned unsoundly, saying to themselves, “Let us lie in wait for the righteous man, because he is inconvenient to us and opposes our actions; he reproaches us for sins against the law, and accuses us of sins against our training. He professes to have knowledge of God, and calls himself a child of the Lord. He became to us a reproof of our thoughts; the very sight of him is a burden to us, because his manner of life is unlike that of others, and his ways are strange.

“We are considered by him as something base, and he avoids our ways as unclean; he calls the last end of the righteous happy, and boasts that God is his father.

“Let us see if his words are true, and let us test what will happen at the end of his life; for if the righteous man is God’s son, he will help him, and will deliver him from the hand of his adversaries. Let us test him with insult and torture, that we may find out how gentle he is, and make trial of his forbearance. Let us condemn him to a shameful death, for, according to what he says, he will be protected.”

Thus they reasoned, but they were led astray, for their wickedness blinded them, and they did not know the secret purposes of God, nor hope for the wages of holiness, nor discern the prize for blameless souls.

GOSPEL (John 7:1-2, 10, 25-30)
Jesus went about in Galilee; he would not go about in Judea, because the Jews sought to kill him.

Now the Jews’ feast of Tabernacles was at hand.

After his brethren had gone up to the feast, then he also went up, not publicly but in private.

Some of the people of Jerusalem said, “Is not this the man whom they seek to kill? And here he is, speaking openly, and they say nothing to him! Can it be that the authorities really know that this is the Christ? Yet we know where this man comes from; and when the Christ appears, no one will know where he comes from.”

So Jesus proclaimed, as he taught in the temple, “You know me, and you know where I come from? But I have not come of my own accord; he who sent me is true, and him you do not know. I know him, for I come from him, and he sent me.”

So they sought to arrest him; but no one laid hands on him, because his hour had not yet come.

His hour had not yet come - Servants of the Word

Testing God's ways Bolling Bryant

The "Hour" of Jesus in the Fourth Gospel Fr Felix Just

Do you live your life in a manner which honours the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ with passion? Jesus took our sin upon himself and willingly suffered death on a cross for our sake, undergoing punishment that we deserve. Three days later, Jesus rose from the dead, establishing his victory over sin and death, and in doing so, restored humanity's broken relationship with God the Father. Throughout his earthly pilgrimage, Jesus met conflict and opposition with grace and strength in order to accomplish his Father's will. We either accept by faith his claims and promises or we reject them with unyielding disbelief and contempt. The stakes are high, both on our earthly journey and in eternity, literally becoming a matter of life or death for each of us.

The religious leaders of the day wanted to arrest Jesus as they were unable to accept and acknowledge his claim to be the Son of God. Jesus boldly stated that he was the Messiah, God's Anointed One, and cried out as he taught in the temple, "The one who sent me is true, and him you do not know. I know him, because I am from him, and he sent me" (John 7:28b-29 NRSV). Jesus claimed that the Jews did not know God, that he alone knew him, and that God sent him. To the Jews, the words from Jesus cut like a double-edged sword. In their eyes, Jesus was committing the crime of blasphemy. This same choice is still before us today. Either what Jesus said about himself is false, or he is telling us the truth about himself, in which case, he is what he claimed to be, the Son of God.

Our Passion for Jesus strengthens as we draw near his peace, love, and joy, by humbly surrendering our lives in obedience to his will. The choice is ours.
The Reverend David A. Sullivan

Eternal God,
who art the light of the minds that know thee,
the joy of the hearts that love thee,
and the strength of the wills that serve thee;
grant us so to know thee,
that we may truly love thee,
and so to love thee
that we may fully serve thee,
whom to serve is perfect freedom,
in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Saint Augustine of Hippo (354-430 AD)


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