Tuesday, August 3, 2010
Image: Beads in the Belfry
Time to open the scriptures to preview what the Lord will be saying to us this Sunday, the 19th Sunday in Ordinary Time.
Take a few minutes to look back over the gospel readings for the last several Sundays (here, here, here, here and here) to see how Luke has been instructing us on the life and demands of discipleship. This Sunday's gospel sustains the theme with an instruction on treasure in the heart of a disciple and on vigilance in our relationship with Christ. The lectionary offers a longer and shorter form of this gospel so it's possible that you may not hear the whole of what you read as you prepare.
The first lesson, from the book of Wisdom, is rich in passover references. To help you better understand this scripture, you might want to refresh your memory of this text from Holy Thursday and this text from the Easter Vigil. This Wisdom text is a good example of how background knowledge of the story of Israel is critical for understanding other texts in the Hebrew scriptures. Without such background, much, even most of the meaning of this passage from Wisdom might be missed.
The lectionary also provides a longer and shorter form for the second lesson. (I think this may be the only instance in the lectionary where this long/short option is provided for two texts on the same day. Anyone know of another?) From Hebrews, this passage offers an excellent definition of faith (follow the link to find it in the opening verse). The passage includes a lengthy reference to Abraham's and Sarah's faith. This is a helpful scripture for those who believe, who hope and who sometimes think there is no hope.
For a look at three texts all in once place, along with commentary on them, check here. If you're bringing children to Mass on Sunday, you'll find tips on helping them prepare to hear the Word here.
A teaser to get you started: What do you treasure? Where is your treasure? Where is your heart? (See this Sunday's gospel for help!)
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Posted by Austin Fleming at 11:08 AM