Sunday 30 October 2016

Bible Book:

Luke 6:20-31 Sunday 30 October 2016

Psalm: Psalm 149


Today is the closest Sunday to All Saints Day - many churcheswill mark this high point of the Christian year by praying for allsaints, known and unknown. Some churches will hold special serviceson Tuesday 1 November, the day when the feast day falls. On Tuesday this week we will visit Matthew'sBeatitudes as we remember those who have lived lives thatdemonstrate God's blessings to the world. But today we considerLuke's Beatitudes - or as they are more often called, Luke's'Blessings and Woes'.

There is a contrast between these two texts. Matthew sets out alist of those who will be blessed, from the poor to those who willbe hated for professing their faith - it is a familiar text to manypeople and full of hope for the poor, the hungry and those whomourn. Luke's Gospel goes further however.

With all the precision of a physician, Luke diagnoses thespiritual health of those who are rich and have full bellies andlaugh, whilst others mourn. In this view of God's future realm,those who sit comfortably and ignore the needs of others will notshare in the blessings of that kingdom of peace and plenty. Luke'sGospel makes it clear that the rich have significant barriers to afull understanding of God's economy of grace. The way todemonstrate membership of God's kingdom is to love even those whohate you, to give away all excess and to follow the 'golden rule'that is at the heart of most religious ethics - to do to others asyou would have them do to you.

To Ponder

  • How do you respond to Luke's consistently uncomfortable messageto those who are wealthy?
  • Who are the saints in your Christian story?
  • Is there an action you can take today that demonstrates yourwillingness to do to others what you would have them do to you? Ifyou can, take it.
Previous Page Saturday 12 November 2016
Next Page Monday 31 October 2016