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What does The Lord require of you?

What Does the Lord Require of You?

love_enemy

“What does the Lord require of you but to seek justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God” [Micah 6:8]

 

This week we depart from our set lectionary Lenten readings to explore, with many others across the Grafton Anglican Diocese, the theme of penitence as a prerequisite for reconciliation and healing. We are faced with the reality of the interconnectedness of our intimacy with God and our own lives that Jesus calls us to live in justice and mercy. We revisit the Beatitudes – part of Matthew’s account of the Sermon on the Mount – where Jesus teaches that our faith is little more than platitudes and dreams without a lived expression of our intimacy with God.

We find God in the poorest, the weakest and the most vulnerable, and as we work for justice, peace and mercy, we participate in God’s reign and God’s life. In the Gospel there is no division between justice and worship, between ministry and liturgy.

We are called to embrace a vibrant and living relationship with God that can be seen and experienced as a vibrant and joyful interaction with the world.

This week, may we recognise God’s hand in all our comings and goings, not just in our church worship amongst other believers.

 

Acknowledgements:

Based on Van De Laar, John, Reflection for Epiphany 4A, 21/12/2013, http://sacredise.com/lectionary/2013/12/epiphany-4a/#more-310

 

Romans 4:1-5, 13-17 The Example of Abraham

41What then are we to say was gained by Abraham, our ancestor according to the flesh? 2For if Abraham was justified by works, he has something to boast about, but not before God. 3For what does the scripture say? ‘Abraham believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.’ 4Now to one who works, wages are not reckoned as a gift but as something due. 5But to one who without works trusts him who justifies the ungodly, such faith is reckoned as righteousness. 13 For the promise that he would inherit the world did not come to Abraham or to his descendants through the law but through the righteousness of faith. 14If it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. 15For the law brings wrath; but where there is no law, neither is there violation. 16 For this reason it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his descendants, not only to the adherents of the law but also to those who share the faith of Abraham (for he is the father of all of us, 17as it is written, ‘I have made you the father of many nations’)—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist.

 

Matthew 5: 1-12 The Beatitudes

1 Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, 2 and he began to teach them. He said: 3 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4 Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5 Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 7 Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 9 Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 10 Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11 “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. 12 Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.