children of God

Tuesday: Reflection on the Twenty-seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

Roman Catholic Proper 27
Revised Common Lectionary Proper 22

Complementary Hebrew Scripture Lesson from The Twelve Prophets: Habakkuk 2:5-11

Moreover, wealth is treacherous;
 the arrogant do not endure.
They open their throats wide as Sheol;
 like Death they never have enough.
They gather all nations for themselves,
 and collect all peoples as their own.
Shall not everyone taunt such people and, with mocking riddles, say about them,
“Alas for you who heap up what is not your own!”
 How long will you load yourselves with goods taken in pledge?
Will not your own creditors suddenly rise,
 and those who make you tremble wake up?
 Then you will be booty for them.
Because you have plundered many nations,
 all that survive of the peoples shall plunder you—
because of human bloodshed, and violence to the earth,
 to cities and all who live in them.

“Alas for you who get evil gain for your houses,
 setting your nest on high
 to be safe from the reach of harm!”
You have devised shame for your house
 by cutting off many peoples;
 you have forfeited your life.
The very stones will cry out from the wall,
 and the plaster will respond from the woodwork.

Semi-continuous Hebrew Scripture Lesson from the Writings: Lamentations 2:13-22

What can I say for you, to what compare you,
 O daughter Jerusalem?
To what can I liken you, that I may comfort you,
 O virgin daughter Zion?
For vast as the sea is your ruin;
 who can heal you?

Your prophets have seen for you
 false and deceptive visions;
they have not exposed your iniquity
 to restore your fortunes,
but have seen oracles for you
 that are false and misleading.

All who pass along the way clap
 their hands at you;
they hiss and wag their heads
 at daughter Jerusalem;
“Is this the city that was called
 the perfection of beauty,
 the joy of all the earth?”

All your enemies
 open their mouths against you;
they hiss, they gnash their teeth,
 they cry: “We have devoured her!
Ah, this is the day we longed for;
 at last we have seen it!”

The Lord has done what he purposed,
 he has carried out his threat;
 as he ordained long ago,
 he has demolished without pity;
 he has made the enemy rejoice over you,
 and exalted the might of your foes.

Cry aloud to the Lord!
 O wall of daughter Zion!
Let tears stream down like a torrent
 day and night!
Give yourself no rest,
 your eyes no respite!

Arise, cry out in the night,
 at the beginning of the watches!
Pour out your heart like water
 before the presence of the Lord!
Lift your hands to him
 for the lives of your children,
who faint for hunger
 at the head of every street.

Look, O Lord, and consider!
 To whom have you done this?
Should women eat their offspring,
 the children they have borne?
Should priest and prophet be killed
 in the sanctuary of the Lord?

The young and the old are lying
 on the ground in the streets;
my young women and my young men
 have fallen by the sword;
in the day of your anger you have killed them,
 slaughtering without mercy.

You invited my enemies from all around
 as if for a day of festival;
and on the day of the anger of the Lord
 no one escaped or survived;
those whom I bore and reared my
 enemy has destroyed.

Complementary Psalm 3

O Lord, how many are my foes!
 Many are rising against me;
many are saying to me,
 “There is no help for you in God.”

But you, O Lord, are a shield around me,
 my glory, and the one who lifts up my head.
I cry aloud to the Lord,
 and he answers me from his holy hill.

I lie down and sleep;
 I wake again, for the Lord sustains me.
I am not afraid of ten thousands of people
 who have set themselves against me all around.

Rise up, O Lord!
 Deliver me, O my God!
For you strike all my enemies on the cheek;
 you break the teeth of the wicked.
Deliverance belongs to the Lord;
 may your blessing be on your people!

Semi-continuous Psalm 137

By the rivers of Babylon—
 there we sat down and there we wept
 when we remembered Zion.
On the willows there
 we hung up our harps.
For there our captors
 asked us for songs,
and our tormentors asked for mirth,
 saying, “Sing us one of the songs of Zion!”

How could we sing the Lord's song
 in a foreign land?
If I forget you, O Jerusalem,
 let my right hand wither!
Let my tongue cling to the roof of my mouth,
 if I do not remember you,
if I do not set Jerusalem
 above my highest joy.

Remember, O Lord, against the Edomites
 the day of Jerusalem's fall,
how they said, “Tear it down! Tear it down!
 Down to its foundations!”
O daughter Babylon, you devastator!
 Happy shall they be who pay you back
what you have done to us!
Happy shall they be who take your little ones
 and dash them against the rock!

New Testament Epistle Lesson: 1 John 5:1-5, 13-21

Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the parent loves the child. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. For the love of God is this, that we obey his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome, for whatever is born of God conquers the world. And this is the victory that conquers the world, our faith. Who is it that conquers the world but the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?

I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.

And this is the boldness we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have obtained the requests made of him. If you see your brother or sister committing what is not a mortal sin, you will ask, and God will give life to such a one—to those whose sin is not mortal. There is sin that is mortal; I do not say that you should pray about that. All wrongdoing is sin, but there is sin that is not mortal.

We know that those who are born of God do not sin, but the one who was born of God protects them, and the evil one does not touch them. We know that we are God's children, and that the whole world lies under the power of the evil one. And we know that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding so that we may know him who is true; and we are in him who is true, in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.

Little children, keep yourselves from idols.

Year C Ordinary 27, Catholic Proper 27, RCL Proper 22: Tuesday

Selections are from Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings copyright © 1995 by the Consultation on Common Texts.

Unless otherwise indicated, Bible text is from New Revised Standard Version Bible (NRSV) copyright © 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Image Credit: Obey Unsplash image with text added by Michael Gilbertson. This image is public domain.

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Acts 2:1-21

(The alternate reading, Genesis 11:1-9, is below)


When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. Amazed and astonished, they asked, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabs—in our own languages we hear them speaking about God's deeds of power.” All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” But others sneered and said, “They are filled with new wine.”

But Peter, standing with the eleven, raised his voice and addressed them, “Men of Judea and all who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and listen to what I say. Indeed, these are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only nine o'clock in the morning. No, this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel:

‘In the last days it will be, God declares,
that I will pour out my spirit on all flesh;
 your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
and your young men shall see visions.
 your old men shall dream dreams.
Even upon my slaves, both men and women,
 in those days, I will pour out my spirit.
  and they shall prophesy.
And I will show portents in the heaven above
 and signs on the earth below,
  blood, and fire, and smoky mist.
The sun shall be turned to darkness
 and the moon to blood,
  before the coming of the Lord's great and glorious day.
Then everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’”¹

¹Joel 2:28-32

Hebrew Scripture Torah Lesson: Genesis 11:1-9

Now the whole earth had one language and the same words. And as they migrated from the east, they came upon a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. And they said to one another, “Come, let us make bricks, and burn them thoroughly.” And they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar. Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let us make a name for ourselves; otherwise we shall be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.” The Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which mortals had built. And the Lord said, “Look, they are one people, and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do; nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them. Come, let us go down, and confuse their language there, so that they will not understand one another's speech.” So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city. Therefore it was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.

Psalm 104:24-34, 35b

O Lord, how manifold are your works!
 In wisdom you have made them all;
 the earth is full of your creatures.
Yonder is the sea, great and wide,
 creeping things innumerable are there,
 living things both small and great.
There go the ships,
 and Leviathan that you formed to sport in it.

These all look to you
 to give them their food in due season;
when you give to them, they gather it up;
 when you open your hand, they are filled with good things.
When you hide your face, they are dismayed;
 when you take away their breath, they die
 and return to their dust.
When you send forth your spirit, they are created;
and you renew the face of the ground.

May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
 may the Lord rejoice in his works—
who looks on the earth and it trembles,
 who touches the mountains and they smoke.
I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;
 I will sing praise to my God while I have being.
May my meditation be pleasing to him,
 for I rejoice in the Lord.
Bless the Lord, O my soul.
Praise the Lord!

New Testament Lesson: Romans 8:14-17

(The alternate reading, Acts 2:1-21, is above)

So then, brothers and sisters, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh—for if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, “Abba! Father!” it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ—if, in fact, we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him.

John 14:8-17, 25-27

Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and you still do not know me? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; but if you do not, then believe me because of the works themselves. Very truly, I tell you, the one who believes in me will also do the works that I do and, in fact, will do greater works than these, because I am going to the Father. I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If in my name you ask me for anything, I will do it.

“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, to be with you forever. This is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, because he abides with you, and he will be in you.

“I have said these things to you while I am still with you. But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.”

Year C Pentecost Sunday

Selections are from Revised Common Lectionary Daily Readings copyright © 1995 by the Consultation on Common Texts.

Unless otherwise indicated, Bible text is from New Revised Standard Version Bible (NRSV) copyright © 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All right reserved.

Image credits: The Tower of Babel (Les Mosaiques de la Chapelle Palatine de Palerme. Belli, Annibale and Pietro Toesca. Milano, Edizioni d'arte Sidera, 1955) via the Vanderbilt Divinity Library,licensed under CC3.0

Pentecost by the Jesus Mafa community via the Vanderbilt Divinity Library, licensed under CC3.0

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Friday: Preparation for the Sixth Sunday in Lent

 Jeremiah 33:1-9 God promises restoration and cleansing from sin.

Philippians 2:12-18 Do all things without murmuring and arguing, so that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, in which you shine like stars in the world.

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Friday: Preparation for the 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Friday: Preparation for the 18th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Complementary: Isaiah 51:17-23 You shall drink no more from the bowl of my wrath.

Semi-continuous: Isaiah 41:8-10 Do not fear, for I am with you.

Both: Romans 9:6-13 It is not the children of the flesh, but those of the promise who are children of God.

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Friday: Preparation for Pentecost Sunday

Friday: Preparation for Pentecost Sunday

Exodus 19:16-25 Moses brought the people before God on Mt. Sinai. The people, even the priests, were not to come on the mountain or God would break out against them.

Romans 8:14-17 All those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.

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