The Word This Week ~ 19 October 2014
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First Reading: Isaiah 45:1, 4-6
The prophet, who lived in Babylon with the exiled Jews. Proclaims that God is the Lord, not only of the Jews, but of all human history and of the whole world. God has chosen the Babylonian leader Cyrus to be the instrument by whom God would bring back his people from exile, so that they
might praise the one true God and make God’s sovereignty known from the rising to the setting of the sun.
Second Reading: 1 Thessalonians 1:1-5
These five verses are the oldest lines in the New Testament, the first to be written down. They are the introduction to a letter which St Paul wrote to some converts of his in the city of Thessaloniki in northern Greece, which he visited in the summer of 50AD. He begins with as a greeting and then praises them for their fidelity to God. He assures them of his prayers that they might continue to be faithful, and that they might be blessed by the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Gospel Reading: Matthew 22:15-21
The word “Pharisee” means ‘separated’ or ‘set apart’ and although there were many good people among them, they usually looked down on the ordinary people of their day. Although there were individual exceptions, they generally opposed Jesus who was critical of many aspect of their
mentality and lifestyle. In this Gospel passage, they join with the Herodian’s – a group of people who were allies of Herod Antipas and by implication, allies also of the Roman occupiers – in an attempt to trap Jesus into conflict either with the civil authorities of the Jews. The answer of Jesus is the basic on which his followers fulfil their dual obligations as citizens, both of the society in which they live and the
Kingdom to which they belong in faith.
Published Fri 17th Oct 2014 12:55:27