The Lord of the Sabbath

Friday                             The Lord of the Sabbath               Matthew 12

The essences of all the readings of the week are found in today’s Gospel.  Jesus’ image of the divided house recalls Isaiah’s telling about the coming downfall of Egypt.  We recall the story of the Ark of the Covenant in Tuesday’s reading when Jesus tells the Pharisees that there is, “One greater than the Temple” in their midst.  Wednesday’s psalm about worship balances Jesus’ teaching about God’s preference for “Mercy and not sacrifice.” Paul’s teaching about sin and grace forms a backdrop to the sin of blasphemy against the Spirit.  This is to grieve the Holy Spirit so deeply by claiming that it is the devil at work in Jesus. Imagine that!

Think of it this way: when the cows led the Ark back to God’s people, how would the Holy Spirit have felt if the people turned the cows around, to walk back down the road again?  

Matthew 12

Visit STUDY THIS on the upper right side of any passage from BibleGateway.
I especially recommend the free resource in Matthew Henry’s Commentary.

In Year A, we continue to read from the Gospel of St. Matthew.

These Firestarters are for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

A Check-Up from the Neck Up

Slavery is a terrible evil.  How sad that this is still continuing in the world in different ways, even children being sold into slavery!

St. Paul talks about those who are caught in sin as being slaves to sin. Keeping with the idea of a slave, he turns the thought to being a slave to Jesus—bound to him by obeying him and following his inspirations in life. 

If you were to make a list of the things that you are attached to, how would these measure up as helps for you to be totally attached to God?  What about your thoughts?  Do they lead you toward life and God, or away from God into selfishness and sulking?  

I like this expression: “I need a check-up from the neck up! 

Romans 6:16-23

Visit STUDY THIS on the upper right side of any passage from BibleGateway.
I especially recommend the free resource in Matthew Henry’s Commentary.

Thursdays are dedicated to the letters of Paul, other letters,
the Book of Acts, and the Book of Revelation.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.

Keeping Balance

When a ship is being tossed and turned in a storm, an instrument called a gyroscope helps keep the floor of the ship balanced and even.  A gyroscope is a rapidly spinning wheel on an axis (like an axle of a car), that tends to stay even, no matter how things are changing all around outside it. 

Psalm 26 tells how the sacred writer is able to keep balance and be peaceful while his enemies are pushing and shoving him all around.  Like a gyroscope, he keeps balance by walking around the altar, instead of spending time with those who poke at him; that would not only have him unsteady, but they would distract him for the peaceful presence of God who gives him joy.

Is there anything in your life that is making you loose peace as though your soul, like your body, is off balance?

Psalm 26

Visit STUDY THIS on the upper right side of any passage from BibleGateway.
I especially recommend the free resource in Matthew Henry’s Commentary.

We read the Psalms in numerical order on Wednesdays.

These Firestarters are from a new edition of The Bible Through the Seasons being developed for families with children. For the Firestarters in the original edition, I recommend the ebook.  You will have the entire program of well over a thousand of these introductions with you on your phone or table! Check the menu options at the site for more information.