Thursday, June 23, 2022

Friday prior to Proper 8


Luke 9:51–62In Luke 9:51, the whole tenor of the Gospel according to St Luke changes, when Jesus sets His face to go to Jerusalem. Now the focus is on the cross, where He will redeem mankind from the clutches of Satan, from bondage to the Law, and from everlasting death. Our eyes, too, must ever be focused on the cross of Christ. It is there alone that we are able to find true freedom, as proclaimed in the epistle from Galatians. Likewise, if pastors are going to faithful to the Lord, as was Elijah, they must always preach Christ crucified as a sacrifice on our behalf.

Jesus calls for total commitment – Commitment to Christ requires total surrender

Jesus has “set His face to go to Jerusalem,” meaning that He has resolutely determined that He must follow that course of action in order to do the will of the Father. As He often did, Jesus sent advance agents ahead to a Samaritan village to prepare for His arrival. However, when the advance agents reached the village, they were met with hostility instead of hospitality. They then asked Jesus if He wouldn’t pull some miracle which would punish the village. Jesus, of course, refused sand went to another village. While is on the road, notice the people who want to follow Jesus but always with reservations. The reading ends with a difficult saying, “no one who puts his hand to the ploy and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”

We often speak glibly at times of being Jesus’ disciple. Do we understand and appreciate what it means? Do we truly want to be disciples? The Gospel confronts us with the challenge of being Christian disciples. It asks us to examine our connection to Christ not only in what we believe about Him but in how faith becomes active in our daily living.

There is a not of hoe in the description of Jesus’ passion as the time for His being received up. There will be suffering and death. Yet the culmination lies even beyond the resurrection. The Suffering Servant will be the Ascended LORD.

Collect for Friday of the week of Pentecost 3: What we ask of thee wisely, O God, do thou of thy great bounty bestow; with all that we so deeply need and know not how to ask; that in the knowledge of thy love we may have they peace that comes not of our striving but of thy gift. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen [2] -24 June, 2022

[1] The Cross of Christ, copyright © Ed Riojas, Higher Things

[2] Collect for Friday of the week of Pentecost 3, For All the Saints, A Prayer Book For and By the Church, Vol. II © 1995 The American Lutheran Publicity Bureau, Delphi, NY

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