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Epistolary Love lectionary # 483

483.doc

Scripture: Lectionary 483. Philippians 1:1-11. Psalm 111:1-2.3-4.5-6. Luke 14:1-6:

From Ephesians we now turn to Paul’s letter to the Philippians which will be our first reading during the next few days.  The Philippians are Paul’s favored and beloved assembly of believers (house church?).  We easily are led by the introduction into seeing how much Paul loves them and us!  His sentiments are so strong that it affects anyone who takes some moments to listen to this beautiful and affection address and introduction.  We easily experience the love of God that exudes from Paul from his heart in this brief epistle.

We are consoled by such expressions of affection and love that he has for his cherished community of believers in Jesus.  Since we, too, are believers who accept Paul not only as our omniscient author but more properly as our inspired writer.  Thus it is a letter for us who are the continuation of God’s People today.  We enter into that love of Paul as his brothers and sisters in Christ Jesus.  We can easily take a bit more time after the liturgy to reread as a love letter addressed to us coming from a supportive and beloved friend.  By allowing its words to warm our heart and imagination we will certainly be refreshed and inspired to share that love with those we minister to and meet today.  We hear the echo of Paul’s voice in these words, “I long for each of you with the affection of Christ Jesus.”

Our response helps us shout out with joy, “How great are your works ,O Lord.”

Jesus manifests his love by healing the man who suffered from dropsy.  He goes beyond observing the ordinary laws of the Sabbath and performs a healing that enables someone else to observe the Sabbath with peace and calm.  Jesus words are echoed from another Gospel: “Greater love no one has than to lay down his life for his friends.”  Amen.

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