How to Be, and How Not to Be
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2 Thessalonians 1:1-5, 11-12
Paul, Silvanus, and Timothy,
To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ:
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
We must always give thanks to God for you, brothers and sisters, as is right, because your faith is growing abundantly, and the love of every one of you for one another is increasing. Therefore we ourselves boast of you among the churches of God for your steadfastness and faith during all your persecutions and the afflictions that you are enduring.
This is evidence of the righteous judgement of God, and is intended to make you worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are also suffering. To this end we always pray for you, asking that our God will make you worthy of his call and will fulfil by his power every good resolve and work of faith, so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus said: ‘But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you lock people out of the kingdom of heaven. For you do not go in yourselves, and when others are going in, you stop them. Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cross sea and land to make a single convert, and you make the new convert twice as much a child of hell as yourselves.
‘Woe to you, blind guides, who say, “Whoever swears by the sanctuary is bound by nothing, but whoever swears by the gold of the sanctuary is bound by the oath.” You blind fools! For which is greater, the gold or the sanctuary that has made the gold sacred? And you say, “Whoever swears by the altar is bound by nothing, but whoever swears by the gift that is on the altar is bound by the oath.” How blind you are! For which is greater, the gift or the altar that makes the gift sacred? So whoever swears by the altar, swears by it and by everything on it; and whoever swears by the sanctuary, swears by it and by the one who dwells in it; and whoever swears by heaven, swears by the throne of God and by the one who is seated upon it.
Scripture passage from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright 1989, 1993, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
22 August 2022 @ 11:28 pm
Pow! what a creative exposure to the the question “To be or not to be”. Thanks, Beth
Connie Koch OP
23 August 2022 @ 4:02 am
Yes! Thank you Beth! You challenge us to pay attention to “how we are” in these times…..
Pat Magee OP
23 August 2022 @ 5:08 am
Thank you Beth! The hypocrisies of our day are really not that much different than those of the Scribes and Pharisees! Once again, keeping our eyes on Jesus is the way to negotiate this shadow. Thanks for the clear reminder!
23 August 2022 @ 5:13 am
Once again, Beth, you hit the target. Yksnks. Ann Marie Rimmer
Peggy Devlin, OP
23 August 2022 @ 5:44 am
WOW – I had Fr. T.A Collins, OP (well-named) for a Scripture course oh-so-long ago who said: “The Word of God is there not only to comfort us, but also to confront us and challenge us!” It has stayed with me. In your profound preaching, Beth, you do/did that! Thanks.