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Faith Daily | 1 December 2021

PRAYER of the DAY - Advent One



Almighty God,

give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness

and put on the armour of light,

now in the time of this mortal life

in which your Son Jesus Christ came among us

in great humility,

that on the last day,

when he shall come again in his glorious majesty

to judge the living and the dead,

we may rise to the life immortal;

through him who lives and reigns with you

and the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever.

Amen.



GOSPEL for the Day: Matthew 15: 29-37


29After Jesus had left that place, he passed along the Sea of Galilee, and he went up the mountain, where he sat down. 30Great crowds came to him, bringing with them the lame, the maimed, the blind, the mute, and many others. They put them at his feet, and he cured them, 31so that the crowd was amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the maimed whole, the lame walking, and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel. 32Then Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for the crowd, because they have been with me now for three days and have nothing to eat; and I do not want to send them away hungry, for they might faint on the way.” 33The disciples said to him, “Where are we to get enough bread in the desert to feed so great a crowd?” 34Jesus asked them, “How many loaves have you?” They said, “Seven, and a few small fish.” 35Then ordering the crowd to sit down on the ground, 36he took the seven loaves and the fish; and after giving thanks he broke them and gave them to the disciples, and the disciples gave them to the crowds. 37And all of them ate and were filled; and they took up the broken pieces left over, seven baskets full.


GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by: Debbie Pringle


In the previous chapter Matthew told of the feeding of 5000 predominately Jewish men (plus the women and children) that had happened, in early spring, some months earlier. He was now in a Gentile area, teaching the people and healing them, just as He had the Jews. These miracles indicated that He was The Messiah (Isaiah 35:5-6) ; a Messiah for the Gentiles as well as the Jews. The Gentiles reaction to spending time with Jesus was to praise the God of Israel.


The people had been with Him for 3 days and they had eaten any food that they had brought with them. Jesus saw that they were hungry and had compassion on them. This feeding miracle is similar, but different, to the feeding of the 5000. The food was provided by the disciples, not a boy. There were 7 baskets of food left over, not 12 (both are numbers of completeness to the Jews). The Greek word sphurides is used for baskets, not the Jewish word kophinoi. The kophinos was a small, flask shaped basket, in which Jewish people carried food. The sphuris was more like a hamper and could be big enough to carry a person. (Paul was lowered over the Damascus wall in one.)


In Matthew, just before today’s reading, there is the story of the Canaanite woman. She showed great faith asking for ”the crumbs under the table”and Jesus went on to heal her daughter. This story shows that God doesn’t want to give the Gentiles crumbs, but He wants to give generously to them. In the same way that He wants to give generously to the Jews.


As a Gentile, I am very grateful. I too praise the God of Israel.


FINAL PRAYER: Prayer based on John 3:16


Jew, Kiwi, Brit, Asian, Aussie,

Thank you for a Christ for all of the world,

Thank you for giving Your Son so that WHOSOEVER believes in Him, will not perish, but have everlasting life.

Amen.


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