Faith Daily | 16 March 2022
PRAYER of the DAY - APBA p 484
Remember, O Lord,
what you have wrought in us
and not what we deserve,
and, as you have called us to your service,
make us worthy of our calling;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
GOSPEL for the Day: Matthew 20: 17-28
17 While Jesus was going up to Jerusalem, he took the twelve disciples aside by themselves, and said to them on the way, 18‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and scribes, and they will condemn him to death; 19then they will hand him over to the Gentiles to be mocked and flogged and crucified; and on the third day he will be raised.’
20 Then the mother of the sons of Zebedee came to him with her sons, and kneeling before him, she asked a favour of him. 21And he said to her, ‘What do you want?’ She said to him, ‘Declare that these two sons of mine will sit, one at your right hand and one at your left, in your kingdom.’ 22But Jesus answered, ‘You do not know what you are asking. Are you able to drink the cup that I am about to drink?’* They said to him, ‘We are able.’ 23He said to them, ‘You will indeed drink my cup, but to sit at my right hand and at my left, this is not mine to grant, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.’
24 When the ten heard it, they were angry with the two brothers. 25But Jesus called them to him and said, ‘You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones are tyrants over them. 26It will not be so among you; but whoever wishes to be great among you must be your servant, 27and whoever wishes to be first among you must be your slave; 28just as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.’
GOSPEL REFLECTION: Catriona Tullberg
This reading outlines what will take place to Jesus in Jerusalem - His arrest, His death by crucifixion, and that on the third day He will rise from the dead. Jesus took the disciples aside to tell them this and curiously there is no recorded response of the disciples to the immediacy of this. We are left wondering how the disciples reacted to this news. Would we be able to understand if we were in their place, or would shock paralyse our thinking?
The mother of James and John moves events along by asking Jesus to give special preference to them – allowing them to sit at each side of Him in Heaven. This is God’s decision and not for the disciples to argue about. Jesus recognizes their dilemmas and His love of them can be recognized in his explanations. He affirms that they will continue to drink of the cup (a reference to his blood shed for us).
Our human concerns, like the disciples, seem so small by comparison and maybe come from a place of fear rather than love. Fear has the capacity to divide us, but by naming it we recognize it and make a space for truth and love.
Jesus patiently teaches the disciples about the greatness of service and the suffering that that can involve. Greatness in God’s Kingdom comes through humility and service – to be great we must serve. He demonstrated His commitment to servanthood by giving up His life as a ransom for us.
Almighty God, you are the source of all life.
Help us, your children, to listen to our elder brother,
Jesus the Christ,
That in him we may discover
The fullness of life
And be delivered from all false goals
And all crippling fears;
Through Jesus Christ our Lord.