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Faith Daily | 21 August 2021

PRAYER of the DAY - PENTECOST APBA p572


Almighty God,

you have given your only Son

to be for us both a sacrifice for sin

and also an example of godly life:

give us grace that we may always thankfully receive

the benefits of his sacrifice,

and also daily endeavour

to follow the blessed steps of his most holy life;

through the same Jesus Christ our Lord.

Amen.



GOSPEL for the Day: Matthew 23: 1-12



Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, 2“The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat; 3therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it; but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach. 4They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on the shoulders of others; but they themselves are unwilling to lift a finger to move them. 5They do all their deeds to be seen by others; for they make their phylacteries broad and their fringes long. 6They love to have the place of honour at banquets and the best seats in the synagogues, 7and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have people call them rabbi. 8But you are not to be called rabbi, for you have one teacher, and you are all students. 9And call no one your father on earth, for you have one Father—the one in heaven. 10Nor are you to be called instructors, for you have one instructor, the Messiah. 11The greatest among you will be your servant. 12All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted.



GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by: : Rev’d Sandra Kjellgren


In this section of the Gospel Jesus is on the offensive against the Pharisees and he is addressing a mixed crowd in the Temple courtyards. He is focussed on the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law.


In so many synagogues of Jesus’ time, a stone seat was located at the front of the building which functioned like the equivalent of a pulpit, where authorised teachers would sit to teach the congregations.


And Jesus told his listeners that they should take heed to what the teachers said about the law of Moses – but not the latter rabbinic additions to the law. He warned the people to not follow the actions of the Pharisees and Scribes as they were known to distort scripture and require observant Jews to carry out all kinds of onerous demands in their Spiritual development which they were not willing to follow themselves.


So, Jesus tells his followers that we must take care to cultivate humble and compassionate hearts. We are cautioned to keep human pride in check and not strive to exalt ourselves rather than God’s word. Our Lord offers us himself as the perfect example to follow as we see him ministering with compassion, mercy and grace to all who are in need.



FINAL PRAYER: – Rev'd Sandra


Loving God,

We remember before you all whose world has fallen apart this week.

We pray for those who have lost loved ones,

for those who have been involved in accidents

and those who have become ill.

We especially pray for those who are struggling in lockdowns.

Grant your healing blessing upon them for the sake of our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.


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