Faith Daily | 28 May 2021
PRAYER of the DAY - PENTECOST APBA p522
O God, who taught the hearts of your faithful people
by sending to them the light of your Holy Spirit:
grant us by the same Spirit
to have a right judgement in all things,
and evermore to rejoice in his holy comfort;
through the merits of Christ Jesus our Saviour,
who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the same Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.
GOSPEL for the Day: Mark 11: 11-26
11 Then he entered Jerusalem and went into the temple; and when he had looked around at everything, as it was already late, he went out to Bethany with the twelve.
12 On the following day, when they came from Bethany, he was hungry. 13 Seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see whether perhaps he would find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. 14 He said to it, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard it.
15 Then they came to Jerusalem. And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who were selling and those who were buying in the temple, and he overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves; 16 and he would not allow anyone to carry anything through the temple. 17 He was teaching and saying, “Is it not written,
‘My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? But you have made it a den of robbers.”
18 And when the chief priests and the scribes heard it, they kept looking for a way to kill him; for they were afraid of him, because the whole crowd was spellbound by his teaching. 19 And when evening came, Jesus and his disciples went out of the city.
20 In the morning as they passed by, they saw the fig tree withered away to its roots. 21 Then Peter remembered and said to him, “Rabbi, look! The fig tree that you cursed has withered.” 22 Jesus answered them, “Have faith in God. 23 Truly I tell you, if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and if you do not doubt in your heart, but believe that what you say will come to pass, it will be done for you. 24 So I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
25 “Whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone; so that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.
GOSPEL Reflection: Contributed by: Rev'd Jan
Well, it seems to me Jesus is not in a happy mood this particular day; ticks off the fig tree, gets really angry with the money changers and others in the temple – and, I think we have to be honest, seems to be offering some quite obtuse teaching…
It reminds me of being in college, training for the church, and one of the students asking innocently if they could change the reading they were required to preach on as they ‘just didn’t get it’. That went down really well.
Starting point: everything Jesus does, is, reveals what God is like. There is no way this cannot be so – we emphasise this theology this coming Sunday, Trinity Sunday – and the same is true of the Holy Spirit. Whatever happens to one happens to the other happens to the other…
Jesus uses the treatment of the fig tree to emphasise that it is faith in God alone that has the power to create change. It is a hard teaching because it leads to the realisation that faith will command only according to God’s will. When we reach mutuality in knowing God’s will, then God’s will is done.
This is very pertinent for the group looking at “What is Christian Healing?” It is so important false expectations are not set up, and that we get to a point, a realisation, that God knows what needs to be healed and we need to trust that. Indeed, have faith in his love.
FINAL PRAYER: Luke 11: 9-10
“So I say to you,
Ask, and it will be given you;
search, and you will find;
knock, and the door will be opened for you.
For everyone who asks receives,
everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.”
open my heart and mind and spirit
to the deep faithfulness you call
in your truth.
May it be my way, my truth, my light.