Re-Opening of the Church on 5 July
We will be opening for a short act of non Eucharistic worship at out usual worship times of: 10.30 a.m. for St. Mary’s and St. Thomas’ and 10 a.m. for .Luke’s. At the present time we won’t be opening at 8.30 a.m. or 6.30 p.m. due to the deep cleaning that will be required between services if we are opening more than once in a day. Also we will remain closed for weekday services at present. This of course is subject to change as time goes on and I am hoping that we will be able to offer our full variety of worship before too long.
Midweek reflection the Third week of Trinity 2020
Being a disciple
Rabbi Yeshua bar Yusef – Jesus the son of Joseph
In the first century AD, there were lots of Rabbis and their disciples. At the time of Jesus, the two most famous Rabbis were Shammai and Hillel. You may remember that Paul says he had trained with Rabbi Gamaliel, and when Mary Magdalene meets the Lord at Easter dawn, she calls Him “Rabbuni” – my Rabbi.
Unlike other Rabbis, Jesus was revolutionary, He knew what shallow religion was doing to the Jews, and proclaimed a lifestyle, which on the face of it, looked impossible…..
The Gospel Reading: Matthew 10.37-39
“Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of Me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. Whoever does not take up their cross and follow Me is not worthy of Me. Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for My sake will find it.”
The greatest of these is love – go after love
Could other Rabbis have spoken of a commitment like this? Certainly, and they did. They spoke of utter commitment. But the strange thing in this passage is that Rabbi Jesus is the focus of the whole discourse – It’s all about a relationship with Him! No other Rabbi could possibly have said this! While other Rabbis spoke of the deep principles of faith, none would have made themselves the epicentre like Jesus did!
From the outset, Jesus makes faith and lifestyle only the outcomes of a radical love relationship with Him! The apostle Paul sums up the whole of his experience and teaching in these words: “The Son of God who loved me…” This, for him, was the power that flowed from Calvary.
The apostle John spoke of himself as the “agapetos” – the one who is loved (by Jesus) This was discipleship. Has it become “tamed” by church traditions?
In the final chapter of John’s gospel, Jesus asks the disciple Simon Peter the ultimate question – not do you trust me? or believe in Me? or will you give up everything for Me? but simply: “Simon, son of John, do you love Me?” At that point, Peter simply didn’t have the capacity to love Jesus – it was at Pentecost that the Holy Ghost set that love in his heart and turned this “follower” into a disciple.
Ah, Lord! enlarge our scanty thought,
To know the wonders Thou hast wrought;
Unloose our stammering tongues to tell
Thy love, immense, unsearchable.