St. Matthew's Episcopal Church Maple Glen, Pennsylvania

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Readings and Reflections on the 12th Sunday after Pentecost

1 Kings 19:4-8
Psalm 34:1-8
Ephesians 4:25 – 5:2
John 6:35, 41-51

In this reading from 1 Kings, the prophet Elijah is fed and encouraged by the intervention of angels so that he might make a 40 day journey through the wilderness to the mountain of God.

John’s Gospel continues from last week, in which Jesus is declared as the Bread of Life. This week we hear some take offense at this claim, pointing out his human nature.  How can he be compared to the supernatural food (manna) given to Israel in the wilderness?  John’s Gospel nonetheless insists that those who believe, trust, and follow Christ will find that in so doing they receive a life that is greater than death, enduring forever.

In Paul’s instructions to the Ephesians, we see that people of the early churches acted very much the way people have always acted.  Anger, bitterness, slander and falsehood always seem to rise up among us.  These things are to be countered with kindness, forgiveness, and Christ like love.

Comment: Jesus is the one who sustains me through the inevitable challenges of life. He is the supernatural gift from God I need.  How blessed to be able to look to Christ when I am weary and stressed! How refreshing to listen to Jesus as an antidote to the endless political fault finding and blaming of human society.  Jesus is also the one who challenges me to be a witness to his way in a troubled world, a way of forgiveness, kindness, and love.