Day 178 | Sunday, 13 September 2020
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO BILL DISBRO!!!!!!!
The assigned readings for this the 15th Sunday after Pentecost are: Exodus 14:19-31; Exodus 15:1b-11, 20-21; Romans 14:1-12 and Matthew 18:15-20.
Let me share with you the Romans reading from The Message:
“1 Welcome with open arms fellow believers who don't see things the way you do. And don't jump all over them every time they do or say something you don't agree with - even when it seems that they are strong on opinions but weak in the faith department. Remember, they have their own history to deal with. Treat them gently.
2 For instance, a person who has been around for a while might well be convinced that he can eat anything on the table, while another, with a different background, might assume all Christians should be vegetarians and eat accordingly.
3 But since both are guests at Christ's table, wouldn't it be terribly rude if they fell to criticizing what the other ate or didn't eat? God, after all, invited them both to the table.
4 Do you have any business crossing people off the guest list or interfering with God's welcome? If there are corrections to be made or manners to be learned, God can handle that without your help.
5 Or, say, one person thinks that some days should be set aside as holy and another thinks that each day is pretty much like any other. There are good reasons either way. So, each person is free to follow the convictions of conscience.
6 What's important in all this is that if you keep a holy day, keep it for God's sake; if you eat meat, eat it to the glory of God and thank God for prime rib; if you're a vegetarian, eat vegetables to the glory of God and thank God for broccoli.
7 None of us are permitted to insist on our own way in these matters.
8 It's God we are answerable to - all the way from life to death and everything in between - not each other.
9 That's why Jesus lived and died and then lived again: so that he could be our Master across the entire range of life and death, and free us from the petty tyrannies of each other.
10 So where does that leave you when you criticize a brother? And where does that leave you when you condescend to a sister? I'd say it leaves you looking pretty silly - or worse. Eventually, we're all going to end up kneeling side by side in the place of judgment, facing God. Your critical and condescending ways aren't going to improve your position there one bit.
11 Read it for yourself in Scripture: "As I live and breathe," God says, "every knee will bow before me; Every tongue will tell the honest truth that I and only I am God."
12 So tend to your knitting. You've got your hands full just taking care of your own life before God.”
“(From the CEB- 12 So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God.)”
From the Hymn – Pues Si Vivimos (When We Are Living) based on Romans 14:8
1. “When we are living, it is in Christ Jesus, and when we’re dying, it is in the Lord. Both in our living and in our dying, we belong to God, we belong to God. We belong to God, we belong to God.”
2. “Through all our living, we our fruits must give. Good works of service are for offering. When we are giving, or when receiving, we belong to God, we belong to God. We belong to God, we belong to God.”
3. “’Mid times of sorrow and in times of pain, when sensing beauty or in love’s embrace, whether we suffer, or sing rejoicing, we belong to God, we belong to God. We belong to God, we belong to God.”
4. “Across this wide world, we shall always find those who are crying with no peace of mind, but when we help them, or when we feed them, we belong to God, we belong to God. We belong to God, we belong to God.”
Gracious God, as we read these words, we are reminded that it is difficult for us sometimes when we have to deal with those who do not always agree with us. We need to remember that it is not up to us to change others, that is your realm. Our responsibility is to be faithful to you and eventually account for our own living and dying. We belong to you, our God. Hear our prayers. Amen
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Rev. Douglas Knopp, Pastor Emeritus