Daily Bible For Advent | Tuesday Week 2 | The Lost Sheep

In these verses of the Bible, Christ expresses the love of God for all people. Christ’s is not an exclusive calling, nor especially a calling to those who most clearly, visibly, seem to adhere to the requirements of the Old Law; he has come to bring home to God those who have wandered, sinners who have fallen far from the Law. When a sinner comes home to God, there is incredible rejoicing in heaven. So we, though we may sin, should never be afraid to return to the Church, to say sorry, confess our sins, and find forgiveness [ … ]

Daily Bible For Advent | Monday Week 2 | Jesus Heals A Paralyzed Man

The paralyzed man would not have been able to come to Jesus without the help of his friends. It is his friends’ faith, and their initiative and bravery, as well as his own that work together to find a way to come to Jesus. Jesus is touched by their faith and their friendship. We may think now as well about the help we give others and the help which we receive from others, in matters of faith and as we confess our sins and seek spiritual healing. Our sins can be like a form of spiritual paralysis, in which condition we may rely a great deal on our friends to bring us back to Jesus [ … ]

Daily Bible For Advent | Second Sunday of Advent | The Baptism of John

Mark’s Gospel, thought by many to be the earliest written, does not present an account of the birth of Christ. He begins with the proclamation of Jesus Christ as the Son of God, leading into his baptism by John. Toward the end of the Gospel, when the crucified Christ dies, the centurion standing by him will affirm this, saying: ‘Truly this was the Son of God.’ Throughout this most fast paced of gospels, this is Mark’s message, to give his readers the knowledge that Christ is the Son of God [ … ]

Daily Bible For Advent | Saturday Week 1 | The Lost Sheep Of Israel

Today’s Bible verses, as per the Roman lectionary, notably elide Matthew 10: 5: ‘Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not.’ This omission is curious, though understandable: during the Mass especially, we are to contemplate inclusion rather than exclusion, and the intentions behind Jesus’ initial injunctions to those he sends to preach might well require explanation. Jesus, then, tells his missionary disciples: you are sent now to preach to the Jews alone, not to Gentiles, not to Samaritans, but to Jews alone [ … ]

Daily Bible For Advent | Friday Week 1 | Jesus Heals Two Blind Men

While the Pharisees deny him, two blind men, who because of their blindness would be excluded from normal Jewish worship, are able to see Jesus for who and what he is. The way in which the blind men hail Jesus is significant: ‘Thou Son of David.’ This implies recognition of Jesus as the Messiah. It is as if, despite physical blindness, there is an inner light – and this is a thought we may all take to ourselves as we seek Jesus [ … ]

Daily Bible For Advent | Thursday Week 1 | The Sermon On The Mount Concludes | The House Built On A Rock

Matthew’s account of the Sermon on the Mount has been related through the whole of chapters five, six and seven of his Gospel. Jesus concludes his teachings with today’s Bible verses, which carry both a promise and a warning. Commencing with the Beatitudes, Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount has presented to the people, toward the start of his ministry, a most beautiful, transformative understanding of God’s call to us to be with Him and to live according to the real, inner truth of the law [ … ]

Daily Bible For Advent | Wednesday Week 1 | The Second Miracle Of The Loaves And Fishes

This, in Matthew’s Gospel, is the second miracle of the loaves and the fishes. Jesus is preaching and working his healing miracles in the border country, where Jews and pagans live side by side. The landscape seems symbolic, archetypal; as Jesus nears the Sea of Galilee, he goes up into a mountain. It is here that Jesus’ miracles lead both Jews and pagans to glorify the God of Israel [ … ]

Daily Bible For Advent | Monday Week 1 | Jesus Heals The Centurion’s Servant

Today’s Bible verses present an extraordinary scene. The centurion is not merely a Gentile; he is an officer of the occupying Roman army – the enemy! – and he comes to a Jew for help. Further to this, the centurion has come to Jesus to ask him to help his servant. This might seem to us an awful lot of care expressed by a Roman officer for a servant, whom we might presume to be a slave. Further to this, the centurion has the tact to know that Jesus should not enter into a Gentile’s house, because this would be seen by the Jews as making him impure [ … ]