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Full lections can be read here.
Based on the Readings as Set
First Reading (Isaiah 58:1-12)
The Lord asserts that true religion is more than just the observance of religious ceremonies and fasts but must include obedience to him, especially in caring for those in need. Doing so will result in his people showing forth his glory.
The Psalmist affirms that those who fear the Lord are firmly established in the midst of the changes and chances of this life. They delight in his laws and obey them, especially in supporting the poor. They are a light in the darkness for all those around them.
Second Reading (I Corinthians 2:1-16)
St. Paul reminds the Corinthians that their faith was not inspired by great words of worldly wisdom but upon the demonstration and power of the Spirit. He gives them his gifts and the mind of Christ in order to live for God in a world subject to a contrary spirit.
Gospel (Matthew 5:13-20)
Jesus tells his followers they are both the salt of the earth and the light of the world. As they more fully keep the laws of God before a watching humanity, more glory is given to the Father and the kingdom of heaven comes closer to realization.
- God’s people are called and equipped to be light in the world
- Our witness in the world is dependent upon our faithfulness to God’s commandments
- The world naturally operates in a way that is contrary to God’s ways
- Our worship is not acceptable if we persist in disobedience
- The “foolishness” of God is greater than the “wisdom” of humankind
- The castoffs of society are the special objects of the Lord’s concern and this must be reflected in our discipleship