19th Sunday after Pentecost

Lectionary 1st Reading Psalm 2nd Reading Gospel
Anglican lectionary:
Jeremiah 31:27-34
119:97-104
2 Timothy 3:14-4:5
Luke 18:1-8
Catholic lectionary:
Exodus 17:8-13
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(both)
(both)
Notes on each reading

Comments on Jeremiah 31:27-34

The theme here is the cultivation of new order.

The passage uses images and symbols of gardening and cultivation: sow and seed of human and animals (Jeremiah 31:270, to plant (v28), grapes (v30).
God shows himself as someone who cultivates, grows and weeds out those things that are rotten
and bad and not productive. Early in the Old Testament in Genesis, God planted a garden in Eden (Genesis 2.8). God is intimately involved with his creation: humankind and animals, trees, plants and all vegetation and all fruits.
Here in Jeremiah God will cultivate and build a new House of Israel and Judah with the seeds of
mankind and animals. It is done with care, love and patience. The new nation with be his and the
people will have his laws written on their hearts. The law of God is the Torah – the commandments
to love one another and all creation and to seek justice so that all those who have the law written intheir hearts will know God for he will have forgiven them for their sins and wickedness. (Jeremiah
31:33-34)

Comments on Luke 18:1-8

Theme of persistence in prayer and seeking justice.

This is a story of salvation. The widow is persistent is expressing her needs. She kept asking for divine help and kept praying. She kept believing God and in due course she succeeds in the process and gets saved/ gets justice from the judge, parable tells us that God always hears the cries and pleas of his people and will surely act. But in Luke 18:8 God wonders whether people have enough faith to believe that He will always enact justice. What is required is faith in the power of persistence. Do not give up. Luke 18:8 refers to the second coming of Christ. When Jesus comes will we be ready? Do we have the stamina to endure the temptations and sufferings of this world with faith and patient endurance so that when Christ comes he will find us faithful and justify us?

Sermon and Application

Jeremiah

  • The recent UN Summit Action Summit 2019
    Environmentalism, pollution, climate change. To limit climate change and achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. To try and do what we can to help the environment and create sustainable living and development.
  • In Jeremiah, God gives his people hope. God ‘planted’ a new house of Israel and Judah. He wants us to cultivate the world and all that He created by planting and nurturing it with resources that our sustainable and renewable and lead to the fruition and flourishing of mankind, animals and all living things.
  • We can bring hope to the next generation that the world they grow in to will be just, beautiful and like a cultivated garden where God’s creation will bloom. God is a just God and passage in Jeremiah is a call for justice and compassion for the world and its peoples and for moral judgement on the use of scare and precious resources.
  • When God’s word is written in our hearts, we will have the favour of God if we do what is pleasing to him and as we also work with him to usher in His Kingdom on earth. God planted a garden in Eden and so he is beginning to work so that the earth will be like a new garden reflecting the new earth in a way God desires it to be.
  • The passage in Jeremiah is about salvation of not just humans but salvation is about the world, all creation.

Gospel of Luke

  • Luke 18:1 reminds us of the justice of God and his readiness and speed to action. The passage implores us to be persistent in prayers and action so that God will find us faithful to him when he comes again to judge those who love him and those who are against him.
  • The passage tells us that for Christ to find us faithful he must find that we have not exploited this world and indulge in it to satisfy our own lusts and desires but that we have been faithful servants and stewards of this earth: loving creation, the climate, the environment and all people just as Christ loves all of us and gave his
    life for us.

Response
The message from our readings is a call to us to be persistent in seeking justice for the earth by
limiting or avoiding the worst effects of climate change. We are asked to do whatever we can in our local communities and cities to save them from the scourge of climate change, pollution and local flooding due to rising sea levels and infrastructural problems such as overcrowding.
Let us cultivate and nourish our hearts and minds with the word of God (the Scriptures) and feed on the rich teachings of the faith that creation is a gift given by God for our care and nurture.
Let us as individuals and as a church be strengthened in our faith and in prayers and with the help of the spirit of God persevere in the work to bring to reality the vision of the world as a sustainable
home for all humanity. A world that truly reflects and radiate the glory and splendour of God

Revd Jaiye Edu

Jaiye is an ordained Anglican pries.He served in Diocese of Lagos Mainland of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion). He now lives on London and works for a medical charity.”

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