|James Tissot - Sarah Hears and Laughs|
- Genesis 18:1-15, (21:1-7) and Psalm 116:1-2, 12-19 •
- Exodus 19:2-8a and Psalm 100 •
- Romans 5:1-8 •
- Matthew 9:35-10:8, (9-23)
On the Sundays that follow Trinity the Revised Common Lectionary offers alternative Old Testament readings and Psalms. The first is a ‘Continuous’ reading that takes us through major sections of the Hebrew Scriptures week by week and may bear little direct relation to the Epistle and Gospel. The ‘Thematic’ alternative is a passage chosen for its relation to the other two readings (though the connection is not always easy to see). On this Sunday there is even more choice, because the Gospel can be read in a long or short version.
|Augustus John - Two Disciples|
The reward for cunning, the world supposes, is success, while the price of innocence is failure. Believing in a providential order in which love ultimately governs all things, means that in our encounters with a fallen world we can use our God-given practical intelligence to good effect, without thereby sacrificing our integrity. When Christian disciples keep the faith on this score, the passage tells us, they are by no means offered an easy ride. That is not the way God works. But they have this profound assurance -- "it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you". Their human weakness and vulnerability have not gone away, but they have been transformed.