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Tuesday 10 September 2019 – The Kingdom of God is Near

Luke 10:1  After this the Lord appointed seventy others and sent them on ahead of him in pairs to every town and place where he himself intended to go. 2  He said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the labourers are few; therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers into his harvest. 3  Go on your way. See, I am sending you out like lambs into the midst of wolves. 4  Carry no purse, no bag, no sandals; and greet no one on the road. 5  Whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this house!’ 6  And if anyone is there who shares in peace, your peace will rest on that person; but if not, it will return to you. 7  Remain in the same house, eating and drinking whatever they provide, for the laborer deserves to be paid. Do not move about from house to house. 8  Whenever you enter a town and its people welcome you, eat what is set before you; 9  cure the sick who are there, and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ 10  But whenever you enter a town and they do not welcome you, go out into its streets and say, 11  ‘Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet, we wipe off in protest against you. Yet know this: the kingdom of God has come near.’ 12  I tell you, on that day it will be more tolerable for Sodom than for that town.

The Kingdom of God comes near when the followers of Jesus say, ‘Peace to this house!‘ and when they are willing to “eat what is set before you” and when they seek to “cure the sick who are there”.  What exactly does this mean?

This is about disciples of Jesus…

  • who refuse to be part of the division of clan, class & race, and instead are committed to peace;
  • who do not shop around for the finest host in town, but instead are content to eat even the humblest plate of food;
  • and who choose to give up the company of the strong and successful to sit with the sick and the weak.

Those who follow Jesus discover that the Kingdom of God comes near when we hang out with the poor, the sick, and the marginalized.

He sent me to give the good news to the poor
Tell prisoners that they are prisoners no more,
Tell blind people that they can see.
And set the downtrodden free.
And go tell everyone
The news that the Kingdom of God has come.

Lyrics – Alan Dale

Ordinary 20 / Pentecost +13

42 The Kingdom Comes

The Scripture passage for the day is drawn from Reuben Job and Norman Shawchuck, A Guide to Prayer for Ministers and other Servants, (Nashville, The Upper Room 1983), 261.
This reflection is from my own devotional exercises for the day

“To comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable” Finley Peter Dunne (1867–1936)