All humanity seems to be at odds with one another. Churches are no different. In our desire to fulfill our mission on earth, we seldom see eye-to-eye with our Christian sisters and brothers. What seems like a missional slam dunk to us may be anathema to others in Christ’s body. One thing we know for sure: When two or three gather together, they are bound to disagree.

In today’s reading, Paul takes to task the Corinthian church for its divisions. Like much of the ancient world, they had split into two camps over what constituted greatness. The Greeks prized wisdom. The Jews esteemed the power of miracles. Today, we likely would affirm both sides, then demonstrate how God can help each achieve their ends. That was not Paul’s way. Paul astounds us by saying neither power nor wisdom is adequate for understanding how God works. Rather than siding with the Jews or the Greeks, Paul takes these two concepts of greatness and turns them on their heads. God’s choice, Paul says, is the apparent foolishness and weakness of the cross.

How can we know that God’s foolishness and weakness trump the wisdom and power of people? Because when we accepted the gospel message, we weren’t wise or powerful. Instead we were needy and poor in spirit, and that made it possible for us to come to faith. Our own experience is proof of how radically different God’s ways are from the ways of the world. In place of the power we clamor for or the wisdom we fancy, God gives us the cross as the legitimate means to greatness. Christ is the substance of everything we desire. We do not boast of any human trait, but only in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Thank you, God, for a mercy that includes all of us foolish and weak people of the world. Help us to see that true wisdom and power are found only in you. Amen.

Rece las Escrituras usando Leccionario en Audio
Leer John 13:1-17, 31-35

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Leccionario Semanal
April 6–12, 2020
Resumen de la Escritura

Although we anticipate the celebration of Easter, this week’s readings remind us to slow down and walk through the suffering of Jesus. If we fail to understand why he has to die, then we fail to grasp fully the power of his resurrection. Monday’s passage in Isaiah anticipates the Messiah, the Anointed One, coming to bring justice to the nations. Tuesday’s Psalm laments that sometimes the righteous are met with scorn. The Hebrews passage for Wednesday declares that Christ knows of the suffering that awaits him, yet he endures it because of the joy to come. On Thursday, the reading in John shows us that even when facing death, Jesus continues to model selfless love. Friday brings pain and rejection, but Sunday is the greatest day in human history. He is risen indeed!

Preguntas para la reflexión

Read John 13:1-7, 31b-35. Consider someone who has disappointed, hurt, or betrayed you whom God might be calling you to love. How could a posture of service help you act in a loving way even if you cannot feel affection for this person?
Read Isaiah 52:13-53:12. How does this description of a suffering servant help you more fully understand Jesus’ suffering on the cross?
Read Lamentations 3:1-9, 19-24. When has grief felt like mercy? When has noticing you are alive felt like a miracle?
Read Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24. Recall a time you forgot how to sing God’s praises despite the joy around you. How did God provide the song?

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