Pondering for Friday, February 24, 2023

Daily Office Readings for Friday of the Last Week of Epiphany: Year 1

Morning, Psalms 95 and 31; Evening, Psalm 35;
Deuteronomy 7:12 to16Titus 2:1 to 15John 1:35 to 42:This will be a double ponder for today.

Ponder 1;

 “Wives must be submissive to their husbands” (Titus 2:5); (and),   “Tell slaves to be submissive to their masters” (Titus 2:9)

Of course, I take issue with both of these statements from Paul to Titus, or to us, from one of the “deuteron-Pauline letters.”  God worked with women and wives in order to fulfill God’s plan for us; Deborah, Woman and wife warrior leader, (Judges 4); Rebecca’s manipulation of her sons to give Jacob the blessing over Esau, (Genesis 27:5 to 29); is two; and Mary agreeing to “let it be with me as you have said” (Luke 1: 26 to 38), is yet another. Also, regarding slavery: through Moses, God freed slaves, (Exodus). No, we too often draw the wrong conclusions, or deliberately misrepresent the inclusive love of God to shape the times in order to please the powerful, and often, male dominant majority. But, I think it’s getting better. I was glad to see an all women aircrew fly fighter aircraft over the Super Bowl 57 opening show. You go Ladies!

Ponder 2:

“When Jesus turned and saw them following, he said to them, ‘What are you looking for?’ They said to him, ‘Rabbi’ (which translated means Teacher), ‘where are you staying?” (John 1:38) and, “He first found his brother Simon and said to him, ‘We have found the Messiah’ (which is translated Anointed), and, “He brought Simon to Jesus, who looked at him and said, ‘You are Simon son of John. You are to be called Cephas’ (which is translated Peter).”  (John 1:42)

I have read that these oral stories were spoken and dictated to a person writing them down. I can imagine the teller of the story, pausing intermittently to explain the translations as he goes. In this short reading from the Gospel of John we have three translations. The first two are about who Jesus is; “Teacher and Anointed.”  And then we have the authority of our Anointed Teacher who changes who we are. We, you and I, go from Simon to Peter; from fisherman, or whatever your vocation is, to anointed teacher, small “t”. Wow, I like it! We have our call to live out the Gospel in word and deed regardless of secular vocation.

Please keep up your thoughts and prayers and hopes for Ukraine.

 “Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all their multitude. And on the seventh day God finished the work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all the work that he had done” (Genesis 2:1 and 2). So, for this evening and tomorrow day my friends, Shabbat Shalom. 

What is Shabbat? Intro to the Jewish Sabbath – YouTube

As we listen to what the Spirit of God is saying to us, let us live to love and serve, and to teach others to love and serve, while pondering anew what the Almighty can do. John

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