For this Sunday’s readings click on the link below or copy and paste it into your browser. http://usccb.org/bible/readings/021719.cfm
Our Gospel reading for this Sunday is Luke’s version of the Beatitudes. The more familiar version of the Beatitudes is found in Matthew’s Gospel. (Mt. 5:1-12a) Luke’s version of the Beatitudes differs from Matthew’s in three distinct ways. 1. Luke’s account takes place on a “stretch of level ground,” not on a mountain. 2. Luke’s Beatitudes are not spiritualized as are Matthew’s, e.g. in Luke the “poor” and “hungry” are blessed, not the “poor in spirit” and those who “hunger and thirst for righteousness.” 3. Finally, Luke’s version contains four “blessings,” but also four “woes.”
Luke’s Beatitudes remind us that true blessings come to those who know their need for God and rely on God rather than themselves. They also suggest that when we seek to be fulfilled by earthly things, and place our confidence and hope in these things, we can anticipate “woe” for ultimately these things cannot satisfy us and cannot offer us eternal salvation.
Our first reading for this Sunday is taken from the Book of the Prophet Jeremiah. It shares both the theme and structure of the Gospel. It reminds us that “cursed is the one who trusts in human beings,” and “blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord.”
In our second reading for this Sunday we continue to read from the first Letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians. The section we read today, is a simple, yet eloquent statement by Paul about our belief in eternal life. Paul says clearly: “If Christ is preached as raised form the dead, how can some among you say there is no resurrection of the dead?” ……………….. If for this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are the most pitiable people of all.”
Questions for Reflection/Discussion:
- When have you experienced God’s blessings in your life?
- When have you relied on yourself and not placed your trust in God?
- What does the promise of eternal life mean to you?