Subject: Redeemer Downtown Devotional: Tenth Sunday after Pentecost - August 5, 2012
Photo by Ashley Buechele
Tenth Sunday after Pentecost - August 5, 2012
These devotionals are to help you prepare for each Sunday to come in the Christian Calendar.*
Luke 14:1-14 (ESV)
This banquet scene is one of many found throughout the Gospel of Luke and serves as a reminder of the power and meaning of hospitality and friendship. The meal is presented as a moment of fellowship, welcome and embrace. On the one hand, this banquet is unlike any other that we will experience in our lifetimes. In it, Jesus has a pointed theological exchange with religious leaders, and then he heals a man with dropsy. These are events we don’t witness every day! On the other hand, there is an everyday simplicity to Jesus’ gesture and to his teaching on the nature of hospitality and welcome.
Hospitality is an act of service, whether it is granting an invitation to someone with whom you don’t have a natural connection and who will never return the gesture (Jesus cautions us from inviting merely friends, brothers, relatives and rich neighbors to a banquet), inviting those in need of healing and friendship (Jesus invites and embraces the man with dropsy), or offering your own place at the table to someone else less privileged than yourself (“Go and sit at the lowest place”). Hospitality is honoring those who might not ordinarily receive honor, and while many acts of Christian obedience may seem more dramatic, hospitality is no less significant, especially when seen as an entire lifestyle and approach towards others.
We know that Jesus Christ gave up a place at His Father’s table in order to give us a seat at His Father’s table. This is the ultimate form of hospitality, honoring those without honor. In light of that cosmic hospitality, are we willing to humble ourselves each day and invite others to sit at our place?
John C. Lin, Downtown Lead Pastor
Let your continual mercy, O Lord, cleanse and defend your Church; and, because it cannot continue in safety without your help, protect and govern it always by your goodness; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Collect** from The Book of Common Prayer
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