Scripture Readings: 2 Samuel 11:26–12:13a | Psalm 51:1–12 | Ephesians 4:1–16 | John 6:24–35
An invitation for reflection on the Scriptures from Rev. Rob.
There are many ways that God can speak to us through Holy Scripture, including times of silence, quiet reflection, and sharing. Just as we did these last few weeks, I invite us to personally think about these questions arising from our Scripture readings. We’ll take 3-4 minutes together in silence for us to reflect on each question. You might find it helpful to write down your answers, but you don’t need to share your answers with anyone. For questions 1 & 3, those who feel comfortable doing so are invited to share their responses in a word or two, but even then, no one has to share unless they would like to.
1. What words, ideas, or images stood out to you as the Scripture passages were read? Why did they stand out? [If anyone feels able to share their response in a word or two here, please do].
2. In response to King David’s acts of exploitation, adultery, and murder, the LORD sent the prophet Nathan to confront David, to expose the truth of his guilt, and to pronounce God’s just response. David repents (Psalm 51 is his prayer of confession), and the LORD spares his life, but the consequences of his sins cause all sorts of chaos in his family for years to come. Reflect on the impact that David’s ‘secret’ sins had on his wider community. How might the ways we live in ‘private’ have much wider consequences, either negatively or positively?
3. In our second reading, St. Paul claims that Christian maturity is not simply about private ‘spirituality’, but is really inseparable from the shared life of the wider Christian community. He emphasizes the vital importance of Christian unity, not only with each other, but with Christ Jesus Himself, promoting a tangible way of life that seeks to maintain these vital relationships (for instance: being led by humility, patience, gentleness, peace, truthfulness, and love). What are some of the specific ways that being a part of the Christian community (that is, a Church family) can help to us grow closer to God and to each other, and also to grow more like Jesus Christ our Saviour? [If anyone feels able to share their response in a word or two here, please do].
4. In our Gospel reading, Jesus challenges the crowd that was following after Him not to “work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you” (John 6:27). We too can often become preoccupied with things in life that truly do not matter when considered in light of the Kingdom of God. Instead, Jesus invites the crowd (and us!) to do the “work” of faithfully believing in Him, the one God has sent to bring eternal life to the world. What might God be asking us to let go of at this time? How might God be challenging us to trust in Jesus in a deeper way?