Biblical Readings for each day's Mass,
(for the Liturgical Year 2020)

05 September, 2020
Saturday, Week 22

1st Reading: 1 Corinthians 4:6-15

By his his lifestyle and manner, Paul seeks to win back the loyalty of the Corinthians

I have applied all this to myself and Apollos for your benefit, brethren, that you may learn by us not to go beyond what is written, that none of you may be puffed up in favour of one against another. For who sees anything different in you? What have you that you did not receive? If then you received it, why do you boast as if it were not a gift

Already you are filled! Already you have become rich! Without us you have become kings! And would that you did reign, so that we might share the rule with you! For I think that God has exhibited us apostles as last of all, like men sentenced to death; because we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels and to men. We are fools for Christ's sake, but you are wise in Christ. We are weak, but you are strong. You are held in honour, but we in disrepute. To the present hour we hunger and thirst, we are ill-clad and buffeted and homeless, and we labour, working with our own hands. When reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we try to conciliate; we have become, and are now, as the refuse of the world, the off-scouring of all things.

I do not write this to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel.

Responsorial: Psalm 53

Response: God himself is my help

O God, save me by your name;
 by your power, uphold my cause.
 O God, hear my prayer;
 listen to the words of my mouth. (R./)

But I have God for my help.
 The Lord upholds my life.
I will sacrifice to you with willing heart
 and praise your name for it is good. (R./)

Gospel: Luke 6:1-5

Jesus defends his disciples for eating grain on the Sabbath

One sabbath while Jesus was going through the grainfields, his disciples plucked some heads of grain, rubbed them in their hands, and ate them. But some of the Pharisees said, "Why are you doing what is not lawful on the sabbath?" Jesus answered, "Have you not read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? He entered the house of God and took and ate the bread of the Presence, which it is not lawful for any but the priests to eat, and gave some to his companions?" Then he said to them, "The Son of Man is lord of the sabbath."

BIBLE

May your words, O Lord, be in my thoughts, on my lips, and in my heart. May they be my guide on life's journey and keep me near to you.

Keeping the Sabbath

The sabbath greeting among Jews is Shabbath shalom! Literally this means "Sabbath Peace!" but it implies a prayer for fullness of life. Growing to this fullness cannot be achieved just by keeping a set of fixed rules. When accused that his disciples were brreaking the sabbath, Jesus gave a common-sense answer, backed up by a Scriptural proof. His friends were plucking ears of grain and eating them, an action normally allowed on weekdays. But Jesus proves that it may also be done on the Sabbath by reminding them of when David and his men got special permission to eat the Temple bread, normally reserved for priests. Authentic keeping of the Law allowed for doing whatever was necessary.


Lord of the sabbath

For Jesus, it was perfectly right to satisfy one's hunger on the Sabbath, especially for people like his disciples who were never sure where they would find their next meal. After defending his friends, Jesus declares that he himself is Lord of the Sabbath. Sunday is our Christian Sabbath, and one it, any work which serves the basic needs of others is allowed. The deeper meaning of Sabbath is as the day when we try to do God's work, and that means responding to the needs of others as Jesus did.


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