Neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39
O God, the fount of wisdom,
you have revealed to us in Christ the hidden
treasure and the pearl of great price:
grant us your Spirit’s gift of discernment,
that, in the midst of the things of this world,
we may learn to value the priceless worth of your
kingdom, and be ready to renounce all else
for the sake of the precious gift your offer.
We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.
- Genesis 29:15-28
- Psalm 105:1-11
- Romans 8:26-39
- Matthew 13:44-58
- Genesis 32:22-31
- Psalm 17:1-7, 16
- Romans 9:1-8, (9-16)
- Matthew 14:13-21
A Thought to Ponder
Pentecost 8 Matthew 13:44-58
“The kingdom of heaven is like a treasure hidden in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells what he has and buys that field.
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls. When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells what he has and buys it.
“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a net thrown into the sea, which collects fish of every kind. When it is full they haul it ashore and sit down and put what is good into buckets . . . ”
The first two parables in today’s Gospel – the parables of the buried treasure and the pearl – are lessons in the total attachment to Christ and detachmentfrom the things of the world demanded of the disciple in order to make the reign of God a reality.
The parable of the dragnet is similar in theme to last week’s parable of the wheat and weeds. Again, Matthew makes the point that the kingdom of God is neither an instant happening nor a static event, but a dynamic movement toward completion and fulfilment which Jesus set into motion.
The “treasures” and “pearls” of lasting value are the things of God: the love of family and friends, the support of community, the sense of fulfilment from serving and giving for the sake of others. In order to attain such treasure, we must take the risk of the speculator and “sell off” our own interests, ambitions and agendas in order to free ourselves to embrace the lasting values of the compassion, love and reconciliation of God.
The Gospel “pearl” of great price transcends logic, efficiency, and self-interest; and the Gospel “treasure” is the joy and wholeness one experiences in imitating the humble compassion and forgiveness of Christ.
In the parable of the dragnet, Jesus calls us to embrace the vision of God that seeks out the good and nurturing, the right and just in all things amid the “junk” of life. © Connections/MediaWorks
You can read the Pew Sheet herePentecost-8-A