And because this gospel was written predominantly for Christians with a Jewish background, it frequently refers to the Hebrew scriptures and to the fulfilment of their prophecies in and through Jesus 4. Therefore, the Gospel according to Matthew presents Jesus as the new Moses, who liberates his people from slavery to sin.
Hence, for example, the focus on the genealogy of Jesus at the beginning see Mt 1: But Jesus is not merely another Moses, although Moses was unquestionably the greatest leader of the Israelites. Not surprisingly, then, Jesus said unambiguously: That is why Jesus regularly referred to the established Jewish norms and customs, and then proceeded to claim that his teaching transcended them. Jesus is the Messiah who inaugurated the rule or kingdom of God here on earth.
Prophecy and Fulfilment To appreciate this, we must understand that Matthew devised the notion of an inextricable link between prophecy and fulfilment, as if it were intrinsic to prophecy that it has a future dimension. By doing this, Matthew added a future orientation to prophecy that it did not originally have. In this way, the Gospel according to Matthew countered the judgement of the Jewish religious authorities that any Jews who accepted Jesus as the Messiah or, worse, as the Son of God, were not only separating themselves from the traditions of Israel but from the God of Israel too.
This suggests again that the Gospel of Matthew was written for those who belonged to the particular strand of the Jewish tradition which emphasised the transcendence of God rather than his immanence 6. There are several other noteworthy distinctions between the Gospel of Matthew and the other gospels. Rob Esdaile has summarised thern: It is a marvellous example of how Jesus understood the development of the old covenant in the new. Accordingly, it is no longer sufficient to adhere to the external law, so to speak, because God looks into the heart and his people are now ready to understand that.
It is no longer adequate not to kill another person. Now people must learn to control the anger that leads to such killing. Neither is it enough not to commit adultery. People must now learn to control their senses and discipline the desires that lead to adultery. Because of the faith he professed in Christ, Peter was personally appointed to lead the emerging Church. Peter was given a key position of authority in the Church which Catholics now call the Papacy.
On the one hand, Jesus gave Peter the keys of the kingdom see Mt This is a reminder that Peter, like us, was weak and fickle. Peter was appointed by Christ to lead his Church, but Peter was not impeccable. He began his public ministry in Galilee and travelled towards Jerusalem. Significantly, it could be argued that there is a certain symbolism here: Once more, it could be claimed that geography is at the service of theology.
The role of the modern reader is to reinterpret Matthew for today, in each new geographical and historical era, just as the Old Testament prophets did with the Torah. Messenger Publications, Harrington, Wilfrid J.
The Columba Press, Reflection Christmas begins earlier every year in the secular world. Many shops and businesses compete to have the first and the biggest display of Christmas lights and decorations. Advertisements for Christmas toys commence in October. People are posting Christmas cards before the end of November and children are taken to visit Santa Claus early in December.
Therefore, it is not surprising that some people feel that Christmas is an anticlimax because it has ended almost before it has begun. In the Christian context, however, and especially in the liturgical year, Christmas does not begin until 25 December and it is preceded by several weeks of waiting and preparation during the season of Advent.
Our Christian hope is incomplete without this understanding of Advent. Advent is not just about preparing to commemorate the birth of the baby Jesus. Crucially, it is a time of spiritual preparation for welcoming Christ into our lives at Christmas, but also a time of preparation for the last judgement. The season of Advent begins today. However, there is an important difference between the secular and Christian understandings of hope.
The secular sense of hope, which is most accurately expressed as wishful thinking, lacks surety or certainty. We are articulating and communicating a certainty that is based on our faith. Jesus told his disciples: He says the same to each one of us. This means that, as Christians, we are sure that he is coming. There is no doubt. For meditation So stay awake, because you do not know the day when your master is coming. Reflection John the Baptist was the last in a long line of prophets who foretold the coming of the Messiah.
A radical abandonment of sinful living was required because God was going to communicate with his people directly through his Son, Jesus, the Messiah. In predicting his passion, Jesus is acknowledging the danger they will face and is trying to preparing his disciples for it.
Yet Mark tells us that the disciples did not understand what Jesus was saying and were afraid to ask what he meant. Such hesitation on the part of the disciples is not characteristic behavior.
Perhaps this is an indication that the disciples were aware that a new situation was emerging. Having arrived at Capernaum, Jesus and his disciples enter a house.
In this private place, Jesus asks his disciples about the argument they had while they were journeying. Again, the disciples are uncharacteristically silent and afraid to answer. They have been found out. Jesus then summons the Twelve, whom Mark identified earlier in his Gospel as those chosen by Jesus to preach and to drive out demons.
Journeying with Luke Paper - Paula Gooder, Mark Pryce, James Woodward brief and accessible guides to the Gospels for learning and reflection. of the liturgical year and the Gospel passages read during that season. Journeying with Luke: Reflections on the Gospel [James Woodward, Paula Gooder, of the liturgical year and the Gospel passages read during that season .
We might easily fail to understand the significance of this action. In first-century Palestine, children were without status or power, possessing no legal rights.
In this action, Jesus is teaching his disciples and us that when we serve the least ones among us, we serve Jesus himself. Who are the people without power or status in our society that Jesus is calling us to serve?
Do we do so willingly? Making the Connection Grades 1, 2, and 3. Young children sometimes have a difficult time recognizing that other people have needs, just as they do. We can teach them to recognize and to serve the needs of others as they learn to meet their own needs. Give each child a different colored crayon and a page from a coloring book. Ask the children who thinks that he or she has the best color and why. If some children do not like the color of their crayon, point out several things that could not be colored without it.
Then ask who would like to keep just that one crayon to use the rest of the year or who would like to share it with others so that everyone can have multicolored pictures. When we serve others by giving up something, we all gain something. Jesus tells us in the Gospel that to be great is to think about what others need instead of thinking about ourselves. Allow the children to share their crayons and color their pages while you brainstorm what they might do to serve the needs of others. Conclude in prayer, together asking God to help us serve others with love. Pray together the Morning Prayer.
Making the Connection Grades 4, 5, and 6. Older children have already learned what it takes to be a famous and important person in our society. We can help them learn that as Christians we have a different set of criteria for greatness.
Ask the group to name some people who are famous actors, athletes, politicians, and so on. Ask the group to consider the question: Why are these people famous? Invite them to identify some of the things that people do to become famous. Some people in our society become famous for their abilities, such as athletes and actors. Other people become famous because they have accepted important jobs, such as leaders of government and politicians. Would you like to be famous? Why or why not? Accept all reasonable answers.
Following the Revised Common Lectionary, each chapter corresponds to a season of the liturgical year and the Gospel passages read during that season. Advertisements for Christmas toys commence in October. He began his public ministry in Galilee and travelled towards Jerusalem. The reader will find an introduction to the biblical text that looks at historical and lit "Journeying with Luke" is the first of four volumes that offer brief and accessible guides to the Gospels for learning and reflection. Why do you think people want to be popular?
Even they wanted to be famous! What did Jesus tell his disciples would make them great? Conclude in prayer together, asking God to help you serve others with love. Making the Connection Grades 7 and 8. In seeking to establish themselves in the community beyond the family, young people often compare themselves with their peers.