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Full lections can be read here.
Based on the Readings as Set
First Reading (Revelation 7:9-17)
John the Divine’s vision of heaven depicts countless white-robed people from every nation worshipping before the throne of God and the Lamb. They are joined by the heavenly creatures in a vast song of praise and are identified as those who have come through great trouble, having washed their robes in the blood of the Lamb. He is now their shepherd: protecting , providing and wiping away every tear.
Psalm (34:1-10, 22)
The Psalmist, having been delivered from great trouble and fear, calls for great praise to be offered to Yahweh who delivered him. All who take refuge in Yahweh will find protection, deliverance, and provision.
Second Reading (1 John 3:1-3)
St. John emphasizes that Christians should know themselves as God’s children, sharing his rejection by the present world as well as becoming like him in the world to come. This is the hope by which they sustain their efforts toward purity in this life.
Gospel (Matthew 5:1-12)
In the Beatitudes Jesus enumerates how godly living in this life leads in due course to the possession of the kingdom of heaven in all its blessedness. Although persecution and trouble may result, these should be considered as blessings because they bring great rewards in heaven and were also suffered by the godly prophets of old.
- Persecution and its rewards
- The alien but rewarding quality of godliness in this world
- God’s ultimate protection and provision for the faithful
- God the deliverer from evil and trouble
- We are not alone in our troubles
- God’s future, his kingdom come, puts all of life into perspective