Future Worship at the East.
Jesus tells one of his most challenging parables. A manager’s dishonesty has been found out and, frightened for his future, he makes a series of dodgy deals with the master’s clients. The disciples are invited to reflect on how best to live in the real world.
Jesus tells a parable about an unnamed rich man and a poor man called Lazarus. In this life, one has all the comforts while the other has nothing; but in the afterlife, their fates are reversed. Jesus challenges his hearers not to neglect the demands of justice in this life
When the disciples ask Jesus to increase their faith, Jesus reminds them that if they have even a tiny amount of faith they can achieve extraordinary things. Then he says that they are simply being invited to fulfil the task given to them.
Jesus is approached by ten men with leprosy who ask for mercy. Jesus sends them to the priests, and on the way, they are healed. But only one returns to give thanks to God. Even though he is not a Jew but a Samaritan, Jesus commends his faith.
Jesus tells a striking and challenging parable in which a widow pesters a judge until he issues a judgement in her favour. Jesus suggests that if an unjust judge would reward persistence, how much more will God respond to the needs of his faithful!
Jesus tells a parable about a Pharisee and a tax-collector that would have shocked his audience. He suggests that a tax-collector who humbles himself is made right with God, rather than a righteous Pharisee.
2 Thessalonians 1.1-4,11-12
The authors tell the Christians in Thessalonica that their love for each other and their faithfulness to God is something to boast about, and pray that God’s power will enable them to remain faithful to their calling.
2 Thessalonians 2.1-5,13-17
The Thessalonians have been shaken by a message that ‘the day of the Lord is already here’, so they are reminded of the good news. Jesus will return at the right time, and for now he is strengthening them in word and deed.
2 Thessalonians 3.6-13
Some of the assembly at Thessalonica have given up working for their living and have become ‘busybodies’. Paul says all should follow his example of being self-supporting, and those who refuse to work should not be admitted to the shared meals of the community.
On the cross, Jesus is mocked as a false messiah by Jewish leaders, Roman soldiers and one of the criminals dying beside him. He forgives those who are crucifying him and welcomes ‘the penitent thief’ into paradise.