The readings for this coming Sunday, the 6th Sunday after Pentecost, are: Psalm 85; 1 Kings 19:9b-21; Galatians 5:1,13-25; Luke 9:51-62.
The sermon will continue to be based on the Galatians readings for the next two Sundays. We’ll also be witnessing the baptism into Christ of Paxton Dean Fritz, son of Adam and Teresa Fritz!
In our Gospel lesson, Jesus wants to stay in a Samaritan village – where he undoubtedly would have brought great blessing- but instead is turned away. Today, it might be considered prudent, but to refuse hospitality to a traveler was a great offense in Jesus’ day. The disciples’ reaction is typical of sinful human beings. They want to get even; they want payback! Jesus rebukes their desire for revenge. Followers of Jesus must not respond this way to insult.
How do you respond when others insult or offend you? Is it the natural reflex of hurting those who cause you harm? Following Jesus comes at a high cost, as he makes clear in verses 57-62. We have to give up a lot of what the world calls our “rights”. But what we gain is worth immeasurably more. Jesus withheld his judgment on us so that we could live. We return good for evil because we have a Savior who did the same for us.