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Lee on the Lectionary: Proper 20 (Year B) from Church Society on Vimeo.

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Posted by Lee Gatiss, 19 Sep 2018

This week's readings teach us that when there are plots and arguments within the people of God, true wisdom is found in imitating Jesus and trusting in God to judge.

The lectionary readings this week are Jeremiah 11:18-20, James 3:13-4:3 & 7-8a, and Mark 9:30-37.

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Posted by Lee Gatiss, 18 Sep 2018

Lee Gatiss considers some lessons for our political and social media engagement, from this Sunday's lectionary reading on James.

If we lack wisdom, we are to ask God (James 1:5). Some people, however, think they are wise enough already says James. And yet their conduct, even with other Christians, is full of bitter jealousy, insatiable ambition, and unwarranted boasting. This tends to cause fights and quarrels amongst brothers whose primary thought is more prominence or more prestige for themselves. God, on the other hand, wants more of them: he yearns for our wholehearted friendship, which is only fostered by an attitude of repentant humility.

An attitude like this is difficult for those who have let their selfish desires and worldly ambitions run away with them and distract them from the way of Christ. So James concludes that the much vaunted wisdom of quarrelsome Christians is actually “earthly, unspiritual, demonic”, precisely because it is not peaceable, gentle, and merciful.  Their sinful passions and propensities cannot be satisfied without attacking other people and dragging them down somehow, whereas truly spiritual wisdom (it says here) raises others up and is itself exalted by God, who gives grace to the humble but opposes the proud.

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Posted by Ros Clarke, 17 Sep 2018

Ros and Amanda discuss John Crotts' book, "Graciousness: Tempering Truth with Love"

“If our zeal is embittered by expressions of anger, invective, or scorn, we may think we are doing service to the cause of truth, when in reality we shall only bring it into discredit,” John Newton, quoted in “Graciousness: Tempering Truth with Love”.

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