Daily Eucharistic Lectionary:1 Peter 4.7-13 Psalm 96.10-end Mark 11.11-26
Psalm 142"A cry to God for succourby one who is persecuted and abandoned by earthly helpers. Christ is the speaker, and his Passion may be seen foreshadowed in the successive verses:
3a Christ in his agony;
3b betrayed by Judas;
4, deserted by the disciples;
5, arrested by his enemies;
6, his faith in the Father;
7, he humbled himself and became obedient unti death;
8, overwhelmed by the powers of eveil, 'himself he acnnot save';
9a, his resurrection; and
9b the fellowship of the church."
Father Carleton, The English Psalter
Circumcision, Passover, the ceasing of the manna, the commander of the army of the Lord
Luke 10.1-16the 72 (or the 70 depending on the MSS) are sent out, woe to Chorazin and Bethsaida
Moses commissioned 70 elders at Num. 11;24-25; also see Gen 10, the 70 nations of the world
there are a lot of parallels with Matthew (9 and 10) but the arrangement and significance of this is all Luke.
"Today the psalmist's prayer is answered once again as we take on our lips this wonderful ABC of praise, raising our minds and hearts to a God who is King of all creation and at the same time a compassionate and loving Father. In Jesus Christ we have seen mightier deeds, more bewildering sign's of God's compassionate love than the psalmist could ever have dreamed of." Richard Atherton
Job 5Eliphaz's speech - the first part of this was displaced by yesterday's feast, it makes slightly more sense to add at least 4:1-11 to today's reading
Didymus the Blind:
Eliphaz acknowledges that God is the Ruler and Creator of all things. He is a man who possesses wisdom in human things. Eliphaz also has an understanding of the invisible and visible, since he speaks of the inexplorable, the great, the honourable, and also of water and rain. If he distinguishes that water from rain, he must have in mind water from wells, from creeks and from cracks in stone. One can find very wise thoughts of this kind in many places in Scripture, not least of all in Paul, who writes, In him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible. But it seems clear that Eliphaz became afraid in a very human way because of the things that it happened to holy Job, and so he turned from this to admire the works of providence. Regarding the things without number, one has to admit that Eliphaz speaks from a human perspective. For God himself knows everything, there is no miracle in that. Doesn’t Solomon say, For it is he who gave me unerring knowledge of what exists, to know the structure of the world and the activity of the elements; the beginning and end and middle of times; the alternations of the solstices and so on? This knowledge is also given to those who, like Solomon, are worthy of this benefit.
Again Eliphaz vigorously criticises the one who has been rebuked by the Lord, but too often it is righteous people who have been vilified. Among them are Joseph, whom the Egyptian woman charged with excess in spite of his modesty, and Susanna, who suffered as a hostage the humiliations from the lawless elders. Consequently, if he understands his words that the just man rebuked by the Lord will be hidden from the scourge of the tongue to mean that he is neither humiliated nor vilified, he is wrong. It is more accurate to say that the one who lives by the will of God cannot be harmed by humiliation or vilification, by the scourge of the tongue. Virtue protects him from being found guilty of the false allegations. Nor does such a person fear the coming destruction, since he says with St Paul, Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril or sword? Over all this he prevails through virtue’s abundance. Likewise, he is protected from the intrigues of false wisdom, since God takes the wise in their own craftiness.
The words of the Prophet, The calamity will come from far away, must be understood like this: the good comes from us. For it is said, The kingdom of God is within you, and so we have an inclination toward virtue that Christ called ‘kingdom’. But the punishment and damage and disorder of sin come from the outside. For the man, who is created after God’s image, carries the seed of the good within, but if he deviates from the right path, he encounters evil, without having received such an inclination from God.
Didymus the Blind, In Job, 5.9-10, 21; ACC 6 (2006) tr. Simonetti & Conti. Source
Romans 3.1-20Righteousness "an imaginary dialogue" (King)
Both Nicholas King and Brendan Byrne (Romans, in the Sacra Pagina commentary) lay this text out in a dialogue form which does help to make slightly more sense of it. Byrne says, "Both Paul's personal experience and that which he here projects upon his people form an instance of that pattern, found again and again in biblical thought, where God's righteousness confronts and triumphantly overcomes total UNrighteousness on the human side ... The long prophetic accusation that now draws to a close has all been designed to [prepare the way for and communicate this radical sense of God's inclusive grace."