Daily Scriptures Reflection for 11/5/11

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Scripture: Lectionary 490. Romans 16:3-9.16.22-27. Psalm 145:2-3.4-5.10-11.
Luke 16:9-15

Saturday’s Readings

Luke, the Evangelist, is also a pastoral theologian who writes his Gospel
to assure the readers that they are on the path to God through their
discipleship.  They want to follow Jesus and so do we.  Luke as a pastor is
concerned about the poor and about social justice issues in our modern
terminology.  He is writing to and for the churches or Christian
communities the apostles have left behind after their death.  In his
concern for the poor the passage we hear today is an important one that
gives us the authentic teaching of Jesus. We can read it on the historical
level as Jesus teaches about the gift of generosity over against the
religious minded who were selfish and possibly even greedy.

Lucan communities are urged to be aware of the tremendous power and
attraction of money or superabundant possessions (“mammon”). His concern is
that whatever the community owns has to be seen in the perspective of
sharing and almsgiving.  Orphans, widows, and the poor are of great concern
for him as he addresses these words to all of us through what he said to
those who were members of the early Christian communities.  In the
historical setting we see Jesus advocating this principle of sharing the
goods and riches persons have with the poor; apparently many religiously
minded were not doing this; Jesus addresses them.  We, however, are being
constantly addressed on this issue by Luke who is the Evangelist of the
Poor.  The poor for us has a greater extension in its meaning and we are
held to the same responsibility of sharing our possessions, our talents,
and time with those in need.  Luke is always speaking to all his readers in
the present not the past.  He prays that God may give us our bread daily.

Luke focuses on possessions and warns us to overcome our own selfishness
and greed. Riches can take us away from God if they are not seen in the
light of the Gospel of Luke.  We are called to use our gifts wisely and
share them with others.

Another follower of St. Paul gives us a more down to earth look at what is
being said. This is taken from the I Epistle of Timothy 1:17-19: “Tell
those who are rich in this world’s goods not to be proud, and not to rely
on so an uncertain thing as wealth.  Let them trust in God who provides us
richly with all things for our use.  Charge them to do good, to be rich in
good works and generous, sharing what they have.  Thus they will build a
secure foundation for the future, for receiving that life which is life
indeed.” Amen.

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