The Blue Mountains Franciscan Church
Sermon Preached at Winmalee on Sunday 24th July
Tenth Sunday After Pentecost Readings
We read from Amos last week of whom we don’t hear from very often and this week we have the definitive from Hosea – another Minor Prophet, who, again takes up little space in the liturgical cycle.
The reading is allegorical and takes us from roughly 746 BC to 538BC, from the abandonment of Israel “10. where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people’, it shall be said to them, to when they are once again ‘Children of the living God.’”
Hosea, represents for us the Lord God in this allegory, who married Gomer when she was a pure maiden, as God married Israel who was obedient to him.
Gomer became a whore and is symbolic of Israel’s Spiritual whoredoms into which she lapsed after Sinai.
From the year 746 BC Israel becomes the mother of all whoredom and the allegory encapsulates a timeline in Israel’s history with the use of the symbolic names of Gomer’s children. Which are:
Jezreel,(after the place Jezreel where Jehu enjoyed slaying the House of Ahab), Lo-ruhamah, (the uncompassionated) and Lo-Ammi (Not my People), these children, symbolize the continued fornication of the children of Israel. For all of the Kings of Israel from the reign of Jeroboam II onward worshipped false gods.
With the birth of Gomer’s daughter, Lo-ruhamah, God’s compassion for Israel slowly comes to an end and by the time Lo-Ammi is born God has completely and utterly forsaken his people Israel, who have been taken by Assyria; and God has turned his favour upon Judah.
With the return of Judah from Babylon in which many Israelites joined with Judah. Spiritually, the believing seed of Jacob or Israel, Gentiles as well as Jews, became numerous “as the sand” (Genesis 32:12); the Gentiles, once not God’s people, becoming His people. To be fulfilled in its literal fullness once more the Spiritual Israel is a child of the Living God
In Colossians we read of the lives of some of these Gentiles who were once “No People” – written in Jewish tradition and according to the metaphors of the gospels Christians are very much believed to be synonymous with the Spiritual Israel to the point of sometimes confusing us with the physical Political Israel.
For the Colossians, Paul concentrates on their understanding of Who Jesus is, (as should we) that he is their foundation, the soil in which they are rooted, to remember what they have been taught. He warns of following after human Tradition of those who make much of believing in angels and in the feasts of New Moons, Sabbaths and the kind of food they eat. He also warns of being beguiled by Philosophers who would draw them away to follow what he calls the ‘elemental spirits of the universe’. He warns them against the very things that the Israel of old did.
Both they and we are to never forget that Jesus is high above every earthly and Spiritual Power, God dwells in Christ in all His fullness and we have come to fullness in our own turn in Him.
In our Baptism 1. We are buried with Christ and raised with him through our faith in God’s power. 2. When we were dead in our sins God gave us back our lives when Christ rose again from the dead.3. God forgave us our sins because Christ made atonement for our sins, setting aside the legal demands of the Law by nailing it to the cross. 15He disarmed the rulers and authorities and made a public example of them, triumphing over them in it. – and this is why we ourselves are victorious over all the powers of the air and have no need of any vain festivals, superstitions, and do not have to listen to the talk of Humanists, Atheists, Wiccans or whomever else might seek to lead us astray.
We the Church, the body of Christ are rooted in the pure and fertile soil of Christ who is the Head by whom we are fed and held in place by his ligaments and sinews, so that we the Body continue to grow into the fullness of God.
“By Prayer and Supplication letting our requests be made known to Him” (Philippians 4:6b)
Psalm 85 is a prayer for the Restoration of God’s Favour and in our Gospel Jesus teaches us the template for Prayer that should keep us in Colossae rather than Jezreel.
St Francis of Assisi Exposition on the Lord’s Prayer
Francis’ Exposition of the Our Father
O, Most Holy “Our Father”:
Creator, Redeemer, Consoler and our Saviour.
“Who is in Heaven”
In the Angels and in the Saints; enlightening them unto
Knowledge, because You, Lord, are Light; inflaming them
Unto love, because you Lord, are love; indwelling and
Filling them unto blessedness, because You, Lord, are the
Highest Good, the Eternal One, from whom is every good
Without whom nothing is good.
“Hallowed be Your Name”
May the knowledge of You in us be made bright, so that we
May know, what is the breadth of Your benefactions, the
Length of Your promises, the sublimity of Your Majesty and
The depth of Your judgements.
“Your Kingdom come:”
So that You may reign in us by grace and make us come
Unto Your kingdom, where vision of You is made manifest,
Love of You made perfect, company with You blessed,
Enjoyment of You everlasting.
“Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven:”
So that we may love You with our whole heart by thinking
Of You always, with our whole soul by desiring You always,
With our whole mind directing unto You all our intentions, by
Seeking Your honour in all things,
And with all our strength by expending all our strength and
Sense of soul and body in submission to Your love and not
In anything else;
And may we love our neighbours even as our very selves by
Drawing all to Your love to the extent of our strength, by
Rejoicing over the good things of others just as over our own
And by compassionating them in evils and by giving offence
To no one.
“ Give us this day,”
Your beloved Son, Our Lord Jesus Christ,
“ Our daily bread” to remember and understand and
Reverence the love, which He had for us, and those things,
Which He, said, did, or endured on our behalf.
“And forgive us our debts:”
By your ineffable mercy, through the virtue of the Passion of
Your beloved Son and by the merits and intercessions of
The Blessed Virgin and all Your elect.
“ As we also forgive our debtors:”
And what we do not fully forgive, Lord make us fully
Forgive, so that we may truly love our enemies for the sake
Of You and intercede devoutly on their behalf with you,
Rendering to none evil for evil and striving in all things to
Advance unto You.
“ And lead us not into temptation:”
Hidden or manifest, sudden or importune.
“ But deliver us from evil:”
Past present and future.
For the Kingdom, the power and the glory are yours, now
And for ever. Amen.
- Source for the Exposition of the Our Father : http://www.efo.org.au/Prime.htm and scroll
- Image By Anonymous – http://collecties.meermanno.nl/handschriften/showillu?id=10499, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=12037682