Devotional Thoughts for July 9, 2006/5th Sunday after Pentecost
- Gospel Reading: Luke 9: 10-17
�"You give them something to eat." Verse 13
Today's Gospel describes the return of the Apostles after their
wonderful missionary experience. They preached peace and the
advent of the reign of God. Our Lord received them gladly and withdrew with them privately to Bethsaida of Galilee. Here he preached to the multitude that gathered to meet him and to listen to him. As the evening approached, the Apostles requested Jesus to send the people away to find food and lodging. In reply Jesus tells them "You give them something to eat,"
The Apostles were taken aback. They knew that they had only five
loaves of bread, a very limited supply in that desert place.
Jesus ordered them to bring what they had. He took the bread and
blessed it, broke it and gave it to the Apostles to feed the multitude. This is the miraculous feeding of the five thousand.
The Apostles and our Lord had preached that the Kingdom of God
had come, with the incarnation of the Son of God. He is the Messiah
and the healing and other miracles were Signs of the Kingdom. [Lk
7:17 and 4:18.) Jesus himself declared this in the Synagogue in
Capernaum by reading from the prophet Isaiah (60:1)
Our mission is to preach the Gospel, which is Jesus Christ the
Crucified and the Risen Lord. He is our Lord and savior. He was
sent by God to bring life and salvation to us (Jn.3:16) We have to
feed the hungry and the poor among us, to sustain their physical
life. We also have a responsibility to nurture their and our own
spiritual life. How are we to do this?
We are not to be satisfied by our social and charitable work
alone. We have to bring the presence of the Living Lord to every one
How do we do this?
We experience His presence with us when we perceive Him in the
bread and the wine which we offer to Him in Holy Qurbana, and when it
is blessed and consecrated as He did in Bethsaida. We very often
forget that we come to meet our Lord, when we assemble at the church.
We have to see Him with our eye of faith and imagination, when the
celebrant together with us celebrate the Holy Qurbana. It is his
banquet. It is the Lord's supper. So we meet him in the Liturgy. We listen to Him and we are fed by Him. He is the bread of life. As we feed on Him we receive life. With that abundant life, as He abides in us we have to be Christ bearers to others around us.
But it is pathetic that we go to see the Qurbana, we are very
often onlookers rather than participants. It is high time we change
our attitude about the Lord's supper. We are sick, as St. Paul reminded the Corinthians, many of us are even dead. We need Him and His healing. He is ready. He knocks at the door of your heart. Are we ready to open and allow Him to reside in us?
Then we will shine as light and others around us will glorify
God by seeing our good example. The Lord invites us to come and taste
Him and live. Let us attract others to approach Him and accept Him
as their Lord and Master. Then we are being obedient to our Lord
when He tells us "You give them to eat."
+Fr P S Samuel, New York
This message had been previously posted in ICON. We thank respected Achen for for letting us repost this Sermon.