Sermon Notes for Sunday 19th. August 2018.
1 Kings 2:10-12; 3:3-14. David dies and Solomon takes over as king. Then God allows him to ask for anything he wants, and he requests wisdom to rule over God’s people well. God is pleased with his request and grants him wisdom, but also promises him wealth and fame and, if he stays faithful to God, long life.
Psalm 111. A Psalm in praise of God’s works which are glorious, righteous, just, merciful, compassionate and trustworthy. God has redeemed God’s people and established an ever-lasting covenant with them, and wisdom is found in the fear of God and in keeping God’s laws.
Ephesians 5:11-21. Paul encourages the Ephesian Christians to live wisely and in the power of God’s Spirit that fills them, and to encourage one another through songs and through worship and thanksgiving to God.
John 6:51-58. Jesus continues proclaiming that he is the Bread of Life, inviting the people to eat his flesh and drink his blood as true food and drink. Those who do this will live, he promises, unlike those who died even after eating the bread in the wilderness.
Reverend Tania writes,
The key word this week is wisdom. Sometimes we view wisdom as akin to intelligence, as an intellectual capacity, but the readings this week move us into a whole different experience of wisdom as something that is gained through intimate union with God in Christ, through the power of the Holy Spirit, and that is lived in simple but practical ways in our daily lives.
Solomon is praised by God for seeking wisdom above all things. In the Psalm, God’s work on behalf of God’s people is praised, and wisdom is offered to those who fear the Lord, and life to those who follow God’s commands.
In Paul’s letter, the Ephesians are encouraged to live wisely by being filled with God’s Spirit as they sing to one another and to God in songs of praise and as they give thanks in all things.
Those who seek life find it, Jesus says, by eating of his flesh and drinking of his blood. This shocking image speaks of absolute union with God, taking the very essence of Christ into our beings, and it results in life, the same life that comes from living wisely.
Wisdom is found, then, through union with Christ and through living in the power of Christ’s Spirit that fills us as we “ingest” the Christ-nature. The strong resonances with the sacrament that come through the readings should also not be missed this week, since it is at Christ’s Table that we are invited into this mystical union with God.
May our liturgy lead us into deeper union with Christ and with the wisdom Jesus offers.
Prayerfully, Rev. Tania.