Shepherds of Christ  
       Daily Writing        


June 6, 2010

June 7th Holy Spirit Novena
Scripture selection is Day 8 Period II.

The Novena Rosary Mysteries  
for June 7th are Joyful.


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June 6, 2010 - Feast of Body and Blood of Jesus

                Fr. Joe said in his homily today

                Ministers in the early days of the country
                    would travel a lot — he would travel
                    with others — he would take care
                    of horses —

                The minister said — you know my talk
                    so well — he told his helper to do it —
                    at the end he asked if any questions —
                    the man in the audience asked a
                    question about predestination —

                the helper said

                    "Oh that is so easy — I will turn, it
                        over to my assistant —"


                Today's Readings


Genesis 14: 18-20

Melchizedek king of Salem brought bread and wine; he was a priest of God Most High. He pronounced this blessing: 

    Blessed be Abram by God Most High, 
        Creator of heaven and earth. 
    And blessed be God Most High 
        for putting your enemies 
            into your clutches. 

And Abram gave him a tenth of everything.


1 Corinthians 11: 23-26

    For the tradition I received from the Lord and also handed on to you is that on the night he was betrayed, the Lord Jesus took some bread, and after he had given thanks, he broke it, and he said, This is my body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of me. And in the same way, with the cup after supper, saying, ‘This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Whenever you drink it, do this as a memorial of me. Whenever you eat this bread, then, and drink this cup, you are proclaiming the Lord’s death until he comes.


Luke 9: 11-17

But the crowds got to know and they went after him. He made them welcome and talked to them about the kingdom of God; and he cured those who were in need of healing.

It was late afternoon when the Twelve came up to him and said, 'Send the people away, and they can go to the villages and farms round about to find lodging and food; for we are in a lonely place here.' He replied, 'Give them something to eat yourselves.' But they said, 'We have no more than five loaves and two fish, unless we are to go ourselves and buy food for all these people.' For there were about five thousand men. But he said to his disciples, 'Get them to sit down in parties of about fifty.' They did so and made them all sit down. Then he took the five loaves and two fish, raised his eyes to heaven, and said the blessing over them; then he broke them and handed them to his disciples to distribute among the crowd. They all ate as much as they wanted, and when the scraps left over were collected they filled twelve baskets.



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The Body and Blood of Christ
June 10, 2007

INTRODUCTION: Today we celebrate our faith in the Eucharist as the Body and Blood of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  Today’s first reading takes us back about 1850 years before Christ.  Abraham’s nephew Lot had been captured by some local tribes and Abraham set out to rescue him, which he did.  On his return, he passed by Salem, which is Jerusalem today and he was met by Melchizedek, who was both king and high priest in that area.  They didn’t believe in separation of church and state in those early days and it was not unusual for the same person to be both king and high priest.  Melchizedek offered bread and wine to Abraham.  This act of eating together signified the creation of a bond of enduring friendship and mutual protection.   Many of the early fathers in the Church saw this gesture as a foreshadowing of the Eucharist.   

St. Paul describes the institution of the Eucharist in his letter to the Corinthians.  The language he uses indicates that this is a tradition that is authentic and reliable.  He received it from the Lord and he is handing it on to the Corinthians as he has received it.  Receiving it “from the Lord” does not necessarily mean that he received it directly, but that it is an essential part of the gospel that has its origin in the teaching and the life of Jesus Christ. 

HOMILY: I want to begin by saying to all of our fathers here: “Happy Father’s Day.”  I was trying to find a joke about fathers and you know what, there aren’t very many.  There must be ten times as many jokes about mothers as there are about fathers.  Perhaps fathers aren’t as funny or perhaps men write most of the jokes.  But since I couldn’t find one about fathers I decided to tell one about mothers.  There was this young son who phoned is mother and asked how she was.  She said she was awfully weak.  Concerned, he asked why she was so weak and she said she hadn’t had anything to eat for 32 days.  He was alarmed and asked what was going on she hadn’t eaten for 32 days.  She said it was because she didn’t want to have a mouth full of food in case he would call.  How’s that for giving someone a guilt trip?  Well, in case your mother or father are still alive and you haven’t called your recently, give them a call today. Remember fathers need love and affection as much as mothers do.  They just try to be tough and don’t say they do.   

I was thinking fathers (and mothers) sometimes have a difficult job.  They have to try to convince their children that vegetables do them more good than ice cream, that turning off the TV and going to bed early is important, especially on school nights, that they need to brush their teeth, go to school, be nice to others, share their things, do their chores and do dozens of other things that children are not inclined to do.   

God the Father has the same difficult job.  He tries to convince us that we are going to be happiest when we do what he tells us to do.  One of the hard things he has to do, is to try to get us to to take on faith many things we cannot see.  He wants us to believe in him, to believe in his love (even though we do not see it at times), to believe in his Son Jesus, to believe that death is not the end of life but for those who faithfully follow Jesus but it is the beginning of eternal life.  One of the things we cannot see but have to take on faith is the Eucharist. 

We heard in today’s gospel the one miracle, other than the resurrection of Jesus, that is reported in all four gospels.  It wasn’t necessarily mentioned by all four because it was the most spectacular of Jesus miracles, but because it foreshadows the ongoing miracle of the Eucharist through which Jesus continues to feed his people with his own Body and Blood. When a child who is told to eat spinach and carrots instead of ice cream or cake which they might prefer, they may not see benefit in doing that.  We may not see anything special about this small wafer and sip from a cup that we receive in Communion.  We just have to take it on faith, a faith that is founded on one thing: the very clear words of our Lord: “This is my Body” and “This is my Blood.”  “Do this in remembrance of me.”   

I was encouraged recently when I read in the Catholic Telegraph that a recent study reported that 91% of young Catholics (ages 20-39) believe the bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Christ at Mass.  But I was sorry to see in the same report that only 77% say they can be a good Catholic without attending church every Sunday.  It’s like saying I believe that a healthy diet and exercise are really important, but I can be healthy without it.  

Most of us nourish our bodies three or more times a day. Yet we’re going to have to leave that part of behind us some day.  What are we doing to nourish the spiritual part of us, the part of us that will live forever?  Christ gives us himself because he knows we need him.  “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.”  Jesus lost a lot of his followers because of that line.  But he didn’t back down on what he said.  The Church tells us to be a good Catholic we must come to Mass at least once a week.  This is the way we Catholics observe the third commandment to keep holy the Lord’s day.  The Church encourages our full participation at Mass, which includes the reception of Communion but says we must receive the Eucharist at least once a year to be in good standing. 

When we were young and didn’t feel like eating our vegetables we did it because we had to.  Hopefully as we matured we got to the point that we saw the value of a good diet and followed it.  So the Church makes rules about Mass and about the Eucharist to help us when we don’t feel like doing what is beneficial for us, but hopefully most of us have gotten beyond that point to where we are able to be nourished in faith and joy by the bread of life and the cup of eternal salvation.


                Things are not
                    always as they appear to be

                one is good for health
                one is candy

                We need to feed our bodies with food
                    as we need to feed our soul with
                    spiritual food.

                Fr. Joe has a holy hour twice a week with


                Keep Christ alive in all we
                    say and do all week —

                Live His life, death and resurrection
                    in our lives


                Jesus: I gave Myself for You

                    I suffered for your sins of pride and
                selfishness — Your denial to the truth
                about yourself —

                    If you lie to yourselves about
                your misbehavior and use others to
                provoke them to anger you are doing
                this to Me —

                    Games, I am love — I was whipped
                for your ways to manipulate others —
                denial of the truth about your
                sinful ways — I cry blood — I long
                to be close to you — I am the way,
                the truth and the life — Unless you
                strip yourself of your manipulative
                ways, you will continue operating
                in deception and cease to really
                live in intimacy with your God —

                    First to thine own self be true —
                To be one with Me, you must not lie
                about your sinful ways — possessiveness,
                control — changing things to have power —
                when the way is to be one with others
                in My Heart doing the Father's will in
                love —

                    Love gives, love wants to give
                as God wants — not holding back
                what God wants so you can prove
                you are right — they are not appreciating
                you — Is it about your performance
                and your being vindicated or is it
                about the souls — I carried My cross and
                the souls I suffered for and died for — Is it about
                you — proving you are okay — or about
                the fact you go deeper into darkness
                seeking to prove your perfection when
                in fact, anyone who says they love God
                and hates his brother is a liar —
                how can you love God who you do not
                see when you do not love your brother
                who you see —

                    I came and I gave Myself for your
                sins of pride and jealousy and
                manipulation — The Holy Spirit will
                impart to you wisdom to learn how
                to really love as you should and not
                act in hateful ways to your brother —
                You must want to change your stone
                hearts and ask God to help you be
                the one who repairs the breach in
                your relationships where you have

                    Pride is the problem, turning
                inward on yourself in selfishness
                rather than giving My light and My
                love to the world —

                    Giving a beautiful witness of
                real Christian love from the heart —

                Song: Give Me Your Heart oh Jesus

                Jesus: I loved those who whipped Me —
                You see with tainted eyes — yourselves
                and focus on yourselves being perfect,
                seeking affection for yourselves
                I cry to stop using your brothers in
                hateful ways —
                Seek the Kingdom of God, with all your
                heart, all your soul, all your being —
                Give as God wants you to give — what
                others need to do My work — Don't
                control things to manipulate others
                blocking My work —

                    Give with an open heart, like I
                spread My arms on the cross — I gave
                My all — I loved those who whipped
                My body and made Me bleed and My
                Heart of love — How in My Perfect
                Heart of burning love — I suffered
                for your deceptive and manipulative
                ways — Is that love — When you use others
                and do not recognize the dignity God
                gives to all God's children —

                    You are wounded and in your attempts
                to cover up the truth about your sins
                of anger and revenge and bitterness —
                you drive yourself from Me and when
                you are miserable from this distance
                from Me because of sin and manipulation
                you are miserable inside — What
                makes you happy is humility, is
                giving, is forgiveness, is LOVE —
                I am love and in Me there is no
                darkness — only pure love — I know
                the Father's love — the more you fix
                yourself in love to My Heart — the more you
                see your faults, they are like planks
                that hurt your relationship with Me
                and you cry to the Holy Spirit for wisdom to
                change — to be converted to a humble
                holy heart — to love and not put up
                a wall around your old wounds that
                have closed you down — while you
                punish others, acting out in misery
                the darkness and unloving ways
                of your heart —

                    I cried blood on the cross — In my
                physical pain — I saw the love given
                to you in My Body and My Blood every
                day at Mass and I saw your focus
                on the here and now — closed down
                heart — when My Heart is a roaring furnace
                of love to heal your wounds and My
                love is sufficient for you to open your
                heart as My instrument of love in
                this world — rather than closing - in,
                in your old habits of anger and punishment —
                anger - revenge; let go of your sins
                now — acknowledge the darkness of
                your hearts — be compassionate and
                rooted in the Consecration to My Heart
                and My Mother's Heart — the Hearts of
                perfect love —

                    My Movement, My Blue Book
                messages are for men who want to
                be likened to My Heart — not people
                who close-in and hurt others for
                their misery —

                    The opening up that is needed in
                your failure to give your will to God and
                to operate from His Plan in love —
                you reason to get things for your
                tainted heart — possessing others,
                jealousies, control, seeking dominance
                for dominance sake

                    Let go of your agenda, your schedule,
                trying to please others who have hurt
                you and win their affection — in
                reality — in projection with those
                who have never ever hurt you —
                using others as your scapegoat for
                your own unforgiveness and anger —
                Let go to God — Pray to the Holy Spirit
                As you give your heart to Mary to mold you
                in My image and likeness —
                I know My own and Mine know Me —
                they hear My voice and follow Me —
                they don't listen to the hired man —
                they lay down their lives in love of God
                and love of others —

                    You use My work like a little
                surprise — I'm good — your bad —
                if you wanted to give — you would
                give to further My Kingdom — you
                come from your woundedness to
                rescue, to see yourself as looking
                good before men — others your scapegoats
                you heap your sins of selfishness —
                Give love — like I gave on the cross —
                I died for your sins of pride and anger —

                Seek purity —
                Seek a humble heart —
                Give to God what is His due —
                Give to men what I desire — being a
                    witness of Christian love and
                    holiness —

                In an alcoholic home — the one addicted
                    is in denial — they need their alcohol —
                    they size up other alcoholics to
                    see that they are better —
                    They are in denial —
                    It is a Merry-Go-Round —
                    You are here on earth to die to your
                        ways not likened to Me — to
                        live the resurrected life — to
                        bring My love and vibrancy to
                        others —

                A person who sees themselves as perfect,
                    judges others — they are not even
                    in touch with their own heart — They may
                    have been wounded so they overlook
                    themselves — provoking, rescuing
                    and fixing others —

                    Life is to be lived as you die to your
                rebellious ways and live more holy
                lives — Consecration means you grow
                in holiness, thus conversion as Mary,
                the heavenly Mother, spoke of at
                Fatima — It is two-fold — You seek
                to die to the unloving, pompous,
                prideful, jealous, controlling ways —
                to live more and more the resurrected
                life from your heart growing
                in greater purity — a heart Consecrated
                to My Heart is a heart in process —
                a heart dying and rising in Me —

                A person who has lived their whole life
                proving they are right, they are perfect
                is living a lie — You are tainted in
                your hearts and your journey here is
                work, forgiveness, stripping yourself
                of pride and unloving ways, control,
                seeking dominance for dominance sake —
                this is what Eve did in the garden —
                Cain shed the blood of his brother —
                The martyrs of today cry out to you
                for they shed their blood for the
                Church, for you today — they suffered
                having their heads cut off —

                    I watch punishment by self-righteous
                people and you don't get the Mass —
                it begins with the Penitential Rite —
                It is the sacrifice of Calvary, sacramentally
                make present — You tell God you are sorry
                for your sins — you are filled with
                gratitude to receive the grace to live
                a more holy life — you die to your ways
                not likened to Me — You rise as you
                receive Me and put on Christ —

                    Coming to the altar angry and being
                there with anger at your brothers is
                missing the boat —

                    To offer a sacrifice — you come
                with a heart of sorrow — to be fed
                by My Word and My Body and Blood —
                You come empty — you leave full —
                You live the Pascal Mystery of
                death/resurrection —

                You are members of the mystical body —
                I am the head — you are united to all
                the Masses going on around the world —
                You are examining yourselves, as Fr. Carter
                did twice a day —
                You are to live a life of holiness —
                Consecration means to make holy


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Call Doris




From Tell My People

The Holy Spirit

Jesus: "My beloved friend, tell My people to pray daily to the Holy Spirit. They are to pray for an increase in His gifts. My people must realize that the Holy Spirit comes to transform them. The Spirit desires to transform you more and more according to My image. Those who are docile to His touch become increasingly shaped in My likeness. He performs this marvel within Mary's Immaculate Heart. The more one dwells in My Mother's Heart, the more active are the workings of the Spirit. The Spirit leads Mary to place you within My own Heart. In both Our Hearts, then, your transformation continues. The more you are formed after My own Heart, the more I lead you to the bosom of My Father. Tell My people all this. Tell them to pray daily for a greater appreciation of these wondrous gifts. I am Lord and Master. All who come to My Heart will be on fire to receive the gifts of the Spirit in ever greater measure! I love and bless My people!"

Reflection: The Holy Spirit is given to us to fashion us ever more according to the likeness of Jesus. And the more we are like Jesus, the more Jesus leads us to the Father. Do we, each day, pray to the Holy Spirit to be more open to His transforming influence? Do we strive each day to grow in union with Mary? The greater our union with our Mother, the spouse of the Holy Spirit, the greater is the transforming action of the Holy Spirit within us.


"What I say to you in the dark, tell in the day-
light; what you hear in whispers, proclaim
from the housetops."
(Matthew 10:27)

Jesus Has Come to Give Us Life

Jesus: "This is the day celebrating My Resurrection (Easter). The day of newness of life. I am Lord and Master. I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Tell My people to come to Me if they wish to experience life in abundance. I want to give all an ever greater share in the life of My Resurrection. Without Me you cannot be happy, nor have peace, nor have real joy. Tell My people to surrender to Me more and more. The more they do so, the more they will experience My love, wisdom, power, peace, joy, happiness, mercy, and goodness. Within My Heart My people will find these riches. I am Lord and Master! Please listen to My words."

Reflection: Through His life, death, and resurrection, Jesus has come to give us life, and to give us this life in abundance.

When we were baptized, we were incorporated into Christ and His Church. When we were baptized, we received the life of sanctifying grace. This life is a created sharing in the life of the Trinity. Truly, we are called to live a God-like existence according to the teaching and example of Jesus! It is our duty and our privilege to develop our life of grace—our Christ-life—through our participation in the Mass, through the reception of the sacraments, through prayer, and through all other good works. Indeed, we are called to love God and neighbor more and more.

What a glorious life has been given to us! In a spirit of thanksgiving, and together with Mary our Mother, let us always strive to know Christ more intimately, to love Him more ardently, and to follow Him more closely, so that He will always bring us to a closer union with the Father in the unity of the Holy Spirit.


Age of the Two Hearts

Jesus: "My beloved priest-companion, I have allowed you to experience in extraordinary fashion the riches contained in My Heart and My Mother's Heart. I desire that you tell all My people about these riches. I desire that My people consecrate themselves to My Sacred Heart and to Mary's Immaculate Heart. My people are living in the beginnings of the age of the Two Hearts.

"After the time of the purification is completed, this new era of the Church and the world will become firmly established. This era will be characterized by the triumph of the Immaculate Heart and the reign of My Sacred Heart. All those who consecrate themselves to My Heart and to My Mother's Heart will help to establish this glorious new age. I am Lord and Master. Please listen to My urgent request. Within Our Hearts you will experience the love and security, the peace and the joy, which you all desire. I love My people with a tremendous love, and in My love I give them this message!"

Reflection: This is the Age of the Two Hearts! The surest road to sanctity in these our times is through consecration to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary. In making this consecration, and striving with God's grace to live it as best we can each day, we are contributing to the establishment of the triumph of the Immaculate Heart and to the arrival of the reign of the Sacred Heart.

end of excerpts


Deuteronomy 30: 19-20

Today, I call heaven and earth to witness against you: I am offering you life or death, blessing or curse. Choose life, then, so that you and your descendants may live, in the love of Yahweh your God, obeying his voice, holding fast to him; for in this your life consists, and on this depends the length of time that you stay in the country which Yahweh swore to your ancestors Abraham, Isaac and Jacob that he would give them.’


                Jesus: Do you follow Me to the table at Mass,
                    but fail to really drink from the
                    cup of My bitter passion — ?

                Do you go to Mass and not empty
                    yourself of your unloving ways
                    and leave in anger and pride — ?


Matthew 5: 20-26

‘For I tell you, if your uprightness does not surpass that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never get into the kingdom of Heaven.

    ‘You have heard how it was said to our ancestors, You shall not kill; and if anyone  does kill he must answer for it before the court. But I say this to you, anyone who is  angry with a brother will answer for it before the court; anyone who calls a brother "Fool"  will answer for it before the Sanhedrin; and anyone who calls him "Traitor" will answer for it in hell fire. So then, if you are bringing your offering to the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar, go and be reconciled with your brother first, and then come back and present your offering. Come to terms with your opponent in good time while you are still on the way to the court with him, or he may hand you over to the judge and the judge to the officer, and you will be thrown into prison. In truth I tell you, you will not get out till you have paid the last penny.


                Jesus: Do you love Me only in controlling
                    your life and implementing your
                    own plan, not the Father's Plan,
                    about what I teach?

                The hatred I experienced from men
                    in My public life grew and
                    the plot to kill Me developed —

                My beloved Judas betrayed Me —
                    I know betrayal — how can
                    you meditate on the scriptures,
                    the rosary and hate your brother — Do you
                    rise up, by putting others down —
                    under your feet —


Ezekiel 18: 31

Shake off all the crimes you have committed, and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why die, House of Israel?


                Jesus: Rid yourself of all your sins and
                    make a new heart and a new spirit.

                I spoke with authority — You can be
                    free from your slavery to pride and
                    jealousy and malice to your brother —
                    but not looking at yourself will
                    steep you deeper into darkness
                    and misery —

                    Look at all the blindness in the
                        scripture — the man who fails to
                        recognize his faults and grow
                        in deeper and deeper vices is
                        a blind - man walking —
                        Walking into a pit of his own enslavement —
                        to his sin —


John 8: 31-43

To the Jews who believed in him Jesus said: 

    If you make my word your home 
    you will indeed be my disciples; 
    you will come to know the truth, 
    and the truth will set you free. 

    They answered, ‘We are descended from Abraham and we have never been the slaves of anyone; what do you mean, “You will be set free?” ’

    Jesus replied: In all truth I tell you, 
    everyone who commits sin is a slave. 
    Now a slave has no permanent standing 
        in the household, 
    but a son belongs to it for ever. 
    So if the Son sets you free, 
    you will indeed be free.

    I know that you are descended
        from Abraham;
    but you want to kill me
    because my word finds no place in you.
    What I speak of
    is what I have seen at my Father’s side,
    and you too put into action
    the lessons you have learnt
        from your father.

They repeated, ‘Our father is Abraham.’ Jesus said to them:

    If you are Abraham’s children,
    do as Abraham did.
    As it is, you want to kill me,
    a man who has told you the truth
    as I have learnt it from God;
    that is not what Abraham did.
    You are doing your father’s work.

They replied, ‘We were not born illegitimate, the only father we have is God.’ Jesus answered:

    If God were your father,
        you would love me,
    since I have my origin in God
        and have come from him;
    I did not come of my own accord,
    but he sent me.
    Why do you not understand what I say?
    Because you cannot bear to listen
        to my words.


Genesis 17: 3-9

And Abram bowed to the ground. 

    God spoke to him as follows, ‘For my part, this is my covenant with you: you will become the father of many nations. And you are no longer to be called Abram; your name is to be Abraham, for I am making you father of many nations. I shall make you exceedingly fertile. I shall make you into nations, and your issue will be kings. And I shall maintain my covenant between myself and you, and your descendants after you, generation after generation, as a covenant in perpetuity, to be your God and the God of your descendants after you. And to you and to your descendants after you, I shall give the country where you are now immigrants, the entire land of Canaan, to own in perpetuity. And I shall be their God.’ 

    God further said to Abraham, ‘You for your part must keep my covenant, you and your descendants after you, generation after generation.


Psalm 105: 4-9

Seek Yahweh and his strength,
tirelessly seek his presence!
Remember the marvels he has done,
his wonders, the judgements he has spoken.

Stock of Abraham, his servant,
children of Jacob whom he chose!
He is Yahweh our God,
his judgements touch the whole world.

He remembers his covenant for ever,
the promise he laid down for a thousand generations,
which he concluded with Abraham,
the oath he swore to Isaac.


John 8: 51-59

In all truth I tell you,
whoever keeps my word
will never see death.

    The Jews said, ‘Now we know that you are possessed. Abraham is dead, and the prophets are dead, and yet you say, "Whoever keeps my word will never know the taste of death." Are you greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? The prophets are dead too. Who are you claiming to be?’ Jesus answered:

If I were to seek my own glory
my glory would be worth nothing;
in fact, my glory
   is conferred by the Father,
by the one of whom you say,
   ‘He is our God,’
although you do not know him.
But I know him,
and if I were to say, ‘I do not know him,’
I should be a liar, as you yourselves are.
But I do know him, and I keep his word.
Your father Abraham rejoiced
to think that he would see my Day;
he saw it and was glad.

    The Jews then said, ‘You are not fifty yet, and you have seen Abraham!’ Jesus replied:

In all truth I tell you,
before Abraham ever was,
I am.

    At this they picked up stones to throw at him; but Jesus hid himself and left the Temple.


                R. We can be troubled by our neighbor —

                God asks us to carry the cross, many times
                    to rely on Him —

                We can be a burden to ourselves, by
                    rejecting the Father's Plan and
                    making our own plan and schedule
                    opposed to the Father's Plan —

                God allows us to suffer without
                    comfort — so we will still give
                    ourselves completely to Him in
                    duress —

                We identify with the Passion of Christ —
                We embrace the cross of Christ —
                We drink from the table of the Lord —
                We live more the resurrected life —

                HOLY SACRIFICE of the Mass

                We die to our sinful ways
                To live more the resurrected life —

                We are fed with His Word
                We are fed with His Body and Blood —

                The hatred against Christ grew until
                    they put Him to death —

                We are to die to the sins we committed,
                    for Jesus shed His blood for
                    our sins —

                Don't rescue others and ignore your
                    own sins


Psalm 31: 10, 16, 18

                    For my life is worn out with sorrow,
                        and my years with sighs.
                    My strength gives way under my misery,
                        and my bones are all wasted away.

                    let your face shine on your servant,
                        save me in your faithful love.

                        muzzles on their lying mouths,
                    which speak arrogantly against the upright
                        in pride and contempt.   


                Jeremiah was victimized —
                    His heart was pure
                    He was obedient to God
                    He was persecuted and disobeyed
                    He suffered —
                    They planned to murder Jeremiah —


Matthew 4: 17

From then onwards Jesus began his proclamation with the message, ‘Repent, for the kingdom of Heaven is close at hand.’


                When we sin we are unfaithful
                    to God — We choose ourselves
                    over God


John 8: 12-20

Jesus, the light of the world

When Jesus spoke to the people again, he said: 

    I am the light of the world; 
    anyone who follows me 
        will not be walking in the dark, 
    but will have the light of life.

A discussion on the testimony of Jesus to himself

At this the Pharisees said to him, ‘You are testifying on your own behalf; your testimony is not true.’ Jesus replied: 

    Even though I am testifying 
        on my own behalf, 
    my testimony is still true, 
    because I know 
    where I have come from 
        and where I am going; 
    but you do not know 
    where I come from or where I am going. 
    You judge by human standards; 
    I judge no one, 
    but if I judge, 
    my judgement will be true, 
    because I am not alone: 
    the one who sent me is with me; 
    and in your Law it is written 
    that the testimony of two witnesses is
    I testify on my own behalf, 
    but the Father who sent me 
        testifies on my behalf, too.

        They asked him, ‘Where is your Father then?’ Jesus answered: 

    You do not know me, 
        nor do you know my Father; 
    if you did know me, 
        you would know my Father as well. 

        He spoke these words in the Treasury, while teaching in the Temple. No one arrested him, because his hour had not yet come.


                Let us go before God on our knees and
                    recognize our faults —
                    Jesus gave us confession —

                Jesus is merciful,
                But we must recognize our sins —
                Acknowledge our sins before God —
                Make reparation
                Seek conversion
                Want to be made more holy —

                Die to our rebellious ways to God's
                    commandments —

                We are to have sorrow for offending
                    God and others and make a
                    firm purpose of amendment
                    not to sin again —

                We have the best resolution and
                    intentions —


Numbers 21: 4-9

They left Mount Hor by the road to the Sea of Suph, to skirt round Edom. On the way the people lost patience. They spoke against God and against Moses, ‘Why did you bring us out of Egypt to die in the desert? For there is neither food nor water here; we are sick of this meagre diet.’ 

    At this, God sent fiery serpents among the people; their bite brought death to many in Israel. The people came and said to Moses, ‘We have sinned by speaking against Yahweh and against you. Intercede for us with Yahweh to save us from these serpents.’ Moses interceded for the people, and Yahweh replied, ‘Make a fiery serpent and raise it as a standard. Anyone who is bitten and looks at it will survive.’ Moses then made a serpent out of bronze and raised it as a standard, and anyone who was bitten by a serpent and looked at the bronze serpent survived.


Psalm 102: 2-3, 16-18, 19-21

Do not turn away your face from me
when I am in trouble;
bend down and listen to me,
when I call, be quick to answer me!

For my days are vanishing like smoke,
my bones burning like an oven;

when Yahweh builds Zion anew,
    he will be seen in his glory;
he will turn to hear the prayer of the destitute,
    and will not treat their prayer with scorn.

This shall be put on record for a future generation,
    and a people yet to be born shall praise God:
Yahweh has leaned down from the heights of his sanctuary,
    has looked down from heaven to earth,
to listen to the sighing of the captive,
    and set free those condemned to death,
to proclaim the name of Yahweh in Zion,
    his praise in Jerusalem;


John 8: 21-30

And I said to them:

   I am going away; you will look for me
   and you will die in your sin.
   Where I am going, you cannot come.

       So the Jews said to one another, 'Is he going to kill himself, that he says, "Where I am going, you cannot come?"'

   You are from below;
   I am from above.
   You are of this world;
   I am not of this world.
   I have told you already:
      You will die in your sins.
   Yes, if you do not believe that I am He,
   you will die in your sins.

    So they said to him, 'Who are you?' Jesus answered:

   What I have told you from the outset.
   About you I have much to say
   and much to judge;
   but the one who sent me is true,
   and what I declare to the world
   I have learnt from him.

     They did not recognise the he was talking to them about the Father. So Jesus said:

   When you have lifted up the Son of man,
   then you will know that I am He
   and that I do nothing of my own accord.
   What I say
   is what the Father has taught me;
   he who sent me is with me,
   and has not left me to myself,
   for I always do what pleases him.

     As he was saying this, many came to believe in him.


                Jesus refers to lifting up —
                We think of the crucifixion on Calvary —
                    We think of the resurrection to
                    come —


John 12: 32

And when I am lifted up from the earth, 
I shall draw all people to myself.’


  Colossians 1: 13-14

    Because that is what he has done. It is he who has rescued us from the ruling force of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of the Son that he loves, and in him we enjoy our freedom, the forgiveness of sin.


                Jesus says He is greater than Abraham —
                    He is divine —
                    They wanted to kill Him for
                        blasphemy —


John 8: 51-59

In all truth I tell you,
whoever keeps my word
will never see death.

The Jews said, ‘Now we know that you are possessed. Abraham is dead, and the prophets are dead, and yet you say, "Whoever keeps my word will never know the taste of death." Are you greater than our father Abraham, who is dead? The prophets are dead too. Who are you claiming to be?’ Jesus answered:

If I were to seek my own glory
my glory would be worth nothing;
in fact, my glory
   is conferred by the Father,
by the one of whom you say,
   ‘He is our God,’
although you do not know him.
But I know him,
and if I were to say, ‘I do not know him,’
I should be a liar, as you yourselves are.
But I do know him, and I keep his word.
Your father Abraham rejoiced
to think that he would see my Day;
he saw it and was glad.

The Jews then said, ‘You are not fifty yet, and you have seen Abraham!’ Jesus replied:

In all truth I tell you,
before Abraham ever was,
I am.

At this they picked up stones to throw at him; but Jesus hid himself and left the Temple.


                We see the unity of Jesus and His Father —


John 10: 31-42

    The Jews fetched stones to stone him, so Jesus said to them, ‘I have shown you many good works from my Father; for which of these are you stoning me?’ The Jews answered him, ‘We are stoning you, not for doing a good work, but for blasphemy; though you are only a man, you claim to be God.’ Jesus answered: 

    Is it not written in your Law: 
    I said, you are gods?
    So it uses the word ‘gods’ 
    of those people to whom 
        the word of God was addressed
    —and scripture cannot be set aside. 
    Yet to someone 
        whom the Father has consecrated 
    and sent into the world you say, 
    ‘You are blaspheming’ 
    because I said, ‘I am Son of God.’ 
    If I am not doing my Father’s work, 
    there is no need to believe me; 
    but if I am doing it, 
    then even if you refuse to believe in me, 
    at least believe in the work I do; 
    then you will know for certain 
    that the Father is in me 
        and I am in the Father. 

    They again wanted to arrest him then, but he eluded their clutches.

He went back again to the far side of the Jordan to the district where John had been baptising at first and he stayed there. Many people who came to him said, ‘John gave no signs, but all he said about this man was true’; and many of them believed in him.


Ezekiel 37: 21-28

...say, "The Lord Yahweh says this: I shall take the Israelites from the nations where they have gone. I shall gather them together from everywhere and bring them home to their own soil. I shall make them into one nation in the country, on the mountains of Israel, and one king is to be king of them all; they will no longer form two nations, nor be two separate kingdoms. They will no longer defile themselves with their foul idols, their horrors and any of their crimes. I shall save them from the acts of infidelity which they have committed and shall cleanse them; they will be my people and I shall be their God. My servant David will reign over them, one shepherd for all; they will follow my judgements, respect my laws and practise them. They will live in the country which I gave to my servant Jacob, the country in which your ancestors lived. They will live in it, they, their children, their children’s children, for ever. David my servant is to be their prince for ever. I shall make a covenant of peace with them, an eternal covenant with them. I shall resettle them and make them grow; I shall set my sanctuary among them for ever. I shall make my home above them; I shall be their God, and they will be my people. And the nations will know that I am Yahweh the sanctifier of Israel, when my sanctuary is with them for ever." '


John 11: 45-57

Many of the Jews who had come to visit Mary, and had seen what he did, believed in him, but some of them went to the Pharisees to tell them what Jesus had done. Then the chief priests and Pharisees called a meeting. 'Here is this man working all these signs,' they said, 'and what action are we taking? If we let him go on in this way everybody will believe in him, and the Romans will come and suppress the Holy Place and our nation.' One of them, Caiaphas, the high priest that year, said, 'You do not seem to have grasped the situation at all; you fail to see that it is to your advantage that one man should die for the people, rather than that the whole nation should perish.' He did not speak in his own person, but as high priest of that year he was prophesying that Jesus was to die for the nation -- and not for the nation only, but also to gather together into one the scattered children of God. From that day onwards they were determined to kill him. So Jesus no longer went about openly among the Jews, but left the district for a town called Ephraim, in the country bordering on the desert, and stayed there with his disciples.

The Jewish Passover was drawing near, and many of the country people who had gone up to Jerusalem before the Passover to purify themselves were looking out for Jesus, saying to one another as they stood about in the Temple, 'What do you think? Will he come to the festival or not?' The chief priests and Pharisees had by now given their orders: anyone who knew where he was must inform them so that they could arrest him.


John 11: 52

and not for the nation only, but also to gather together into one the scattered children of God.


Isaiah 42: 1-7

Here is my servant whom I uphold, 
my chosen one 
    in whom my soul delights. 
I have sent my spirit upon him, 
he will bring fair judgement to the nations. 
He does not cry out or raise his voice, 
his voice is not heard in the street; 
he does not break the crushed reed 
or snuff the faltering wick. 
Faithfully he presents fair judgement; 
he will not grow faint, 
    he will not be crushed 
until he has established 
    fair judgement on earth, 
and the coasts and islands 
    are waiting for his instruction. 
Thus says God, Yahweh, 
who created the heavens 
    and spread them out, 
who hammered into shape the earth 
    and what comes from it, 
who gave breath to the people on it, 
and spirit to those who walk on it:
I, Yahweh, have called you 
    in saving justice, 
I have grasped you by the hand 
    and shaped you; 
I have made you a covenant of the people 
and light to the nations, 
to open the eyes of the blind, 
to free captives from prison, 
and those who live in darkness 
    from the dungeon. 




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