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28th February 2021

posted 25 Feb 2021, 03:52 by Church Office   [ updated 25 Feb 2021, 04:08 ]
Second Sunday of Lent
Parish Eucharist

Last week we heard God’s promises to Noah, a promise never to destroy us. This week we hear God’s promises to Abraham, a promise to walk with us and to bless us.

We meet Abraham in Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16 when he has begun to doubt the promise; he has jeopardised it with his own actions and he cannot imagine how God will be able to keep the promise. Like Noah last week, God gives to Abraham a sign of his promise: for Noah it was the rainbow; for Moses, it is the stars of the sky and the sand of the desert – God’s blessings will be more numerable than these.

When God promises Abraham his blessing it is so that he and his people will be a blessing to all peoples. In Mark’s gospel 8:31-38, Jesus is heading to Jerusalem to face his death. He reminds his followers (that’s us folks) that not only are we blessed so that we might bless others, but that it is in blessing others that we find ourselves blessed: “whoever loses their life for my sake and the sake of the Gospel will gain it".

Readings

Genesis 17:1-7, 15-16

When Abram was ninety-nine years old, the Lord appeared to Abram, and said to him, “I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless. And I will make my covenant between me and you, and will make you exceedingly numerous.” Then Abram fell on his face; and God said to him, “As for me, this is my covenant with you: You shall be the ancestor of a multitude of nations. No longer shall your name be Abram, but your name shall be Abraham; for I have made you the ancestor of a multitude of nations. I will make you exceedingly fruitful; and I will make nations of you, and kings shall come from you. I will establish my covenant between me and you, and your offspring after you throughout their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you.

God said to Abraham, “As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her Sarai, but Sarah shall be her name. I will bless her, and moreover I will give you a son by her. I will bless her, and she shall give rise to nations; kings of peoples shall come from her.”

Gospel Reading: Mark 8:31-38

Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.”

He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life? Indeed, what can they give in return for their life? Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”

Collect
Almighty God,
by the prayer and discipline of Lent
may we enter into the mystery of Christ’s sufferings,
and by following in his Way
come to share in his glory;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Amen.

Ċ
Church Office,
25 Feb 2021, 03:52
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