Accogli la mia lode, Padre

Ti benedico o Padre, all’inizio di questo nuovo giorno.
Accogli la mia lode e il mio grazie per il dono della vita e della fede.
Con la forza del tuo Spirito guida i miei progetti e le mie azioni:
fa che siano secondo la tua volontà.
Liberami dallo scoraggiamento davanti alle difficoltà e da ogni male.
Rendimi attento alle esigenze degli altri.
Proteggi con il tuo amore la mia famiglia.
Così sia.

Ma lo spirito cattivo rispose loro: “Conosco Gesù e so chi è Paolo, ma voi chi siete?”. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 18,25  

.. parlava e insegnava esattamente ciò che si riferiva a Gesù, sebbene conoscesse soltanto il battesimo di Giovanni. ..

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 18,28  

.. dimostrando pubblicamente attraverso le Scritture che Gesù è il Cristo. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 18,5  

.. tutto alla predicazione, affermando davanti ai Giudei che Gesù era il Cristo. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 19,15  

Ma lo spirito cattivo rispose loro: “Conosco Gesù e so chi è Paolo, ma voi chi siete?”. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 19,17  

.. presi da timore e si magnificava il nome del Signore Gesù

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 19,4  

.. credere in colui che sarebbe venuto dopo di lui, cioè in Gesù“. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 19,5  

.. udito questo, si fecero battezzare nel nome del Signore Gesù 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 20,21  

.. Greci di convertirsi a Dio e di credere nel Signore nostro Gesù

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 20,24  

.. la mia corsa e il servizio che mi fu affidato dal Signore Gesù, di rendere testimonianza al messaggio della grazia di Dio…

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 20,35  

.. soccorrere i deboli, ricordandoci delle parole del Signore Gesù, che disse: Vi è più gioia nel dare che nel ricevere!”…

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 21,13  

.. legato, ma a morire a Gerusalemme per il nome del Signore Gesù“. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 22,8  

Risposi: Chi sei, o Signore? Mi disse: Io sono Gesù il Nazareno, che tu perseguiti. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 24,24  

.. chiamare Paolo, lo ascoltava intorno alla fede in Cristo Gesù

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 25,19  

.. la loro particolare religione e riguardanti un certo Gesù, morto, che Paolo sosteneva essere ancora in vita. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 26,15  

dissi: Chi sei, o Signore? E il Signore rispose: Io sono Gesù, che tu perseguiti. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 26,9  

.. tempo mio dovere di lavorare attivamente contro il nome di Gesù il Nazareno, 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 28,23  

.. il regno di Dio, cercando di convincerli riguardo a Gesù, in base alla Legge di Mosè e ai Profeti. 

 Atti degli Apostoli – Atti_degli_Apostoli  At 28,31  

.. regno di Dio e insegnando le cose riguardanti il Signore Gesù Cristo, con tutta franchezza e senza impedimento. 

 Lettere Paoline – Colossesi Col 1,1  

Paolo, apostolo di Cristo Gesù per volontà di Dio, e il fratello Timòteo, 

 Lettere Paoline – Colossesi Col 1,3  

.. continuamente grazie a Dio, Padre del Signore nostro Gesù Cristo, nelle nostre preghiere per voi, 

 Lettere Paoline – Colossesi Col 1,4  

per le notizie ricevute circa la vostra fede in Cristo Gesù, e la carità che avete verso tutti i santi, 

And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:23  Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 5:25,27  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, • that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory, having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing; but that she would be holy and blameless.

Colossians 1:28  We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man with all wisdom, so that we may present every man complete in Christ.

Philippians 4:7  And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Colossians 3:15  Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful.

2 Thessalonians 2:16,17  Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us eternal comfort and good hope by grace, • comfort and strengthen your hearts in every good work and word.

1 Corinthians 1:8  who will also confirm you to the end, blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.

 

L’effusione dello Spirito Santo su tutti gli uomini

Dal «Commento su san Giovanni» di san Cirillo d’Alessandria, vescovo

(Lib. 5, cap. 2; PG 73, 751-754)
L’effusione dello Spirito Santo su tutti gli uomini

    Quando colui che aveva dato vita all’universo decise con un’opera veramente mirabile, di ricapitolare in Cristo tutte le cose e volle ricondurre la natura dell’uomo alla sua condizione primitiva di dignità, rivelò che gli avrebbe concesso in seguito, tra gli altri doni, anche lo Spirito Santo; non era infatti possibile che l’uomo tornasse altrimenti ad un possesso duraturo dei beni ricevuti.
    Stabilisce dunque Dio il tempo della discesa in noi dello Spirito ed è il tempo della venuta del Cristo, che egli ci annunzia dicendo: «In quei giorni», cioè nel tempo del Salvatore nostro, «Io effonderò il mio Spirito su ogni creatura» (cfr. Gl 3, 1).
    Quando dunque l’ora della splendida misericordia di Dio portò sulla terra tra noi il Figlio Unigenito nella natura umana, cioè un uomo nato da una donna secondo la predizione delle Sacre Scritture, colui che è Dio e Padre concesse di nuovo lo Spirito e lo ricevette per primo il Cristo, come primizia della natura umana totalmente rinnovata. Lo attesta Giovanni quando dichiara: «Ho visto lo Spirito scendere dal cielo e posarsi sopra di Lui» (Gv 1, 32).
    Cristo ricevette lo Spirito in quanto uomo ed in quanto era conveniente per un uomo il riceverlo. Il Figlio di Dio, che fu generato dal Padre rimanendo a lui consostanziale, e che esiste prima della sua nascita umana, anzi assolutamente prima del tempo, non si ritiene offeso che il Padre, dopo la sua nascita nella natura umana, gli dica: «Tu sei mio figlio, oggi ti ho generato» (Sal 2, 7).
    Il Padre afferma che colui che è Dio prima del tempo e da lui generato, viene generato oggi, volendo significare che nel Cristo accoglieva noi come suoi figli adottivi. Il Cristo infatti, poiché si è fatto uomo, ha assunto in sé tutta la natura umana. Il Padre ha il suo proprio Spirito e lo dà di nuovo al Figlio, perché anche noi lo riceviamo da lui come ricchezza e fonte di bene.
    Per questo motivo egli ha voluto condividere la discendenza di Abramo, come si dice nella Scrittura, e in tutto si è fatto simile a noi suoi fratelli. L’Unigenito Figlio non accoglie dunque per se stesso lo Spirito; infatti lo Spirito è lo Spirito del Figlio, ed è in lui, e viene dato per lui, come abbiamo già detto: ma poiché, fattosi uomo, il Figlio ebbe in sé tutta la natura umana, ha ricevuto lo Spirito per rinnovare l’uomo completamente e riportarlo alla sua prima grandezza.
    Usando dunque la saggezza della ragione e appoggiandoci alle parole della Sacra Scrittura, comprendiamo che Cristo ebbe lo Spirito non per se stesso, ma per noi; ogni bene, infatti, viene a noi per mezzo di Lui.

RESPONSORIO        Ez 37, 27-28; cfr. Ger 31, 31; Eb 8, 8

 Io sarò il loro Dio, essi saranno il mio popolo. Quando il mio santuario sarà in mezzo a loro per sempre, le genti lo sapranno: * io sono il Signore, che santifica Israele.
 Stabilirò con la casa d’Israele e con la casa di Giuda un’alleanza nuova:
 Io sono il Signore, che santifica Israele.

Friday (January 11): “Lord, you can make me clean”

Daily Reading & Meditation

Friday (January 11): “Lord, you can make me clean”

Scripture: Luke 5:12-16

12 While he was in one of the cities, there came a man full of leprosy; and when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and besought him, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” 13 And he stretched out his hand, and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately the leprosy left him. 14 And he charged him to tell no one; but “go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as Moses commanded, for a proof to the people.” 15 But so much the more the report went abroad concerning him; and great multitudes gathered to hear and to be healed of their infirmities. 16 But he withdrew to the wilderness and prayed.

Meditation: Do you seek the Lord Jesus with expectant faith? No one who sought Jesus out was refused his help. Even the untouchables and the outcasts of Jewish society found help in him. Unlike the people of Jesus’ time who fled at the sight of a leper, Jesus touched the leper who approached him and he made him whole and clean. Why was this so remarkable? Lepers were outcasts of society. They were driven from their homes and communities and left to fend for themselves. Their physical condition was terrible as they slowly lost the use of their limbs and withered away. They were not only shunned but regarded as “already dead” even by their relatives. The Jewish law forbade anyone from touching or approaching a leper, lest ritual defilement occur.

This leper did something quite remarkable. He approached Jesus confidently and humbly, expecting that Jesus could and would heal him. Normally a leper would be stoned or at least warded off if he tried to come near a rabbi. Jesus not only grants the man his request, but he demonstrates the personal love, compassion, and tenderness of God in his physical touch. The medical knowledge of his day would have regarded such contact as grave risk for incurring infection. Jesus met the man’s misery with compassion and tender kindness. He communicated the love and mercy of God in a sign that spoke more eloquently than words. He touched the man and made him clean – not only physically but spiritually as well.

How do you approach those who seem difficult to love, or who are shunned by others because they are deformed or have some physical or mental weakness? Do you show them kindness and offer them mercy and help as Jesus did? The Lord Jesus is always ready to show us his mercy and to free us from whatever makes us unclean, unapproachable, or unloving.

Lord Jesus, inflame my heart with your love and make me clean and whole in body, mind, and spirit. May I never doubt your love nor cease to tell others of your mercy and compassion.”

Psalm 147:12-15,19-20

12 Praise the LORD, O Jerusalem! Praise your God, O Zion! 
13 For he strengthens the bars of your gates; he blesses your sons within you. 
14 He makes peace in your borders; he fills you with the finest of the wheat. 
15 He sends forth his command to the earth; his word runs swiftly. 
19 He declares his word to Jacob, his statutes and ordinances to Israel. 
20 He has not dealt thus with any other nation; they do not know his ordinances. Praise the LORD! 

Daily Quote from the early church fathers: Jesus’ healing demonstrates the power of the kingdom of heaven, by Ambrose of Milan, 339-397 A.D.

“The authority of power in the Lord is here compared with the steadfastness of faith manifest in the leper (Luke 5:12-13). He fell on his face because it is a mark of humility and modesty that each feel shame for the sins of his life, but shyness did not restrict his confession. He showed the wound, he begged for the remedy, and the very confession is full of piety and faith. ‘If you will,’ it says, ‘you can make me clean’” He conceded the power to the Lord’s will. But he doubted concerning the Lord’s will, not as if unbelieving in piety, but as if aware of his own impurity, he did not presume. The Lord replies to him with a certain holiness. ‘I will: be clean. And immediately the leprosy departed from him.’ For there is nothing between God’s command and his work, because the work is in the command. Thus he spoke, and they came into being (Psalm 33:9). You see that it cannot be doubted that the will of God is power. If, therefore, his will is power, those who affirm that the Trinity is of One will affirm that it is of one power. Thus the leprosy departed immediately. In order that you may understand the effect of healing, he added truth to the work.” (excerpt from EXPOSITION OF THE GOSPEL OF LUKE 5.2–3)


Meditations may be freely reprinted for non-commercial use – please cite: copyright (c) 2019 Servants of the Word, source:  www.dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager

Thursday (January 10): “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me”

Daily Reading & Meditation

Thursday (January 10): “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me”

Scripture: Luke 4:14-22

14 And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee, and a report concerning him went out through all the surrounding country. 15 And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all. 16 And he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up; and he went to the synagogue, as his custom was, on the Sabbath day. And he stood up to read; 17 and there was given to him the book of the prophet Isaiah. He opened the book and found the place where it was written, 

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, 19 to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.” 

20 And he closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant, and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21 And he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” 22 And all spoke well of him, and wondered at the gracious words which proceeded out of his mouth; and they said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?”

Meditation: What can bring us true freedom and joy? In Jesus we see the healing power of God’s love and mercy in action. Wherever Jesus went, people gathered to hear him speak about the kingdom of heaven and God’s promise to bring freedom and healing to those who put their trust in God. His gracious words brought hope, joy, and favor to those who were ready to receive him. 

Jesus began his public ministry in his own land of Galilee where he was reared. His proclamation of the fulfillment of the Messianic prophecy of Isaiah brought wonder to the people. Isaiah had prophesied that the Messiah would come in the power of the Holy Spirit to bring freedom to those oppressed by sin and evil (see Isaiah 61:1-2). Jesus awakened their hope in the promises of God. They, in turn, received his words favorably and wondered what would become of “Joseph’s son”. Their hearts were hungry for the word of life and they looked to Jesus with anticipation and wonder. Do you look to Jesus with confidence and hope in the fulfillment of all God’s promises?

The word “gospel” literally means “good news”. Isaiah had prophesied that the Messiah would come in the power of the Holy Spirit to bring freedom to those who suffered from physical, mental, or spiritual oppression (see Isaiah 61:1-2). Jesus came to set people free, not only from their infirmities, but from the worst affliction of all – the tyranny of slavery to sin, Satan, and the fear of losing one’s life. God’s power alone can save us from dejection, hopelessness, and emptiness of life. The Gospel of salvation is “good news” for everyone who will receive it. Do you know the joy and freedom of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God who came to bring us the kingdom of heaven?

“Lord Jesus, you are the fulfillment of all our hopes and dreams. Through the gift of your Holy Spirit you bring us truth, freedom, and abundant life. Fill me with the joy of the Gospel and inflame my heart with love and zeal for you and for your kingdom of peace and righteousness”.

Psalm 72:1-2, 14-17

1 Give the king your justice, O God, and your righteousness to the royal son! 
2 May he judge your people with righteousness, and your poor with justice! 
14 From oppression and violence he redeems their life; and precious is their blood in his sight. 
15 Long may he live, may gold of Sheba be given to him! May prayer be made for him continually, and blessings invoked for him all the day! 
16 May there be abundance of grain in the land; on the tops of the mountains may it wave; may its fruit be like Lebanon; and may men blossom forth from the cities like the grass of the field! 
17 May his name endure for ever, his fame continue as long as the sun! May men bless themselves by him, all nations call him blessed!

Daily Quote from the early church fathers: Christ brings hope of release from spiritual bondage, by Eusebius of Caesarea, 260/263-340 AD

“‘The Spirit of the Lord is on me because he has anointed me’ (Luke 4:18 and Isaiah 61:1). Clearly this happened to those who thought that the Christ of God was neither a mere man nor an unfleshed and unembodied Word who did not take on a mortal nature. Instead they say he is both God and human, God in that he is the only-begotten God who was in the bosom of the Father, and man… from the seed of David according to the flesh (Luke 1:32). Thus, God the Word, who through the prophecy has been called Lord, speaks out this prophecy that is preeminent among other promises: ‘I am the Lord, and in the right time I will draw them together’… 

“Taking the chrism in the Holy Spirit, he, chosen from among all, appears as the only-begotten Christ of God. And the verse ‘he has sent me to proclaim good news to the poor’ (Luke 4:18), he fulfilled in that time when he ‘was preaching the kingdom of heaven’ and explaining the beatitudes to the disciples by saying, ‘Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of God’ (Matthew 5:3)… And for those nations then imprisoned in their souls by the invisible and spiritual powers he preached release to his newly encouraged disciples… Therefore, he preached release to the prisoners and to those suffering from blindness who were those enslaved by the error of polytheism, and he creates a year that is acceptable, through which he made all time his own year. And from the passing years of humanity he provides days of created light for those close to him. He never kept hidden the age that is to come after the perfecting of the present. For that age will be a time much on the Lord’s mind, being an age and day of requiting. For he will grant a change of fortune or a year of favor to those struggling in the present life.” (excerpt from COMMENTARY ON ISAIAH 2.51.5)

[Eusebius of Caesarea (260/263-340) was a bishop, Scripture scholar and first historian of the Christian church.]

Meditations may be freely reprinted for non-commercial use – please cite: copyright (c) 2019 Servants of the Word, source:  www.dailyscripture.net, author Don Schwager