“Blessed are the poor in spirit"

Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Jan. 30, 2011 (4A)
From the Center for Liturgy at Saint Louis University

Sunday Mass Readings  
Podcast of the Readings 
Video of Reflections on Readings
Lecturas y Comentarios 
Prayer of the Hours
BQ: Would you applaud after the homily?

Questions on Sunday's Readings for use by discussion groups,
prayer groups, or for individual prayer.
First Reading
Book of the Prophet Zephaniah,
Chapter 2, Verse 3; Chapter 3, Verses 12-13

1. “Faithful remnant” means those who remain faithful in spite of great difficulties, bad example and poor leadership. How do people remain faithful with such obstacles? What helps you?

2. Discuss some of the places/things in which the rich might place their trust. Do you ever hope in such things? Which do you think engenders more trust, wealth or poverty? Explain.

Responsorial Psalms
Psalm 146: 6-10

1. This week's Response is taken from Matthew 5:3 (the Beatitudes). How does the Psalm speak to what Jesus told his disciples that day as he taught them on the mountain?

2 . The Psalm talks about the 'oppressed', the 'hungry', the 'captives', the 'blind', those 'bowed down.' Where do you find yourself among these? Can you identify with any of these?
Second Reading
First Letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians, Chapter 1, Verses 26-31

1. The weak, the foolish and the lowly confound the strong, the wise and the strong. What does this mean to you? Can you give examples?

2. Is weakness a top priority for your country, or strength? For your work? For your social life?

According to Matthew, Chapter 5, Verses 1-12a

1. Moses received the ten commandments on a mountain. Jesus gave the sermon on a mount. Compare and contrast

2. Does Jesus define his own life by the beatitudes? Do you think this is a lesson or an invitation? Why?

Online Sunday Bible Study Group
Please share below your reflections on the above Sunday Readings. May we be blessed by God's words as reflected in your thoughts and experience-sharing.


  1. Barry Lamont8:26 AM

    The Psalm is about trusting in God,
    the one who made us.
    “Happy those whose hope is in the Lord …
    the maker of heaven and earth.” (Verses 5, 6)

    Why do we trust in God and not princes of this world?
    Because “ He keeps faith forever,”
    and “ He gives food to the hungry. (Verses, 6,7)

    Who among us is not hungry
    for a closer relationship with The Lord?

    In our 1st reading, Zephaniah tells us
    to “Seek the Lord all you humble of the earth.”
    St. Paul in our 2nd reading assures us,

    God is not going to call the wise, the powerful,
    or those of noble birth.
    Rather, he calls the lowly, the weak, to shame the strong.

    The message is clear –
    The Psalm is telling us we really need
    to humble ourselves
    if we want to be raised up with Him.
    That may be hard to do
    if it means we have to swallow our pride
    and put aside worldly concerns.

    But if we truly want to be set free
    from the sins that bind us,
    then we need to repent
    and bow down before the Lord and seek his grace.
    Only then will we begin to have
    a right relationship with the Lord.


  2. Studying the bible has always been a personal desire. The Message Bible has made that task so much easier. The clear 'message' in today's language affords a much smoother read and creates an environment of understanding I only hoped to achieve. This Bible is highly recommended as a stand-alone, or for use in conjunction with the NIV or other versions.