"But I say to you, love your enemies"

On Sunday, February 23, 2014, we will conclude our reflection on the Sermon on the Mount with Jesus’ exhortation: “Be perfect as your heaven Father is perfect.” As we will see later, perfection has been God’s design and will for man from the beginning.
Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time, Feb. 23, 2014 (7A)
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: Does the Church permit Organ Donations?

Questions on Sunday's Readings for use by discussion groups,
prayer groups, or for individual prayer.

First Reading

Book of Leviticus, Chapter 19, Verses 1-2, 17-18

1. One way the Lord says to love your neighbor is “You shall not bear hatred for your brother or sister in your heart . . . cherish no grudge against any of your people.” Is this an easy thing to do? Have you tried it? Will you try again?

2. If we all “loved our neighbors as ourselves” do you think there would be wars, prisons, hunger and poverty? Discuss.

Responsorial Psalm
Psalm 103: 1-4, 8, 10, 12-13

1. This week we are asked to love the 'unlovable' in our lives. How does the Psalm inspire us to be able to do this?

2. The Psalm says that the Lord 'crowns' us with kindness and compassion. How does this enable us to imitate the Lord?

Second Reading
First Letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians, Chapter 3, Verses 16-23

1. St. Paul says that “the Spirit of God dwells in you.” When do you remember this? When you have important decisions to make? When you are in serious trouble? When good things happen? Not very often? Will this reading cause you to make changes regarding this issue?

2. In the reading what does Paul say makes you holy? What will happen if anyone destroys you? And, is your neighbor holy too? If this is so, how do you treat the people in your life?.

According to Matthew, Chapter 5, Verses 38-48

1. How do you feel about turning the other cheek when someone strikes you on the right cheek? Why would Jesus tell us to “Love your enemies?” Did he show us how to love our enemies? What far was he willing to go for them?

2. What do you think praying for those who persecute you might do for you? Would it be easy to do it? What might help?

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

1 comment:

  1. Barry Lamont9:09 AM

    Our psalmist sings the praises of a divine and loving God,
    who surrounds us with compassion,
    pardons our sins, heals our ills.
    He nurses no lasting anger,
    He has not dealt with us as our sins deserve.
    Our job is to remain faithful to the Lord,
    as we are His children,
    and to treat His anointed ones
    with love and compassion, as He would do.

    The Gospel teaches a powerful and difficult message –
    We are to be merciful to our enemies by imitating the Father.
    Verse 8 of the Psalm tells us how:

    “Merciful and gracious is the Lord,
    Slow to anger and abounding in kindness.”

    Who can love their enemies, and do good to them?
    It will be difficult if we allow our earthly nature to rule us.

    Just as “God has not dealt with us as our sins merit,”
    so must we imitate God and have compassion on those
    we would typically want to condemn.
    We cannot imitate God
    without a share in Christ’s divinity,
    and in turn being empowered
    by the holy Spirit within us.
    Only then will we have the kind of compassion the psalmist speaks about –
    Verse 13, “As a father has compassion on his children,
    so the Lord has compassion on the faithful.”