"Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man."

The Gospel for Sunday, Feb. 10, 2013, contains a surprise development. This Fifth Sunday will find three of the greatest witnesses in the Bible—Isaiah, Paul and Peter—expressing their own worthlessness.

Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Feb. 10, 2013 (5C)
From the
Center for Liturgy at Saint Louis University

Sunday Readings
Podcast of the Readings 
Video of Reflections on Readings
Lecturas y Comentarios 
New American Bible
Prayer of the Hours
BQ: Can we who are sinful be part of Jesus’ mission?

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

First Reading
Isaiah 6:1-2a, 3-8

1. What do Isaiah, Paul and Peter have in common in these readings?

2. God had some big tasks in mind for Isaiah, Paul and Peter. Could God just as well call us to do small things first, to take baby steps till we get used to saying yes?

Responsorial Psalm

Psalm 138: 1-2, 2-3, 4-5, 7-8

1. Our psalmist affirms, 'When I called, you answered me; you built up strength within me.' Speak of your own experience when you were in need of the Lord's help to build up your spiritual vigor.

2. David pleas with God, 'forsake not the work of your hands.' As a child of God, tell of how you can expect the Lord to love you forever unconditionally.

Second Reading
Corinthians 15:1-11 or 15:3-8, 11

1. Paul persecuted the Church, but because of grace he became a superb minister. Was he given the grace solely for his own benefit? Explain.

2. "For I am ... not fit to be called an apostle …" Do you think fit or worthy is the measure that God uses to call a person? Discuss the inconsistency between what Paul was and what he was asked to do? Is anyone "fit" or worthy?

Luke 5:1-11

Put out into deep water and lower your nets for a catch.

1. List some of the dangers of "deep water." What is not there for your security? What is there to threaten you? So why would you go there? What virtue do you need?

2. Where did Peter have to go in the lake before he could catch the fish? Where did he have to go in his personal life before he could "catch" people for God? Was everything up to him or did Peter receive extraordinary help? When are you yourself on the shore and when are you in the deep?

Sunday Bible Study Group

Please share your thoughts on these Sunday Readings. And please do use these questions for your own Bible study sessions with family and friends.

1 comment:

  1. Barry Lamont5:09 PM

    "Lord your love endures forever,
    never forsake the work of your hand.”

    Our psalmist David composed
    this prayer of a grateful heart.
    “I will give thanks to you,
    O Lord, with all my heart.”
    The seraphim in our 1st reading
    (Isaiah) cry out in a similar tone,
    “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of
    hosts, all the earth is filled with
    His glory,”

    David is grateful because his
    petitions are answered by the Lord.
    “For you have heard the words
    of my mouth.” The Lord's answers
    to David's prayers have come at a
    critical time, a time when our
    psalmist is seeking to build up
    his strength.

    David speaks of a divine rescue --
    “When I cried out, you answered;
    you strengthened my spirit.”
    Perhaps we’re all in need of a
    spiritual rescue of the type David
    describes. And it isn’t because
    of any of the psalmist’s virtues
    that he obtains salvation. It is
    a result of God’s loving fidelity.
    “Lord, your love is eternal.”

    Our God does not forsake the
    work of His hands, though who
    has given the Lord anything that
    he may be repaid? Unworthy as
    we are, and though the Lord is
    exalted, He watches over us in our
    lowly state. And thanks be to God,
    His kindness endures forever.
    St. Paul says the same thing in our
    2nd reading, “But by the grace
    of God I am what I am.”

    Our psalmist reminds us -- all God
    has to do is stretch out his right hand,
    and we will be saved. “You stretch out
    your hand, your right hand saves me.”
    Jesus made a similar intervention
    on behalf of St. Peter and his fishermen
    companions in our Gospel reading,
    when our Lord astonished Peter
    at the catch of fish they had made.
    And on that same day at the Lake
    of Gennesaret Jesus empowered Peter
    to become a true apostle and a catcher
    of men by following the Lord.

    Our psalm concludes in a grateful and
    affirming theme, showing how Peter
    probably felt, as he fell on his face
    at the feet of the Lord that day by the lake.
    “The Lord is with me to the end.
    Lord your love endures forever,
    never forsake the work of your hand.”