"You shall not put the Lord, your God, to the test."
This Sunday, Feb. 17, 2013, is the First Sunday of Lent. And our Gospel shows Jesus fasting in the desert where He is tempted by the devil. Satan, scripture tells us, is the prince of jealousy, bitterness, paranoia, obsession, and lies. Few things in life torment us and beat us up as badly as these. They lurk in every dark corner, come out from under our beds at night, generally threaten us, darken our days, dampen our joys, and make us anxious as to what might lie around the corner. We just word things differently.
Sunday Readings' Discussion Questions
First Sunday in Lent, Feb. 17, 2013 (1LentC)
From the Center for Liturgy at Saint Louis University
Podcast of the Readings
Video of Reflections on Readings
Lecturas y Comentarios
New American Bible
Prayer of the Hours
BQ: What is the Pope's influence in your life?
Questions on Sunday's Readings for use by discussion groups,
prayer groups, or for individual prayer.
1. The First Reading contains the faith story of a people. Is there a way your own faith story is like this one? Discuss.
2. What good things came out of the Israelites’ desert sojourn? Was there any other way for them to get to the Promised Land? Metaphorically speaking, is the desert a place to fear or do you find its mysteries attractive?
Psalm 91: 1-2, 10-11, 12-13, 14-15
1. Our psalmist speaks about God's angels guarding us in all our ways. Give an example of how you have been borne up upon the hands of angels and given power physically or spiritually to trample down the devil and his minions.
2. In the Psalm God says that if we cling to Him, He will deliver us and set us on high. Tell of what it means to you to 'cling' to the Lord, and having done so, how have you been made free from evil that threatens you.
1. How do you proclaim that Jesus is Lord in all the small places where you live your daily life? (in the parish, at work, with family or friends) Do your proclamations require words?
2. Is most of what you do for someone colored by the love you have for that person? The Word who is “near you, in your mouth and in your heart” is Christ. What are the implications?
1. Why do you think Jesus begins his ministry with his “retreat to the desert”? He experienced the sufferings brought about by our sins. Did he experience our temptations too? Is there any part of them that he does not understand?
2. When an athlete starts to get flabby he/she exercises to get back in shape. Is there an analogy here for your spiritual life? How do you exercise to get into shape spiritually? What would a “flabby” spiritual life look like? How does yours look now?
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.