Sunday, February 12, 2017 Sixth Sunday after Epiphany / Lectionary 6 Introduction
In today’s reading from Deuteronomy we are called to choose life by loving and obeying God. Much of today’s gospel reading echoes portions of the Ten Commandments. Jesus’ instructions to the crowd reveal a pattern of behavior that honors both God and the neighbor, resulting in life and health for the whole community. We, too, are invited to embrace these commandments, not out of fear of retribution, but because God has promised that to do so means life for us.
First Reading: Deuteronomy 30:15-20
The Lord sets before the people of God a clear choice. Life and prosperity will come to the faithful; loss of the land will be the consequence of disobedience. Choosing life entails loving and holding fast to the Lord. Life in God’s presence presupposes the promise made to the ancestors.
Psalm: Psalm 119:1-8
Happy are they who follow the teaching of the Lord. (Ps. 119:1)
Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 3:1-9
Human leaders in the church are not the ones who control ministry. Rather they are fellow workers who belong to God, the one who truly controls and continuously empowers the ministry of the church.
Gospel: Matthew 5:21-37
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus exhorts his followers to embrace standards of righteousness that exceed legal requirements and traditional expectations.