(3 August 2014, 19 July 2015)
LORD of all power and might, who are the author and giver of all good things; Graft in our hearts the love of your Name, increase in us true religion, nourish us with all goodness, and of our great mercy keep us in the same; through Jesus Christ our Lord.
1 Kings 17:8-16; Psalm 34:11-15; Romans 6:19-23; Mark 8:1-10a
It is written in James’ epistle that “true religion” involves caring for those in need. As the Collect suggests, that is what we find throughout today’s scriptures. Both Elijah and Jesus take compassion on people by feeding them. The Psalm simply tells us to “turn from evil and do good.” The Epistle provides a more detailed explanation for this: we can either be “slaves” to sin or to God; slavery to one is freedom from the other. Throughout all these readings, however, is a critical lesson: being a truly religious slave of God is active, not passive.