1st Reading – Genesis 18:1-10a
The first book of the Bible derives its name from the Greek rendering of chapter 2, verse 4: “these are the generations (genesis) of the heavens and the earth.” Tradition has it that Moses is the author – that is, he wrote down the oral traditions which had been passed down through the preceding centuries.
The first eleven chapters of Genesis recount such events as the creation of the earth, the flood, and the Tower of Babel. It is not until we get to the twelfth chapter that we are able to place a date on the events recounted with any certainty. Abram was called by God to journey to Canaan about 1850 B.C.. At that time Abram was 75 years old and God made him three promises of blessing; promises which were later solemnized by covenants: A nation, made a covenant in Genesis 15, and fulfilled in Moses; a name (dynasty, kingdom), made a covenant in Genesis 17:1-19, and fulfilled in David; and a worldwide blessing, made a covenant in Genesis 22 and fulfilled in Jesus the Christ. It was with Abram becoming Abraham, the father of all nations, at the making of the second covenant, that men and women began to rely upon God in faith and are changed by it. For today’s reading we join Abraham shortly after his name change. Abraham is 99 years old and he, along with all male members of his household, has just been circumcised.
2nd Reading – Colossians 1:24-28
Last week we started our study of the Letter to the Colossians. Recall that Paul was using this occasion to answer the Judaizers and remind them of the absolute supremacy of Jesus the Christ. Today Paul tells us his role in proclaiming the gospel.
Gospel – Luke 10:38-42
Last week we heard the parable of the good Samaritan. Shocking because the Samaritans were considered by the Jews to be even lesser than the pagans – although the Samaritans also worshiped the same God as did the Jews. Today again we hear of Jesus acting contrary to Jewish cultural norms in three ways: He is alone with women who are not his relatives, He is being served by a woman, and He is teaching a woman in her own house.