Liturgical Bible Study Guide: 5th Sunday in Ordinary Time Cycle C

Christian Affirmations and Personalized Bible Scriptures

Gospel – Luke 5:1-11

After reading from the scroll of Isaiah in the synagogue in Nazareth (the Gospel reading for the past two weeks), Jesus went to Capernaum where he taught in the synagogue on the Sabbath and cast out a demon, then He went to Simon’s house and healed his mother-in-law, healed many, casting out demons for some. The next day He went to a remote spot but the crowds followed Him. Jesus then told the crowds that He must give the good news in other towns also because that is what He was sent to do. Verse 4:44 tells us that He preached the gospel in the synagogues of Judea (one would expect Galilee). Our reading for today, which is Simon’s call to be an apostle, takes place at the Sea of Gennesaret (Sea of Galilee).

1st Reading – Isaiah 6:1-2a, 3-8

Last week we heard Jeremiah’s call to prophetic office which was in the form of a dialog between Yahweh and Jeremiah. Today’s reading describes Isaiah’s call to prophetic office in 742 B.C., 116 years before Jeremiah’s call.

Isaiah, according to Jewish tradition, was of royal stock. It is certain that he belongs to the tribe of Judah and that his home was in Jerusalem. Unlike Jeremiah, who was celibate, Isaiah was married and had two sons.

From the time of his calling, Isaiah’s whole life was devoted to the “Lord Yahweh.” The Lord had called him and henceforth Isaiah was His servant. There was only one law in the world for him – the will of Yahweh. Yahweh is the “holy one,” the Almighty, whose glory fills heaven and earth, who made the world according to His plan, and governs and directs it according to His will. He “works all things,” even when His works appear strange and unintelligible to man. The name Isaiah means “Yahweh is salvation.”

Jeremiah’s call to office was in the form of a dialog between Yahweh and Jeremiah; Isaiah’s is a majestic vision.

2nd Reading – 1 Corinthians 15:1-11

For the past two weeks we have heard the Christian community (the Church) compared to the human body and we have heard of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. In both instances it was made clear that no one individual or gift is more important than another as all are there to serve the common good. However, of the theological virtues of faith, hope and love, love (charity) is the most important and all can possess it. Chapter 14 of 1 Corinthians, which we skip over to get to today’s reading, talks about the relative value of the gifts of prophecy, tongues, interpreting tongues, etc., and ends with the direction that the gifts are to be used for the edification of the Church.

As we learned three weeks ago (2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C), Paul wrote this letter to answer things which were worrying the Corinthians. Today he treats the subject of the resurrection of the body. A characteristic Greek and Platonic concept was that the body was a hindrance to the soul’s activity. St. Paul answers this question by declaring that the bodily resurrection of Christ is a fact duly attested to by chosen witnesses.

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