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Lectionary reflections - Year A
Ordinary Time
Proper 21

Ezekiel 18.1–4, 25–32
Philippians 2.1–13

Matthew 21.23–32

‘Don’t forget the bring-and-buy sale next week; the ladies’ group will meet on Thursday to continue their excellent work on the worn-out hassocks; and by the way, don’t forget that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and saviour of the world.’

That’s not really a fair parody of what is happening in Philippians, because the verses before the glorious hymn on the nature of Christ are not as mundane as a list of church notices, but even so, the effect is extraordinary.

Paul’s relationship with the church in Philippi is beset with drama and danger. Acts tells us about the founding of the church, and how it led to beatings and imprisonment for Paul and Silas (you might like to refresh your memory by reading Acts 16.11–40). By the time he is writing this letter, Paul is back in prison. It isn’t completely clear which of his many spells in prison this is, but it must have been
quite lengthy, because there has been time for an exchange of letters, for people to visit, and for the Philippians to send Paul things to make him more comfortable and to further his work (see 4.10ff.)...

Taken from Lectionary reflections year A by Jane Williams - Published by SPCK

Publisher: SPCK - view more
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