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Proper 17

Jeremiah 2.4–13
Hebrews 13.1–8, 15–16
Luke 14.1, 7–14

Don’t sit at the top table, declares Jesus; start at the bottom and see what happens. If this is a parable, as Luke says, it isn’t advice about behaviour at dinner parties. In Luke’s wider context, its meaning is cognate with Jesus’ warning and summons to his contemporaries. God has promised a great wedding party, the ‘messianic banquet’. But if Israel thinks she has an inalienable right to sit at the top table, she has another think coming. Pride comes before a fall, humility before exaltation. This isn’t just wise counsel to an individual: it’s Jesus’ great challenge to the Israel of his day...

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