Spiritual Reflections of Fr John Brian

A web place for epistles, sermons, homilies, and other spiritual and pastoral reflections of Fr John Brian Paprock, including Sunday sermons from Holy Transfiguration Chapel in Madison Wisconsin and links to articles published on-line. All images are from the archives of Fr John Brian. Most of them are photographs taken by him. Permission to use any of the content of this blog needs to be requested - frjohnbrian@gmail.com

Monday, September 26, 2011

Still Following Material Things?


Still Following Material Things?


"Beware of the teaching of the Pharisees and the Sadducees" says Jesus Christ in the Gospel of Matthew (16:5-12) and compares their teaching to leaven or yeast.

Yet in the same passage, He reminds His disciples that He provided bread for the 5,000 and again for the 4,000 - bread is made with leaven/yeast. So what is Jesus telling us?

In this week's lessons from the scriptures, Fr John Brian walks us along with the readings appointed for Sunday to reveal what these teachings of the Pharisees and Sadducees are.

The evening and morning readings are from the Gospel of Matthew Chapter 15 - and in Chapter 15 there is a pivotal interaction with the Pharisees, which is helpful in our understanding.

Then, in this Sunday's reading in Acts, St Peter is confronted by the High Priest who we are told is of the Sadducees - also helpful in our understanding (Acts 5:17-32).

Then, Fr John Brian takes us to St Paul's First Epistle to the Corinthians (2:14-3:90, to bring the fullness of the spiritual teaching for this Sunday. St Paul gives clarity for spiritual discernment.

Fr John Brian using the words of St Paul asks if we are "still following material things" since we are still in strife and envying and divided.

But the Lord has given us a different way, different from the material and worldly religiousness of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

"For we work together with God; you are God's work and God's building." (1Cor 3:9)

This sermon uses and refers to scripture readings appointed by the Syrian Malankara calendar and was give on Sunday, September 25, 2011 by Fr. John Brian Paprock at Holy Transfiguration Orthodox Mission Chapel, Madison, Wisconsin.
"We have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency may be of the power of God and not of us." 2 Corinthians 4:7.

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