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Matthew 2:1-15

Find today’s passage here. The Sunday after Christmas I preached about Matthew 2:13-23 asking: Now What? That reflection applies to today’s verses as well. I used PARDeS to dig even deeper into the different aspects of this piece. Interesting stuff.

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Matthew 1:1-25

Find today’s passage here. Since I just preached about it a couple of weeks ago, may I refer you to the sermon titled “Love”.

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Romans 10:5-17

Today’s Reading is Romans 10:5-17.

Verses 5-8 remind us to not focus on a distant future or fate or a place up in heaven or down in hell but to only look and live right here, right now. Jesus said the same thing in his sermon on the mount: “So do not worry about tomorrow; it will have enough worries of its own. There is no need to add to the troubles each day brings.” (Matthew 6:34)

Verse 12 makes clear that God’s salvation is for everyone, no exceptions. A modern-day version of “Jews and Gentiles” would include people of all races, gender identities and faith traditions. Radical inclusion is the only option for a faith community truely based in God’s extravagant love. Once you start to reject certain people, this is what you get:

Verse 17 has been the sad basis for one of the silliest exclusions churches have erected: It was held that the hearing-impaired could not be saved because they were not able to acoustically perceive the good news. Our little human minds cannot even begin to grasp the all-encompassing love of God: No exceptions!