Daily Readings



Readings of Today: 2017-05-23

6th Week of Easter - Tuesday

FIRST READING
Acts 16:22-34

The crowd in Philippi joined in the attack on Paul and Silas, and the magistrates had them stripped and ordered them to be beaten with rods. After inflicting many blows on them, they threw them into prison and instructed the jailer to guard them securely. When he received these instructions, he put them in the innermost cell and secured their feet to a stake.

About midnight, while Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God as the prisoners listened, there was suddenly such a severe earthquake that the foundations of the jail shook; all the doors flew open, and the chains of all were pulled loose. When the jailer woke up and saw the prison doors wide open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself, thinking that the prisoners had escaped. But Paul shouted out in a loud voice, “Do no harm to yourself; we are all here.” He asked for a light and rushed in and, trembling with fear, he fell down before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus and you and your household will be saved.” So they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to everyone in his house. He took them in at that hour of the night and bathed their wounds; then he and all his family were baptized at once. He brought them up into his house and provided a meal and with his household rejoiced at having come to faith in God.


RESPONSORIAL PSALM
Psalm 138:1-2ab, 2cde-3, 7c-8

R. Your right hand saves me, O Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.


I will give thanks to you, O LORD, with all my heart, for you have heard the words of my mouth; in the presence of the angels I will sing your praise; I will worship at your holy temple, and give thanks to your name.

R. Your right hand saves me, O Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.


Because of your kindness and your truth, you have made great above all things your name and your promise. When I called, you answered me; you built up strength within me.

R. Your right hand saves me, O Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.


Your right hand saves me. The LORD will complete what he has done for me; your kindness, O LORD, endures forever; forsake not the work of your hands.

R. Your right hand saves me, O Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.


ALLELUIA
See John 16:7, 13

R. Alleluia, alleluia.

I will send to you the Spirit of truth, says the Lord; he will guide you to all truth.

R. Alleluia, alleluia.


GOSPEL
John 16:5-11

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Now I am going to the one who sent me, and not one of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I told you this, grief has filled your hearts. But I tell you the truth, it is better for you that I go. For if I do not go, the Advocate will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes he will convict the world in regard to sin and righteousness and condemnation: sin, because they do not believe in me; righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; condemnation, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.”


Meditation: Who hasn't experience sorrow and grief over the loss of a loved one?  Sorrow filled the hearts of Jesus' disciples when they heard him speak about his imminent departure.  Jesus explained that it was for their sake that he must leave them and return to his Father. He promised,  however, that they would never be left alone.  He will send in his place the best of friends, the Holy Spirit.  Jesus tells his disciples three very important things about  the work of the Holy Spirit -- to convince the world of sin and of righteousness and of judgment. The original word for convince also means convict. The Holy Spirit is our Sanctifier.  He makes us holy as God is holy.  He does this first by convicting us of our sin and by bringing us humbly to the foot of the Cross. The Spirit convinces us of God's love and forgiveness and of our utter dependence on God for his mercy and grace.  We need the power of the Holy Spirit to lead us from the error of our sinful ways and to show us the way of love and truth.  The Jews who condemned Jesus as a heretic and blasphemer thought they were serving God rather than sinning when they crucified Jesus. When the gospel was later preached on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2:37), many were pricked in their heart and convicted of their sin. What made them change their mind about Jesus?  It is the work of the Holy Spirit to both convict us of wrongdoing and to convince us of God's truth.  The Spirit convinces us of the righteousness of Christ, backed by the fact that Jesus rose again and went to his Father. The Holy Spirit also convicts us of judgment.  The Spirit gives us the inner and unshakable conviction that we shall all stand before the judgment seat of God. God's judgments are just and good.  When we heed his judgments we find true peace, joy and reconciliation with God. Do you allow the Holy Spirit free reign in your life that he may set you free from the grip of sin and set you ablaze with the fire of God's love?

"Come Holy Spirit, and let the fire of your love burn in my heart. Let me desire only what is pure, lovely, holy and good and in accord with the will of God and give me the courage to put away all that is not pleasing in your sight."


See you tomorrow!