In the eighth chapter of Paul’s first letter to the church in Corinth, he addresses whether it is lawful for a Christian to eat food that has been consecrated to an idol. Rather than giving a simple yes or no, he digresses by contrasting knowledge and love. Whereas knowledge “puffs...

Our God of infinite love, grant me wisdom and courage to divest myself of self-interest so I may be a conduit for your love to build up each person I encounter today. Amen.

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Lectionary Week
January 22–28, 2024
Scripture Overview

Grammarians study the behavior of language. When a writer places one word beside another, a behavior is constructed that stimulates our faculties of reason, sense, and imagination. Language is the medium through which God’s desires are expressed, and the grammar of God’s holy will for us is revealed in this week’s readings through the prophetic words spoken by Moses, the lyrics of praise written by a psalmist, the correspondence of Paul to the church in Corinth, and the Gospel according to Mark. These four grammars share a common antecedent in Divine Mystery, the grammar of God’s covenant that no person can diagram definitively. When reading these passages from Holy Scripture, hear and hold the words for the ways they stimulate your faculties and the textures of meanings they have acquired through the ages.

Questions and Suggestions for Reflection

Read Deuteronomy 18:15-20. To whom or to what setting do you turn when you yearn to hear God’s voice?
Read Psalm 111. For what are you praising God today? How have you experienced God’s steadfast love recently?
Read 1 Corinthians 8:1-13. What do you think of Paul’s statement, “Knowledge puffs up, but love builds up”? Can you think of examples of this in your everyday life?
Read Mark 1:21-28. How do you react to the concept of authority? How does the authority of Jesus differ from the authority we may encounter in the world?

Respond by posting a prayer.