I missed church today after planning to go for the first time in a while. I wish I’d gone. I would have heard these words from the Lectionary for today:
5When Jesus saw the crowds, he went up the mountain; and after he sat down, his disciples came to him. 2Then he began to speak, and taught them, saying:
3“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 6“Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 7“Blessed are the merciful, for they will receive mercy. 8“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 9“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 10“Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11“Blessed are you when people revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. 12Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in hear in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.
Today’s text readings in the Lectionary mark the beginning of the readings of the Sermon on the Mount in the liturgical year.
I wish the Sermon was the creed we’d read every week in church instead of the anachronistic Nicene Creed. The core teachings of Jesus, not the resolution of the theological disputes of the 4th century, should be the guiding lights of our practice and faith. The Sermon asks so much more of us. I guess that explains it.