Then Paul and his companions set sail from Paphos and came to Perga in Pamphylia. John, however, left them and returned to Jerusalem; but they went on from Perga and came to Antioch in Pisidia. And on the sabbath day they went into the synagogue and sat down. After the reading of the law and the prophets, the officials of the synagogue sent them a message, saying, “Brothers, if you have any word of exhortation for the people, give it.”
So Paul stood up and with a gesture began to speak: “You Israelites, and others who fear God, listen. The God of this people Israel chose our ancestors and made the people great during their stay in the land of Egypt, and with uplifted arm he led them out of it. For about forty years he put up with them in the wilderness. After he had destroyed seven nations in the land of Canaan, he gave them their land as an inheritance for about four hundred fifty years.
After that he gave them judges until the time of the prophet Samuel. Then they asked for a king; and God gave them Saul son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, who reigned for forty years. When he had removed him, he made David their king. In his testimony about him he said, ‘I have found David, son of Jesse, to be a man after my heart, who will carry out all my wishes.’
Of this man’s posterity God has brought to Israel a Savior, Jesus, as he promised; before his coming John had already proclaimed a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel. And as John was finishing his work, he said, ‘What do you suppose that I am? I am not he. No, but one is coming after me; I am not worthy to untie the thong of the sandals on his feet.” “My brothers, you descendants of Abraham’s family, and others who fear God, to us the message of this salvation has been sent.
Because the residents of Jerusalem and their leaders did not recognize him or understand the words of the prophets that are read every sabbath, they fulfilled those words by condemning him. Even though they found no cause for a sentence of death, they asked Pilate to have him killed. When they had carried out everything that was written about him, they took him down from the tree and laid him in a tomb. But God raised him from the dead; and for many days he appeared to those who came up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, and they are now his witnesses to the people.
And we bring you the good news that what God promised to our ancestors he has fulfilled for us, their children, by raising Jesus; as also it is written in the second psalm, ‘You are my Son; today I have begotten you.’ As to his raising him from the dead, no more to return to corruption, he has spoken in this way, ‘I will give you the holy promises made to David.’ Therefore he has also said in another psalm, ‘You will not let your Holy One experience corruption.’
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
“Once upon a time, there was a little girl named Lauren. She lived in a big house with her mommy and daddy. Mommy and Daddy loved Lauren so much, she was their favorite little pumpkin. On Thursday…” And my mother would continue, telling me the story of my day.
I do the same with my daughter each night. But now she is three and insists that she tell the story. She begins with the words we taught her, which my mother also taught me. We sit on either side, and we listen.
In today’s first reading, Paul tells the story of salvation history. That is what Scripture is – the story of God’s offer of relationship to people and the people’s response. Let us remember what God has done. And let us tell others the story.
What is the story of what God has done in your life? Retell that story to yourself. Give praise and thanks to God.
Today I pray a version of the Examen to notice the story of what God is doing in my life today:
—Lauren Hackman-BrooksPlease share the Good Word with your friends!