- Centering prayer— Pray for illumination, “Lord, open my heart and mind by the power of the Holy Spirit,” and remain in silence.
- Read slowly, keeping any words or phrase that come to your mind, and mark on them.
- Close eyes and meditate on what you read.
- Take a note if you have question, inspiration.
Read Matthew 19
Teaching on household structure.
Chapter 19 is the beginning of the fourth section in the book of Matthew out of five sections. Each section begins with the similar phrase, “When Jesus had finished saying.”
On marriage and divorce (1-12) – In response to Pharisees’ question on divorce, Jesus teaches covenant in marriage relationship. It was God’s intention from the beginning for husband and wife to be one. Jesus teaches about divorce in light of covenant as well, pointing out hardened heart of husband, which manipulate Moses’ divorce law. The manipulation was practiced in male centered culture. Living single, Jesus teaches, is to be by the grace of God.
The little children (13-15) – Children have no status. Jesus bless them, and he identifies all disciples as children. As children, all disciples are excluded from main power status in the society, but they challenge the power of the world for the kingdom of God.
The rich young man (16-30) —- The young man is rich with many possessions. He belongs to elite group in the society with power, wealth, and status, compared to children in verse 13-15. Presumably he gains wealth through many ways ensuring that many remain poor in his society.
Jesus points this by saying “Sell your possessions and give to the poor… then come, and follow me,” for this rich young man to know the power of the kingdom of God not by the power of his wealth. But he would not do it, “he went away sad.” His wealth is the lord of all his life.
“eternal life,” (v.29) is God’s life that God gives when one responds to God with renewed purpose of life. It is the present reality as well as future reality (v.29)
After Reading —- Reflection and prayer.
- Reflect on this question, “What does God speak to me today in this chapter?
- Pray that God’s word today be the way, the life, and the truth to you.
- Live it out through the day.