Seventh Sunday after Epiphany

Pastor'sSummary of Luke 6:27-38

Jesus has told his disciples whom God will favour when Christ comes again: those who are now "poor", "hungry", sorrowlful and hated will be "blessed"; fortunes will be reversed.

Now he interprets his teachings to potential followers (:you that listen") in radical terms. He speaks to those now hated: bring before God ("bless", "pray for", v. 28) those who persecute you, and offer no resistance to anyone who deprives you of your most basic possessions, "your coat" (v. 29) and "your shirt". Reciprocating the love and loving actions already shown and taken by others is basic human behavior (the cultural norm) and so does not warrant God's notice. Even lending when you expect to be repaid is not enough, rather love others by doing for them as you would wish they would do for you, the Golden rule, even when you are fairly sure they will do nothing for you, v. 35. In doing so, you will be doing as God does, he gives even to those who reject his love and work against him, without expecting recompense. Further, abstain from critical attitudes to others, :forgive" (v. 37) those indebted to you, and "give" (v. 38) freely. God will reward you very plenteously for your generosity.