When Dishonesty Threatens Our Oneness in Christ Fri. May 6)

The word of the day is “fear.”  We may have a rosy picture of the life of the first believers who were filled with the Holy Spirit, bold in the proclamation of the Gospel, united in a common life, and fearless in the face of arrest, imprisonment, and death.  Yet, in today’s reading of Acts 5:1-11, we hear a note of sobering realism.  Luke reports the first instance of troubles in the community.  As a divine punishment for cheating and lying, a couple falls dead at the feet of the apostles.  Luke, the writer of Acts, summarizes the somber response of the faithful, “So great fear came upon all the church and upon all who heard these things” (OSB 5:11).…

God’s Holiness and Our Holiness in His Likeness (Sun. Oct. 17)

The word of the day is “holy.”  What categories do we use to speak of God?  Life, love, goodness, and truth might come to mind.  Or we might think of righteousness, glory, or grace.  Then too, there are the terms omniscience, omnipotence, and omnipresence.  All these are ways of thinking of God.  But in today’s reading of 2 Corinthians 6:16-7:1, Paul reminds us of the fundamental character of God when he advises his congregation in Corinth to “perfect holiness in the fear of God” (vs. 7:1). God’s Holiness, His “Otherness” In 1 Peter, the apostle underscores Paul’s admonition when he writes, “Be holy, for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:16 quoting Leviticus 11:44).  Note that our holiness, however, has its…