Readings: May 13, 2012 6th Sunday of Easter
Acts 10:25-26, 34-35, 44-48; 1 John 4:7-10; John 15:9-17 (The Message)
Acts 10:25-26, 34-35, 44- 48
God Plays No Favorites
he minute Peter came through the door, Cornelius was up on his feet greeting him—and then down on his face worshiping him!
Peter pulled him up and said, “None of that—I’m a man and only a man, no different from you.” Peter fairly exploded with his good news: “It’s God’s own truth, nothing could be plainer: God plays no favorites! It makes no difference who you are or where you’re from—if you want God and are ready to do as he says, the door is open. He’s doing it everywhere, among everyone.
No sooner were these words out of Peter’s mouth than the Holy Spirit came on the listeners. The believing Jews who had come with Peter couldn’t believe it, couldn’t believe that the gift of the Holy Spirit was poured out on “outsider” non-Jews, but there it was—they heard them speaking in tongues, heard them praising God.
Then Peter said, “Do I hear any objections to baptizing these friends with water? They’ve received the Holy Spirit exactly as we did.” Hearing no objections, he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. © 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson
1 John 4:7-10
God Is Love
My beloved friends, let us continue to love each other since love comes from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and experiences relationship with God. The person who refuses to love doesn’t know the first thing about God, because God is love—so you can’t know him if you don’t love. This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him. This is the kind of love we are talking about—not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they’ve done to our relationship with God. © 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson
Jesus said to His disciples: “I’ve loved you the way my Father has loved me. Make yourselves at home in my love. If you keep my commands, you’ll remain intimately at home in my love. That’s what I’ve done—kept my Father’s commands and made myself at home in his love.
“I’ve told you these things for a purpose: that my joy might be your joy, and your joy wholly mature. This is my command: Love one another the way I loved you. This is the very best way to love. Put your life on the line for your friends. You are my friends when you do the things I command you. I’m no longer calling you servants because servants don’t understand what their master is thinking and planning. No, I’ve named you friends because I’ve let you in on everything I’ve heard from the Father.
“You didn’t choose me, remember; I chose you, and put you in the world to bear fruit, fruit that won’t spoil. As fruit bearers, whatever you ask the Father in relation to me, he gives you.
“But remember the root command: Love one another. © 2002 by Eugene H. Peterson