Our Lord’s Harvest

Fr Michael Rasicci’s homily for the 6th Sunday after Pentecost, 07/12/2020. In the Gospel today, Matthew writes about Jesus and the Parable of the Sower. Much of the seed falls on ground where it cannot grow. Some seed falls on fertile ground and produce a yield of 100 times, or 60 times, or 30 times (the amount of seed sown). Bishop N.T. Wright, in his commentary on this passage, says that, in Jesus’ time, people were lucky to get an 8 times return on their investment of seed. Jesus speaks of 100 times return. Jesus’s explanation of the parable was for the ears of His disciples. (We are those disciples today.)

Jesus is talking about the kingdom He is bringing into the world with His words and miracles, His life, death, and resurrection. It will be different than the world has ever been. One way it will be different is that it has the potential to yield this astronomical yield. While Jesus was preaching, he had very few followers. Throughout the Church’s early history, until Paul’s missionary journeys begin to bear fruit and the disciples were inspired to go and spread Christ’s word, very few followed Jesus.

In the first Reading to day, Jacob and Esau were twins and Esau sold Jacob his birthright for a bowl of lentil stew. Similarly, in the early days of the Church, people gave up what they did not realize was their key to immortal life.

In Romans, Paul says, …”If the Spirit of He who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Jesus from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through His Spirit that dwells within you. (Romans 6: 10-11)

We are the ones who have received this birthright from God. We are the ones in whom the Holy Spirit has chosen to dwell. We are called by the Spirit, yet we live in the world. Christ’s words and Spirit are within us. We need to thank God daily for these gifts. With the help of the Holy Spirit, we can produce yields of 100, or, 60, or 30 times–in our words and deeds. We can grow in our faith. We can grow in the love of God. We can grow in our wisdom. Our faith is something that we take seriously and not for granted. Every day we need to acknowledge what God has done in our lives to get us to this point.

The only time that harvesting of 100 fold or so happens is when God calls us to himself.

(Readings: Genesis 25: 19-34; Psalm 119: 105-112; Romans 8: 1-11; Matthew 13: 1-9, 18-23) (This link is for the entire bulletin for the service.)

There is a separate video link for the Indwelling Spirit–Virtual Eucharist for the 6th Sunday after Pentecost, 07/12/2020.


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