In Luke’s gospel has a series of stories about rich men and their concern for money (among other key topics): the parable of the Prodigal Son (15:11-32) followed by the story of the Dishonest Steward (16:1-13) and the story of the rich man and the poor Lazarus (16:19-31). The in-between verses, vv.14-18, begin with the phrase, “The Pharisees, who loved money.” Jesus describes these people as an “abomination” (bdelygma) before God (v.15). In the biblical tradition the term is used to speak of idolatry and in condemning financial misdealing (Dt 25:16). Idolatry and money, twins as abomination. Continue reading
Today is the Feast of St. Patrick which has optional readings you can find here.
The scene in the gospel is familiar – “oh sure, I’ve heard this before, Jesus is calling his disciples to be fishers of men” – perhaps too familiar. As with most scriptures, there is more than meets the eye.
The account begins with a wide-angle view with Jesus in a natural amphitheater with a large crowd. Having Simon Peter take him in the boat just a little offshore, Jesus can take in the breadth of the crowd as he teaches. There among in the crowd are people who have heard of the great things he has done in Nazareth and Capernaum, as well as Pharisees, scribes and officials from Jerusalem. There too are the ones who will become his disciples and follow him.