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The Institute of Lutheran theology not only provides programs to train pastors and teachers, but it also provides educational and devotional resources for individuals and congregations. These resources are provided free of charge and made available through our web page. Please subscribe to and use any of these resources.

The Institute of Lutheran theology not only provides programs to train pastors and teachers, but it also provides educational and devotional resources for individuals and congregations. These resources are provided free of charge and made available through our web page. Please subscribe to and use any of these resources.

The Eighth Sunday after Pentecost A

The Eighth Sunday after Pentecost A

Should we fear the reaper and his colleagues… the ones whom Jesus will send at the time of harvest to separate the weeds from wheat?  Resting on Jesus’ promise given us in our baptism, we can be secure that we are sons and daughters of the kingdom.  Those who should strike fear in our hearts are those who separate the weeds from the wheat prematurely.  These are the ones who discern that the field—that is, the field into which the Word of God has been sown—has weeds… has impurities… or, perhaps we should say has sinners… flourishing in its midst.  In their zeal to purify the field and protect the wheat (the righteous), the zealous would pluck out the weeds (the unrighteous).  Jesus prohibits such attempts at achieving purity.  He does so because these days are not the time for purification.  Purification will come at the time of harvest. (vs. 30).  Another reason rests upon those who would be “purifiers,” the ones who would purify prematurely.  They simply do not have the capacity to purify the field of weeds without damaging the wheat as well.  That is, the unrighteous “sons of the evil one” cannot be removed from the field without uprooting the righteous “sons of the kingdom.”  Just there is the danger we should fear:  that those zealous for purity would prematurely attempt to separate the righteous from the unrighteous.

Prayers from one who is tempted to be a zealous “purifier…”

Holy Father, you have sent your Son to be the Lord of the harvest.  Grant that I so acknowledge his Lordship that I co-exist with both sons and daughters of the kingdom and with sons and daughters of the evil one, trusting the Lord of the harvest and his reapers to know who is whom.  Father, be so merciful!

Holy Father, you have sent your Son to be the Lord of the harvest.  As I co-exist with all the others growing in the field into which your Word has been sown, grant me resistance to the temptation of being a purifier, prematurely cleansing the field of the “sons of the evil one.”  Father, be so merciful!

Holy Father, you have sent your Son to be the Lord of the harvest.  As I am encouraged against the temptation to prematurely be a purifier, grant that I am humble in the face of my neighbors’ sin, knowing that I, too, am a sinner.  Father, be so merciful!

Holy Father, you have sent your Son to be the Lord of the harvest.  Provide for me the companionship of others without anxiety whether they’re wheat or weeds.  Father, be so merciful!

Holy Father, you have sent your Son to be the Lord of the harvest.  Give me over to my neighbors as one who is useful in their obtaining of their daily bread.  Father, be so merciful!

Holy Father, you have sent your Son to be the Lord of the harvest.  Grant that the Institute of Lutheran Theology be a sower of your Word in the world.  Father, be so merciful!

Holy Father, you have sent your Son to be the Lord of the harvest. As I wait for the harvest. provide me with patience that I may wait upon you, Father, to establish the time of harvest. Father, be so merciful!

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