Reading program for Matthew’s Gospel during 2011 Lent – #5
Prepared by Fr. Joseph Palubeski, CR, 2011 [email protected]
Preparation exercises taken from CATHOLIC SERENDIPITY BIBLE
March 27 - April 2
OPPOSITION FROM ISRAEL
Read Matthew chap12:1 - 50
> Regarding house plants, do you: (a) talk and sing to them like friends? (b) Forget about them till their leaves falloff? (c) Just hope that no one gives you one?
Read Matthew Chap 13:1 – 23. If your bible has cross-references or footnotes, you might want to check them out for further insights. (this may take a day or two)
> What is a parable?
> What four types of soil does Jesus mention? What characterizes each? What happens to the seed in each kind of soil?
> What does Jesus’ explanation of the parable (vv 18-23) reveal about the seed? About the various soils? The fruit? The farmer?
> What do parables accomplish that simple and direct speech lacks?
> How does Jesus’ challenge in verse 9 help explain verses 11-12? How does faith open you up to more and more spiritual insight?
> How does the quotation from Isaiah vv 14-15 explain the difficult of understanding parables (v13)?
> In vv 16-17 Jesus gives a new Beatitude. What have these disciples seen and heard that the prophets longed to see and hear? Are we included in this blessing? Why do you think so?
> Can you see and hear Jesus at work in today’s world? If so, how?
> How would you explain this parable to a group of city kids who don’t know anything about sowing a field? What modern analogy would you use?
> Why do so many people misunderstand the Gospel?
> What deep “roots” help to prevent a believer from falling away? What gives you roots?
> What worries can choke your growth in Christ? How can you free your life from these “thorns”?
> What “crop” does Jesus want believers to yield? What can you do to increase your productivity?
> Consider your life history – where have you been in each of the different soil situations in the parable? (e.g. pathway, rocks, thorns, good soil)
OPPOSITION & JESUS, THE KINGDOM AND THE CHURCH
Read Matthew Chap 13:24–16:12 Divide these verses over the remaining days
Personal Reflection after reading this section
> Be a candid camera to capture these various scenes - What is the reaction of the listeners to each
parable? Who is it that reacts?
> What does Jesus suggest to you in ch 15: vv 8-9?
> What consolation does Jesus offer in the 11:29-30
> Do you ask Jesus or God for signs 16:1?