Set us free, O God, from the bondage of our sins, and give us the liberty of that abundant life which you have made  known to us in your Son our Savior Jesus Christ; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen

ISAIAH 58:1-12 . . . a denunciation of the injustices of those who only act at their religion.  There is a promise of the Lord’s favor for those who genuinely repent and care for the needy.
PSALM 112:1-10 . . . Blessed are those who are right with the Lord, who are just and generous with those in need.
1 CORINTHIANS 2:1-16 . . . Paul teaches the Corinthians that the wisdom of God is very different from the wisdom in which humans pride themselves
MATTHEW 5:13-20. . . disciples are like salt and as light to the world.  They are to live even more righteously than the pious scribes and Pharisees.

Listen as Phillip Martin, pastor of Epiphany Lutheran Church in Richmond, Virginia sheds light on today’s passage from today’s Gospel lesson. He says, “While your light is important, Jesus is not speaking about individual lights here. He is speaking to his disciples as a group…their power as a collective.” This concept can be quite challenging to our individualistic society. Could we learn something from our early Christian predecessors about how to light and flavor our world today