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The Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost
Jesus promises a happy ending. Getting there is another story. In this week’s gospel, Jesus tells us that he’s here to shake things up: Do you think I came to give peace to the earth. No, I tell you, I came to divide it. Sadly, these few lines from Luke have been cited to justify centuries of religious strife, intolerance and holy war. But Christ is not preaching jihad, he’s predicting the impact his message of love will have on our self-centered human nature. There’s no hidden agenda here. He has come to turn the value system of the world on end. And he knows the process will not always be pretty.
In this gospel, Jesus is a self-proclaimed troublemaker. But as he shows us over and over, eternal life in the love of Christ is certainly well worth the trouble.
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