Twenty-sixth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Twenty-sixth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Anyone who is not against us is for us.

In the first reading and the Gospel Joshua and John both try to stop people from doing God’s work because they aren’t “one of us”. Moses and Jesus oppose that way of thinking. God’s work will be done in whichever way God chooses, and by whom God chooses. The bigger issue that Jesus asks us to face up to is if we are about God’s business, how can we possibly give scandal to others through our own sinfulness? The only person we have any control over is ourselves. Don’t worry what others are up to, you have no control over them. Worry instead about yourself, there’s enough there to keep you busy.

As you begin these reflections each day spend a few moments repeating the phrase “Speak Lord, your servant it listening.” Then read the short passage from Sunday’s readings until you have memorised it. Read the questions and give yourself time to deeply consider your response. Once you have reflected for a few minutes, speak to the Lord, as you would to a friend, about what you have reflected upon.


The Lord came down in the Cloud. He spoke with Moses, but took some of the spirit that was on him and put it on the seventy elders. When the Spirit came on them they prophesied, but not again. (Numbers 11:25)

  • When has the Lord spoken to you?
  • What have you done with the Spirit the Lord gave to you?
  • Who have you shared the Spirit with?
  • Let the Lord speak to your heart as he did with Moses.



Then said Joshua the son of Nun, who had served Moses from is youth, ‘My Lord Moses, stop them!’ Moses answered him, ‘Are you jealous on my account? If only the whole people of the Lord were prophets, and the Lord gave his Spirit to them all.’ (Numbers 11: 28-29)

  • When have you been jealous?
  • Have you ever tried to stop something because it didn’t seem right to you?
  • What kind of prophet are you?
  • Let the Lord speak to your heart about his gifts to you.



The law of the Lord is perfect, it revives the soul. The rule of the Lord is to be trusted, it gives wisdom to the simple. (Psalm 18:8)

  • Does God’s law revive your soul?
  • Have you always trusted in the rule of the Lord?
  • When have you received wisdom?
  • Let the Lord speak to your heart about his law.



But who can detect all his errors? From hidden faults acquit me. From presumption restrain your servant and let it not rule me. (Psalm 18:13-14)

  • What fault do others see in you that you don’t see in yourself?
  • What do you presume, and does it rule you?
  • Are you guilty of the sin of presumption?
  • Let the Lord speak to your heart about his view of you.



Labourers mowed your fields, and you cheated them – list to the wages that you kept back, calling out; realise that the cries of the reapers have reached the ears of the Lord of hosts. On earth you have had a life of comfort and luxury; in the time of slaughter you went on eating to your heart’s content. (James 5:4-5)

  • Have you ever been unjust to anyone?
  • What comfort or luxury could you forgo for others?
  • Have you ignored others in their time of trouble?
  • Let the Lord speak to your heart about his justice.



‘John said to Jesus, ‘Master, we saw a man who is not one of us casting out devils in your name; and because he was not one of us we tried to stop him.’ But Jesus said, ‘You must not stop him: no one who works a miracle in my name is likely to speak evil of me. Anyone who is not against us is for us. (Mark 9:38-40)

  • Why is John trying to protect his privilege and status?
  • When have you felt excluded because you weren’t ‘one of us’?
  • When have you excluded someone because they weren’t ‘one of us’?
  • Let the Lord speak to your heart about his miracles.



‘But anyone who is an obstacle to bring down one of these little ones who have faith, would be better thrown into the sea with a great millstone round his neck.’ (Mark 9:42)

  • Have you ever given scandal to someone else?
  • Who has been an obstacle to your growth in faith?
  • Can someone whose faith has been lost ever find it again?
  • Let the Lord speak to your heart about his heart.

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