Working with the Word
Focusing the Gospel
Key words and phrases: Go on your way, peace will rest, the kingdom of God is at hand, I have given you the power, rejoice
To the point: Jesus sends the disciples out to plant the seed of the Good News and harvest its fruit of peace and the in-breaking of the kingdom of God. The “kingdom of God is at hand” because wherever disciples are present and received, God is present and received. Despite the disciples facing “wolves” and sometimes being rejected, their labor will bear fruit for it is God’s power that works through them. For this divine power and presence the disciples—and we—rejoice.
Connecting the Gospel …
... to the first reading: Isaiah’s vision uses different images to describe the same reality presented in the Gospel. The fruit of the disciples’ labors (peace, healing, and God’s kingdom at hand) are described in Isaiah as comfort, abundance, and prosperity. Both readings envision God’s power and presence now and a future when our “heart[s] shall rejoice.”
... to experience: Many people live in fear of a future marked by destruction and chaos; they have abandoned hope. These readings invite us to hope in the future God has in store for us, one of blessing and joy. At the same time, because God’s kingdom is already at hand, we live in this blessing and joy now.
**From Saint Louis University