The Cayman Islands are within the ancient Episcopal Jurisdiction
of The Bishop of London granted him by the Crown in 1634
St Alban’s (Grand Cayman) & St Mary’s (Cayman Brac)
Church & Office - 461 Shedden Road
P O Box 719, Grand Cayman KY1-1103, CAYMAN ISLANDS
Tel (345) 949 2757
Welcome to St Alban’s Anglican Church
Today's Scripture: Deuteronomy 26: 1-11 Romans 10: 8b-13 S. Luke 4: 1-13
Today: 8.35 am Matins; 9am Church School; 9.30 am HOLY EUCHARIST; 6 pm E. Prayer
This Week: Tues - Fri 12.30 pm Midday Prayers; Sat 10 am Prison Ministry, Northward.
Next Sunday: 8.35 am Matins; 9am Church School; 9.30 am HOLY EUCHARIST; 6 pm EP
1st Sunday in Lent
O Lord, who for our sake didst fast forty days and forty nights: Give us grace to use such abstinence, that, our flesh being subdued to the Spirit, we may ever obey thy godly motions in righteousness and true holiness, to thy honour and glory, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end.
FAITH IN FOCUS: THE USUAL SUSPECTS
Do we really believe that Jesus was tempted? Surely the Son of God was above such things? Not if we are to trust the gospel writers. According to them there is no temptation that we experience that Jesus did not undergo. And because of his position it was much worse for him. Yet if he did not give in to temptation, he did no wrong. And so our temptations cannot be sins either. Only if we give in to them.
The tempting of Jesus by the devil in the desert draws us to some home truths. For Jesus was tempted at his very roots. The three temptations that today’s gospel reports are catch-all temptations; they are samples or specimen charges. They encompass all that human beings can have dangled before them and they have different names. Perhaps we could call them: money, power and success. More old-fashioned language gives them different titles: sensual appetites, excessive worldly desire and proud self-sufficiency. Whatever name we give to them, they are the temptations that all of us undergo throughout our lives. They are the usual suspects.
What was really happening to Jesus is that he was being offered the chance by the devil to change his identity. Why go through all the suffering that awaited him, when simply to pay homage to the devil would get him an easy life? The devil was offering him a chance to have things easy, but at a price. The cost of giving up who he really was: the Son of God and Saviour.
When the devil failed to overcome Jesus he went off to look for another chance. It’s strangely comforting for us to know that Jesus’ temptations continued long after the 40 days in the desert. There would be other occasions when he maybe had to think twice about taking the easy way out. And this rings bells with any honest Christian, for temptation is something we have to struggle against constantly. It’s a battle that never ends.
In the 40 days of Lent that stretch before us we are given the chance to look at our own identity. Who am I really? What sort of person am I called to be and how can I ensure I don’t duck the challenge? There’s no need to make a list of the ways in which we are tempted to take the soft option. The usual suspects will show up sooner or later.
WORD OF GOD
You must lay your gifts
before the Lord your God,
and bow down
in the sight of the Lord your God. (Deuteronomy 26:10)
WORD FOR TODAY
The devil tempted Jesus to be someone and something he was not. We too have 40 days to journey with Christ towards finding our own true identity as children of God. What are we tempted to become in exchange for the wonder that we are? And is it really worth it?
DO NOT pray for easy lives. Pray to be stronger men.
(John F Kennedy)
THE DEVIL tempted Christ, but it was Christ who tempted the Devil to tempt him. (Samuel Butler)
THE LENTEN APPEAL to conversion involves continuous and patient work on oneself, work that arrives at knowledge of the hidden motives and the secret springs of ambition, sensuality and selfishness. (Pope John Paul II)
THIS WEEK’S BIBLE READINGS
Mon: Genesis 41: 25-45, Galatians 3:23 - 4:7, John 5: 1-18
Tues: Genesis 41:46 - 42:5, Gal 4: 8-20, John 5: 19-29
Wed: Genesis 42: 6-17, Galatians 4:21 - 5:1, John 5: 30-end
Thur: Genesis 42: 18-28, Galatians 5: 2-15, John 6: 1-15
Fri: Gen 42: 29-end, Galatians 5: 16-end, John 6: 16-27
Sat: Gen 43: 1-15, Galatians 6, John 6: 27-40
NEXT SUNDAY: Genesis 15: 1-12, 17-18, Philippians 3: 17 - 4:1, S. Luke 13: 31-end