17C22. Genesis 18:20-32. Abraham walked toward Sodom with the divine guests for whom he had just served hospitality. Then the Lord expressed to Abraham that “the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah (was) so great” that he had to see for himself. “The Lord remained standing before Abraham. Then Abraham drew nearer and said: ‘Will you sweep away the innocent with the guilty?’” For me what follows is a narrative analogous to a buyer wedeling down the price before a merchant in a Middle East bizarre. The example that Abraham sets for us is that he, while always being respectful, was always persistent.
Luke 11:1-13. Jesus himself was a person of prayer who in his humanity felt the need to live in relationship to the divine. The prayer he taught his disciples is a prayer of relationship of a son to his father. First, he shows an appreciation for the sacredness and divinity of his Father. Secondly, he petitions that the reign of God come to fruition over a world that often chooses to be apart from God. Thirdly, he asks for the infusion of God’s grace or life that enables us to live in the holy image and likeness of God. Then he asks that we may live sharing in God’s sinless, holy nature as well as calling us to not to deny others to live in that same holiness by forgiving the ways in which others may have offended us. Lastly, he admits to the fear that we may fall to the threat of this world’s challenge to our holiness. Jesus’ call for us to be persistent, I believe, is a demand that prayer be an endless way of life by which we live out our faith daily. We are to live in a never ending asking, knocking, and seeking because the Holy Spirit is the breathe of spiritual life without whom we become nothing more than just another animal of this earth. Live in Our Father’s love or die spiritually.
Colossians 2:12-14. We have all been sinners and so consequently “dead in transgressions.” Paul writes, “He brought you (and us) to life along with him, having forgiven us all our transgressions.” Salvation comes from our Savior and not by our work but by our cooperation with his salvific activity.