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Sunday Morning Services
January 22 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Every Sunday morning, Chalice holds hybrid services. Here
You can also connect with us via our:
YouTube Channel (click on the subscribe button and you will get notification when a post is made) – https://www.youtube.com/
The story found in Matthew 2:13-23 is only found in the Gospel of Matthew. Why is that? It has to do with audience Matthew is writing to which was a Jewish community hoping that they could merge together their Jewish traditions with their lives as Christians. By the end of the first century of the common era (around 75CE), the followers of Jesus were experiencing persecution by the Roman Empire and were being excluded from traditional Jewish circles.
From the very first chapter of the Gospel, the writer wants his audience to know that Jesus stand squarely in the lineage of Abraham, through King David up to Joseph himself. The writer also wants his audience to know that the great events of Jewish history like the Exodus and the Exile form the psyche of Christians as much as they do of Jews. It is to that point that story this Sunday comes into view. If you remember the history, Joseph who was the son of Jacob ends up in Egypt enabling the large tribe of Jacob to be saved from a great famine in their homeland. There in Egypt the Israelites experience the pain and suffering of slavery to be eventually liberated from that slavery with the help of Moses. If Matthew is to connect his Jewish/Christian community to the great story of Israel, he has to have a way to connect Jesus to that story. How he does this is to tell the story of the innocent victims of the empire (of Herod the Great who was a proxy for Rome), then tell of the flight of the Holy Family to Egypt (connecting them to another Joseph who helped his family survive), and finally the bringing forth of the family with their new born who has already been called “Savior.”
In some ways the story stretches the imagination of historicity since there is no record in Jewish tradition of a slaughter of innocents like that of Herod. So what can we make of the story today? It is easy, right? The Holy Family are refugees and/or asylum seekers from the violence of a political world bent on control and power instead of the dignity and integrity of human beings (especially the most vulnerable).
In the New Year the challenge is do we continue to align ourselves with the empire? Or do we stand in solidarity with the refugees and asylum seekers. Can you guess where Jesus stands?
I really want to encourage you to join us in person on January 1. I know we are still on high alert for COVID, Flu and other sicknesses, but try to be in person for the first worship of 2023 since it might be a very important year for us as members of Chalice Christian Church!
The Zoom Link is here. We start at 10:00 and finish around 11:00. All are welcome!