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The Rev. Jay Lawlor delivers message to "owe nothing but love" in homily at Holy Family Episcopal Church

The Rev. Jay Lawlor preaching on the 14th Sunday After Pentecost Proper 18 Year A, September 10, 2017 at Holy Family Episcopal Church in Fishers, IN.

The Rev. Jay Lawlor preached at Holy Family Episcopal Church in Fishers, Indiana on the 14th Sunday After Pentecost Year A, September 10, 2017.

Love is the only measure of value to God. Showing love within the Jesus group AND loving our neighbors.”
— The Rev. Jay Lawlor

INDIANAPOLIS, IN, US, February 12, 2018 /EINPresswire.com/ -- "In addressing the Church in Rome, Paul wrote: Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. Paul reminds them of Jesus’ second part of the Summary of the Law: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law," said the Rev. Jay Lawlor in a sermon to the people of Holy Family Episcopal Church in Fishers, Indiana. The theme of the Rev. Lawlor's sermon was "to owe nothing but love." A video recording of the Rev. Lawlor's sermon has been posted by Holy Family Productions and on the Rev. Jay Lawlor's website. Following are excerpts from the sermon transcript:

There is a wonderful little book by the late Henri Nouwen titled In the Name of Jesus: Reflections on Christian Leadership. In that book Nouwen wrote: “We cannot bring good news on our own. We are called to proclaim the Gospel together, in community.” (Henri Nouwen, In the Name of Jesus)

Nouwen's reflection goes to the heart of our New Testament readings this morning. Both Jesus, in the Matthew's gospel, and Paul, in his letter to the Church in Rome, are speaking of Christian leadership. And not only ordained leadership. Not even primarily ordained leadership.

Jesus and Paul are speaking of discipleship. From where do we gain our authority as disciples? And how are we to carry out our mission, with its various ministries?

I think Jesus understood this would be the questions facing his disciples after the first Easter. It is why he gave the authority to bind and loose to his disciples. He made it about the authority of community gathering in his name. [...]

In addressing the Church in Rome, Paul wrote: Owe no one anything, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law. (Romans 13:8) Paul reminds them of Jesus' second part of the Summary of the Law: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore, love is the fulfilling of the law.(Romans 13:10)

Paul is reorienting the cultural norms of Roman society for members of the Church in Rome. To 'owe nothing except to love' eliminates the need to live by the structures inherent in the Roman cultural ethic of social status, power, money and debt so pervasive in Roman society – and ours. Love is the only measure of value to God. Showing love within the Jesus group AND loving our neighbors.
For the Church in Rome it could be liberating. It can be liberating for us as well. Followers of Jesus are called to live a better way, free from the cultural norms which assign status, power, and wealth as a measure of worth. Paul was inviting and urging Christians to know the heart of Jesus and live from that knowledge.

The entire sermon can be viewed at https://www.therevjaylawlor.com/owe-nothing-but-love-sermon-by-the-rev-jay-lawlor-sep-10-2017-video/

Visit Sermons Video Series page on the Rev. Jay Lawlor's website for all six of the sermons the Rev. Lawlor preached at Holy Family.

The Rev. Jay Lawlor
The Rev. Jay Lawlor
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Video of the Rev. Jay Lawlor preaching on the 14th Sunday After Pentecost Proper 18 Year A, September 10, 2017 at Holy Family Episcopal Church in Fishers, IN.

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