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Advent Meditation: Wednesday, December 11, 2019

By Daniel Joslyn-Siemiatkoski

Psalm 38, 119:25-48  •  Amos 8:1-14  •  Matthew 23:1-12

Our readings today offer warnings about the perils of religious leadership. No one becomes a leader of a religious community with the intention of leading people astray or abusing their own authority. Yet Scripture and human experience tells us that this is all too often the case. This truth is an object lesson concerning the pervasive reality of sin. Sin has a strength to corrupt things that are good and true and beautiful. This serves as a stark reminder for us that a core message of Scripture is our need for confession and repentance. When Jesus inaugurates his ministry, he declares “the Kingdom of God has come near, repent, and believe in the good news” (Mark 1:15). Let us examine our lives, especially where we have lead others astray, and repent, moving into the promise of the good news of Jesus Christ.

Let us pray: O God, thank you for calling us to repentance. May we learn to live as you would have us. Amen.

The Rev. Daniel Joslyn-Siemiatkoski, PhD
Duncalf-Villavaso Professor of Church History
Seminary of the Southwest

Listen to Daniel read his meditation and prayer:

The Rev. Daniel Joslyn-Siemiatkoski  joined the faculty as the Duncalf-Villavoso Professor of Church History in 2014, having taught for a decade at other Episcopal seminaries. His teaching focuses on integrating Anglican and Episcopal identity with the broader sweep of Christian history and Jewish-Christian relations. His research interests include Anglican and Episcopal history, Jewish-Christian relations ancient and modern, the development of Anglican ecclesiology, and comparative theology. He is the author of The More Torah, The More Light: A Christian Commentary on Mishnah Avot and Christian Memories of the Maccabean Martyrs and has authored chapters in various edited volumes and articles in Anglican Theological Review and Anglican and Episcopal History. Professor Joslyn-Siemiatkoski is a representative for The Episcopal Church in the Anglican-Roman Catholic U.S.A. dialogue group and a member of the board of trustees for the Episcopal Evangelism Society and the Historical Society of the Episcopal Church. He serves as an assisting priest at St. David’s Episcopal Church in Austin.

The Advent Meditations and Prayers are a gift to our seminary community and are made possible through gifts to our Annual Fund. Seminary of the Southwest appreciates the support of its friends, alumni, and the communities around the world that its graduates serve for the glory of God. This support ensures that Southwest, as an institution made of individuals dedicated to service to God and their fellow members of the body of Christ, can continue doing its part to build the body of Christ.


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