5th Week of Easter: Thursday, 23rd May 2019

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5th Week of Easter: Thursday

5th Week of Easter: Thursday, 23rd May 2019

Acts 15:7-21; Ps. 96(95):1-3,10; John. 15:9-11 (Ps Wk I)

The early Church was facing its first major crisis. In the early days, it was mainly Jews who were followers of Jesus but as the Good News spread, many Gentiles began following The Way. Some Jewish followers believed the Gentiles must become Jews first by being circumcised and following the Jewish laws. At the Council of Jerusalem, Paul and Barnabas concluded that it was not necessary for Gentiles to be circumcised.

Peter agreed that since the Holy Spirit was given to gentile believers, salvation came “through the grace of the Lord Jesus.” James focused on the one important thing – fidelity to God. The Gentile converts only had to avoid all appearance of idol worship. We should not put obstacles in the way of people seeking the Lord.

Jesus told the disciples that he loved them in the same way that God the Father loved him. By remaining united with Jesus in mind and heart always, his followers would mirror the relationship between Jesus and the Father. Those who remained united would be nourished and sustained. Love was the key, but love required action — the act of obedience to Jesus’ commandments.

What are these commandments? To love God with all your heart and your neighbour as yourself. Joy would be the result of this deep connection with Jesus. Have you experienced this joy that is the result of remaining in Jesus?

Lord, help me to remain united with You always.