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Day 56: Spiritual Food in Quarantine

We beseech you to excel still more.

Twice in today’s New Testament reading, St. Paul urges the Thessalonians to excel still more in their obedience to God and their love for one another. Other versions say increase, abound and progress more and more. Justification is God declaring we are righteous. Sanctification is we being conformed to the image of His Son. We are to constantly grow. Right now we know in part, but then we will know more fully. In the gospel, Jesus in effect says, “you have heard (and obeyed) the commandments of old, now I say to you fulfill My kingdom’s higher standard.” If before we required an eye for an eye, now we love our enemies. This is why we are being equipped to do the work of service to the building up of the body of Christ in love, so that we can reach the full measure of His stature. Jesus increasing, we decreasing. That’s the way it is in the kingdom of God.

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