Exploring the Sunday Gospel - Seventeenth Sunday after Trinity


Today is the Seventeenth Sunday after Trinity. Today’s reading from Matthew’s Gospel focuses attention on the growing conflict between Jesus and the religious authorities following the dramatic events that had taken place on Palm Sunday. Jesus has ridden into Jerusalem on a donkey, been greeted with shouts of ‘Hosanna to the Son of David!’ and driven the traders from the temple.  Now the Jewish authorities want to trap Jesus into speaking out the claims of Messiahship portrayed by such actions.  Jesus refuses to fall into this trap and sets one of his own.


For those of you who wanted to do some thinking and preparation for today’s service during the preceding week, I invited reflection on the image of setting traps. In today’s picture from his book, The Grumpy Day, Teddy Horsley feels that someone has set a trap for him when he trips over the vacuum cleaner.


Lord Jesus Christ,

you made sound judgements

and were blameless before your accusers.

Give us a sound sense of judgement,

that we may witness to you

in confidence and in truth;

for you are our God.



Next Sunday is the Eighteenth Sunday after Trinity. The Gospel reading from Matthew 21 presents the parable of the vineyard, and continues to explore the conflict between Jesus and the religious authorities. The image to help prepare for this theme is vineyard. You can find out more about that theme by looking at the Educational Resources and the Preparation Resources.


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