Friday 1 July
Amos 8.4-6, 9-12
Psalm 119.2, 10, 20 30, 40, 131
What with all kinds of feasts recently, we have hardly had a chance to take in the lively figure of Amos, a Southerner preaching in the Northern Kingdom; but we can see that he will not win many friends with today’s invective against ‘you that trample on the needy’, and those who are looking at their watches, waiting for the Sabbath to be over, as he warns them of dire consequences for their neglect of God. The psalm, by contrast (a strange selection, this, from beginning to end of the hymn to God’s gift of law) is a wonderful song about the poet’s absolute devotion to God and his longing for God’s commandments. In today’s gospel we have the call of Matthew from his tax-desk; this is followed by a great party, attended by Jesus’ undesirable friends.