Monday 1st September – Monday of week 22 of the year
Reflection: Luke 4:16-30
BY FAITH, NOT BY RACE
The Prophet Isaiah announced to the Jewish pioneers who returned to Jerusalem that God would bless their efforts. The ruins would be rebuilt and the people would come back in great numbers from the countries where they were exiled (Isaiah 61:1-2). This was an Old Testament prophecy concerning the release of the Jews from the Babylonian captivity.
“Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing” Luke 4:21
They were expecting a political king who would set them free from the Romans. More so, they expected the Messiah to come in a more glorious form; not one who would live in their neighbourhood and eat and dine with them. Their familiarity with Jesus bred contempt. Jesus placed Himself in the category of Old Testament Prophets, who themselves received no better treatment from their own countrymen. He recounted the story of the widow of Zarephath (2 Kings 17: 8-24) and Naaman the Syrian (2 Kings 5); both gentiles who were blessed by the ministry of the prophets because of their faith. Thus, He implied that the benefits and blessings of the Divine Kingdom were coming in answer to Faith, not in answer to race. God is in debt to no man. His mercies would flow to other people if His own rejected them.
Dear friends in Christ, by virtue of our Baptism we have become adopted children of God and heirs to His kingdom. Though we are heirs to the kingdom of God, we have to work out our salvation with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12) through our faith and good deeds if we are really going to share in this inheritance Let us not allow our familiarity with our Priests and the Religious and our constant participation in the Sacred Liturgy; make us lose sight of their great significance and the powerful effects of their ministries.
PRAYER: Lord, open my eye that I may see you and my heart that I may accept you. Help me not to lose sight of your presence around me and especially in the sacraments. Amen.
KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 155 – In faith, the human intellect and will cooperate with divine grace: “Believing is an act of the intellect assenting to the divine truth by command of the will moved by God through grace.”
HIDE A TREASURE: “Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God, consider the outcome of their life, and imitate their faith.” Hebrews 13:7 RSV-CE
Readings for Today: 1 Corinthians 2:1-5, Psalm 119:97-102, Luke 4:16-30