Thursday, March 23, 2006
FRIDAY 3RD WEEK OF LENT
MARCH 24, 2006
FRIDAY 3RD WEEK OF LENT - YEAR II
Thus says the LORD: Return, O Israel, to the LORD, your God; you
have collapsed through your guilt. Take with you words, and return
to the LORD; Say to him, "Forgive all iniquity, and receive what is
good, that we may render as offerings the bullocks from our stalls.
Assyria will not save us, nor shall we have horses to mount; We
shall say no more, `Our god,' to the work of our hands; for in you
the orphan finds compassion." I will heal their defection, says the
LORD, I will love them freely; for my wrath is turned away from
them. I will be like the dew for Israel: he shall blossom like the
lily; He shall strike root like the Lebanon cedar, and put forth his
shoots. His splendor shall be like the olive tree and his fragrance
like the Lebanon cedar. Again they shall dwell in his shade and
raise grain; They shall blossom like the vine, and his fame shall be
like the wine of Lebanon. Ephraim! What more has he to do with
idols? I have humbled him, but I will prosper him. "I am like a
verdant cypress tree"- Because of me you bear fruit! Let him who is
wise understand these things; let him who is prudent know them.
Straight are the paths of the LORD, in them the just walk, but
sinners stumble in them.
One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him, "Which is the first
of all the commandments?" Jesus replied, "The first is this: Hear, O
Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your
God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and
with all your strength. The second is this: You shall love your
neighbor as yourself. There is no other commandment greater than
these." The scribe said to him, "Well said, teacher. You are right
in saying, He is One and there is no other than he. And to love him
with all your heart, with all your understanding, with all your
strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is worth more than
all burnt offerings and sacrifices." And when Jesus saw that he
answered with understanding, he said to him, "You are not far from
the Kingdom of God." And no one dared to ask him any more
Jesus and the scribes and priests of the Temple have been debating
furiously and heatedly over issue after issue (Mk 11:27-12:27).
However, they seemed to agree with Jesus' declaration of the
greatest commandments. One of the scribes even praised Jesus for
it, for which Jesus returns the favor by saying that the scribe
is "not far from the Kingdom of God."
Jesus' agreement with the scribes would be short-lived however and
we know later that these scribes and priests would put Christ to
death. So much for that bright spot as the Pharisees and Temple
officials return to their hatred of Jesus and what He stands for.
Unfortunately, many of us fall into that same trap. We would agree
on the major concept of Christianity but we would show a different
side of ourselves when real world issues confront us. Perhaps the
most common example is our behavior during Sunday Mass and the rest
of the week. We may find ourselves nodding in agreement to the
readings and the Sunday homily but find ourselves acting the
opposite during the rest of the week.
The commandments we read today are indeed the bases of our faith.
But our Christian character is not complete just because we have the
commandments as our foundation. The commandments can only have
meaning when we motivate ourselves to learn and practice the ways
and teachings of Jesus. Loving God with all our heart and soul
starts with listening to God with all our heart and soul. Loving
our neighbor starts with building our Christian character to be
better people so that we can do more for others.
We pray ...
- for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the
- for the speedy recovery and healing of Bernardita Galero.
- for the speedy recovery and healing of Dionisio Galero.
- for the personal intentions of Mian Atencio.
- for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary.
- Birthday: Filbert Aaron G. Tiu
- In Memoriam (+): Consuelo Cunanan (Mar 24, 1914 - Jan 8, 1981)
- for world peace and reconciliation.
Finally, we pray for one another, for those who have asked our
prayers and for those who need our prayers the most.
Have a good day!
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