Monday, August 25, 2014
Tuesday 21st Week in Ordinary Time
Tuesday 21st Week in Ordinary Time
2 Th 2: 1-3a, 14-17 / Ps 96:10, 11-12, 13 / Mt 23: 23-26
Reading: 2 Th 2: 1-3a, 14-17
Brothers and sisters, let us speak about the coming of Christ Jesus, our Lord, and our gathering to meet him. Do not be easily unsettled. Do not be alarmed by what a prophet says or by any report, or by some letter said to be ours, saying the day of the Lord is at hand. Do not let yourselves be deceived in any way. To this end he called you through the gospel we preach, for he willed you to share the glory of Christ Jesus our Lord. Because of that, brothers and sisters, stand firm and hold to the traditions that we taught you by word or by letter. May Christ Jesus our Lord who has loved us, may God our Father, who in his mercy gives us everlasting comfort and true hope, strengthen you. May he encourage your hearts and make you steadfast in every good work and word.
Gospel: Matthew 23: 23-26
Woe to you, teachers of the Law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You do not forget the mint, anise and cumin seeds when you pay the tenth of everything, but then you forget what is most fundamental in the Law: justice, mercy and faith. These you must practice, without neglecting the others. Blind guides! You strain out a mosquito, but swallow a camel. Woe to you, teachers of the Law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You fill the plate and the cup with theft and violence, and then pronounce a blessing over them. Blind Pharisee! Purify the inside first, then the outside too will be purified.
In the first reading, we are encouraged to persevere in our calling as Christians. Nowadays we are not very good at persevering. Couples easily break up, priests leave their ministry, people in business cheat one another, etc. Perseverance is closely linked to faithfulness. We are called to persevere in our faithfulness to God. We have been enlightened by many events in our lives which have proven to us how much God loves us. So why do we not persevere in the faith? Because the devil constantly tempts us to think the opposite, to tell us that money is more important than family, that carnal pleasures are desirable and to escape from the cross. A Christian perseveres because he firmly believes that Jesus is the Lord and he wants to please him with all his being. But without the Holy Spirit he often falls to the temptations of the world. So he needs to live by the Spirit and nurture the love he has for God in his heart. He must say no to the devil every day and fight the daily battle of faith. If he keeps in mind that Jesus will come again, he will strive to persevere in his Christian life while eagerly awaiting His Second Coming.
The gospel tells us to clean and remove the dirt inside us. We are told not to be scrupulous but to mind the weightier matters of the Law which are justice, mercy and good faith. To be a follower of Christ means to understand the central point of Christianity, which is to love as Jesus loved us, till the point of death. So we know that we will have to be vigilant always and not fall into Pharisaic hypocrisy. Let us not be found among the goats at the Last Judgment but among the sheep that have been faithful to the teachings of the Lord.
We pray ...
... for a deep and profound respect for life, especially for the unborn
... for all the prayer intentions in the MTQ Dailyprayer Diary
... for families who are in need of healing
... for world peace and reconciliation
... for the birthday intentions of Mary Joy Billanes
... for Almabelle Abapo, Lisa Claire Branzuela and Dale Robert's Basilla who will take the Physician Licensure Exams (Aug 23,24, 30, 31) - the grace of wisdom, understanding and clarity of mind during their preparations and exam proper.
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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