Sunday, July 19, 2015
MONDAY, 16th Week in Ordinary Time
July 20, 2015 MONDAY, 16th Week in Ordinary Time
St. Apollinaris, Bishop and Martyr
Ex 14: 5 – 18 / Mt 12: 38 – 42
[According to tradition, St. Apollinarius was consecrated a bishop by St. Peter and sent to Ravenna, Italy, at its first Bishop. He was martyred by the sword during the reign of Emperor Claudius.]
Reading: Ex 14: 5 – 18
The king of Egypt was told that the people had fled; then Pharaoh and his ministers changed their minds with regard to the people. "What have we done," they said, "in allowing Israel to go and be free of our service?" Pharaoh prepared his chariot and took his army with him. There were six hundred of his best chariots; indeed he took all the Egyptian chariots, each one with his warriors.
Yahweh had hardened the mind of Pharaoh, king of Egypt, who set out in pursuit of the Israelites as they marched forth triumphantly. The Egyptians – all the chariots and horses of Pharaoh, his horsemen and his army – gave chase and caught up with them when they had encamped by the sea near Pihahiroth, facing Baalzephon.
The Israelites saw the Egyptians marching after them: Pharaoh was drawing near. They were terrified and cried out to Yahweh. Then they said to Moses, "Were there no tombs in Egypt? Why have you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done by bringing us out of Egypt? Isn't this what we said when we were in Egypt: Let us work for the Egyptians. Far better serve Egypt than to die in the desert!"
Moses said to the people, "Have no fear! Stay where you are and see the work Yahweh will do to save you today. The Egyptians whom you see today, you will never see again! Yahweh will fight for you and all you have to do is to keep still."
Yahweh said to Moses, "Why do you cry to me? Tell the people of Israel to go forward. You will raise your staff and stretch your hand over the sea and divide it to let the Israelites go dryfoot through the sea. I will so harden the minds of the Egyptians that they will follow you. And I will have glory at the expense of Pharaoh, his army, his chariots and horsemen. The Egyptians will know that I am Yahweh when I gain glory for myself at the cost of Pharaoh and his army!"
Gospel: Mt 12: 38 – 42
Then some teachers of the Law and some Pharisees spoke up. "Teacher, we want to see a sign from you."
Jesus answered them, "An evil and unfaithful people want a sign, but no sign will be given them except the sign of the prophet Jonah. In the same way that Jonah spent three days and three nights in the belly of the monster fish, so will the Son of Man spend three days and three nights in the depths of the earth.
"At the judgment, the people of Niniveh will rise with this generation to condemn it, because they reformed their lives at the preaching of Jonah, and here there is greater than Jonah. At the judgment, the Queen of the South will stand up and condemn you. She came from the ends of the earth to listen to the wisdom of Solomon, and here there is greater than Solomon."
"To see is to believe." In many circumstances, similar to the teachers of the law and Pharisees in today's reading, we have to witness ourselves before we accept, we have to see with our own eyes before we believe. We always need proof or evidence and we have to experience things ourselves before we believe. Are we likewise that skeptical in matters of faith?
Better than seeing what is visible to the human eye is experiencing it from the heart. Be it a smooth-sailing or bumpy ride, our faith-journey with our Lord Jesus Christ should be based on pure trust in a loving God who wants nothing else but to give us salvation and everlasting life.
Sometimes we are too busy and pre-occupied looking for miracles that we forget to recognize and appreciate the everyday blessings we receive from God. Our lives are living testimony of his great power. What miracles do we need, what kind of proof is still needed in order for us to recognize God and love him with the same passion as he loves us?
Just like his love for us, our faith should not be conditional; we need not demand for miracles. Instead we just need to believe and trust wholeheartedly. As the risen Jesus chided the doubting Apostle Thomas the week after his resurrection, "you believe because you see me, do you not? Happy are those who have not seen and believe.
We pray that, like Thomas before the risen Lord, we can say in faith and with great love, even though we have not seen, "You are my Lord and my God."
WE PRAY FOR MTQ DAILY PRAYER DIARY INTENTIONS:
IN MEMORIAM (+)
YAN CHIN BEE
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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