Friday September 11, 2020. Readings and Reflection

The Sermon on the Mount Carl Bloch, 1890

“I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.”
A reading from the first Letter of Saint Paul to the Corinthians (I Corinthians 9:16- 19.22b-27)

Brethren:  If I preach  the  gospel,  that  gives  me  no  ground for boasting.  For necessity is laid upon  me.  Woe to me if I do not preach the gospel! For if I do this of my own will, I have a reward; but if not of my own will, I am entrusted with a commission. What then is my reward?  Just this:  that in my preaching I may make the gospel free of charge, not making full use of my right in the gospel. For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a slave to all, that I might win the more.  I have become all things to all men,that I might by all means save some. I do it all for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings. Do you not know that in a race all the runners compete, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we are imperishable.  Well, I do not run aimlessly,  I do not box  as one beating the air; but I pommel my body and  subdue  it, lest after preaching  to  others  I myself  should be disqualified.

The word of the Lord.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm 84:3.4.5—6.12 (R. 2)
R/. How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts!

My soul is longing and
yearning for the courts of the Lord.
My heart and my flesh cry
out to the living God. R.

Even the sparrow finds a home,
and the swallow a nest for herself
in which she sets her young, at your altars,
O Lord of hosts, my king and my God. R.

R/. How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of hosts!

Blessed are they who dwell in your house,
forever singing your praise.
Blessed is the man whose strength is in you,
whose heart is set on pilgrim ways. R.

For the Lord God is a sun, a shield;
the Loan will give us his favour and glory.
He will not withhold any good
to those who walk without blame. R.

ALLELUIA John 17:17ba
. Your word, O Lord is truth; sanctify us in the truth. Alleluia.

“Can a blind man lead a blind man?”
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke (Luke 6:39-42)

At that time: Jesus told his disciples a parable: “Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? A disciple is not above his teacher, but every one when he is fully taught will be like his teacher. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take out the speck that is in your brother’s eye.”

The Gospel of the Lord.

Today’s Reflection
We live in a hyper-judgemental culture. We tag others and label them monsters: “he is a thief”, “he is too arrogant”, “she is too rigid”, “they are too poor for your level”, “you can’t afford me”, “she lives in a ghetto”, “he can’t speak good English.” These and more such assertions often sound simple and harmless; yet, they have tremendously poisoned love and harmony. Nobody wants to be around someone who constantly condemns them or others. To find fault is easy but to live better may be difficult. Jesus’ teaching in the gospel of today provides a practical guide to spiritual growth. He says it is a sign of hypocrisy to tag others as evil while we paint saintly pictures of ourselves. The only path to peace is to reduce the amount of judgement in our lives and gradually seal our lips when tempted to utter judgement about others.


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