FIRST READING
The king of Babylon brought captive to Babylon Jehoiachin and all the men of valour.
A reading from the second Book of Kings (2 Kings 24:8-17)

Jehoiachin was eighteen years old when he became king, and he reigned three months in Jerusalem. His mother’s name was Nehushta the daughter of Elnathan of Jerusalem. And he did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, according to all that his father had done. At that time the servants of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came up to Jerusalem, and the city was besieged. And Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to the city, while his servants were besieging it; and Jehoiachin the king of Judah gave himself up to the king of Babylon, himself, and his mother, and his servants, and his princes, and his palace officials. The king of Babylon took him prisoner in the eighth year of his reign, and carried off all the treasures of the house of the Lord, and the treasures of the king’s house, and cut in pieces all the vessels of gold in the temple of the Lord, which Solomon king of Israel had made, as the Lord had foretold. He carried away all Jerusalem, and all the princes, and all the mighty men of valour, ten thousand captives, and all the craftsmen and the smiths; none remained, except the poorest people of the land. And he carried away Jehoiachin to Babylon; the king’s mother, the king’s wives, his officials, and the chief men of the land, he took into captivity from Jerusalem to Babylon. And the king of Babylon brought captive to Babylon all the men of valour, seven thousand, and the craftsmen and the smiths, one thousand, all of them strong and fit for war. And the King of Babylon made Mattainah, Jehoiachin’s uncle, king in his stead, and changed his name to Zedekiah.

The word of God.

RESPONSORIAL PSALM Psalm79:1-2.3-5.8.9 (R. see 9bc)
R/. For the sake of the glory of your name, free us, O Lord.

O God, the nations have invaded your heritage;
They have profaned your holy temple.
They have made Jerusalem a heap of ruins.
They have handed over the bodies of your servants
As food to feed the birds of heaven,
and the flesh of your faithful to the beasts of the earth. R

They have poured out their blood like water round Jerusalem;
no one is left to bury the dead.
We have become the taunt of our neighbours,
The mockery and scorn of those around us.
How long, O Lord? Will you be angry forever?
Will your jealous anger burn like fire? R.

R/. For the sake of the glory of your name, free us, O Lord.

Do not remember against us
The guilt of former times.
Let your compassion hasten to meet us;
For we have been brought very low. R.

Help us, O God our savior,
For the sake of the glory of your name.
Free us and forgive us our sins,
Because of your name. R.

ALLELUIA John 14:23
Alleluia. If a man loves me, he will keep my word, says the Lord, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him. Alleluia.

GOSPEL
The house built upon the rock and the house built upon the sand.
A reading from the holy Gospel according to Matthew (Matthew 7:21-29)

At that time: Jesus said to his disciples, “Not every one who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the Kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you evildoers.’ Every one then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house upon the rock; and the rain fell, and the floods came; and the winds blew and beat upon that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house upon the sand; and the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell; and great was the fall of it.” And when Jesus finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as their scribes.

The Gospel of the Lord.

Today’s Reflection

Christianity is not a profession but a practice. Following Christ and living the gospel values is not contained in heaping up words but in accepting Jesus as Lord and Saviour and letting him build our lives. St James advises: “Be doers of the word, and not merely hearers who deceive themselves” (1:22). We see human-made structures acclaimed to be architectural marvels abruptly tumble like a pack of cards hit by a tsunami, a hurricane or a tornado. When we build our lives on a personal relationship with Jesus, with the word of God as its foundation, our life will stand and endure all the storm, tsunami and all other negative influences

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