12 Feb 2017: Blessed are They Who Follow the Law of the Lord

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Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time (Year A)

Reading 1: Sir 15: 15 – 20;Ps. 119: 1-34; Reading 2: 1 Cor 2: 6 – 10; Gospel: Mt 5: 17 – 37

Nothing is hidden! ‘How should I live?’ could never be a question for us Christians for it is written in black and white.

The community chosen by God experienced this. God gave them commandments to follow and to abide by it. The commandments were precise, clear and against all the compromises that could be thought of. They were indeed imperatives. The whole history of the people of Israel was based on their response to this obligation.

Jesus in His preaching modified or summarized the 10 commandments into two – based on a single principle of love. Though the quantity has been reduced, the quality of practicing it has indeed been increased. And we have the explanation for these commandments in the Gospel reading of the day. As the old commandment demanded not to commit adultery, the new commandment stated that a lustful sight in itself is adultery. While the former exhorted not to kill, the later expresses that the anger against a brother or sister itself is equal to murder. It demands a lot from us. But, do not worry. Real love for the Lord makes everything simple. The crux of the demand is the sincere love.

The result and the reward of this authentic act is the ability to know even the depth of God led by His Spirit. St. Paul expresses it in his first letter to the Corinthians: the secret of the Divine wisdom is to bring us to glory. The home that God has prepared for us is far greater than what we can imagine.

Now, what should we do to experience this: make a choice. God has placed before us a path to follow. But He too has given us freedom to choose. As the first reading tells us, it depends on our preference: whether to choose water or fire. Let us decide to follow what God expects from us by following His greatest commandment of love, that the words of the psalmist might become true in our lives too: “Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord.”

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