Gospel Reflections

REFLECTION CAPSULE FOR THE DAY – Sep 04, 2021: Saturday

✝️ REFLECTION CAPSULE FOR THE DAY – Sep 04, 2021: Saturday

“Growing in the Love of the Law-Giver – the Lord of the Law – JESUS!”

(Based on Col 1:21-23 and Lk 6:1-5 – Saturday of the 22nd Week in Ordinary Time)

Society is governed by various laws and regulations.

Every organization, every institution and every establishment has its own rules and legislations.

The world, however, also is a strange witness to weird and peculiar laws…
… some known
… many unknown

In Oklahoma State of the U.S. …
… you can be arrested for making ugly faces at a dog.

In Vermont State of the U.S….
… a woman must get written permission from her husband to wear false teeth.

In Milan, Italy…
… it is a legal requirement to smile at all times except at funerals or hospitals

In Samoa…
… it’s a crime to forget your own wife’s birthday.


Interesting and unusual, isn’t it?


Well… each law has its own purpose and motive when it is framed and formulated.

But, when a rule fails to deliver its intended aim and gets devoid of all target, it becomes worthless!
>> When a law loses its original flavour and objective, it gets reduced to merely a plain statement!


A similar situation is what is encountered in today’s Gospel passage from Luke 6:1-5.

Here is a law that is genuine and good and was commanded by God Himself…
>> And all of us know this by heart, when we recite the Ten Commandments: “Keep the Sabbath Day Holy!”


The Sabbath day was initially the seventh day of the week.
>> In the seven days of creation, it is the Day on which God rested from His work.

And so in Exodus Chapter 20, we learn that since God rested from his work on the Sabbath, He wanted His people to take a day of rest on the Sabbath as well.

This is a great principle, right?

It is certainly good to get some rest during the week!

So far, so good!
So far, so nice!


But as time moved ahead and as generations passed on…
… craziness began to find its way into this law!

The Jews were so intent at keeping this law that they began formulating practical guidelines on “how” to follow this law – what could be done and what could not be done.

They came up with a list of 39 main tasks which could not be performed on the Sabbath.
>> This list included sowing seed, ploughing, reaping, binding, threshing, winnowing, grinding, sifting, kneading etc etc…

Some of these, however, lost sight of the “spirit of the Law”…
… and began to be performed merely “for the sake of following!”


It is this “legalistic and uncharitable” insistence of the Law that Jesus was against…
… and He sought to restore back the Original Spirit of the Sabbath Law!


Jesus, the Lord of the Sabbath is clear to point out to the legalistic Pharisees:
“You don’t have to teach me about Sabbath rules…
… It is I who have set up it in the first place!

The Sabbath was supposed to be a day of rest…
… but you’ve made it a day of working hard to keep the law!

If you have to work so hard to keep the Sabbath, then you’ve totally misunderstood the intention of the Sabbath.”


The Sabbath is giving God the priority…

The Sabbath is giving one’s heart to the Lord!
The Sabbath is growing in relationship with Him!
The Sabbath is a day of taking rest, with the Lord!
The Sabbath is restoring our relationship with God!
The Sabbath is dedicating more of one’s resources to His Kingdom!
The Sabbath is strengthening ties with our family and fellow beings!

Yes, the Law is important…
… but do I lose focus of its original purpose, like the Pharisees…

Or do I, like Jesus, understand the true meaning and intention of the rules and guidelines in our lives?

Let us truly seek to throw away frivolous practices of any Laws & embrace the Lord of the Law and grow in His love!

Love the law…
Be zealous to keep the law…
… But not just for the sake of the law!

Rather, to grow in the Love of the Law-Giver Himself…the Lord of Law…JESUS!


God Bless! Live Jesus!


– Fr Jijo Jose Manjackal MSFS
Bengaluru, India

——————————–
📖 Discovering the beauty of the Catholic Church through the Catechism
I BELIEVE IN THE HOLY SPIRIT
>> To believe in the Holy Spirit is to profess that the Holy Spirit is one of the persons of the Holy Trinity, consubstantial with the Father and the Son: “with the Father and the Son he is worshipped and glorified.”
>> For this reason, the Divine mystery of the Holy Spirit was already treated in the context of Trinitarian “theology.”
>> The Holy Spirit is at work with the Father and the Son from the beginning to the completion of the plan for our salvation.
>> But in these “end times,” ushered in by the Son’s redeeming Incarnation, the Spirit is revealed and given, recognized and welcomed as a Person. Now can this Divine plan, accomplished in Christ, the firstborn and head of the new creation, be embodied in mankind by the outpouring of the Spirit: as the Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. (Cf. CCC # 685-686)
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