In Sunday’s FIRST READING we hear Moses giving the people the 10 COMMANDMENTS.
We don’t like being told what to do, and often we are driven to rebellion by too many rules. Unfortunately we need rules to guide us. Instead of seeing the 10 Commandments as a list of oppressive rules, we can see them as the blueprints of the world God wishes us to live in – where people don’t kill, steal or abandon their family. Where children honour their parents, and parents honour their children. Where no one is jealous, no one lies and everyone is free to rest. Sound appealing?
These commandments gave hope to the former slaves of Egypt and they can should inspire us today.
In the SECOND READING we are reminded that people have thought that the Christian story is foolishness. The Jews were looking for a powerful Messiah. The Greeks were the masters of philosophy and wisdom.
Yet the Christians believe in a Crucified Christ – which to many was not a sign of power or of wisdom. But what if God did not come to overthrow with physical might or to crush people with clever arguments? What if the plan all along was for God to show each of us our value to Him, by becoming one like us, teaching us how to treat one another before dying in our place so that we might live. In this way, what many see as weakness or foolishness, becomes the sign of worth that so many people need to receive today.
In Jesus’ day, the Temple system had become quite corrupt. To be ‘right’ with God, you needed to sacrifice animals. But the animals you used had to be bought in the Temple market and were very expensive. BUT you could only buy these animals with Temple coins, which you had to exchange your money for at a terrible exchange rate! Basically it was a system that favoured the rich – those who could afford it, were washed clean of their sins.
This is why in Sunday’s GOSPEL Jesus drives out the money-changers and animal sellers from the Temple. Jesus wants to remove all the barriers that stop us coming to God. One way he does this in us is through the Sacrament of Reconciliation (Confession). It can often be our own shame and guilt that stop us coming back to God and stop us believing that He loves.
Let us pray that we would follow God commandments to bring about God’s kingdom, the world of peace that God wants for us today, as we say: Our Father…
We ask the prayers of our Blessed Mother for all those who struggle to appreciate their worth as we pray: Hail Mary…
Let us pray that all those who feel far from God would know that he loves them and desire them to come back to him as we pray: Our Father…
Think: Can you list the 10 Commandments?
Pray: What has caused you to doubt God? Speak to someone about your doubts and pray about them.
Act: Book an appointment to receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation.