Today's Scriptural Meditation Readings:
September 8, A.D. 2006
Scripture from today's Liturgy of the Word:
Psalm 13:6ab, 6c
Matthew 18-23 or 1:18-23
A brief reflection on today's Scripture passages:
"A virgin will bear a son and they shall name him Emmanuel, God is with us."
Today's readings affirm the value of human life, for if we dismiss the Bible as fiction, we reduce ourselves to being a mindless, purposeless and calamitous accident of nature. In God alone, through Christ and His Spirit, can we claim any worth or reason for being. That a Creator God sent us His Son in human flesh to be offered as a final and perfect sacrifice for the remission of our sin reveals that we are far more than physical, animal-like creatures whose only purpose is the survival of our species.
It is a recorded fact that all of humanity has intimations that our beings have a spiritual and eternal dimension that draws us to establishing a relationship with an Almighty Power--God. We sense also that apart from Him, we cannot achieve the fullness of our humanity. Mankind values and strives toward such concepts as truth, love, justice, peace, mercy, generosity, etc. but eventually realizes after eons of destruction that without the wisdom and aid of a higher power we doom ourselves to living in hatred, pride, violence and greed, inevitably leading us into wars.
Despite, and perhaps because of man's vicious thoughts and actions, Scripture assures us that God, Emmanuel, is always with us. His love and truth personified in Christ ever draws us to become progressively more like Him through obedience to God's Word made possible through the power of His Holy Spirit. Matthew's genealogy shows that Jesus in His human flesh is descended from David's royal line. Note, however, that four women are included in Christ's lineage. Two were not Israelites: Rachel was from Canna and a harlot, and Ruth was a Moabite; Thamar and Bathsheba were both adulterers.* Their inclusion in His human family implies that Christ is the universal Savior who calls everyone to Himself. All who approach Him in repentance, seeking forgiveness of sin and the grace to live in God's Holy Word will be welcomed into His kingdom.
O Christ, Source of all Good, imbue us with the knowledge that in having humbled Yourself by sharing in our humanity, you make it possible for us to participate in Your divinity. Amen.
- Marie Bocko, OCDS
(mlbocko at earthlink dot net)
*Editor's Note: Some Biblical commentaries about the first four women mentioned in Matthew’s genealogy indicate they all were probably foreigners, something that portends that the Good News was meant for everyone. They were not those of Israel’s female heroines like Esther or Deborah, but of four women associated with impropriety, be it actual or contrived, and stand in contrast to the person of Mary, the fifth woman in the genealogy, who we know was pure, sinless and full of grace and conceived through the power of the Holy Spirit and virginally gave birth to Jesus our Lord.
Friday, September 8, 2006
Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Lives of the saints:
Full Scripture text from today's Liturgy of the Word:
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