THE WORD BECAME FLESH
Thursday of thirteenth week in Ordinary time, 2021
Take your son…offer him
Dear friends in Christ, what greater sorrow can anyone face in parenting, than to watch a child die? How does it feel that the demand is made for a father to sacrifice his own and only son? The courage of Abraham is beyond imagination.
Our first reading (Genesis 22:1-19) is the story of the greatest test of Abraham’s faith. He had waited till he was a hundred years old before he had Isaac. Ishmael and his mother Hagar had been sent away because of Sarah’s complaint, leaving him with only Isaac as a son. One can only imagine his pains at God’s demands, “Take your son, your only begotten son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering upon one of the mountains of which I will tell you.” Abraham obeyed and did as the Lord told him. He took his son to Moriah and only at the point of sacrificing the boy did the angel stopped him, and declared that this was a test of his faith, and that since he has the fear of God by not withholding his only begotten son, his reward will be great. What is it you have that is so precious, that you become too attached and unable to let go? Someday you will leave everything when death comes. God will however not spare his own Son the way Isaac was spared, he allowed him to go the whole length of the road of suffering and death for our sake.
In the Gospel of today (Matthew 9:1-8) the scribes accused Jesus of blasphemy because he said to the paralytic "Take heart, my son; your sins are forgiven." But to prove his power of forgiveness, Jesus said to the man, "Rise, take up your bed and go home." And it happened just as he proclaimed it. How can God blaspheme? Their minds were closed to listening to God speak to them. Have you shut your ears to God's word? Have you closed your mind to the word of life? While God is patient with you, take advantage of his patience and have your sins forgiven. The day of judgment will come suddenly upon those who have failed to use the opportunities provided by God for their repentance.
Let us pray: Lord, you came in Christ to reconcile the world to yourself, give me the grace to appreciate the word of life and live according to your holy will. Amen.