Reflection on Today’s Daily Readings by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM
Scripture: Lectionary 481. Ephesians 6:1-9. Psalm 145:10-11.12-13.13-14.
One can sense a pause in the long journey narrative that Luke helps us make
with the disciples. We are following Jesus up the roads to Jerusalem. Hang
in there since there are six more chapters to the journey! The atmosphere
surrounding Jesus continues with a feeling of urgency and concern on the
part of the followers about salvation. Will many enter the realm of the
kingdom of God or only a few? If we continue reading and paying attention
to the whole of the New Testament we see there is no definite answer given.
When looking at the positive and bright scenes withing the last book of the
New Testament we see the numbers are great. Jesus does not give a specific
answer. The eschatological perspective of Luke is more a realized one,
namely, the kingdom is here now and within us. If we sense that, then we
are on the right road up to Jerusalem with Jesus. If we do not, then keep
praying and reading the Scriptures.
There is a somber tone to the readings at this point and it fits in with
the season of Autumn when the winds pick up and the leaves start to fall in
droves. A meditative spirit invades nature as it takes its last breaths
before the colder weather sets in. Jesus words then fit this time of year
and help us to reflect more profoundly on the teachings has already has
given us--words of mercy, kindness, words that are salvific. We keep with
him and the apostles as we journey on this day.
God is the only one who knows the answer to that question--are there many
who are saved. Jesus shows us that prudence and awareness are important in
our lives. Jesus hints that it is best to follow the narrow path that he is
taking up to Jerusalem. Salvation of course is the meaning of his Name and
it is the reason he is one with us in our human nature and our struggles
with such questions. Is there an afterlife? We trust in the Truth, the
Way, and the Life who Jesus is. We know that God is faithful to his
promises and as St. Clement of Rome tells us that God never lies. He
cannot. Jesus is the human face of God who shows us the way.
He assues us that peoples from all parts of the Earth will be in the
kingdom: the north, south, west, and east will come. They too are part of
the chosen people of God in the realm of salvation. Only absolute evil
doers will not be able to continue on the pilgrimage with Jesus. We who
follow the Lord each day are convinced of his presence within us. We trust
in our own limited faithfulness will help us to be within the kingdom of
God now and in the future. We are glad that Jesus tells us Abraham, Isaac,
and Jacob are there already together with the prophets. We can learn from
them and what has been written about them. There is nothing to fear or to
be anxious about. We may be among the last but in the kingdom we may be
among the first. Only God knows this and that is good for us for it leads
us to trust more and more in his words. Amen
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