01 June – Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Deuteronomy 11:18, 26-28, 32
“Therefore, take these words of mine into your heart and soul. Bind them at your wrist as a sign, and let them be a pendant on your forehead. “I set before you here, this day, a blessing and a curse: a blessing for obeying the commandments of the LORD, your God, which I enjoin on you today; a curse if you do not obey the commandments of the LORD, your God, but turn aside from the way I ordain for you today, to follow other gods, whom you have not known. Be careful to observe all the statutes and decrees that I set before you today.
Romans 3:21-25, 28
But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, though testified to by the law and the prophets, the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction; all have sinned and are deprived of the glory of God. They are justified freely by his grace through the redemption in Christ Jesus, whom God set forth as an expiation, through faith, by his blood, to prove his righteousness because of the forgiveness of sins previously committed, for we consider that a person is justified by faith apart from works of the law.
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name? Did we not drive out demons in your name? Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’ Then I will declare to them solemnly, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.’
“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock. And everyone who listens to these words of mine but does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”
Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock.
In the Old Testament, Moses told the Israelites that they would receive blessings if they followed the commandments, and be cursed if they did not — very similar to the notion of many religions we might know. However, after Jesus, we learn that “a person is justified by faith apart from works of the law”.
In other words, salvation is now not about following orders. It is by God’s grace that we receive it! This is evident in Jesus’ words, where he calls even those who have done supposedly good works “evildoers”. The whole plan of salvation does not depend on whether we earn merit points for helping out in ministry or doing what is religious.
God will provide us with material, skills and even the strength we need to build our “spiritual houses”. We need to learn to accept what He gives us through His grace in the Word, sacraments and the people around us. Otherwise we end up building our spirits with poor material that will easily crumble when we face trouble!
(Today’s reflection by Regina Xie)
Prayer: We pray to the Lord for more opportunities to build our spirits, and for the grace to recognize those opportunities when we encounter them. Amen.
Thanksgiving: We give thanks to the Lord for the priests and religious.
02 June, Mon – 2 Peter 1:2-7; Mark 12:1-12
03 June, Tue – 2 Peter 3:12-15a, 17-18 ; Mark 12:13-17
04 June, Wed – 2 Timothy 1:1-3, 6-12; Mark 12:18-27
05 June, Thu – 2 Timothy 2:8-15; Mark 12:28-34
06 June, Fri – 2 Timothy 3:10-17; Mark 12:35-37
07 June, Sat – 2 Timothy 4:1-8; Mark 12:38-44
08 Jun, Sun – Hosea 6:3-6; Romans 4:18-25; Matthew 9:9-13; Tenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
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