30 July – Saint Peter Chrysologus
Adult convert to Christianity. Deacon. Priest. Bishop of Ravenna, Italy in 433. Fought paganism and the Monophysite heresy, enforced reforms, and built several churches and ornate altars in his see. Preacher with such language skills, he was given given the name Chrysologus, referring to his golden word. 176 of his sermons have survived; it is the strength of these beautiful explanations of the Incarnation, the Creed, the place of Mary and John the Baptist in the great plan of salvation, etc., that led to his being proclaimed a Doctor of the Church in 1729 by Pope Benedict XIII.
– The Patron Saint Index
Moses used to take the Tent and pitch it outside the camp, at some distance from the camp. He called it the Tent of Meeting. Anyone who had to consult the Lord would go out to the Tent of Meeting, outside the camp. Whenever Moses went out to the Tent, all the people would rise. Every man would stand at the door of his tent and watch Moses until he reached the Tent; the pillar of cloud would come down and station itself at the entrance to the Tent, and the Lord would speak with Moses. When they saw the pillar of cloud stationed at the entrance to the Tent, all the people would rise and bow low, each at the door of his tent. The Lord would speak with Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend. Then Moses would turn back to the camp, but the young man who was his servant, Joshua son of Nun, would not leave the Tent.
And the Lord descended in the form of a cloud, and Moses stood with him there.
He called on the name of the Lord. The Lord passed before him and proclaimed, ‘The Lord, a God of tenderness and compassion, slow to anger, rich in kindness and faithfulness; for thousands he maintains his kindness, forgives faults, transgression, sin; yet he lets nothing go unchecked, punishing the father’s fault in the sons and in the grandsons to the third and fourth generation.’ And Moses bowed down to the ground at once and worshipped. ‘If I have indeed won your favour, Lord,’ he said ‘let my Lord come with us, I beg. True, they are a headstrong people, but forgive us our faults and our sins, and adopt us as your heritage.’
Moses stayed there with the Lord for forty days and forty nights, eating and drinking nothing. He inscribed on the tablets the words of the Covenant – the Ten Words.
Leaving the crowds, Jesus went to the house; and his disciples came to him and said, ‘Explain the parable about the darnel in the field to us.’ He said in reply, ‘The sower of the good seed is the Son of Man. The field is the world; the good seed is the subjects of the kingdom; the darnel, the subjects of the evil one; the enemy who sowed them, the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; the reapers are the angels. Well then, just as the darnel is gathered up and burnt in the fire, so it will be at the end of time. The Son of Man will send his angels and they will gather out of his kingdom all things that provoke offences and all who do evil, and throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and grinding of teeth. Then the virtuous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Listen, anyone who has ears!’
As a man speaks with his friend
Some people have the understanding that God in the Old Testament is one who is to be feared, one who punishes and intends to wipe out the race once in a while to save the human race. The New Testament on the other hand is about God the Father sending His Son, Jesus on earth, to be one of us, and Him showing His love for us, sacrificing Jesus, who died for all our sins; that it’s all about forgiveness, love and resurrection. We definitely have to rethink what God is like in the Old Testament.
In today’s reading, we learn that there is a time and place for us to say our prayers. Many would say it is a spiritual connection, which is highly sacred and structured. We all have to find our own ‘Tent of Meeting’ in the midst of our busy lives. God speaks with Moses like a man speaking with his friend, and that is exactly how God has been reaching out to us form the very beginning of time. We are His children, He is our creator, we are not made to be punished but to be created out of love and we are meant for love. Moses proclaimed that God is tenderness and compassion, slow to anger, rich in kindness and faithfulness. These are traits of Jesus His Son when we reflect on the life on Jesus as well. God has been a consistent lover; He has been greatly misunderstood by the ignorance of man.
His fairness and love for us challenges us to be a good man, as He will judge us at the end of the day, splitting the good wheat from the darnel. If we are to follow evil and do what the devil has tempted us, we fall prey to the evil one and set ourselves up to being a man whom God will be displeased with. What is our prayer life like? We are face with so many temptations and challenges each day that we lose track of what holds importance in the life of a Christian. Take a short break into the tent my friends, and speak to Him like you do to your best buddy. He is a God of tenderness and compassion and mercy; He has always been and always will be.
(Today’s OXYGEN by Austin Leong)
Prayer: Let me love you Lord like no other, the unconditional love that You have always tried to show us, and may I be a good example of You.
Thanksgiving: Thank you O God for steering me back into the right direction when I was lost, let me never to walk in the valley of darkness where I may be tempted by evil.