Gospel Meditation

February 19, 2022

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February 20, 2022
7th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Sometimes, Jesus’ teachings don’t seem to make practical sense. When we hear things like love your enemies and do good to them, turn the other cheek when struck, give to anyone who asks, do to others as you would have them do to you, be merciful, stop judging, forgive, and give to others, we get a bit unsettled. After all, it’s okay for God to do all of these things, but does He really want us to do them, too? Many good-hearted Christians really draw the line with some of these ideals and say, “No way!” They even remark that if someone did something hurtful to someone they loved, they would have no reservations seeking severe retribution. There is still this persistent thinking, even among those who consider themselves Christian, that a violent action deserves a violent response. Somehow, we continue to justify this.

Yet, it is most clearly against the very grain of the Gospel. Part of our difficulty has more to do with understanding God’s love. We wrongly think that sinful or hurtful actions and evil people somehow are seen as lesser in God’s eyes. They are not. God loves the sinner as much as He does the saint. And, both of these inclinations exist in every human being, even those who consider themselves holy. Both the capacity for good and the disposition toward evil exist in every one of us. Viktor Frankl has this to say when reflecting on the Holocaust: “Our generation is a realistic generation because we have learned what a human being really is. When all is said and done, man is that same creature who invented the gas-chambers of Auschwitz; but he is also that being who walked upright into those chambers with the prayer ‘Shema Yisrael’ on his lips.”

If we believe in God, we have to act like God. Whether we like that idea is another issue. If we don’t then perhaps, we need to reconsider our faith and whether we really believe in Jesus Christ. We are made in the image of God, not the image of ourselves. The Christian must, at all costs, leave resentment and the need for retaliation behind, lose defensiveness and bring into the mind and heart the realization of who we represent in this world.



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20 de febrero de 2022
7º Domingo del Tiempo Ordinario

Después de resumir las cuatro bienaventuranzas del domingo pasado, san Lucas nos ayuda a profundizar en la doctrina de Jesús y en sus palabras. Alerta con frases sabias a todos los cristianos, que de alguna manera se acercan al Evangelio: “Yo les digo a ustedes que me escuchan” (Lucas 6,27).  Se trata de una colección de principios que versan así: “Amen a sus enemigos, hagan el bien a los que los odian, bendigan a los que los maldicen, y rueguen por los que los maltratan” (Lucas 6, 27-28).  Cada uno de estos principios o reglas invitan a una seria reflexión. Deben penetrar en el corazón y en la mente para que produzcan mucho fruto.

Además, se nos dan pautas para caminar el camino de Jesús. Realidades increíbles que dice el Maestro, muchas veces imposibles de llevar a cabo. Poner la otra mejilla al ser golpeados, al que arrebata el manto darle también el vestido, dar al que pide, y al que te quita no reclamarle. ¿Cómo se hace esto? Son ejemplos concretos de conducta cristiana que no fallan al ponerlos en práctica. Jesús nos enseña que lo que importa es la persona y que debemos dejar a un lado los prejuicios y diferencias sociales. Si mi prójimo me necesita, ahí debo estar sin fijarme en la raza o el color. Por esa razón existe la regla de oro: “Traten a los demás como quieren que ellos les traten a ustedes” (Lucas 6,31).