The Bible: The Power of Rebirth

Jesus Instructs Regarding Seeking Honour Before Men

Reflection on the Gospel of the Monday
Of The Thirty-First Week In Ordinary Time

 

Luke 14:12-14

Cultural Truths are ideas and way of doings things according to how a particular society thinks things should be and how they aught to be done. They may not be morally right or wrong, but the more important thing is they may be socially okay, but Christianly Wrong. These truths change from geographical and ethnic region to region, but the Truth of Jesus is constant and unchanging. One such illustrative thing was the idea of divorce in Biblical times, which Jesus Corrected and said was wrong, and God never intended for divorce.

Today’s Gospel also deals with one such cultural truth – social celebrations. Social Celebrations are good and are an expression of joy over something or someone, but we usually invite those we live around and also the socially well to do. We are uncomfortable to invite the not so well to do, and many a times our first thought is about what will others (those we are moving around with) say. Jesus is addressing three things in this parable. One providing for the needy. Two, asking us also to share and be mindful of the poor around us (The Parable of Lazarus and Jives), so we can show our gratefulness to God who is the ultimate source of our Joy, that we celebrate in social celebrations. And also not to alienate the poor, because in giving to them, we in turn open the door of our heart for God to come in and bring goodness in it. The story of Moses before Pharaoh is more about the third point. God is pleading with Pharaoh to do something good, ‘let the Hebrews go, with this gesture to make space for Him, Yahweh in the life of Egypt, so he can move in and help them bypass the oncoming danger 10 disasters…‘ And the sad story is that Pharaoh understood this and responded by saying that he chose not to know Yahweh… This is signified by the hardening of Pharaoh’s Heart. Today’s Gospel is saying, avoid the hardening, keep a light for the poor in your hearts…

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