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  Homily (Reflection) for 17th December: Weekdays of Advent on the Gospel
 

Gen 49:2.8-10;
Ps 71:1-4.7-8.17. (R. cf. v. 7);
Matt 1: 1-17.
Topic: Leave it Better.
One might wonder why the pains Saint Matthew took to trace the genealogy of Jesus Christ back Abraham. The book of Deuteronomy reads about Israel: “... you are a people holy to the Lord your God; the Lord your God has chosen you out of all the peoples on earth to be his people, his treasured possession” (Deut 7:6). And the call of Abraham in the book of Genesis marks the beginning of His election of Israelites as His chosen nation, cf. Gen 12.
Think of how one feels when being referred to as a son or a daughter of a successful man or woman. Or better still from a noble and successful family. In the same way, the Jews pride themselves as the Lord’s chosen. Hence in their culture, there is serious importance in genealogy as we can see in the bible, cf. Gen 4:17ff; 5:1-32. The inability to trace one’s origin to Abraham or at least to David raises serious question mark as to being a genuine Israelite. So, today’s gospel in part is an attempt to show that Christ is the long awaited Messiah as prophesied, cf. 1Kg 11:36; Lk 1:27; Is 22:22.
One of the truths we know is that today begets tomorrow. As a result, take everything you do very serious. In other words, do your best at all times. The life you live today might uplift or shame others tomorrow. So Leave the history Better than you met it.
Bible Reading: Phil 2:12-18.
Thought for today: Leave everything better than you meet them.
Let us pray: God help us to make this world a better place – Amen.

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