Homily (Reflection) for the Tenth Sunday of the Year (B) (10th June, 2018) on the Gospel
Gen 3:9-15;Ps 129 (R. V. 7);
Topic: ...that kingdom cannot stand.
In today’s gospel, some said that Jesus had gone out of His mind. In the same vein, the scribes who came down from Jerusalem said, “He has Beelzebul, and by the ruler of the demons he casts out demons”. As a result, His family went out to restrain Him. Jesus said to them in part,
If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but his end has come (Mk 3:24-26).
Jesus used this opportunity to highlight the importance of peace. And considering how much many communities especially Christian communities lack peace, it is important to reflect briefly on peace.
In the gospel according to Saint John, Jesus said to His disciples, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you” (Jn 14:27). The peace in question is true peace. Hence, the Psalmist prayed, “Take me not off with the wicked, with those who are workers of evil, who speak peace with their neighbours, while mischief is in their hearts” (Ps 28:3).
True peace comes from God. He is a God of peace, cf. 1Cor 14:33. And for Saint Paul, Christ is our peace, cf. Eph 2:14. He preached peace to both those who were far off and to those who were near, cf. Eph 2:17. We read in the prophet Isaiah, “There is no peace... for the wicked” (Is 48:22; 57:21).
Jesus also said in today’s gospel, “Whoever does the will of God is my brother and sister and mother” (Mk 3:35). Who do we consider today as our friends, well-wishers, and so on? Often, they are those who support everything we do even when we know that we are wrong; those who lie to us, and their likes. Do not forget that “the wicked man conceives evil, and is pregnant with mischief, and brings forth lies” (Ps 7:14). We must remember that “A truthful witness saves lives, but one who utters lies is a betrayer” (Prov 14:25). And those who lie so as to be considered as good people should not forget that “A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who utters lies will not escape” (Prov 19:5). The book Proverbs goes further, “he who utters lies will perish” (Prov 19:9). And whoever lies is of the devil. Hence Jesus said,
You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father's desires. He ...has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks according to his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies (Jn 8:44).
Finally, we conclude with Saint Paul, “Let us then pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding” (Rom 14:19). Unless we have true peace, we are condemned to destruction. The Psalmist warns, “Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it” (Ps 34:14).
Bible Reading: Rom 14:13–15:6.
Thought for today: Pursue peace with everyone (Heb 12:14).
Let us pray: ...may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in all ways – Amen (2Thess 3:16).
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