A Call to Repentance

Luke 10: 13-16
Jb 38: 1, 12-21; 40: 3-5 / Ps 139: 1-3, 7-10, 13-14

… whoever rejects Me rejects the One Who sent Me.
Luke 10:16

Are we not rejecting Jesus Christ
When we don’t receive Him constantly?
Don’t we fail the Pearl of such great prize
When we miss this opportunity?

“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the deeds of power done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. But at the judgement it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon than for you. And you, Capernaum, will you be exalted to heaven? No, you will be brought down to Hades. Whoever listens to you listens to me, and whoever rejects you rejects me, and whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me.” (Luke 10: 13-16)

Reflection

In today’s Gospel, Jesus rebuked and condemned the cities of Chorazin, Bethsaida, and Capernaum, because although most of His miracles were performed in these places, the people there had not repented. Although they were awed by the wonders they had seen, and were impressed by the words of this “great prophet”, they still remained unchanged in their sinful ways.

How frustrating it must have been for Jesus, that after all He had done to proclaim the coming of His Father’s Kingdom — by casting out evil spirits, cleansing lepers, healing paralytics, raising the dead, feeding thousands with a few loaves and fish, empowering His disciples, and teaching the multitudes with His parables — most of the people went away either “greatly entertained” or determined to make Him their political saviour. They failed to see His real mission — to cast out their indifference, cleanse them of their sins, heal them of their spiritual paralysis, and raise them to a higher level of consciousness — that of being God’s children under a New Covenant. The Kingdom had been preached in their hearing, but they had refused to repent.

Today’s Gospel also serves as a warning to our generation too. Unlike the Jews in Jesus’ time, who had no knowledge about the Trinity, about faith and true repentance, we have already received so much in our strong Christian heritage. Our responsibility as the more informed followers of Christ is therefore much greater than those who are not as blessed. And yet, how many of us come to witness the greatest miracle that happens everyday in the celebration of the Holy Mass? How many of us are truly penitent, and desire to be cleansed and be transformed by receiving Him in the Eucharist? The people in Capernaum wasted a great opportunity by not responding to God’s call through His Son who was in their midst. Are we letting the same opportunity go to waste by not receiving Him constantly in the celebration of the Holy Mass?

Lord God, forgive us for our complacency, when we take our faith for granted, and when we do not give the greatest miracle every Sunday — the celebration of the Holy Eucharist — the importance it deserves. Disturb us, Lord, and make us see how fortunate we are and how grateful we should be that we are blessed in our community. May Your Spirit reign in our hearts for all time. Amen.

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