Be Steadfast in God’s Word

Matthew 10: 17-22
Acts 6:8-10; 7:54-59 / Psa 31

…do not worry about what you are to say or how you are to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
(Matthew 10:19-20)

When we proclaim God’s Word be brave,
On His Spirit we can depend.
They persevere whom God will save
And bear the trials till the end.

(Jesus said), “But beware of people, for they will hand you over to their courts and scourge you in their synagogues. On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. But when they arrest you, do not worry about what you are to say or how you are to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you. Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. You will be hated by everyone because of my name, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 10:17-22)

Reflection

Jesus tells us in today’s Gospel reading to be bold and steadfast in spreading the Good News of salvation. Amidst the turmoil and confusion in this world – even in the face of family division (which is certain during a political season) – we must not be afraid to speak out for our faith and our belief in His teachings.

One evening, at a Christmas dinner party, we got into a serious discussion with a free-thinker on the subject of the Bible’s integrity. The guest we met claimed to be a former seminarian and now a very successful insurance man. It was obvious that he had read extensively on writings of Bible scholars and exegesists, and with his good memory, employed his knowledge to advantage.

Although he claimed to be still a Catholic (“by birth and not by choice”), attending mass at least once a year — to commemorate the Last Supper, but not receiving communion (?) — his long discourse clearly was leading to a demolition job of the foundation of our faith, the Bible.

It proved to be an interesting evening, learning a lot of things about the seeming discrepancies in Scriptures (a favorite pastime of cynics). But the most important lesson I learned that night was that the more you strive to increase your knowledge about Scriptures through the writings of skeptics and scholars, the more you will question your faith, and the more you will stray from the real message of God’s Word. And therein lies the difference between knowledge and wisdom. One comes from the mind, and the other from the Spirit.

Thank You, Father God for this gift of faith. I know my knowledge about its origins are limited, but I believe our Savior’s words when He said, “”Do not worry about what you are to say… it will not be you who speak but the Spirit of your Father.” (Mt. 10:19-20). And who are we to think that our knowledge could ever be better than His wisdom?

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