Who knows the plans of God? We discover them during the journey of our life, in which the Lord walks by our side, and gives us light to discover the meaning of the events.
THE BOOK OF WISDOM
ü It is a "deuterocanonical" book. These are the books that the people of Israel never accepted as revealed by God, and neither do our brothers of other Christian traditions. But our church has always accepted them as revealed by God. .
ü Its traditional name is "Wisdom of Solomon."
ü Why of Solomon, if it was written many centuries after the death of Solomon?
ü It is a tradition of the people of Israel to attribute all the wisdom literature to Solomon.
ü In the 10 first chapters of the book, wisdom is greatly exalted, but from chapter 11 on it is justice that is present in all the chapters, and even in the first 10.
ü Would that be that justice is a part of wisdom? This is left to our reflection.
ü The author finds himself in a cross culture society: Greek and Semitic (Israelite)
ü We discover that, through the literary style and language.
ü The theme of the book, as Luis Alonso Schoëkel says, is: is a treatise on government justice.
ü Syria was loosing its power before the growing strength of the Babylonian Empire.
ü the author of the book already acknowledges the immortality of the human being "God created man for immortality.... 2,23"
ü This verse is a clear answer to the anguish form evil and from suffering of Job and of Qoelet.
ü Wisdom is considered as Word and also as Spirit.
ü We are already in the threshold of the Gospel grace.
FIRST READING. Wis 9:13-18b
v Who knows the mind of God?
v What men think is always small, insignificant even when it seems great.
v The author says that the body, what is earthly, prevents us from flying, from rising, it is a dead weight that drags us downward.
v We do not have to understand this literally, because our body is a body with a spirit, and our soul is an incarnate spirit. As human beings we are both spirit and matter which we cannot separate, if we could do so we would not be human beings anymore.
v We have a hard time understanding the events of our life, of our history, that surround us.
v The author asks who will be able to discover and understand fully the thing from heaven.
v Only the one who has received the Spirit of God can understand what God commands.
v His Spirit makes straight our path.
RESPONSORIAL PSALM -Ps 90 3-4,5-6,12-13,14-17
IN EVERY AGE, O LORD, YOU HAVE BEEN OUR REFUGE
You turn man back to dust
saying "Return, o children of men."
for a thousand years in your sight
are as yesterday, now that it is past
or as a watch of the night.
You make an end of them in their sleep
the next morning they are like the changing grass
which at dawn springs up anew
but by evening wilts and fades.
Teach us to number our days aright
that we may gain wisdom of heart
return, O Lord! how long?
have pity on your servants!
Fill us at daybreak with your kindness
that we may shout for joy and gladness all our days
and may the gracious care of the Lord our God be ours
prosper the work of our hands for us!
Prosper the work of our hands!
ü All the verses we read this Sunday are a reminder of the greatness of God and of our pettiness.
ü But the Lord loves us , thus we ask him with great trust to look at us with compassion.
ü We also ask him with great trust that his goodness may come upon us, so that our works will please him.
GOSPEL LK 14:25-33
Jesus continues to teach on his journey to Jerusalem, and he continues also to teach in our journey through life.
Today we are going to hear from him three simple lessons which are really only one: the conditions for following him.
The first lesson, confuses us "to hate father, mother....."
· But to be able to understand what he really means we need to know the language he is using
· Jesus speaks in his own native language the Aramean, which belongs to the Semitic group of languages and participates of its characteristics. To hate does not mean the same as it means in our language. To hate means to love less.
· Thus he is telling us that we have to love him more than anybody else, even more than ourself.
· What he really tells us is that we cannot love ourselves more than we love him.
· And if we are sincere, we will acknowledge that when we say that we love very much our family, in this love there is a lot of selfishness. Each one of us may reflect on that.
· If we do not love him over everything and everybody else, we cannot be his disciples. And this not because he rejects us, he is not to be blamed but us. The reality is that we do not want to be like him, even if we say it, we do not want to change, but remain as we are.
The second example is the man who wants to build.
· It seems that the Lord wants to teach us prudence, do not begin if you cannot finish the work, either because you do not have the financial means or enough workers to do it.
· If you begin in these conditions you will not be able to complete and you will suffer humiliation
The third example is very similar to the second one, but the situation is war, do not go to war against your enemy if you do not have enough soldiers and enough arms, because you are going to be defeated.
The Lord finishes his teaching saying that if we do not renounce all our possessions we cannot be his disciples:
· to renounce what we possess seems to be the same as to love him more than anything and anybody else.
· to renounce seems also to be the same as the prudence we need in our lives, prudence that will help us to follow him, to be his disciple.
SECOND READING Flm 9-10, 12-17
Ø The letter to Philemon is a personal letter of Paul to his friend Philemon.
Ø But the theme is so important for our Christian life, that those who put together the canon of the Scriptures considered worth to include this letter.
Ø The theme is slavery, but it is not a treatise on slavery, but a teaching about the equality, the fraternity among all the human beings.
Ø Onessimus is a slave of Philemon who has fled from his master.
Ø This could result in his execution, but Onessimus has heard about Paul, the friend of his master, and he goes to him for help.
Ø Paul evangelizes and baptizes him, Onessimus becomes a Christian, a member of the community of faith, thus a brother.
Ø And then Paul asks Onessimus to return to his master, and gives him this letter addressed to Philemon.
Ø Paul asks Philemon to welcome back Onessimus, he asks even more, to receive him as if Onessimus were Paul.
Ø This is a short letter who has only one chapter, but it is a letter filled with the tenderness of Paul and the radical demands of the Gospel.
Ø We have already seen these demands in today's Gospel as we have heard the Lord saying to us that we have to love him over everything else, even ourselves.
His Excellency, Mgr. Claret, already consecrated a bishop was at the point of sailing for his diocese. Since God our Lord gave me a such a firm certainty in the words this servant of God told me when he came to talk with me, as I have said – doubting that the work would become a reality – I was unable to remove from my memory how could it be to profess in that convent if it was God’s will for me to go on with the work His Divine Majesty had entrusted to me. . Venerable María Antonia París, Foundress of the Claretian Missionary Sisters, Autobiography 94-95.
Lord, I want to know nothing but your holy will, that I may do it, and do it, Lord, as perfectly as possible. I want nothing but you yourself, Lord, and in you-and only through and for you--all other things. For you are all I need. You are my Father, my friend, my brother, my spouse, my all. I love you, my Father, my strength, my refuge, and my consoler. Make me love you, Father, as you love me and wish me to love you. I know, my Father, that I do not love you as I ought, but I am quite sure that a day will come when I will love you as much as I desire to because you will grant me the love I ask through Jesus and Mary. St. Anthony Mary Claret, Founder of the Claretian Missionary Sisters, Autobiography 445.
CLARET, Antonio María Claret, Autobiografía.
PAGOLA, José A. Following in the Footsteps of Jesus. Meditations on the Gospels for Year C.
PARIS, María Antonia, Autobiografía
RAVASI, Gianfranco, Según las Escrituras, Año C.
SCHÖKEL, Luis Alonso, Comentario a La Biblia de nuestro Pueblo.