Sunday, 24 July 2016 : 17th Sunday of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Sharbel Makhluf, Priest (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Genesis 18 : 20-32

Then YHVH said, “How great is the cry for justice against Sodom and Gomorrah! And how grievous is their sin! I am going down to see if they have done all that they are charged with in the outcry that has reached Me. If it is not so, I will know.”

The Men with Him turned away and went towards Sodom, but YHVH remained standing before Abraham. Abraham went forward and said, “Will You really let the just perish with the wicked? Perhaps there are fifty good people in the town. Are You really going to let them perish? Would You not spare the place for the sake of these fifty righteous people?”

“It would not be at all like You to do such a thing and You cannot let the good perish with the wicked, nor treat the good and the wicked alike. Far be it from You! Will not the Judge of all the earth be just?” YHVH said, “If I find fifty good people in Sodom, I will spare the whole place for their sake.”

Abraham spoke up again, “I know that I am very bold to speak like this to my Lord, I who am only dust and ashes! But perhaps the number of the good is five less than fifty. Will You destroy the town because of five?” YHVH replied, “I will not destroy the town if I find forty-five good people there.”

Again Abraham said to Him, “Perhaps there will be only forty.” He answered, “For the sake of forty I will not do it.” Abraham went on, saying, “May my Lord not be angry, but let me speak. Maybe only thirty good people will be found in the town.” YHVH answered, “I will not destroy it if I find thirty there.”

Abraham said, “Now that I have been so bold as to speak to my Lord, what if only twenty can be found?” He said, “For the sake of twenty I will not destroy the place.” But Abraham insisted, “May my Lord not be angry, but let me speak just once more. What if only ten can be found?” And YHVH answered, “For the sake of ten good people, I will not destroy Sodom.”

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