Friday, 15 February 2019 : 5th Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we heard of the story from both the first and the Gospel reading passages that related to us, the story of both mankind’s downfall into sin, and how then mankind were saved from the pit of sin by God Himself, lifted up from the depth of darkness and hopelessness, into the new hope and the promise of God’s wonderful love and grace.

In the first reading passage today, taken from the Book of Genesis, we heard how Satan, the evil one, the one who rebelled out of pride against God, Lucifer, the false lightbringer, who became proud of his own glorious nature and power, wanted to bring down those whom God loved the most out of all of His creations, that is man. Satan appeared to Adam and Eve in the form of a serpent, tempting them with lies and with sweet, false promised of glory and power in exchange for disobedience against God.

He promised that men would become like God if only they ate from the fruits of the tree specifically forbidden by God for them to eat. The devil was striking at mankind’s ego, pride and desire in their hearts and minds, to subvert them into being selfish, egoistic and be filled with the desires that in the end caused them to fall into sin against God, and was therefore cast out of Eden and God’s presence, to suffer the consequences of our sins in this world of suffering.

By desiring to know more, to want more knowledge by eating of the fruits of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, in fact men were restraining themselves within that knowledge, with the desire to know, the greed to taste and feel the pleasures of the world, many of which led them to sin even more, and fall deeper into the darkness. By that act of disobedience, sin entered into the hearts of men, and corrupted them, leaving them in the darkness.

But God, Who loved each and every single one of us, did not give up on us. In fact, He planned everything since the very beginning of the salvation of all those whom He loved, by nothing less than the giving of His own Beloved Son, Jesus Christ, Who became our Lord and Saviour. In the Gospel passage today, as we heard how the Lord opened the ears and loosened the tongues of a man born deaf and mute, we in fact heard the story of our own salvation and liberation from the tyranny of sin.

Sin has become a great obstacle, a great veil of darkness that prevented us from seeing the love and the light of God. Through sin we have been separated from God, and made to suffer in darkness. But God did not want us to suffer forever in that darkness. He brought to us a new light, a new hope that pierced through this dark veil and wall of sin, in the form of Christ, our Lord, Saviour and Redeemer.

We have been sick all these while because of our sins, and would have suffered the fate of eternal damnation, had the Lord not intervened for our sake, because of the great and boundless love that He has for each and every one of us, even to the greatest of sinners among us. He called us all to return to Him, and to be loved once again by Him. And the way towards that, is through Him alone, by our faith in Him, believing that in Him, our Lord and Saviour, is our Hope for eternal life.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today all of us are called to reflect on our own lives, and our own earthly existence. Are we aware of the sins we have committed in our respective lives thus far? Are we aware of the dangers of leaving those sinful ways and wickedness uncorrected and unrepented? We must also realise that it is in God alone that we can find healing through forgiveness, and we must realise how even when we are good in all things and are physically healthy, but because of sin, all of us are sick spiritually.

Many of us are afflicted by the allures of worldly pleasures and temptations, the temptation of monetary wealth, the desires and lusts for the flesh, the greed for glory and human praise, the wants for position and prestige, acceptance and approval by our fellow men. And all of these often caused us to fall deeper into sin, as inevitably all these caused our desires to clash, and we cause suffering and pain on others as we seek to satisfy our own desires.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, let us take some time using this opportunity given by God, for us to turn away from the path of sin, and embrace the loving mercy and forgiveness that God is offering us all so generously. Let us all seek Him to heal us from our afflictions, just as the man born deaf and mute sought the healing of the Lord and was healed from all of his complaints. It is by putting our trust in God, that we will receive pardon from all the obstacles that prevented us from truly enjoying the true happiness and glory, which in God alone we can enjoy.

May the Lord be with us always, and may He continue to guide us all, through our life, now and always. May He bless us all in our endeavours, and bring us ever closer to Him, that we may love Him more and more, our Lord and Saviour. Amen.

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