Wednesday, 17 July 2019 : 15th Week of Ordinary Time (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day we listened to the words of the Scripture speaking to us about the calling of Moses to be the deliverer of God’s people in the famous encounter he had with the burning bush, which all of us are surely familiar with. God called Moses from within the burning bush that miraculously do not burn, to send him to the Pharaoh of Egypt and to convince him to let the Israelites go free from slavery.

He is calling Moses to be His servant, His worker and His mouthpiece among His people and to the Egyptians and their Pharaoh. God then revealed to Moses what His plan was in freeing His people from slavery and bondage. He was to go to Pharaoh and present God’s words before him, and should he refuse, God’s power and majesty would force Pharaoh and the Egyptians to submit to His will, as what He eventually showed through the Ten Plagues.

In the Gospel passage today then we heard about the Lord Jesus speaking to His heavenly Father in His prayer, thanking Him for all that He has done. The Lord has planned everything for the salvation and liberation of us all, all mankind, from the slavery of sin. And He has done it all through none other than His Son, Jesus Christ Himself, Whom He sent into this world to be our Saviour and Liberator, much like Moses had been sent to the Israelites to be their deliverer.

The Lord has finally revealed the plan for His salvation, to save all of us from destruction due to our sins, through His Son, and the Lord Jesus joyfully thanked His Father for the truly Good News, revealing the truth to His disciples and later on through the Holy Spirit. It is truly a great joy that has come into this world, just as the coming of Moses brought about a great joy to the Israelites who have long suffered in slavery.

We can see therefore the clear parallel between the two readings today, one from the Old Testament and another from the New Testament. And we can see how Moses and his works in the liberation of Israel is a kind of prefigurement of the works which God Himself would do for the liberation of all of His servants. The old Passover itself is the foreshadowing of the one and true Passover that Christ Himself brought with Him.

All of us are the ones who have received this Good News and the truth which Christ has brought with Him into this world. But now, let us spend some time to reflect on our own lives and how we have responded to the Good News and the truth God has revealed to us. Have we been faithful and have we devoted ourselves to God all these while? Or have we instead walked down our own path and disobeying God all these while?

Look at the example of the Israelites themselves, after they have left Egypt and as they journeyed through the desert. The Israelites have received the wonders of God’s power and love, as He brought them out of the land of Egypt with many miracles and intervention. And yet, they refused to believe and continued to disobey Him repeatedly. They rejected His ways and His laws, and chose a golden calf to be an idol for them to worship, committing many wicked deeds along the way.

Are we going to follow their examples too? Are we going to disobey the Lord and choose to follow the twisted path of the Israelites as well? If all these while we have not been living our lives with faith, what are we all waiting for then? We have such a loving God and Father waiting for us to return to Him and yet, we have been so stubborn in our refusal to listen to Him all these while.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, on this day let us all reexamine how we should live our lives from now on, and let us all grow ever stronger in faith, and commit ourselves ever more, in living our lives aligning ourselves to God’s truth. May the Lord continue to guide us in our journey and may He continue to bless us each and every days of our lives, now and forevermore. Amen.

Wednesday, 17 July 2019 : 15th Week of Ordinary Time (Gospel Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Matthew 11 : 25-27

At that time, Jesus said, “Father, Lord of heaven and earth, I praise You; because You have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to simple people. Yes, Father, this was Your gracious will.”

“Everything has been entrusted to Me by My Father. No one knows the Son except the Father; and no one knows the Father except the Son, and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.”

Wednesday, 17 July 2019 : 15th Week of Ordinary Time (Psalm)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Psalm 102 : 1-2, 3-4, 6-7

Praise YHVH, my soul; all my being, praise His holy Name! Praise YHVH, my soul, and do not forget all His kindness.

He forgives all your sins and heals all your sickness; He redeems your life from destruction and crowns you with love and compassion.

YHVH restores justice and secures the rights of the oppressed. He has made known His ways to Moses; and His deeds, to the people of Israel.

Wednesday, 17 July 2019 : 15th Week of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Exodus 3 : 1-6, 9-12

Moses pastured the sheep of Jethro, his father-in-law, priest of Midian. One day he led the flock to the far side of the desert and came to Horeb, the Mountain of God. The Angel of YHVH appeared to him by means of a flame of fire in the middle of a bush. Moses saw that although the bush was on fire it did not burn up.

Moses thought, “I will go and see this amazing sight, why is the bush not burning up?” YHVH saw that Moses was drawing near to look, and God called to him from the middle of the bush, “Moses! Moses!” He replied, “Here I am.” YHVH said to him, “Do not come near; take off your sandals because the place where you are standing is holy ground.”

And God continued, “I am the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob.” Moses hid his face lest his eyes look on God. YHVH said, “The cry of the sons of Israel has reached Me and I have seen how the Egyptians oppress them. Go now! I am sending you to Pharaoh to bring My people, the sons of Israel, out of Egypt.”

Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the people of Israel out of Egypt?” God replied, “I will be with you and this will be the sign that I have sent you. When you have brought the people out of Egypt, you will worship God on this mountain.”