(Easter Sunday) Sunday, 27 March 2016 : Easter Sunday of the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, Holy Week, Easter Octave (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : White

Acts 10 : 34a, 37-43

Peter then spoke to them, “No doubt you have heard of the event that occured throughout the whole country of the Jews, beginning from Galilee, after the baptism John preached. You know how God anointed Jesus the Nazarean with Holy Spirit and power.

He went about doing good and healing all who were under the devil’s power, because God was with Him; we are witnesses of all that He did throughout the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem itself. Yet they put Him to death by hanging Him on a wooden cross.

But God raised Him to life on the third day and let Him manifest Himself, not to all the people, but to the witnesses that were chosen beforehand by God – to us who ate and drank with Him after His resurrection from death. And He commanded us to preach to the people and to bear witness that He is the One appointed by God to judge the living and the dead.

All the prophets say of Him, that everyone who believes in Him has forgiveness of sins through His Name.

Sunday, 23 November 2014 : 34th Sunday of Ordinary Time, Solemnity of our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe, Memorial of Pope St. Clement I, Pope and Martyr, and St. Columban, Abbot (Homily and Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today we celebrate the great feast day and solemnity of the Church, that is the Solemnity of our Lord Jesus Christ the King, King of all creation and of all the universe. This celebration also marks the ending of our liturgical year, as next Sunday we will begin the season of Advent in preparation for Christmas, and this Sunday is the last great celebration of a liturgical year in the calendar of the Church celebrations.

And the theme of the Kingship of Christ ties closely to the future promised coming of our Lord Jesus into this world. The readings for this period, including the readings for today’s solemn occasion therefore is a reflection of this truth and this fact, that God will come again at a time He has appointed, and He will come again to judge all the living and the dead, as we believe in our Faith. In this we hope, as He will come again to gather us from the nations and bring us to His eternal love and glory.

As the Lord mentioned in the first reading, taken from the Book of the prophet Ezekiel, even though mankind and the people of God had sinned and therefore suffered its consequences, being torn apart as a people and scattered through the nations, He did not abandon them, but still loved them all the same. At the time of the prophet Ezekiel, the northern kingdom of Israel had been destroyed by the Assyrians and its people brought into slavery and exile. The same had also happened to the southern kingdom of Judah, which population was brought to Babylon in a period known as the Babylonian captivity.

While those things had happened because of the sins of the people, who were not faithful to the covenant of the Lord, but it does not mean that God did not give them a second chance. If only that they would repent and change their sinful and evil ways, and adopt the ways of the righteous, then the Lord who is their Lord and Shepherd will gladly welcome them back into His embrace.

The psalm today is the renowned Psalm on ‘the Lord is my Shepherd’, which shows the nature of God as our loving Shepherd, as our Guide and as the provider of everything that we will ever need. And while we follow our Shepherd, who is the Lord, we will have no need to fear anything, as neither the power of the evil one nor the powers of this world and the evils in it have any power over us if we are ever faithful and solidly attach ourselves to our Lord and our Shepherd.

This is the nature of our Lord and Master’s Kingship, that is a Shepherd Kingship, not one where the king enslaves everyone to do his bidding and will, but instead a servant leadership. Remember what Lord Jesus did on the day of the Last Supper, when He acted as a servant, washing the feet of all His disciples. He taught the Apostles that a leader should lead by giving examples and serving others entrusted under his care, and not to lord over the other or even to oppress them.

And like a shepherd, who cares gently and tenderly for his sheep, our Lord’s kingship is one of service and love. He guides His sheep, that is all of us into the right paths and provide us all that we need. We need not fear the powers of evil and death if we stick closely to our Lord, as He is the only One who can bring harm to our soul. Though the powers of this world may be able to harm our body, they cannot do anything to harm our soul.

That is because, the faithful, though persecuted and oppressed by the world, they will be greatly rewarded at the Last Judgment, and their souls will be saved. We have no need to fear, brothers and sisters, if we follow the Lord. Persevere and remain faithful. Remember that in another part of the Gospel, Jesus said that those who seek to preserve themselves in this world will lose it, but those who do not mind to lose themselves will gain eternal life?

Through Christ, we have been made justified and righteous, as He is the new Adam by virtue of His incarnation as Man, as the prime example of the faithful and the just. The first Adam, our ancestor, had been unfaithful, and he followed his own personal greed and desire, and being thus taken in by Satan’s lies, and disobeying God, he had sinned, and sin entered into the hearts of men.

Jesus therefore is the role model for all of us, as the new Adam, who led a life opposite of the first Adam. While the first Adam was unfaithful and sinful, Christ the new Adam was completely faithful and devoted to God, free of any taints of sin in life. And meanwhile the first Adam thought first about himself and succumbed to his desires, Christ the new Adam thought first not of Himself, but of the One who had sent Him into the world, and obeyed the will of His Father perfectly and fully, that He brought about our salvation from sin and death.

And thus, in the second reading today, taken from letter of St. Paul to the Corinthians, it was mentioned that for the obedience and the actions Christ had taken, as our King, and yet as a humble and servant King, God was pleased to subjugate all things and all peoples under His authority, that is precisely what He will do in the end of time, the Last Judgment, as the Judge to judge all the living and the dead.

At the end of time, our Lord Jesus will come to judge us all, and nothing that we have done or we have not done will not be uncovered. He knows everything about us, and there is nothing that we can hide from Him. Not even the deepest of our hearts’ secrets will remain hidden before God. The Book of Life and the other books mentioned in the Book of revelation and the Gospels contain all of our actions, our deeds and our words, every single things that we have committed.

Remember, brothers and sisters in Christ, that our Lord as our King, has two aspects, just as all the other kings also have. First, our King shows us mercy and love, His desire for all of us to be reunited with Him. However, as King, He also has to mete out justice and judgment, which must be impartial. Thus, while He is merciful and loving towards us, but He hates our sins, the taints and blemishes which separate us from the perfection of His love.

In the Gospel we heard how Jesus detailed on what will happen at the Last Judgment. All will come before the Lord their King, and He will judge them equally based on their actions. There were two groups of people at that judgment, and the judgment results are clear cut. It is either that they have done what is right in the eyes of God, or if they have done what is wicked, or failed to do what is right in the sight of God.

This should then bring our attention to the nature of sin. The most common sin known to us, is the sin of action, that is sins committed by doing things abhorrent and wicked before God and men, such as stealing, murder, jealousy, coveting others’ belongings, disobedience against God, fornication of the flesh and many others. However, many of us often do not realise or forget that there is another type of sin that is equally bad, and this is the sin of omission.

What is the sin of omission? As the name said, it is sin committed when we are perfectly in place and capable of doing something good, and yet we consciously choose not to do so, and instead, we often care for ourselves first, succumbing to our ego, pride and greed. Just as the first Adam, we have the tendency to be selfish, to think of ourselves first, and to satisfy our own needs first. And while he got the knowledge he wanted, he sinned.

What did Jesus say to those whom He judged to be on His left? He cursed them and condemned them because they have had many opportunities to do good things and to help the many people around them who are in need, and yet they ignored them and went on doing their own businesses, caring only about themselves. Their ignorance and refusal to lift up and raise their hands to help, had been accounted for, and these weighed in against them at the final judgment.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, on this celebration of the Solemnity of Christ the King, what we can we do to improve ourselves and to ensure our salvation? It is by following the example of our Lord Himself, who is King, Lord and Master of all the Universe, and yet, He was humble, obedient and loving in all of His actions. He served those entrusted to Him, and also loved the poor, the meek and lowly, the ostracised and the castaways of the society. He showed His mercy and love to sinners, the prostitutes and tax collectors.

In following the actions and ways of Jesus our Lord and King, we will be able to do what is right, and give to our brethren in need, the love and support which we should give to them, especially whenever we are in position to give our help and our love. Do not forget also, that we must therefore avoid the sin of omission, which means that we should not be complacent or lazy whenever we are able to commit good deeds for the sake of our brethren.

Today, we also celebrate the feast day of both Pope St. Clement I, Pope and Martyr, and also St. Columban, an abbot. The actions of these saints were in accordance to the actions of Christ, and they showed care and love for their friends and neighbours around them. Pope St. Clement I was the Pope in the early Church, one of the first direct successors of St. Peter the Apostle as the Bishop of Rome. Meanwhile, St. Columban was an abbot who lived during the early Dark Ages.

Pope St. Clement I was one of the earliest Popes, and records suggested that he was directly chosen by St. Peter to be one of his successors together with Pope St. Clement’s immediate predecessors. He was pious and devoted to God, and he tirelessly worked for the sake of the faithful. He was a man of prayer and love, often caring for those less fortunate under his care. He provided for them spiritually as well as in material, as far as he could.

It was told that he was exiled under the orders of the Roman Emperor Trajan, who sent him to the far corners of the Empire at Chersonessos, to work in a mine there. He carried out his work dutifully without fear, and when there was a draught in the mine, he prayed to God, and immediately a clear spring appeared, to the delight of his fellow exiles and workers.

It was clear from these examples, that Pope St. Clement I is another role model we can follow, as he truly practiced his faith, and when he was able to, he helped those around him by using the grace God given him, the grace of prayer and faith, which he used to bring goodness to the others poor, oppressed and exiled from their houses.

Meanwhile, St. Columban was an Irish missionary, who travel widely across Europe and Christendom at the time, spreading the faith in various locations, serving and helping others around the places during his journeys. St. Columban established many monasteries around Europe and Christendom, becoming eventually an abbot himself.

The works and dedications of St. Columban might have been different from that of Pope St. Clement I, but nevertheless, what he had done, was also done to help the least of the society, those who have been lost to the darkness, and by giving places to the faithful who sought to devote themselves more to God in prayer, he had done much great goodness for the Lord and His people.

Hence, as we end our liturgical year with this celebration of the Solemnity of Christ the King, and with the understanding that upon baptism, we too have shared in the Kingship of Christ, let us all be ever more resolute in truly living our faith, so that in all that we do, and in all that we say and in our actions, we may be loving towards our brethren, especially those who are in need of our help.

Let us be like our Lord and King, who did not boast and be proud of His authority and kingship, but rather remain humble and serve those who had been entrusted to Him. Through our baptism, we share in the kingship of Christ, and we have to realise that all of us have the responsibility to take care of one another, to keep each other in the path of the Lord. May our Lord and King watch over us always, and help us, so that we may remain ever faithful, and in the end, when He comes again, He may find us righteous and just, and thus are worthy of His eternal kingdom. God be with us all. Amen.

 

First Reading :

https://petercanisiusmichaeldavidkang.com/2014/11/19/sunday-23-november-2014-34th-sunday-of-ordinary-time-solemnity-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-king-of-the-universe-memorial-of-pope-st-clement-i-pope-and-martyr-and-st-columban-abbot-first-readi/

 

Psalm :

https://petercanisiusmichaeldavidkang.com/2014/11/19/sunday-23-november-2014-34th-sunday-of-ordinary-time-solemnity-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-king-of-the-universe-memorial-of-pope-st-clement-i-pope-and-martyr-and-st-columban-abbot-psalm/

 

Second Reading :

https://petercanisiusmichaeldavidkang.com/2014/11/19/sunday-23-november-2014-34th-sunday-of-ordinary-time-solemnity-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-king-of-the-universe-memorial-of-pope-st-clement-i-pope-and-martyr-and-st-columban-abbot-second-read/

 

Gospel Reading :

https://petercanisiusmichaeldavidkang.com/2014/11/19/sunday-23-november-2014-34th-sunday-of-ordinary-time-solemnity-of-our-lord-jesus-christ-king-of-the-universe-memorial-of-pope-st-clement-i-pope-and-martyr-and-st-columban-abbot-gospel-read/

Sunday, 3 November 2013 : 31st Sunday of Ordinary Time (First Reading)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Wisdom 11 : 22 – Wisdom 12 : 2

For the entire world lies before You, just enough to tip the scales, a drop of morning dew falling on the ground. But because You are Almighty, You are merciful to all; You overlook sins and give Your children time to repent. You love everything that exists and hate nothing that You have made; had You hated anything, You would not have formed it.

How could anything endure if You did not will it? And how could anything last that You had not willed? You have compassion on all because all is Yours, o Lord,  Lover of life.

In fact Your immortal Spirit is in all. And so by degrees You correct those who sin,  You admonish them, reminding them how they have strayed so that turning away from evil they may trust in You, Lord.

Thursday, 31 October 2013 : 30th Week of Ordinary Time (Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Brothers and sisters in Christ, opposition is against us, against the servants of the Lord our God, against the good works dedicated to the service of God and His people, and finally, against the Lord Himself.

Today the Lord highlighted a historical fact, on how the people of God, the chosen people of Israel, rejected the Lord, His love and kindness, and cast away those whom God had sent to them. They did not just send them away but many of them were even slaughtered in cold blood.

The people whom the Lord had chosen and made as His own has rebelled and turned away from Him. Naturally, the Lord would have been angry and should have destroyed them all from the face of the earth. However, He is loving and merciful just as He is just and angry against the sins mankind have committed. He wants His people to be saved, and not to fall for the sins they have done.

The Lord Himself was rejected when He came to be with His people, and to liberate them from the yoke of the evil one. He did not leave His people to the power of the evil one, but they spurned His love. He was condemned for sins that He did not commit and was condemned to a humiliating death on the cross. Nevertheless, you all know what the Lord did.

He took up all those sins that were placed upon Him, and took them into Himself unto death. All these He had done for us, so that we do not have to suffer the consequences of the sins we had committed. For the consequences of sins are suffering and death, and the Lord who loves us dearly, does not want us to suffer those fates. That is why He offered Himself through Jesus His Son, to be the sacrificial victim to liberate us from our fate of destruction and death.

He laid down His own life that we shall live, that we shall not die an eternal death and suffer eternal suffering in hell. Nobody can separate us from Him, just as St. Paul had said in the first reading today, in his letter to the Church in Rome, the Empire’s capital. St. Paul asserted Christ’s eternal and undying love for all of us, that He is willing to suffer all the grievous sufferings actually intended for us as our deserved punishments for our sins.

It is that through His one and only ultimate sacrifice on the cross, that the Lord saves us all from the valley of death and brings us closer to the heavenly rewards that we have been blessed with through Jesus Christ. Nevertheless, as is noted in the Gospel today, despite all the love and kindness that the Lord has poured on us, there are still those who do not follow Him and even despise Him, just as they had despised the prophets and messengers sent before the Lord.

It is easy for us to dismiss them as being others, as being not all of us. Yet, we should indeed look first into ourselves, whether we have ourselves been righteous or wicked in our actions, and whether we have been ignorant or obedient to follow the Lord and His commandments. If we have done any of these, then we too have taken part in the suffering of the Lord.

Remember, that every single wounds on the Body of Christ is the sins that we have committed, with every words of evil that came out of our mouth, and with every actions of our limbs and bodies that do not reflect love or bring pain and suffering to others. Hence, brethren, let us, from today onwards, reflect on our own actions, and learn from what we have done, that we will cast from us, any actions that contribute towards the suffering of Christ in His Passion.

May our loving and merciful God continue to nurture in us His wonderful love, that we will grow to be ever more faithful and loving children of God, saved by Jesus His Son, and rejecting Satan and all of his advances. God guide us all. Amen.

Wednesday, 30 October 2013 : 30th Week of Ordinary Time (Scripture Reflection)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today it is revealed to us, how it is that it is not easy for us or anyone to enter into the Kingdom of God, and what the Lord has done to help us, that we can indeed enter His Kingdom. Many of us though, remain ignorant on the love of God, and what He has done for us, and many of us too, remained in our debauched way of life.

Yet, many of us at the same time also remain unaware that in our actions, we do not do things that will ensure our salvation in God. We remain idle, and even worse, we did things abhorring and abominable in the eyes of the Lord and even in the eyes of mankind. We like to deal with the things of the flesh, temptations of this world, and the offerings of the evil one rather than obeying the Lord and doing what is pleasing in the eyes of the Lord.

This is because it is not easy to follow the Lord and do as He commanded us. His desire for us is to love one another, and care for one another, just as we ought to love Him, with all our heart, with all our attention, and with all our dedication. We have to give Him the full attention and the complete dedication of our hearts. We cannot be half-hearted in this, as the Lord Himself said, that we cannot serve two Masters.

We cannot serve both the Lord, as well as Satan. Satan, the deceiver and the great enemy, has dominion and power over this world, ever since sin and evil entered into us. Ever since we have sinned against the Lord and disobeyed Him, we have entered into the dominion and fall under the power of the evil one. He is what is to many of us, our true master, because the things at we do reflect not the actions of the children of the one, true God, but instead as the actions of the children of Satan.

Brethren, why is the Lord so critical of those people who asked Him about the nature of salvation? Whether there are few or many that will be saved? That is because, they knew that the path is not going to be easy, and yet they did nothing about it, and continued on their daily life schedules. Often they neglected to do what the Lord had asked them to do, because they were too busy going about their routines.

Yes, as we all now know, that to sin is not just for us to do evil things or things that are considered evil. That is sin all right, but sin is also about failing to do what is right, what is good, and what is expected of us, to the point that we fail to appreciate the nature of goodness and love itself. We tend to become self-absorbed in our lives, and prefer to stay in our own comfort zones. We tend to detest going the extra mile to do what is good.

This is what the Lord wants to change from us, that we no longer give in to our pride and our human vanity, and instead open ourselves and our hearts in particular, ever more to the love and compassion of the Lord our God. In opening of ourselves, we do not only rid ourselves of the sense of self-preservation and vanity, as well as getting rid of the pride within us, but we also open ourselves at the same time, to loving our brethren, our brothers and sisters in the same Lord.

Let us therefore, brothers and sisters, step outside our comfort zone. Be daring to open up ourselves, and cast away the veil of pride and sin that had enclosed our hearts for long enough. We shall not allow them to interfere in our lives any longer. Let us also decisively reject Satan, casting him out of our lives, and rejecting all of his lies and false offers. Reject the father of lies and accept the Father of truth. Reject the father of hatred and accept the Father of love.

Hence, brethren, from now on, let us break free from our slavery under Satan, casting away his yoke, and rebuke the pleasures of this world that he offered all of us. No doubt that he will not be pleased, and will use all the powers in his possession to return us to himself. This is why our journey will not be easy, as oppositions will be rampant, and this world itself, as the dominion of the fallen one, shall be against us, the children of God.

Be not afraid though, because the Lord our God will surely send His help upon us. He will not abandon His children to be the slaves of His rebel angel. What is important then, is for us, to keep strong our defenses, namely our spiritual defenses, through constant and devout dedication to the Lord our God in prayer. When we pray, make sure our prayers are meaningful and dedicated to the Lord our God.

Do not let selfishness and pride come between us and the Lord. Indeed, let us be meek and humble before God, asking Him for forgiveness for our sins, and give ourselves in complete surrender before Him, that He will take us away from the dominion of Satan, into eternal life of glory with Him in heaven. God be with us all, forever and ever. Amen.

Friday, 27 September 2013 : 25th Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Vincent de Paul, Priest (Scripture Reflections)

Liturgical Colour : White

Dear brothers and sisters in Christ, today Christ revealed His identity to His disciples, after asking them whether they know who He truly was. And the prophet Haggai in the first reading, comforted the people of God who laid in ruins after they returned to the land the Lord had given them after a long exile in Babylon.

In Christ, the Son of God, the world has been given the salvation that God had promised for them. In Christ, who is not mere man but a divine made man, the world achieve a fullness of glory in the Lord, the perfection that has been taken from us when we became lost after our rebellion at the beginning of Creation.

Christ is the fulfillment of God’s promise to mankind over time which He renewed through the prophets, and finally perfected in Jesus. God resolved to rebuild the destroyed mankind that they once again become His beloved ones, freed from sins and slavery to the worldly pleasures and sins.

Yet, although He is a conquering King who comes to destroy death and sin, and be triumphant over all evils, but He came as a humble King, One who is destined to suffer and die. Yes, death for our sake, that through the death, we may not die but live eternal with Him. He is the Lamb of God, the One to be slaughtered and whose Blood is to be shed, for the sake of all of us, for our salvation.

Although He is great and mighty, He faced suffering, persecution, and death, that He took in into Himself all the sins and sufferings of mankind, that we do not have to suffer them for eternity, and instead enjoy life everlasting in happiness with God. This is the renewal the Lord promised to the returned exiles of Israel through the prophet Haggai and the other leaders of the people. The renewal God had sent through His own Son, Jesus Christ.

The Lord loves us so much, that He was not willing to see us to suffer with the devil in eternal fire, to suffer for the consequences of our sins and faults. That was why He sent us Jesus, to be our Help, our Hope, and our Way, to return to Him, to reclaim the true joy, happiness, and the inheritance that we had forsaken when we disobeyed Him in the garden of Eden.

All that, and He was ready to endure lashes, torture, nails, and the cross itself.  The Lord Jesus walked that arduous path towards Calvary, enduring the weight of that cross, bleeding from His wounds, to die a criminal’s death on the cross, in Calvary, for our sake. Imagine the combined weight of the world’s sins, that is the sins of all mankind. That was the weight of the burden which caused Christ much pain and suffering, and He endured it.

At the same time, through that sacrifice of Himself, God had made His love for His people evident, by the giving of Himself for out sake. He gave us all new hope and light in life. Remember, before the glorious cross, the cross of Christ resurrected from the dead, there is always the cross of suffering, that is the cross taken up by the Christ suffering for our sins.

We cannot abandon the Christ, both in His glory and in His time of greatest humiliation on the cross, the humiliation that he turned into glory. That is why, brethren, we have a mission that has been given to all of us and that is to proclaim the crucified Christ to all people, to all the nations, especially to those who have yet to hear about the wondrous Christ and His works of salvation.

Today, we commemorate the feast of St. Vincent de Paul, one of the great saints in the Church, who was well known for his commitment to the Lord, especially to the weak, the poor, and the unloved. St. Vincent de Paul was born in France and was educated to be a faithful and good follower of Christ, when he was captured among many by the Algerian pirates running rampant in the region during his time, and was made into a slave.

St. Vincent de Paul was enslaved and sold to a renegade Catholic owner, until he managed to convince him to return to the faith, who then helped to get St. Vincent to be released from his slavery. He then committed the rest of his life as a worker of the Lord, caring for the last, the lost, and the least in the society, emphasizing on the need to give love to these people, and not abandon them to the darkness.

St. Vincent de Paul was particularly caring about those who were enslaved, being once a slave himself, and showed them the true nature of Christian love, that is dedication and the giving of oneself for the sake of others in need. He was truly the embodiment of who we all Christians ought to become, to be people for others, to be faithful disciples of the Lord who is Love.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, let us follow the examples of St. Vincent de Paul, making real our faith in this world, through our dedication and service to our brethren in need. We do not have to do big things, but what we can do is, to do even simple things to those around us, to those whom we meet along the way, giving them simple acts of love.

Even these small acts are significant, brethren, and we must not discount them for bigger and more ambitious acts of charity, as it is in these small acts that we can do daily that truly make the difference, and truly bring out the love that we have in us, and sharing it with one another. St. Vincent de Paul, pray for us always, that in all the things we do, we may be more inspired to be charitable and loving. God bless us all, always. Amen.

Sunday, 8 September 2013 : 23rd Sunday of Ordinary Time (Scripture Reflection)

Liturgical Colour : Green

Brothers and sisters in Christ, today we learnt an important lesson of our lives, and on the nature of God Himself. We are mortals brethren, and one day we will all die, and that is an important thing that we all will have to realise at one point of time in our life.

The Lord our God has His plans for all of us, ever since He created us and this universe. The way that God thinks is not in short moments or days or weeks in our human perception. He thought of things far before things happen, and He formed in His thoughts the plan He had for all of us His creation.

Our transgressions and disobedience against Him, starting from Adam and Eve our ancestors did not disturb His plans for us at all, for everything truly moved as how He desired it, and in His great love for us, He planned a rescue mission for all of us, long before it was executed. That all because He cares for us, and just as He had planned since the very beginning, that He wanted us to be in His presence in true joy and happiness forever.

That was why He prepared for us the salvation in the form of Christ, Himself incarnate into man like us in Jesus. Long before Christ was even born unto this world, He had made His preparations, to prepare this world and its people to be ready for the coming of the Saviour.  That was why He sent the prophets into this world, that they delivered to the people of God for the eventual coming of the Messiah.

He sent Moses to liberate His people, Israel, from bondage and slavery by the Pharaohs and the Egyptians. Through Moses too the people of God had received the very Laws of the Lord and His commandments. These laws were meant not to limit the people of God nor oppress them with even more burdens. In fact, these laws were meant to help us in our path towards God, towards freedom, freedom from evil, freedom from the burdens of sin.

God did not leave us behind without any help. If the prophets were rejected and murdered, then He would send even more, for our sake, that eventually was born through the Lord Jesus. With the arrival of Jesus, the new hope for this world had arisen. In Christ lay the perfection of all the prophecies of the prophets, the teachings of the elders of Israel, and ultimately the love of God.

But Jesus did not come into this world to enjoy a happy life and to just zap out our sins automatically. He had much work to do, and He had to endure rejection, pain, suffering, and mockery by others throughout His life. Even His hometown relations mocked Him in the synagogue when He revealed the truth about Himself, seeing Him as a mere carpenter’s son.

Yet all of these are within God’s divine and long-prepared plans for us and for our salvation. He endured all of that with the greatness of His love for us, and the love and obedience Jesus always has for His Father in heaven. So much so that even when His disciples abandoned Him, betrayed Him to the authorities and to His enemies, and despite facing such a great challenge of the monumental task of having to endure the sins of the entire mankind, He endured it with love, for us.

Through Christ’s suffering, pain, and Passion on the way to Calvary, and through His crucifixion unto His death, He had broken the hold of sin over mankind, by rising from the dead in glorious resurrection, He snatched us all away from the hands of Satan forever, if we embrace the salvation He had offered us through His death and resurrection.

All indeed are part of God’s plan, formed long ago since He created us from dust. Remember that after our ancestors fell into sin, He did not shun us or abandon us, even though He did punish them for their transgressions. He promised our ancestors, that One will be born of the woman, who will in a sense , enact revenge on Satan, the snake, the deceiver. That One to be born was truly Christ, born of the woman, the Blessed Virgin Mary.

Through the death and resurrection of Christ, He had dealt a crushing blow on Satan, as promised by God Himself at the beginning of time, showing how far the Lord’s foresight and plans had been. In Christ too, the promise God had first made to Abraham was fulfilled in its completion, that the descendants of Abraham would be great. He also fulfilled the promise made to David, that one of his descendants would rule forever, that is in Christ, the descendant. of David, also Son of God Most High, who is King of all Kings for all eternity.

Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, having seen truly the greatness of the love, the might, and the wisdom of our Lord, let us therefore realise the great love and care He has for all of us, planning from very early on, for our welfare and for our wellbeing. He did not even fear death for our sake, that He died for us, that we may live.

Let us thus not harden our hearts as our ancestors had done, and instead humble ourselves before Him, opening our hearts to His divine love. Let us also realise our mortality, of the nothingness we are compared to the all wonderful God. It is not to degrade ourselves or to make ourselves feel inferior. It is important for us to understand and take note of our shortcomings, that we will be able to seek to be better, that is to seek God, in whom we can find true wisdom and true enlightenment.

May the Lord who is ever loving, kind, and caring, continue to provide for us, protect us, and guide us to Himself that we will not fall into damnation with Satan and his angels. God be with us and bless us with abundance of graces forever. Amen.