Liturgical Colour : Green
Brothers and sisters in Christ, today we heard in the Gospel reading, of the content of the sermon of Jesus on a mount, also known as the Sermon on the Mount or the Beatitudes, a series of blessings for those who walk righteously in the way of the Lord and lived according to what God had asked them to, namely to bring peace and love where there is hatred and violence, and those who focused on the Lord rather than on the things of this world.
And in that also lie the curses and warnings for those who do not walk in the path of the Lord, who oppress others and those who practice wickedness in life, preferring the path of Satan and the pleasures of the world to the way of God, which for them seem to be a more difficult and less promising path, and yet that is the only path towards salvation.
St. Paul in the first reading today, in his letter addressed to the faithful and the Church in Corinth spoke about how the faithful should be maintaining whatever good things and virtues that they committed, and avoid any misfortunes, impurities and the darkness of the world that could be brought through certain actions.
No one knows the plan of the Lord and the will of God fully except the Lord Himself and to those whom He had revealed His will and plans to. And what we know of the end times when Jesus will come again in His glory, we know it from what He Himself had told the disciples, and the more detailed explanations as we heard it from the Book of the Revelations which was written by St. John the Evangelist as he received a vision of what was to come.
No one knew when and at what moment the Lord would come again. Remember that Jesus Himself mentioned that He will come again when people least expect it, like a thief entering into the house, no one knows when and how it will happen. Thus, He urged all of His disciples and all of us to be ever vigilant and to be always prepared for all eventualities.
Therefore, this was why St. Paul wrote in the way he did in his letter, as it was truly not known when the Lord would come again, and it was frequently assumed at that time, that the second coming of Jesus would be soon and immediate. Therefore, it was really not that St. Paul was opposed to marriage, or to the people walking and acting in the ways of the world, but he was truly concerned for the salvation of their souls.
All the priests and many other servants of God are also greatly concerned with the salvation of our souls, all of those who had been entrusted to them, like sheep entrusted to the care of their shepherds. But we ourselves should be concerned with our own salvation, the salvation of our souls. For if we do not do something, then when the time comes suddenly, we will be found wanting, and will not have any part in God’s kingdom, condemned for eternity.
How do we do this then? How do we live our lives so that we can ensure our safety and protection from the danger of eternal damnation? None other than by following the teachings of the Lord, some examples of which are what in the Beatitudes, the blessings which Jesus pronounced for those who had committed those good deeds.
And this is not impossible for us to do. And if we do them, we are truly going to be found as worthy when the Lord comes again, and He will bless us with His grace. But if we fail to do as He said, and instead if we follow the ways of this world and immerse ourselves in corruption, then His curse will be upon us, and in the end, only suffering will await us.
Therefore, brothers and sisters in Christ, let us heed the message of the Beatitudes, not just to be awed by them, but that we truly listen to that message, and then practice it in our lives. We should not worry if things are not perfect as we are bound to make mistakes, but what is important is that we should do better every time, and thus we should begin from now before it is too late.
Never wait, brethren, and be ready at all times. Do not wait until it is too late for us and we regret our mistakes. May Almighty God and Lord guide us in this life, that we may find our way to Him through what He had revealed to us through His Son, Jesus Christ. Amen.