Lord, help me to be worthy to come into Thy Holy Presence
1st Sunday of Advent (C) : Thursday 2nd December 2021
Is. 26:1-6; Ps. 117:1,8-9,19-21,25-27;
Mt. 7:21, 24-27 (Ps Wk I)
The readings today remind us that God holds us accountable for how we respond to Him. Through the use of images related to a fortified city, the author of the book of Isaiah presents the picture of a strong city that is not only built by God but also protected and governed by Him. The city is especially strong because it is guarded against anything or anyone who does not meet the approval of God. God can identify His own and decide who may enter into the city and who may not. Only those who are upright in His eyes are allowed through its gates.
In this city over which God rules and protects, the oppressors of the poor are taken down from their high and lofty positions and brought to the lowest places by God. The city is a dwelling place where the righteous and the poor will find refuge in Him. The psalmist echoes a similar sentiment when he says, “it is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in men…” or “in princes”, for his love has no end.
Jesus, on his part, uses the image of a newly built house to explain the importance of being upright in what we say and do. Many people want to enter the kingdom of heaven, that is, to enter into the presence of the Lord, by declaring that they know him personally. But Jesus makes it clear that it is not sufficient to claim to know him. A believer must also do what is expected of him by the Lord.
Lord, may I be worthy to come into Your presence. Amen.