23rd Week in Ordinary Time (B) : Thursday 9th September 2021

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St Peter Claver, SJ

23rd Week in Ordinary Time (B) : Thursday 9th September 2021

Col. 3:12-17; Ps. 150:1-2,3-4,5-6;
Lk. 6:27-38 (Ps Wk III)

Jesus speaks of ‘agape’, a love of active concern that expresses itself in deeds of love. In fact, He demands a deep form of active love for one’s enemies. A disciple is expected not to retaliate insults from enemies but show forgiving love (v. 30). In terms of giving, he or she should give without reserve. Verse 31 is known as the ‘golden rule’ based on reciprocal relationships and even beyond this. This means that Jesus’ command to love one’s enemies is by doing good to them without calculating the return of love even when there is no hope of any good act in return. So, true disciples of Jesus are selfless, disinterested and have pure love, especially for the good of others. This is because Jesus himself, by his death on the cross, reveals this kind of love.

Faced with this challenge, we know it is a struggle to overcome evil with good, hate with love. Yet, what Jesus is asking us is not so much to like the enemy nor a question of the sentiment of affection but real active agape.

We are called to forgive and give generously, and the reward we receive will be greater from God. We recall this is what Jesus said in the Sermon on the Mount or the Beatitudes. Let us continue to review our daily living to grow because this is necessary for self-improvement.

The phrase ‘give till its hurts’ implies genuine ‘giving’. Like St Francis of Assisi, in his prayer of peace, let us take up this challenge to love unconditionally.

“Lord, help me learn to love my enemies and allow others to grow in Your name.”

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