Paralyzing Tales

Greetings on this the Thursday of the Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time
Readings: Gn 22:1b-19; PS 115:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 8-9; Mt 9:1-8
Notes: Encountering the story of Abraham and Isaac must include a few moments of the story of the Lord and Noah otherwise we are left with Paralyzing Tales.

  • Noah obeyed the Lord.
  • Noah did not intercede for the remaining of humanity.
  • Afterwards Noah offered a burnt offering.
  • The Covenant of Noah.

But the summary of the flood encounter gives an idea of the purpose of the story.

The Covenant of Noah.
Gen 8:20-22.

Then Noah built an altar to the LORD, and choosing from every clean animal and every clean bird, he offered burnt offerings on the altar. When the LORD smelled the sweet odor, the LORD said to himself: Never again will I curse the ground because of human beings, since the desires of the human heart are evil from youth; nor will I ever again strike down every living being, as I have done. All the days of the earth, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, Summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.

As we encounter the Noah story we don’t get hung up on the failure to invite any except his own family into the ark. We have other stories that show concern for the other as a supreme act. This is a different.

Noah (and Abrahma and Isaac) are stories of personal sacrifice and fidelity unto the Lord.

  • Noah set aside the world to save the world.
  • Abraham/Isaac set aside family to save all families.

Noah, Abraham and Isaac can be understood this way:

And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will receive a hundred times more, and will inherit eternal life (Mt 19:29).

All this giving up is for the forgiveness and reconciliation of humanity.

First reading
Do not lay your hand on the boy,” said the messenger.
“Do not do the least thing to him.
I know now how devoted you are to God,
since you did not withhold from me your own beloved son.”

in your descendants all the nations of the earth
shall find blessing — all this because you obeyed my command.”

Responsorial Psalm
I will walk in the presence of the Lord, in the land of the living.
The house of Israel trusts in the LORD;
he is their help and their shield.

Alleluia Verse
God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ
and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.

Gospel Portion

  • Noah – for all creation
  • Abraham/Isaac – for all families.
  • Jesus – for every soul.
  • Forgiveness.
  • Restoration.
  • Reconciliation.

But that you may know that the Son of Man
has authority on earth to forgive sins”–
he then said to the paralytic,
“Rise, pick up your stretcher, and go home.”
He rose and went home.

Peace be with you,
Deacon Gerry

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