Essence

Greetings on this the Tuesday of the Seventeenth Week in Ordinary Time
Readings: Ex 33:7-11; 34:5b-9, 28; PS 103:6-7, 8-9, 10-11, 12-13; Mt 13:36-43
Notes: A little bit of theology today.

First reading
The First Commandment of the Ten in its fullest:

I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.

You shall not have other gods beside me. You shall not make for yourself an idol or a likeness of anything in the heavens above or on the earth below or in the waters beneath the earth; you shall not bow down before them or serve them. For I, the LORD, your God, am a jealous God, inflicting punishment for their ancestors’ wickedness on the children of those who hate me, down to the third and fourth generation; but showing love down to the thousandth generation of those who love me and keep my commandments.

When you consider how many different ways the Lord could have inspired the writing of the commandments, he chose to reveal his essence in his actions:

I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.

Responsorial Psalm
The Lord is kind and merciful.
This is, for me, the most beloved of all statements of who the Lord “is”.

We have heaps of similes of the Lord:

  • like a lion
  • like the sun

We have lots of attributes we use to describe the Lord:

  • Jealous
  • Just
  • Strong
  • Compassionate

All pointing to the essence of the Lord:

Love

  • Love as it is expressed as kindness and mercy.
  • Here we see no distance between some attributes and essence.

The Lord is Love – completely self-giving for the benefit of the Other of the Self.
He ordered all his essence to our freedom from the house of slavery.
All his actions, whether easy or difficult on us, are ordered to the same first commandment.

  • I free you.
  • I love you.
  • Love me back.

Alleluia Verse
The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower;
all who come to him will live for ever.

Gospel Portion
All kindness finds its origin in the Lord.

Jesus explains the parable that the seed is the word of God.
It is our call to the likeness of God.

When planted well, it transforms the one who accepts it.

Never assume you know the state of any soul but your own.

Never assume worthiness of any, including yourself.

Accept simply: the Lord is Kind and merciful.

Peace be with you,
Deacon Gerry

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