Friday, July 19, 2013

Upon Him

Upon Him

Saturday of the Fifteenth Week in Ordinary Time

The children of Israel set out from Rameses for Succoth, about six hundred thousand men on foot, not counting the little ones…This was a night of vigil for the LORD, as he led them out of the land of Egypt; so on this same night all the children of Israel must keep a vigil for the LORD throughout their generations.  Exodus 12:37, 42

Behold, my servant whom I have chosen, my beloved in whom I delight; I shall place my Spirit upon him, and he will proclaim justice to the Gentiles.  He will not contend or cry out, nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets.  A bruised reed he will not break, a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory.  And in his name the Gentiles will hope.  Matthew 12:18-21 (Isaiah 42:1-4)


Jesus, in your compassionate sacred heart, you bring justice and freedom to the oppressed.  Although I will never know the slavery experienced by Moses and his people in Egypt, I remain subject to being enslaved by the forces of the world that make we want to seek out riches and more. Send your Spirit upon me to free me from what ties me up.  When released, inspire me to bring your justice to others.


Today’s readings from sacred scripture and the Hebrew Bible are rich in salvation history.  First, we have the overlapping reference to the prophecy of Isaiah restated in the Good News according to Matthew.  This establishes that the spirit of the Lord is upon Jesus.  The passage also echoes the Nazareth Manifesto of social justice outlined in Luke’s Gospel. 
The fulfillment of this is in the hearing of the Word and putting it into practice because the Lord not only proclaims justice to the people, He delivers it as well.  We also see this manifest in the first reading as Moses leads the people out of captivity into freedom (“brings justice to victory”).


Justice and Jesus.  Just us and Jesus.  These are both frequent themes in the readings.  Jesus brought justice to the world when he was alive.  Today, Jesus needs our help to make that a reality.
Jesus performed his signs among the people but asked them to keep his identity a secret until his time comes.  Where can you bring the light of hope without expecting fanfare?  To your family?  To your workplace?  To your school?  To your travels?

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