April 9, 2014

The Gospel Today 

Wednesday of the Fifth Week of Lent

John 8:31-42

Jesus said to those Jews who believed in him,
“If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples,
and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
They answered him, “We are descendants of Abraham
and have never been enslaved to anyone.
How can you say, ‘You will become free’?”
Jesus answered them, “Amen, amen, I say to you,
everyone who commits sin is a slave of sin.
A slave does not remain in a household forever,
but a son always remains.
So if the Son frees you, then you will truly be free.
I know that you are descendants of Abraham.
But you are trying to kill me,
because my word has no room among you.
I tell you what I have seen in the Father’s presence;
then do what you have heard from the Father.”

They answered and said to him, “Our father is Abraham.”
Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children,
you would be doing the works of Abraham.
But now you are trying to kill me,
a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God;
Abraham did not do this.
You are doing the works of your father!”
So they said to him, “We were not born of fornication.
We have one Father, God.”
Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me,
for I came from God and am here;
I did not come on my own, but he sent me.”

Reflection (Sem. Ivan Joseph Feniquito):

     There are so many questions doubts and misconceptions that need to be clarified. The conversation of Jesus with His new followers pursued to clarify their doubts and questions. One of the Jesus’ answers to their question is, “Truly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave. But the slave doesn’t stay in the house forever; the son stays forever. So, if the Son makes you free, you will be really free.”

      God gives us the gift of freedom. We are capable of taking decisions about what we will do, how to carry things or plan out. Freedom connotes to self-determination. We have the power to realize ourselves, to make ourselves and to determine ourselves. With the freedom that God has given us, there are some factors that affect and influence our use of freedom such as physical and psychological limitations, habits, and controlled by sense of reward and punishment. These factors affect out decision that lead us to sin. If we choose to commit sin, it will enslave us. We make our choices in life. Do you prefer to be a slave of sin throughout your life? We are responsible of making good decisions and avoiding sin. God does not only give us freedom but also, He is present and available to help us in times of our doubts, confusion, fear and struggles.

       In the beginning of the Gospel, Jesus was telling those who believed in Him, “You will be my true disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” This means that above all the intimate freedom that God has given us, in a deeper sense, God is giving us the inner transformation which is a consequence of the knowledge of the truth. The transformation of our spiritual life leads us in becoming mature in living out a genuine righteousness and holiness.

         In this season of Lent, let us continue to seek God who is the truth through prayer and meditation, in order for us to be transformed in the power, mercy and grace of God. Let us be more sincere in living our faith, not just this season of Lent, but every day of life.

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