GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings) DATE: 3RD AUGUST 2017
GOD’S WORD FOR THE DAY (based on Catholic Liturgical Readings)
DATE: 3RD AUGUST 2017
THURSDAY OF THE SEVENTEENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME
FIRST READING: Exodus 40:16-21, 34-38
PSALM: Psalm 84:3-6, 8, 11
GOSPEL: Matthew 13:47-53
THEME: GOD IS WITH US
In recent times, nations, communities, families and individuals are investing so much into security. Building of high walls with sophisticated electronic gates and cctv cameras have become common. Reason? With the increase in crime rate, the world is becoming more and more unsafe. Amidst the uncertainties of the unfolding events of our personal and world history, it is soothing to hear that God is with us.
In our First Reading, Moses erects the tabernacle of the Lord in obedience to the command of the Lord (cf. Ex. 40:1ff). The Hebrew word for tabernacle, “mishkan”, literally means a “dwelling-place”. Therefore the tabernacle for the Israelites, as they sojourned through the wilderness, was a conscious reminder that God was with them. This awareness of God’s presence was the secret behind their strength and their ability to take possession of the Promised Land.
The understanding that God dwells among his people takes on a deeper meaning when in John 1:14, the author writes, “And the Word became flesh, and dwelt (“tabernacled”) among us” (Jn 1:14). The Greek word used for tabernacle in Exodus 40:1ff (i.e. in the Greek version of the Old Testament) is the same word used in the text of John 1:14. This means in and through Jesus (the Word made flesh), God has chosen to pitch his dwelling place among human beings. Therefore, everyone who has accepted Jesus can confidently say “God is with me”.
Inspired by this revelation, Paul writes, “If God is for us, who can be against us?…For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Rom 8:31, 38-39).
As you set out today to embark on your daily activities, be filled with the assurance that God is with you. Nothing can defeat you today because God has “tabernacled” himself in your life. When you are faced with any decision to make, pause and look around you, God is there to help you. When you are faced with a frightful situation, take heart, God is with you. When everyone is against you, remember God is for you. And because of his presence in your life, you will get to the Promised Land.
PRAYER: Eternal Father, you are the reason I live and move. Your powerful presence in my life is my security. With you on my side, I fear no evil. In Christ Jesus, I am yours forever. Amen
Andrews Obeng, svd
DIVINE WORD MISSIONARIES
BIBLICAL PASTORAL MINISTRY
“May the darkness of sin and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word and the Spirit of grace. And may the heart of Jesus live in the hearts of all people” (St. Arnold Janssen).