Wednesday – 10th Week of Ordinary Time 6/9 (revisited)
Gospel - Matthew5:17-19
Coming Down the Mountain
The Hills of Nazareth
A little context and background here! Jesus has gone up on the mountain to teach the crowd. He has given them new “commandments” - the Beatitudes and today He bluntly tells them that He is not here to get rid of the “old” Commandments but to fulfill them. Life just got a bit tougher,
Going up a mountain and giving new “laws” very clearly remind us of God giving Moses the Ten Commandments on Mt. Sinai. But Jesus goes further and adds the law of love. Then in today’s Gospel, He says in no uncertain terms that it doesn’t mean you don’t need to follow the Commandments any more. It’s not an either/or; it’s both! So for anyone in the crowd hoping for an easy path to heaven, sorry, not gonna happen.
Let’s face it: most of the Commandments are worded in terms of AVOIDING evil. Jesus’ command to love others is about DOING good! We are all called to follow both. It is not enough to avoid evil; we are called to DO good. It’s about positive action for others. We are called to not merely avoid evil; we are called to confront it.
Chances are some people, after hearing this, walked away from Jesus. They thought – no, this is too hard; I was hoping for an easy way. Being good, being loving to others, acting in a loving way is difficult. It takes effort and commitment. We’ve heard His words. Now it’s time to come down off the mountain and really live out our Christian faith.