Saturday, October 17, 2009

Do Not Worry About What To Say. The Holy Spirit Will Give You The Right Words To Say.

Today’s First Reading is taken from Paul’s Epistle to the Romans (4:13, 16-18)

God promised Abraham that through him all of the people of the earth would receive blessing (Genesis 12:3). God also promised that Abraham’s descendants would be more numerous than the stars in the sky. Abraham did not receive this promise through the Law, which God gave to Moses four and a half centuries after Abraham’s time, but through righteousness that comes from faith (Genesis 15:6).

Therefore, Paul writes, the promise is not earned (by obedience to the law, for instance), but it is a gift granted by God to Abraham and his descendants, not only to those who merely obey the Law, but to all who have faith, like Abraham, who is the father of all the faithful, as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations” (Genesis 17:5). He is our father in the sight of God, in whom he placed his trust, God who gives life to the dead, and calls into being that which did not exist. Abraham believed, hoping against hope, that God’s promise would be fulfilled, that he would become the father of many nations, and that his descendants would be as numerous as the stars in the sky (Genesis 15:5).

Responsorial Psalm
Ps 105:6-7, 8-9, 42-43

R. The Lord remembers his covenant forever.

You descendants of Abraham, his servants,
sons of Jacob, his chosen ones!
He, the LORD, is our God;
throughout the earth his judgments prevail.

R. The Lord remembers his covenant forever.

He remembers forever his covenant
which he made binding for a thousand generations –
Which he entered into with Abraham
and by his oath to Isaac.

R. The Lord remembers his covenant forever.

For he remembered his holy word
to his servant Abraham.
And he led forth his people with joy;
with shouts of joy, his chosen ones.

R. The Lord remembers his covenant forever.

Today’s Gospel reading is taken from Luke (12:8-12). Jesus tells his disciples, “Whoever acknowledges me before others, I, the Son of Man, will acknowledge before God’s angels. On the other hand, he also says, “But whoever disowns me before men will be disowned before God’s angels. And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven.”

The teaching of Jesus that blasphemy against the Holy Spirit is an unforgiveable sin is found not only here, in Luke 12:10, but also in Matthew 12:32 and Mark 3:29. The Church teachings that there are no limits to God’s mercy, but those who deliberately refuse to accept God’s mercy by repentance reject the forgiveness of sin, and the salvation offered by the Holy Spirit. Such hardness of heart can lead to final impenitence and eternal loss. [John Paul II, DeV 46]

The disciples of Jesus will have troubles because of their faith, but Jesus promises that the Holy Spirit will help them. They may be brought before a synagogue court, or perhaps the Sanhedrin [the Temple Court] would hear their cases. Later, Gentile rulers will oppose them, as well. But Jesus reminds them, “Do not worry about how you will defend yourselves, or what you will say. The Holy Spirit will teach you at that moment the right words to say.”

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