January 29 - Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time : Commandments of Love

January 27th, 2017

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First Reading  Zephaniah 2:3, 3:12-13
There will be a people who remain sheltered from God's anger.

 

Responsorial Psalm  Psalm 146:6-10
The Lord is faithful forever.

 

Second Reading  1 Corinthians 1:26-31
God chooses the weak to show his power.

 

Gospel Reading Matthew 5:1-12a

 

 

                    Today's reading is the beginning of Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, which is found in

Matthew's Gospel. Jesus describes those who are truly fortunate, the lucky ones of their

day.  “Blessed”   is   sometimes translated as happy,   fortunate,   or favored.  But   it   is  not

emperors, conquerors, priests, and the wealthy who enjoy this favor. Rather, it is the

common people, those whom earthly success has largely passed by: the poor, the meek,

the persecuted, and the peacemakers. Jesus is saying that divine favor is upon those

who are poor, those who mourn, those who are persecuted. This news might have been

welcome—and surprising—to the crowds who heard Jesus that day.

How can this be? The answer is that even though they may have been denied worldly

success, what cannot be taken away from them is their potential to live rightly by one

another. It is all too easy for those who enjoy the pleasures of this world from their

hilltop mansions to float above such obligations. Jesus goes on to say that so long as

ordinary people stand for the right things and do not retreat in their rightness before

those who seem to have more power, what is right will prevail. It’s their kingdom — a

kingdom organized not from the top down, but from the bottom up. In the Beatitudes,

Jesus offers a description of the community of goodwill His teachings will build in this

world – if we follow them