October 19 – Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time : Caesar Vs. God

October 16th, 2014

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First Reading : Isaiah 45:1,4-6
The Lord chooses Cyrus to subdue the nations for the sake of Israel.

Responsorial Psalm : Psalm 96:1,3-10
Sing praise to the Lord.

Second Reading : 1 Thessalonians 1:1-5b
Paul greets the Thessalonians, recalling the Gospel they received.

Gospel Reading : Matthew 22:15-21

Every Christian holds dual citizenship, each one of which has its own benefits and duties. Our birth made us citizens of an earthly nation; our baptism made us citizens of a heavenly Kingdom. Obedience to the spiritual Law, obedience to the temporal law! This is the summary of today's gospel. As far as possible, we need to live out both of these citizenships responsibly. We can be good citizens of earth, giving to Caesar what belongs to him, as well as good citizens in Christ's Kingdom, giving to God what belongs to him. But through the centuries, the many Christian saints and martyrs have taught us that if we are ever forced to choose between the two, if ever Caesar tries to take what belongs to God, we must be faithful to our true, everlasting homeland, even if it means suffering painful consequences here on earth.