Friday of the Second Week of Advent

For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they said,
“He is possessed by a demon.”
The Son of Man came eating and drinking and they said,
“Look, he is a glutton and a drunkard,
a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’

In modern terms you might say, “Your damned if you do and damned if you don’t”.  Jesus message was (is) very hard for some people to accept, especially people with any kind of power.  This attitude would lead to Jesus’ suffering and death.  The Jews expected their Messiah to come in a blaze of glory.  They expected a mighty conqueror who would avenge all the bad treatment they and their ancestors had endured through the centuries.

Instead, they got a carpenter’s Son; a man who preached that the meek, not the strong and powerful, would inherit the world.  He ridiculed the Jewish leaders.  He often made fools of them.  And they didn’t like it one bit.  They found fault in everything He did and said, even though, deep in their hearts they had to know that He was speaking the truth.

In today’s world, followers of Christ are often ridiculed.  We’re called “religious fanatics”.  When we proclaim that Jesus spoke the truth and that truth doesn’t change, it’s said that we’re stuck in the past.  How often have you heard “The Church needs to change to fit into the modern world?” when the truth is that it’s the modern world needs to change.   The Ten Commandments are still the Ten Commandments and they’re just as valid today as they were in the days of Moses.

This is nothing new.  In the last 2,000 years the Church has often been criticized.  In the 1500s, Martin Luther thought the Church needed major reform.  While it’s true that the Church has had many leaders who failed to live up to their vows, the Church itself is never wrong as long as it holds to the teachings of its founder, Jesus Christ.

For today’s reflection, let’s take some time to think about what the Church really teaches.  Read the Ten Commandments.  Read the beatitudes.  Recite the Creed.  Then, email me if you think you’ve discovered something that’s not right.

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