1 [For the choirmaster Of David Psalm] Yahweh, you examine me and know me,
2 you know when I sit, when I rise, you understand my thoughts from afar.
3 You watch when I walk or lie down, you know every detail of my conduct.
7 Where shall I go to escape your spirit? Where shall I flee from your presence?
8 If I scale the heavens you are there, if I lie flat in Sheol, there you are.
9 If I speed away on the wings of the dawn, if I dwell beyond the ocean,
10 even there your hand will be guiding me, your right hand holding me fast.
13 You created my inmost self, knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 For so many marvels I thank you; a wonder am I, and all your works are wonders. You knew me through and through,
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1 Then from the heart of the tempest Yahweh gave Job his answer. He said:
12 Have you ever in your life given orders to the morning or sent the dawn to its post,
13 to grasp the earth by its edges and shake the wicked out of it?
14 She turns it as red as a clay seal, she tints it as though it were a dress,
15 stealing the light from evil-doers and breaking the arm raised to strike.
16 Have you been right down to the sources of the sea and walked about at the bottom of the Abyss?
17 Have you been shown the gates of Death, have you seen the janitors of the Shadow dark as death?
18 Have you an inkling of the extent of the earth? Tell me all about it if you have!
19 Which is the way to the home of the Light, and where does darkness live? –
20 You could then show them the way to their proper places, you could put them on the path home again!
21 If you do know, you must have been born when they were, you must be very old by now!
3 Job replied to Yahweh:
4 My words have been frivolous: what can I reply? I had better lay my hand over my mouth.
5 I have spoken once, I shall not speak again; I have spoken twice, I have nothing more to say.
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28 ‘What is your opinion? A man had two sons. He went and said to the first, “My boy, go and work in the vineyard today.”
29 He answered, “I will not go,” but afterwards thought better of it and went.
30 The man then went and said the same thing to the second who answered, “Certainly, sir,” but did not go.
31 Which of the two did the father’s will?’ They said, ‘The first.’ Jesus said to them, ‘In truth I tell you, tax collectors and prostitutes are making their way into the kingdom of God before you.
32 For John came to you, showing the way of uprightness, but you did not believe him, and yet the tax collectors and prostitutes did. Even after seeing that, you refused to think better of it and believe in him.
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4 DIRECT me in your ways, Yahweh, and teach me your paths.
5 ENCOURAGE me to walk in your truth and teach me since you are the God who saves me. FOR my hope is in you all day long — such is your generosity, Yahweh.
6 GOODNESS and faithful love have been yours for ever, Yahweh, do not forget them.
7 HOLD not my youthful sins against me, but remember me as your faithful love dictates.
8 INTEGRITY and generosity are marks of Yahweh for he brings sinners back to the path.
9 JUDICIOUSLY he guides the humble, instructing the poor in his way.
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25 ‘Now, you say, “What the Lord does is unjust.” Now listen, House of Israel: is what I do unjust? Is it not what you do that is unjust?
26 When the upright abandons uprightness and does wrong and dies, he dies because of the wrong which he himself has done.
27 Similarly, when the wicked abandons wickedness to become law-abiding and upright, he saves his own life.
28 Having chosen to renounce all his previous crimes, he will most certainly live: he will not die.
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Listen to Sacred Heart Morning Prayer
15 ‘If your brother does something wrong, go and have it out with him alone, between your two selves. If he listens to you, you have won back your brother.
16 If he does not listen, take one or two others along with you: whatever the misdemeanour, the evidence of two or three witnesses is required to sustain the charge.
17 But if he refuses to listen to these, report it to the community; and if he refuses to listen to the community, treat him like a gentile or a tax collector.
18 ‘In truth I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven; whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
19 ‘In truth I tell you once again, if two of you on earth agree to ask anything at all, it will be granted to you by my Father in heaven.
20 For where two or three meet in my name, I am there among them.’
2 Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving, acclaim him with music.
6 Come, let us bow low and do reverence; kneel before Yahweh who made us!
7 For he is our God, and we the people of his sheepfold, the flock of his hand. If only you would listen to him today!
8 Do not harden your hearts as at Meribah, as at the time of Massah in the desert,
9 when your ancestors challenged me, put me to the test, and saw what I could do!
7 ‘Son of man I have appointed you as watchman for the House of Israel. When you hear a word from my mouth, warn them from me.
8 If I say to someone wicked, “Evil- doer, you are to die,” and you do not speak to warn the wicked person to renounce such ways, the wicked person will die for this guilt, but I shall hold you responsible for the death.
9 If, however, you do warn someone wicked to renounce such ways and repent, and that person does not repent, then the culprit will die for this guilt, but you yourself will have saved your life.
Sacred Heart of Jesus have mercy on us and teach us how to share your message of salvation.
So if there is some judging to do by me, let it be of my own corruptness, and when it comes to the world I should be concerned with sharing the love of Christ by action and as St. Francis of Assisi said “when necessary use words”.
So this whole mentality of pointing fingers at the world in contempt needs to stop; this clenching of the fist against those who we consider grave sinners needs to stop; this pushing those who we do not consider to be worthy away must stop.
Encouraging others to follow Christ can be far more effective than telling them that they are going to hell. Not that we should not preach the full Gospel, but that the Good News should be gift wrapped with acts of love, compassion, mercy, tolerance, forgiveness and generosity. If I want to show the world that they should not sin then let me demonstrate it by my own pure living and not by my words, other than that, I should allow the Holy Spirit be the one pointing out sin.
Think about this for a moment: Did you fall in love with Jesus because He pointed out to you all the things that are wrong with you on a daily basis? Or did you fall in love with Jesus because He loved you first in spite of the fact that there was plenty that He could have pointed out was wrong with your life? Was it not the kindness of the Sacred Heart of Jesus that attracted you to Him? Was it not His love that knocked down the walls of perdition from your heart?
So then, if we are to be truly thankful to Christ Jesus for His forgiveness, let there be love towards others around us. If we are to truly worship and glorify our Lord, let there be love from us to all, even our enemies. I hate to say it brothers and sisters, but talk is cheap. Let’s stop talking and let’s start loving.
Sacred Heart of Jesus, we do not know how to love! Please help us to love as You love us. Amen.
What exactly does it mean to abide in Christ? Is it to do what He says, to continue to believe in Him, to tolerate Him, or is it to remember Him? If we look at the New International Version of the Bible, we are told to “continue in him”. The Orthodox Jewish Bible says that we should “remain in Him”. So we have three translations using three different words that can affect our perception of what 1 John 2:28 says to us. Hence, as we look at scripture, each of us with our own translation preference, we can perhaps come out of this passage with a similar, yet a little different understanding of the message that the Apostle John was trying to share with us.
If we went around asking people what it means to abide in Christ, chances are that we would get similar answers to the question. However none of the answers would be exactly the same. I guess our answers would be similar to the answer we would give Jesus if He came before us today and asked, “‘but who do you say that I am?’”(Luke 9:20) Our answers, although similar, would differ based on our own understanding of Jesus. Our answer would be personal.
Such is the way in which God reveals Himself to His people; in a common unifying and undeniable way, but at the same time in a personal manner. One revelation serves as a template or framework from which each person can start or work off from, while the other revelation comes only after each person seeks guidance from Christ intimately. The broader communal understanding that is revealed to the Church serves as a guardrail that keeps us from perhaps justifying ourselves when confronted by the deeper revelation that we experience as we relate to Christ Jesus.
So while we should place great importance in our personal relationship with Jesus, we have to make sure that our personal relationship with Christ is tempered with sound Church teaching. We have to make sure that our personal relationship with Christ does not become our own individual, self directed relationship with Christ. Otherwise we run the risk of self justification. Self justification, of course, is perhaps the worst enemy that we can encounter as we journey on to Heaven. Telling ourselves that what we are doing against God isn’t so bad or that it is somehow mitigated is the biggest obstacle that we face when it comes to letting Christ transform our life into His image. Unless we let Christ transform us I dare say that we are not abiding in Him.
I guess we can say then, that abiding in Christ requires us to have an honest and constant personal relationship with Him; and that to keep our relationship honest and constant we have to look to the Church in order to help us understand what the Sacred Heart of Jesus reveals to us. We can seek the guidance of the Church by attending services at a local church or parish. We can read books from different Church leaders. We can listen to sermons on the radio and online. The opportunities to connect with the Mystical Body of Christ are essentially endless. Nevertheless, whatever you learn from your pastor and other church teachers or fellow Christians needs to be brought with you whenever you come before Christ. In that way, you can honestly examine your conscience in order to determine if you are following the Lord Jesus. If you are not, then with the guidance of the Holy Spirit you can take the proper action to correct your erring ways. In that way you can “abide in him, so that when he is revealed [you] may have confidence and not be put to shame before him at his coming.”(1 John 2:28)