Devotional Thoughts for Aug. 11, 2013/First Sunday After Transfiguration
- Gospel Reading- Matthew: 21.28-32
We are continuing our liturgical journey from the celebration of Transfiguration
of Christ to that of the Assumption of Mother Mary. In between these two feasts
we celebrate two Sundays. Today is the first Sunday after the Transfiguration.
Jesus said this parable in the context where He saw the unbelief of the
believer. Some Biblical scholars argue that the two kinds of sons represent the
Gentiles and Jewish people. But some other scholars affirm that the two sons
represent the Jewish community itself; representing the lay people who were
associated with the Graeco-Roman world and the law keepers of Judaism.
Nevertheless, it is notable that this is the only occasion where the phrase �tax
collectors and prostitutes� is used in apostolic writings.
Jesus elucidates the paradox of �atheism of the theistic� through this parable
and reveals the complexity of human nature.
Three main points from this passage could be meaningful to meditate.
1. The Power of Positive Rethinking
The first son�s disrespect through his words was certainly an insult to his
father. He might have responded so due to the thought of the probable discomfort
which would arise if he follows the word of his father. However, when he
rethinks about his instantaneous response he becomes willing to obey his
father�s words. He repented about his response and found the value of genuine
Mar Jacob clearly depicts this value in a Bovooso: �The tears of a repentant are
more valuable than diamonds�. (Tuesday Suthara Sheema Prayer). John the
Baptist�s message was the same too. �Produce fruit in keeping with repentance
(St. Mat:.3.8). That�s why the Fathers of the Church say �confession is a
forgotten medicine.� Each opportunity to rethink and analyze the prior responses
and decisions in our life could oil the machinery of our relationships with God
and human. The genuine repentance, and the willingness to change to even a
diametrically opposite view or to make a complete U-turn, if necessary, will
help the person to steer his journey towards the right shore.
2. Nothingness of Peripheral Promises
Today we live in a world where we hear more promises with the absence of any
in-depth passion towards the promise. Definitely these kind of promises
fabricate a kind of contentment to the ears of the audience. However, when they
see the nothingness of these peripheral promises, it definitely hurts their
hearts rigorously and they identify the person�s dim-witted personality. He /
she will lose the basic trust of the immediate people around him / her. This
indeed applies to our relationship with God: Jesus noticeably stated �Not
everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but
only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven" (St. Mt.7.21). In short,
the real fruit of the peripheral promises is self-deception and nothingness.
3. The Greatness of Implemented Promises
Both sons are not true models for a true Christian life. The real Christian
model is the right response with the willingness to implement the promise. This
model is perfectly portrayed in the parable of the sower (St. Lk.8.8). Some seed
fell on good soil; the soil responded pleasantly and nurtured without any delay.
The quality and depth of the soil facilitated the growth of the seed to a
fruitful tree. So a promise followed by its implementation inserts the quality
of trustworthiness into one�s personality. This personality will not be double
faced. This quality is an essential ingredient to a positive relationship with
God and human. God himself shows this model in his relationship with the people
of God. �Blessed be the Lord who has given rest to his people Israel, according
to all that he promised. Not one word has failed of all his good promise, which
he spoke by Moses his servant.� (I Kings: 8.56)
Without trust, words become the hollow sound of a wooden gong. With trust, words
become life itself. -- John Harold
May God bless us to rethink if our words are insulting to anyone and to learn
the nothingness of peripheral promises, and the greatness of implemented
In Christ�s service,
Rev. Fr. Varghese M Daniel, PhD
(Research Fellow, Yale University)
New Haven, Connecticut
This message is a repost from ICON's archives.
We have a new web interface for the ICON Matrimonials now, please check the link
below. As a member of ICON community you can use this free service to advertise
your matrimonial needs on this page.
Instead of a weekly refresh of the site, we will place your advertisements as
and when it is available. By default, the advertisements will stay on this page
for 180 days then it will automatically drop off from the list.
There are two sections on this new page one for Groom and another for Bride.
Please click on the appropriate section to see the ad placed on that section.
New ICON Matrimonial link http://www.icon.org.in/mm
Wish you all the best !!