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18th Week Thursday - Reflections

18th Week, Ordinary Time, Thursday, 09-08-18
Jeremiah 31:31-34 / Matthew 16:13-23

A hierarchy is a system in which members of an organization or society are ranked according to relative status or authority.

As such, no subordinate is higher than the superior, and no slave is greater than the master.

When the hierarchy is given due respect then there will be order and stability. But when it is not, then the result could be chaos and anarchy.

All the more, when it comes to God and us, then we must acknowledge who is the Creator and who is the creature.

In the 1st reading, we heard what the Lord God has to say to His people: They broke that covenant of mine, so I had to show them who was master.

Between God and His people, there is no question of who is master and who is the slave. The covenant that God made Israel was more than that of a master-slave order.

Israel became God's people. It became a relationship based on faithfulness, integrity and justice.

But God's people broke all that. Even the order of master-slave is broken. And the result is chaos and anarchy and distress for God's people.

Even Peter didn't quite understand that though he was commissioned to be the rock on which Jesus will build the Church, it is Jesus who is the Lord and it will be Jesus who will give the directions and make the decisions.

We are God's people. He loves us as His children. Our duty to pledge our obedience and faithfulness to Him. Then our lives would have order and stability.                                                                                                               **                                                                                                                            In the study of philosophy, there is this classical definition for man, and that is man is a rational animal.

That term is of interest in that as much as man has intellect and free will, he is also nonetheless, a part of the animal kingdom in that he also has needs and has instincts.

And being a rational animal, man also has the power of choice - the choice to believe in God or not, and also the choice to serve God or not.

The people of God in the 1st reading knew who God is and believed in God. Yet they also chose to disobey God and to be unfaithful to Him.

So even though God made a covenant with them, they broke it, and so God said in the 1st reading: They broke that covenant of mine, so I had to show them who was master.

Putting in bluntly, when man does not acknowledge God as his Master, then he becomes the master of his own destruction.

Yet God has written His covenant of love deep in our hearts, and hence we are also able to acknowledge Jesus as the Christ, the Son of the living God.

Yes, Jesus is our Lord and Master. Yet it is not just about words or ideas. We are to follow our Lord and Master in how He serves and suffers for the sins of mankind.

When we do not acknowledge Jesus as our Lord and Master and follow His Law of love, then we are not any more rational than just another animal. (SY)