SEPTEMBER 11. Ord Time B. Wk 23. Sat. Lk 6. 43-49
Jesus said to his disciples:
‘There is no sound tree that produces rotten fruit, nor again a rotten tree that produces sound fruit. For every tree can be told by its own fruit: people do not pick figs from thorns, nor gather grapes from brambles. A good man draws what is good from the store of goodness in his heart; a bad man draws what is bad from the store of badness. For a man’s words flow out of what fills his heart.
‘Why do you call me, “Lord, Lord” and not do what I say?
‘Everyone who comes to me and listens to my words and acts on them – I will show you what he is like. He is like the man who when he built his house dug, and dug deep, and laid the foundations on rock; when the river was in flood it bore down on that house but could not shake it, it was so well built. But the one who listens and does nothing is like the man who built his house on soil, with no foundations: as soon as the river bore down on it, it collapsed; and what a ruin that house became!’
We have some very solemn words being spoken in today’s gospel as it is the conclusion of his Sermon on the Mount where Jesus has just outlined in detail what being a Christian demands
It is significant he compares one who listens to his teachings; - and puts them into practice; - to a good tree with the ability to produce a crop of good fruit; - a truth we need to pay attention to; - remembering the person talking to us is Jesus Christ; -the Son of God!
Not only is he our creator; - a truth we need to get our head around and absorb; - but he also desires to be our brother; - the Son of God wants to be a brother to us; - so we can worship, praise, and serve “Our Father” together!
Sadly, we tend to “skip over these truths” very quickly; - whereas we need to be ‘ruminating’ on them, and allowing them to influence our lives. And Christ himself says this very strongly in today’s gospel:
“Everyone who comes to me; - and listens to my words; - and acts on them; - I will show you what he is like!” This is God conversing with us; - but we tend to treat what he is saying as insignificant; - which is a crazy situation. We should be on our knees listening to what he is telling us; - given he is God!
“He is like the man who when he built his house dug, and dug deep, and laid the foundations on rock!” He wants us to see our responsibility as building something that is strong and solid and able to withstand the battering it will receive in the years to come; - what a beautiful; - and accurate; - description of the Christian vocation?
And how true it is we will be battered by the elements on many occasions during our earthly pilgrimage, and we need a solid foundation for our building, so it does not fall over?
But we also need to heed the warning given at the end of the sermon: “The one who listens and does nothing is like the man who built his house on soil, with no foundations: as soon as the river bore down on it, it collapsed; and what a ruin that house became!’
Gospel Acclamation Jn14:23
All who love me will keep my words,
and my Father will love them and we will come to them.
First reading 1 Timothy 1:15-17 ·
Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners
Here is a saying that you can rely on and nobody should doubt: that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners. I myself am the greatest of them; and if mercy has been shown to me, it is because Jesus Christ meant to make me the greatest evidence of his inexhaustible patience for all the other people who would later have to trust in him to come to eternal life. To the eternal King, the undying, invisible and only God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.