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Sunday, July 11, 2010

Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Saint Luke 10:25-37.
There was a scholar of the law who stood up to test him and said, "Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?"
Jesus said to him, "What is written in the law? How do you read it?" 
He said in reply, "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself." 
He replied to him, "You have answered correctly; do this and you will live." 
But because he wished to justify himself, he said to Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" 
Jesus replied, "A man fell victim to robbers as he went down from Jerusalem to Jericho. They stripped and beat him and went off leaving him half-dead. 
A priest happened to be going down that road, but when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side.
Likewise a Levite came to the place, and when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side. 
But a Samaritan traveler who came upon him was moved with compassion at the sight. 
He approached the victim, poured oil and wine over his wounds and bandaged them. Then he lifted him up on his own animal, took him to an inn and cared for him. 
The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper with the instruction, 'Take care of him. If you spend more than what I have given you, I shall repay you on my way back.' 
Which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the robbers' victim?" 
He answered, "The one who treated him with mercy." Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise." 

Commentary of the day 
Saint Severus of Antioch (around 465-538), bishop 
Homily 89

 He came down from heaven » (Creed)
       “A man went down from Jerusalem to Jericho." Christ did not say, "somebody went down" but " a man went down", because this passage concerns all humanity. For humanity, as a result of Adam's sin, left Paradise, our tranquil home on high, where there was no suffering and which was filled with wonders; this place was rightly called Jerusalem, a name which means "God's Peace ". And all mankind fell towards Jericho, a hollow and low country, where the heat is stifling. Jericho is the feverish life of this world, a life that separates us from God... And once humanity had thus turned away from the right road towards this life, a troop of wild demons came to attack us like a band of robbers. They stripped us of the clothing of perfection, and left us no trace of the strength of mind, purity, justice, or prudence, or anything else which characterizes the divine image (Gn 1:26); but striking us repeatedly by the blows of various sins, they knocked us down and finally left us  half dead...

      The Law given by Moses passed by, but it lacked strength; it did not lead humanity to a complete cure; it did not raise us up from where we lay… For the Law offered sacrifices and offerings "which could not make perfect those who practised this worship" for it is impossible that the blood of bulls and goats take away sins" (He 10:1.4)...

      Finally a Samaritan came to pass. Christ deliberately gives himself the name Samaritan… For he himself came to us, carrying out the intention of the Law and showing by his acts "who is our neighbor" and what it is "to love others as oneself".


Elizabeth Mahlou said...

The Good Samaritan is the story of my life! Not that I am "good" in any sense of that word, but I keep coming across injured people in my life's path, as if God were steering me in their direction and giving me just the right skills to help them. So, this passage is always a personal one for me.

Along other lines, I would like to let you and other followers know that my Blest Atheist blog went down. I replaced it with 100th Lamb ( I explain why there.

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