30th Sunday in ordinary time, year a, October 23, 2011

Last weekend Jesus left the religious leaders speechless- so eloquently. He answered the question about the taxes. (So did father Jones in his homily). Soon after, the religious leaders of the time were back with more questions to trap Jesus. This weekend’s gospel reading they asked, “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” The question appears to be harmless, but it was a verbal hand grenade. Unknowingly, they set up a trap that they themselves fell into. My friends, when God brought the Israel out of Egypt, it was a time to show his peoples something rather extraordinary.  I believe in my heart that God realized they have matured enough to be called his chosen people. Here God destined Hebrews to become his prophets and his priests to all the other nations. Moses was one to communicate the news for the people, and God would confirm it with great miracles. 1. Liberation from slavery in Egypt. From such event, in years religious leaders of the Hebrew people drafted all 613 precepts of toran.  Sometimes when we think it is difficult to follow the 10 commandments think of the people who need to follow directions of 613 of them.  Let’s just think for a moment. If everyone followed the 10 commandments, had perfect health, had all they needed of this world goods, had absolute security and peace, the question would be: 1. Would God be loved and praised by everybody? 2. Would God be completely forgotten and ignored? My friends, it is through showing God that we love him and thank him every day we earn our place in heaven. It is by loving and helping our neighbor that we can prove our love for God and our gratitude for all that he has given for us. That is why I feel Jesus gives the answer he gives in today’s gospel. “Which is the greatest commandment of the law?” If we do not take Jesus’ teaching from today’s gospel seriously my friends, soon enough people would appear to be both un teachable and un improvable. We become cynic.  I love to study ethology. It is a branch of the knowledge that investigates the mechanisms and behaviors in animals. There were great ideas studying animal behavior an idea of so called “imprinting” for instance. I always thought (and still do) that we can learn a lot from animals. Take elephants for example. When one elephant in a herd is hurt, other elephants will help him stay on his feet by providing a shoulder to lean on. Can we do less for people? Could Wall Street learn something from the elephant? I think that they should. “In the history of mankind one bloody chapter follows another almost without interruption; the only appliance that we now possess atomic weapons, and in the even on war we run the risk of destroying ourselves. Now we are our own worst enemies; unless, we succeed in taming our aggressive urges.  Why do I say all of this? (Because IO believe that having our own intelligence, brain, open hearts and all possible aid of  faith and freely given grace of Jesus, we can change . We don’t need to be each other’s enemies. We can make the SHEMA. The beautiful prayer that Jesus quotes in today’s gospel as an example of greatest commandment of love.  We can make it our own again. This week give time, do something nice, extra ordinary to others. If you grow tired of loving others this week, think of the elephants.



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