Homily for Monday of the 2nd Week of Lent Year A
Theme: Our responsibilities to others
By: Fr. Benny Tuazon
Homily for Monday, March 18 2019
(Lk. 6:36-38) Monday of the Second Week of Lent, Day Thirteen (13) of Lent
In today’s Gospel Jesus reminds us of our responsibilities to others. He tells us to avoid judgment and condemnation. Compassion should be our attitude towards them. This is how God deals with us. No matter what we have committed, God is always merciful. He renders forgiveness if we are contrite. Jesus looks forward to our own judgment. When that time comes, God will also see how we have been to others. It follows that we will also be judged accordingly. This is another way of stating one of the two great commandments, “ Love your neighbours as you love yourself.” If only we could see our neighbours as ourselves, all of God’s commandments will come to reality. Yes, even loving enemies and unlimited forgiveness.
The First Reading (Dn. 9:4b-10) is a clear example of a true contrition. The prophet Daniel begs God for mercy in behalf of Israel. They had been wicked, disobeyed the commandments, and worshipped other Gods. He was shamefaced because in spite of all the goodness of God, they had the gall to reject His love and His will. Yet, Daniel is consoled by the mercy of God. The Psalmist (Ps. 79) echoed the same pleading. He asked that God deals with us not according to our sins. The Psalmist was aware of how they had been unworthy even of the love and mercy of God. They should be judged like they had judged others. They must have realized the gravity of their sins and their attitude towards others. They still hope God will render them His judgment and not theirs.
Jesus was not really asking as to be blind, mute, deaf, and callous over the evil happening around us. It is our responsibility as baptized Christians to witness to our faith which includes proclaiming the Gospel to everyone and guiding our neighbours to conversion. To do so will be to be guilty of the sin of omission. No. We can still assert goodness and holiness without making judgments. Jesus wanted us to be very aware that externals are not conclusive factors to make a sound judgment. Intentions, thoughts, motives, and the like are hard to determine. We must always give each person the benefit of the doubt until we are certain. It is for this reason that we cannot condemn a person no matter what he had done. The recent events in our country regarding the war on drugs is a good example. Drug addicts had been summarily killed just because they are one. Rehabilitation only becomes an option when they do not (allegedly) resist arrest or voluntarily agree to it. Some officials do not even consider them human. Talk about who was inhuman? The field of medicine had, in fact, regarded drug addiction as a sickness. Thus, it can and must be treated. Killing them disregards a God who is merciful and our responsibility to be merciful.
I believe that we just have to put ourselves in the shoes of our neighbor. Like everyone else, we maybe guilty of sin at times, but we believe we are basically a good person. We believe we deserve a second chance. If that is so, we must also give the same privilege to others. The Good News is that God is always merciful and compassionate. We only need to look back at history and we can realize the greatness, vastness, and grandness of God’s mercy. St. Peter, St. Paul, St.Mary Magdalene, St. Matthew, St. Thomas, Zacchaeus, the thief on the cross, St. Augustine, etc. Even Judas Escariot, had he repented, he would have been forgiven. But with the mercy of God, by this time, I believe he was already forgiven. Nobody will be lost. That was Jesus’ mission. When He died on the cross, He meant salvation for all. He did and it has never changed since.