YEAR C: HOMILY FOR THE 33RD SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME. (6)










YEAR C: HOMILY FOR THE 33RD SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME.

THEME: THE END OF EVIL.

BY: Rev. Fr. Justin Chima Obijuru.

 

R.1: Malachi 4:1-2a
R.2: 2 Thessalonians 3:7-12
Gospel: Luke 21: 5-19

Could there be an end to evil? The propensity to do evil had been en vogue right from the time of Cain, when he killed Abel, the just man.

Modern politicians often end their speeches with a rhetorical flourish that promises a better world for our children and grandchildren. Such sentiments strike a chord in most hearts—who doesn’t wish for a better world for the rising generations? Politicians may commit to banishing poverty, providing quality education, putting an end to war, or starting health insurance for all. True noble sentiments for all, but desperately difficult to achieve.

Jesus, however, didn’t promise a better world; rather, a new world, an end to the reign of evil.

St. Paul, in Romans 3:23-24 has this to say: “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God; they are justified by His grace as a gift, through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus”. Human nature needs redemption.

The readings of today cannot be about the end time; rather, they speak about overcoming the reign of evil. When the first reading, Malachi 4: 1-2a uses the imagery of “the day comes, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evil doers will be stubble”, it is expressive of an end to evil. St. Paul, in the second reading, II Thess 3: 7-12, speaks of a certain idleness that reminds us that an idle mind is the devil’s workshop. We certainly conquer this when we find ourselves employed at the service of work. St. Paul’s opinion of work cuts across the crossroads of piety and remuneration. It condemns an attitude of begging and inactiveness. Monks who would beg their way all through without employing some menial works, do not so much propagate the Gospel. There is dignity in work and there is greater reward in the preaching of the Gospel.

RELATED: YEAR C: HOMILY FOR THE 33RD SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME

Christians are encouraged to shun slothful attitudes, because it is a deadly sin which does not depict the mind of God. Views concerning the virtue of work to support society, the Church and to further God’s plan suggest that through inactivity, one invites sin. The word, “sloth”, connotes indifference to duties and obligations to God. As Christians, our obligations to God should be one of physical expressions to good deeds. Unlike other capital sins, sloth is a sin of omission, being a lack of desire and/or performance. God wants us to be alive and industrious, by so doing we conquer the wiles of evil.

In the Gospel, Luke 21: 5-19, Jesus proves of the destruction of evil. He says: “When you hear of wars and tumults, do not be terrified; for this must first take place, but the end will not be at once” (Luke 21: 9). The Temple was the delight of the Jews, an embodiment that needed cleansing, little wonder Jesus made a whip of cords when he entered it and saw those buying and selling. He said to the Jews: “destroy this Temple and in three days I will raise it up” (Jn 2: 19). In his Body, Jesus destroyed evil and raised up a new world. A world, where wisdom rules and not evil anymore: “For I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which none of your adversaries will be able to withstand or contradict” (Luke 21: 15).

Child of God, an era of Truth is an era of the defeat of evil. Can there be an end to evil? We have to make efforts to defeat evil and promote good deeds. Theodicy justifies God; but whence comes evil? St. Augustine says it is the privation of Good. When you deprive the society that good or unleash evil on people, you become the devil’s workshop. Stop right away the reign of evil.

Wishing you a beautiful Sunday!

 

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