Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Gospel Reflection

January 21, 2014
Tuesday – Ordinary Time
Memorial of Saint Agnes, Virgin and Martyr
by Rev. Fr. Benjo Fajota, Vice Rector, Mary, Queen of Peace Shrine (Our Lady of Peace Quasi Parish/EDSA Shrine)
5:30 PM Mass at the EDSA Shrine

Reading 1 1 sm 16:1-13

The LORD said to Samuel: “How long will you grieve for Saul, whom I have rejected as king of Israel? Fill your horn with oil, and be on your way. I am sending you to Jesse of Bethlehem, for I have chosen my king from among his sons.” But Samuel replied: “How can I go? Saul will hear of it and kill me.” To this the LORD answered: “Take a heifer along and say, ‘I have come to sacrifice to the LORD.’ Invite Jesse to the sacrifice, and I myself will tell you what to do; you are to anoint for me the one I point out to you.”

Samuel did as the LORD had commanded him. When he entered Bethlehem, the elders of the city came trembling to meet him and inquired, “Is your visit peaceful, O seer?” He replied: “Yes! I have come to sacrifice to the LORD. So cleanse yourselves and join me today for the banquet.” He also had Jesse and his sons cleanse themselves and invited them to the sacrifice. As they came, he looked at Eliab and thought, “Surely the LORD’s anointed is here before him.” But the LORD said to Samuel:  “Do not judge from his appearance or from his lofty stature, because I have rejected him. Not as man sees does God see, because he sees the appearance but the LORD looks into the heart.” Then Jesse called Abinadab and presented him before Samuel, who said, “The LORD has not chosen him.” Next Jesse presented Shammah, but Samuel said, “The LORD has not chosen this one either.” In the same way Jesse presented seven sons before Samuel, but Samuel said to Jesse, “The LORD has not chosen any one of these.” Then Samuel asked Jesse, “Are these all the sons you have?” Jesse replied, “There is still the youngest, who is tending the sheep.” Samuel said to Jesse, “Send for him; we will not begin the sacrificial banquet until he arrives here.”  Jesse sent and had the young man brought to them. He was ruddy, a youth handsome to behold and making a splendid appearance. The LORD said, “There anoint him, for this is he!”  Then Samuel, with the horn of oil in hand, anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and from that day on, the Spirit of the LORD rushed upon David.  When Samuel took his leave, he went to Ramah.


Responsorial Psalm ps 89:20, 21-22, 27-28

R. (21a) I have found David, my servant.
Once you spoke in a vision,
and to your faithful ones you said:
“On a champion I have placed a crown;
over the people I have set a youth.”
R. I have found David, my servant.
“I have found David, my servant;
with my holy oil I have anointed him,
That my hand may be always with him,
and that my arm may make him strong.”
R. I have found David, my servant.
“He shall say of me, ‘You are my father,
my God, the Rock, my savior.’
And I will make him the first-born,
highest of the kings of the earth.”
R. I have found David, my servant.


Gospel mk 2:23-28

As Jesus was passing through a field of grain on the sabbath, his disciples began to make a path while picking the heads of grain. At this the Pharisees said to him, “Look, why are they doing what is unlawful on the sabbath?” He said to them, “Have you never read what David did when he was in need and he and his companions were hungry? How he went into the house of God when Abiathar was high priest and ate the bread of offering that only the priests could lawfully eat, and shared it with his companions?” Then he said to them, “The sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath. That is why the Son of Man is lord even of the sabbath.”


Yes, we live in a world of policies, of laws. But then there are people who are very strict, very objective in exercising these rules, and they do not bend even to the disadvantage of the people, even to the point of losing their humanity. Ang ibig sabihin ay may mga taong nakatuon lamang sa batas kahit na nahihirapan na ang mga tao.

Jesus is telling us that there is a very simple rule to exercise when we are at a dilemma, whether to follow the law or not. As Christians, we have to bend sometimes to give way to the welfare of the people. Sinasabi ni Hesus na mas mahalaga ang tao, mas mataas ang tao kaysa sa batas. Kaya nga ang Kanyang simpleng batas na pinapairal ay ang tao ay hindi ginawa para sa Sabbath, ngunit ang Sabbath ang ginawa para sa tao.

Ibig sabihin, kung tayo ay papipiliin kung dapat gawin ang sinasabi ng batas, ngunit ito naman ay nagpapahirap sa tao, ang susundin natin ay ang batas ng Diyos. Simple lang. The law of God must prevail. And the law of God is none other than the law of LOVE. Man must be made superior to every rule. Hindi dapat nangingibabaw ang batas sa tao. Even the wisest lawmakers cannot anticipate the thousands or even millions of incidences where they can say that the law must be really exercised in its full objectivity. May mga pagkakataon na tayo ay dapat na bumibigay. We must bend some rules if it will be for the welfare and benefit of the people. Ito ang batas ng Diyos. At ito ang dapat manaig - ang batas ng pag-ibig.