Luke 6: 27-38 (7th Week of Ordinary Time, Year C)

The readings last Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time were powerful. In the Book of Samuel (1Samuel 26:2-23), David had the opportunity to eliminate his enemy, Saul. Abishai whispered to him that the Lord has delivered his enemy into his grasp. But David chose the way of restraint, the way of mercy and did not harm Saul. He recognized that Saul is anointed by God. David has the sense of God. Our society has lost the sense of God that is why we have gun violence, greediness, war, hatred, pride.

Paul in his letter to the Corinthians (1Corinthians 15: 45-49) stresses the first man and the last man, the earthly man and the heavenly man. He invites his community to image the heavenly man who is Christ. This is because we are children of the Most High.

This is what Jesus teaches in the Sermon on the Plain in the Gospel of Luke (Luke 6: 27-38). Our true identity is that we are created in the image and likeness of God. We are called to be merciful, to love our enemies and to pray for those who curse us. It is to embrace the love of God that is inclusive, stronger than hatred. We are called to make the love of God prevail in our life. This can only happen when we have a sense of God otherwise we become instruments of curse and death.

This reminds of a story of a monk who was praying under a tree beside a river. Then he noticed a scorpion at the foot of the tree struggling for dear life as the surging waves tried to drown him. The monk stretched out his hand to pull the scorpion to safety but each time his hand came near, the scorpion tried to sting him. A passerby saw what was going on and said to the monk: “What are you doing? Don’t you know that it is in the nature of a scorpion to sting?” The monk replied, “And it is in my nature to save. Must I change my nature because the scorpion refuses to change his?”

Our true nature is to save, to bring life and to be a blessing to others.

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