Wednesday, January 16, 2013

The Sword of Forgiveness and Mercy ***

S. Matthew 10:34 – 11:15

O. Jesus concludes his instructions to the Disciples. He talks about the role of John the Baptist.

“Don’t imagine that I came to bring peace to the earth! I came not to bring peace, but a sword. I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. Your enemies will be right in your own household!”
The message of forgiveness and mercy is not friendly to those of authority or power over us. This message is like a sword, cutting through the chains of authority and power. This is why it is such a dangerous message to spread. Having awareness of this danger is important before embarking on spreading that message.

Those in any sort of authority over us, including our own families, may not be open to this new way. That is why they can act as our enemies in spreading this message. This was especially the case in the time Jesus was talking. To go against the Pharisees and to believe in something different than the majority was dangerous.

Forgiveness and mercy were not something associated with religious law at the time, and the pushback by family would be great, as they would fear our persecution, or worse our death at the hands of those in power. Family may even be fearful of retribution on them for the acts of their children.

We must not fear reaction from our families or communities. Their fears cannot become a block for us to spread the message of forgiveness and mercy to all beings.

P. May I find the strength and guidance to spread forgiveness and mercy to others.

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