Wednesday of the Ninth Week in Ordinary Time
Today’s Audio Mass Readings – Lectionary: 355
1st Reading – 2 TM 1:1-3, 6-12
Paul, an Apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God
for the promise of life in Christ Jesus,
to Timothy, my dear child:
grace, mercy, and peace from God the Father
and Christ Jesus our Lord.
I am grateful to God,
whom I worship with a clear conscience as my ancestors did,
as I remember you constantly in my prayers, night and day.
For this reason, I remind you to stir into flame
the gift of God that you have through the imposition of my hands.
For God did not give us a spirit of cowardice
but rather of power and love and self-control.
So do not be ashamed of your testimony to our Lord,
nor of me, a prisoner for his sake;
but bear your share of hardship for the Gospel
with the strength that comes from God.
He saved us and called us to a holy life,
not according to our works
but according to his own design
and the grace bestowed on us in Christ Jesus before time began,
but now made manifest
through the appearance of our savior Christ Jesus,
who destroyed death and brought life and immortality
to light through the Gospel,
for which I was appointed preacher and Apostle and teacher.
On this account I am suffering these things;
but I am not ashamed,
for I know him in whom I have believed
and am confident that he is able to guard
what has been entrusted to me until that day.
Responsorial Psalm – PS 123:1B-2AB, 2CDEF
R. (1b) To you, O Lord, I lift up my eyes.
To you I lift up my eyes
who are enthroned in heaven.
Behold, as the eyes of servants
are on the hands of their masters.
R. To you, O Lord, I lift up my eyes.
As the eyes of a maid
are on the hands of her mistress,
So are our eyes on the LORD, our God,
till he have pity on us.
R. To you, O Lord, I lift up my eyes.
Alleluia – JN 11:25A, 26
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the resurrection and the life, says the Lord;
whoever believes in me will never die.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel – MK 12:18-27
Some Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection,
came to Jesus and put this question to him, saying,
“Teacher, Moses wrote for us,
If someone’s brother dies, leaving a wife but no child,
his brother must take the wife
and raise up descendants for his brother.
Now there were seven brothers.
The first married a woman and died, leaving no descendants.
So the second brother married her and died, leaving no descendants,
and the third likewise.
And the seven left no descendants.
Last of all the woman also died.
At the resurrection when they arise whose wife will she be?
For all seven had been married to her.”
Jesus said to them, “Are you not misled
because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God?
When they rise from the dead,
they neither marry nor are given in marriage,
but they are like the angels in heaven.
As for the dead being raised,
have you not read in the Book of Moses,
in the passage about the bush, how God told him,
I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac,
and the God of Jacob?
He is not God of the dead but of the living.
You are greatly misled.”
Catholic Daily Reflections
Knowing the Mind of God
Jesus said to them, “Are you not misled because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God?” Mark 12:24
This Scripture comes from the passage where some Sadducees were trying to trap Jesus in His speech. This has been a common theme in the daily readings as of late. Jesus’ answer is one that cuts to the heart of the problem. He does clear up their confusion, but He starts by simply laying down the clear truth that the Sadducees are misled because they do not know either the Scriptures or the power of God. This should give us reason to pause and look at our own understanding of the Scriptures and the power of God.
It is easy to try to figure life out on our own. We can think and think and think and try to analyze why this happened or that. We can try to analyze others actions or even our own. And often times in the end, we are just as confused and “misled” as when we began.
If you find yourself in such a confusing situation about anything you are trying to understand about life, perhaps it’s good to sit and listen to those words of Jesus spoken as if they were spoken to you.
These words should not be taken as a harsh criticism or rebuke. Rather, they should be taken as a blessed insight from Jesus to help us step back and realize that we are often misled about the things of life. It’s very easy to let emotion and errors cloud our thinking and reasoning and lead us down the wrong path. So what do we do?
When we find ourselves feeling “misled” or when we realize we do not really understand God or His power at work, we should stop and take a step back so that we can pray and seek what God has to say.
Interestingly, praying is not the same as thinking. Sure, we need to use our mind to ponder the things of God, but “thinking, thinking, and more thinking” is not always the way to the correct understanding. Thinking is not prayer. We often do not understand that.
A regular goal we must have is to step back in humility and acknowledge to God and ourselves that we do not understand His ways and will. We must strive to silence our active thoughts and set aside all preconceived notions of what is right and wrong. In our humility, we need to sit and listen and wait on the Lord to take the lead. If we can let go of our constant attempts to “figure it out” we may find that God will figure it out for us and shed the light that we need. The Sadducees struggled with a certain pride and arrogance which clouded their thinking and led to self-righteousness. Jesus attempts to gently but firmly redirect them to clear thinking.
Reflect, today, upon whether you are struggling in any way with misleading and confusing thoughts. Humble yourself so that Jesus can redirect your thinking and help you to arrive at the truth.
Lord, I do want to know the truth. At times I can allow myself to be misled. Help me to humble myself before You so that You can take the lead. Jesus, I trust in You.