Reflection on the Daily Readings for 9/05/09 by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM
Scripture: Lectionary # 436. Colossians 1:21-23. Psalm 54:3-4.6.8. Luke
Paul strongly encourages us to be grounded and steadfast in our faith.
Through our baptism and the gift of faith we have been reconciled to God
through the dying and rising of Jesus. Paul wants us to continue to live
out the Gospel now that we believe and to be ambassadors of reconciliation.
This is what is expected of us because of our sacramental commitment to be
“other Christs” to others.
In Luke’s passage we see a continuation of Jesus’ display of teaching
authority and power. There are six such scenes of this together with the
opposition he faces from the religiously minded people and their scribes
who push for the letter of the law. Luke has taken this material from
Mark’s Gospel and has placed it within the context of Jesus’ authority and
teaching. Both display his power over evil and even over nature. Luke will
develop his Gospel while using much of Mark’s Gospel but always giving us
more narrative and a great abundance of Jesus’ sayings. The theme of
promise and fulfillment were announced as he introduced his Gospel and its
assurance for those desiring to grow in their faith.
In the event of his disciples plucking grain on the sabbath, Jesus declares
that he ‘The Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.” Perhaps, we are
seeing that Luke presents Jesus as the teacher who is most concerned with
those who suffer hunger and thirst. His Gospel is the Gospel of the Poor
of God as we have seen in the hymn that Jesus’ Mother sings in Luke
1:46-56. The disciples have need of food to eat even on the sabbath.
There are exceptions to the precepts about the Sabbath and Jesus teaches
this one through using the Scriptures where David allows his men to eat of
the bread that was reserved only for the priests.
It is difficult for many to observe the Sabbath today, but we learn from
Jesus that certain ways of doing this observance permit exceptions while
others are just our own indifference to the Sabbath where we tend to go on
doing our regular work even at home. We do need leisure if we are to
restore our creativity as well as our need for prayer and even
contemplation. The Sabbath offers us an opportunity to observe it rather
than to always rationalize our exceptions to it. Amen.