Scripture: Lectionary Aug.1. Jeremiah 15:10,16-21. Psalm 59:2-3.4.10-11.17.18. Matthew 13:44-46:
We continue to move through the scroll of Jeremiah the prophet. He helps us get into his personal life, his prayer, and his problems with the sinfulness of Israel and Judah. Today we are privy to some of his interior thoughts about himself in relationship to God and to his call as a prophet of God. The content of the passage tells us about the essence of his prophetic vocation. He finds the words of God burning within him and he has a great desire to profess what God is telling him and to challenge the people whom he loves with great passion. He is the only mouthpiece of God in these troubling days of exile and disaster and uncertainty. He is called to be a wall of brass against all who oppose God’s will, including the king, the servants of the Temple, and the people. Jeremiah is certainly the most persistent, passionate, and personal among all the prophets. Some of his writings are almost like a personal diary or journal notebook. Even from his mother’s womb he was called to the difficult role of a true prophet of God. The Psalm response expresses his hope: “God is my refuge on the day of distress.”
Jesus continues with two short and simple parables in this famous section of parables about the kingdom of God. He has the most parables about the kingdom among the evangelists. The theme of kingdom (basilea in N.T.Greek) occurs thirty-three percent of the time in all of the New Testament. Matthew uses it fifty-five times.
Both parables seem to treat of the importance of seeking and finding and then making the right choice about what is a priority in the kingdom of God. Discernment is involved in making right choices based on openness in prayer and looking at what is to found like a treasure in the field of choices or like the beautiful pearl of great price that must be obtained despite its price. Doing God’s will helps to bring about the kingdom of God. Witness to God’s love and proclaiming his saving deeds are part of the keeping of the treasure and the pearl.
We pray that God’s kingdom may come and God’s will may be done. Amen.
Copyright 2012 Fr. Bertrand Buby, S.M.