Today’s Gospel: Matthew 5:17-19
Matthew, in this passage on the fulfillment of the Law, is seeking to reassure Jewish converts that following Christ is not a rejection of Judaism and the Law, but rather following an evolution of what has gone before.
Jesus made it perfectly clear that He was not there to show disrespect to the Law or even to bring it to an end, but instead to fulfil the Law and bring it to a new level of understanding. In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus was doing more than sharing His vision of the kingdom of God; He was announcing its arrival.
Living in the kingdom means going beyond the previous understanding of what it was to sustain a relationship with God (living in obedience to a vast array of rules and regulations). Instead we are called to holiness through the pursuit of virtue based on love. Jesus gave humanity a new motive and understanding; one He wrote on their hearts – love of God and neighbour, to be merciful, to imitate Christ; that is truly how to show reverence to God. We should always remain mindful of sin and its dangers; sin alienates us from others and damages our relationship with God, and as such should be avoided. However, we should not, like the Pharisees, be obsessed by our shortcomings (or the shortcomings of others). We should practice a more perfect understanding of the Law, the one that Jesus taught us, and teach others to do the same.
In my daily life, how do I actively seek to build up on the kingdom of God?
Lord, help me to always use the gifts and talents You have given me to help build up Your kingdom here on earth. May I always do my best to serve You and serve others in imitation of Your love. Amen.
Copyright 2017 Claire Howell
I’m Claire, I’m 28 and I live in Scotland. I’m a teacher of Religious Education in a Roman Catholic secondary school and get to spread the Gospel daily to 12-18 year olds.