Reflection by Kathryn Mulderink
Today’s Gospel: Luke 11:29-32
More and more people are gathering to hear Jesus. What attracts them is certainly not His “nicey-nicey, keep everyone happy” presentations. He calls this generation “evil” and says they will be condemned for their lack of faith! He rebukes them for their unbelief, comparing His listeners unfavorably with people who are not Jews: the Queen of Sheba and the Ninevites.
Jesus refers to the “sign of Jonah”: They are looking for an extraordinary sign, but He will give them something unexpected when, like Jonah from the belly of the fish, He returns alive after three days. They are looking for a sign from heaven (of divinity) but He will give them a sign from the earth (of His incarnation and passion, rather than His glory).
Then He says that in the end, the Queen of the South will condemn them, not because she will be given the power of judgment, but because she did something that, when compared to their inaction and incredulity, will be found superior to it. She came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon, while they will not hear the Truth that Jesus proclaims, which is far greater.
In the end, the Jews will also come out badly when compared to the Ninevites, who were saved because they repented at the (reluctant) preaching of Jonah. As Jonah’s call to repentance was a sign to them, Jesus is an even greater sign to this generation, who will reject Him.
As He does in other places, Jesus portrays those outside of Israel more positively than those within. Being baptized and attending Mass does not take us beyond judgment. We must sincerely accept the Word of God, correspond with the grace poured into us, and work each day to conform our lives to Christ.
What can we do today to conform our hearts and minds more completely to the heart and mind of Christ?
Lord, teach my heart to lean into Yours in each moment, so that I am more and more conformed to You, walking with You, thinking and acting according to Your will always.
Copyright 2019 Kathryn Mulderink
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