Daily Readings Reflection for 6/24/09

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Reflection on the Daily Readings for 6/24/09 by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM

Today’s Readings

Scripture: Wed. of fourth week (12th). Genesis 15:1-12.17-18. Psalm
105:1-2.3-4.6-7.8-9. Matthew 7:15-20. Lectionary # 373:

Relationships are precious and delicate.  We learn of the relationship of
Abram and God who speak to one another as a friend to a friend!  The entire
chapter 15 brings this relationship to the fore in two parts: first, the
promise that there will be a child given by God to Sarai and Abram (Isaac
will be his name).The second part is about the covenantal relationship of
Abram with God which even the ritual at the end of the passage and the
ecstacy of Abram confirm.

The theological writer of this very human imaging of God is attributed to
the Yahwist (an exegetical term that describes the older traditions and
more anthropomorphic ways of revelation in the Torah’s first book).  God
and Abram are in dialogue and God answers the questions posed by some of
Abram’s doubts. This helps us realize that we learn from reading the Bible
that we too should be familiar with God using our own language while
asking, demanding, questioning, and yet always believing in the
relationship we have with the Lord our God.  Faith “does not mean believing
in spite of the evidence. It means trusting profoundly in a person, in this
case the personal God who has reiterated his promise.” (Jewish Study Bible,
p.35).

Covenants like sacraments are intimate encounters of entrustment to God and
God to us.  We learn more about them through a careful and faith inspired
manner of reading the Scriptures.  A covenant is not a contract or a
fifty-fifty deal with someone. It implies giving everything one hundred
percent to the other while the other is doing the same. In the case of God
we come to realize that we receive more than we can possibly give.  At the
end of the reading for today there is an ancient ritual of walking between
the slaughtered animals.  This indicates the seriousness of the covenant
for it means the person not faithful to the covenant will be like those
animals!

Our Psalm for the day takes this episode and makes it a prayer. The
following verse captures the theme: “The Lord remembers his covenant
forever. He remembers forever his covenant which he made binding for a
thousand generations–Which he entered into with Abraham and by his oath to
Isaac.”  (Psalm 105:9). Amen.

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