Reflection on Today’s Daily Readings by Fr. Bertrand Buby, SM
Scripture: June 4, Lectionary # 357. II Tim. 3:10-12. Psalm 119. Mark 12:35-37: We who believe in the Scriptures are to see them as the Living Words of Jesus and of God. St. Paul, in his letters to his disciples, Timothy and Titus, is a living Gospel for them. He has told them and us “For me to live is Christ.” The churches he has initiated and even founded started as a small community of simple people. Now as he is near the end of his journey which he will compare to a racing event, the communities have grown all over the Mediterranean coasts and inlands. He is heading for the capital Rome and even intends to go to the “ends of the earth”–Spain! Where he desires to end, Christopher Columbus will have as his beginning! Timothy and Titus and all of Paul’s followers have enjoyed his preaching and teaching. The way of Christ is manifested in the table of virtues that he gives them in most of his letters. Paul lived out these virtues and became a living example for them to which they were drawn. (Exempla trahant). He reminds Timothy to go back to the Scriptures that he learned from childhood (the Old Testament, the Tanakh). Timothy and Titus will remain faithful to what they have learned from Paul and the Scriptures about the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Both now have the wisdom to be convinced of their belonging to the saving actions of the living Christ. Paul then gives all of us a convincing passage on the value of Scripture–both testaments! Jesus continues to vocally spar with the teachers and scribes. He matches their understanding and shows them the need to go deeper into the heart of these revealed words of God. Some like the rich man and the one who asks about the greatest of the commandments are honest in their debate with Jesus and are not trying to trick him or to demean him. They recognize him as a true teacher and wisdom figure. In the text for today Jesus is showing them that Psalm 110 is messianic in its message and that if they look into its deeper meaning they will find it applies to who Jesus is. A worthwhile reflection on this psalm can help us appreciate who it is foretelling. Psalm two is also reflecting the same type of a messianic meaning. Jesus is unraveling for his listeners the “messianic secret.” Jesus is the Lord that the Psalm foretells for those who believe that Jesus is the anointed one of God. We too need to be instructed by the Scriptures as our daily spiritual nourishment for mind, heart, and soul. They are not there for simply studying and researching them. They are to be the living voice of God and of Jesus for us. Like Timothy and Titus we are to learn how to live godly lives and to be open to participating in the ministries of the Church to which we belong. All people have gifts from God to be shared with the community. Jesus must be the living voice that motivates us. Paul, Timothy, and Titus show us the way. Amen.