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The privilege of discipleship

Gospel Reading: Mt 13:16-17
Jesus said to his disciples: “But blessed are your eyes, because they see, and your ears, because they hear. “Amen, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.”

These sayings of blessedness come after Jesus’ parable of the sower and in the wider context of all Jesus’ parables.

Here in Matthew, the idea of purposeful secrecy is unlike that of Mark’s gospel, which is “in order that” people will not perceive the truth of the Kingdom (cf Mk 4:12), but because they do not perceive (cf Mt 13:13). There are two reasons for this. First, rejected by the people, Jesus turns his attention to the disciples. Second, the ministry of Jesus encounters opposition. Many of the parables are about trouble – seed falling onto poor soil, weeds growing up in a field of wheat, a net pulling up bad fish among the good – and the message of these parables enables the disciples to understand why Jesus has encountered trouble. Contrasted to these responses is the blessedness of those who are truly open to the message of Jesus and are ready and willing to let his words sink into their lives. Such blessedness is typified by the saints honored today: Sts. Joachim and Anne, parents of Mary.

“Now will I praise those godly men, our ancestors, each in his own time: These were godly men whose virtues have not been forgotten” (Sir 44:1).

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SOURCE: “366 Days with the Lord 2016,” ST. PAULS Philippines, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: books@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.