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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.”

Righteous people longed to see. The concept of righteousness is complex in Hebrew Scriptures. Generally, it indicates that some person, action, or thing meets or fulfills the requirements of given relationship. In relation to the standard of law, it means conduct in accordance with the Law. In this sense, righteousness is right conduct as opposed to sin and wickedness; it is honesty as opposed to deception, and truthfulness as opposed to mendacity (cf Gn 30:33; Jer 4:2). The righteous are people who serve God in fidelity (cf Mal 3:18). God looks at the righteous with favor (cf Jb 36:7); he blesses them (cf Ps 5:13) and makes them stand firm (cf Ps 7:10).

The New Testament idea of righteousness builds on the concept as it developed in Hebrew Scriptures. Hence, the righteous are people of good moral conduct (cf Mt 5:45; 13:49; 25:37, 46).

Jesus tells the disciples that they are blessed because they see and hear what past believers – prophets and righteous people – longed but were unable to see and hear. They share in the proclamation of the good news to great crowds, of the inspired words and miracles of Jesus. The disciples are privileged to receive God’s Word, to know Jesus, and to believe in him.

“I have not come to call the righteous to repentance but sinners” (Lk 5:32).

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SOURCE: “365 Days with the Lord,” ST PAULS, 7708 St. Paul Rd., SAV, Makati City (Phils.); Tel.: 895-9701; Fax 895-7328; E-mail: publishing@stpauls.ph; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.