Gospel reading: Mt 12:14-21
The Pharisees went out and took counsel against Jesus to put him to death.
When Jesus realized this, he withdrew from that place. Many people followed him, and he cured them all, but he warned them not to make him known. This was to fulfill what had been spoken through Isaiah the prophet: Behold, my servant whom I have chosen, my beloved in whom I delight; I shall place my Spirit upon him, and he will proclaim justice to the Gentiles. He will not contend or cry out, nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets. A bruised reed he will not break, a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory. And in his name the Gentiles will hope.
There are various instances when Jesus is confronted by those who oppose him. At times, Jesus reasons with them with conviction or force, as when he is reproved by the Pharisees for his disciples’ plucking grains on a Sabbath. At other times, though, like in the Gospel, he chooses to let go of the issue and move away to another place. Matthew then interprets the “passive” or non-confrontational behavior of Jesus in the light of the passage in Isaiah describing the Suffering Servant as meek and humble.
Wise people counsel that we have to “choose our battles.” There are times when we have to fight and defend ourselves. At other times, however, it may be better to ignore and choose to abandon confrontation and fight. And we will be surprised to find out afterwards that we have made the right choice. Fighting is not always the most effective means to conquer the enemy.
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Are you willing to be called a “coward” for abandoning a battle that for you is not worth fighting?
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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: [email protected]; Website: http://www.stpauls.ph.