Daily Scripture Analysis

Daily Gospel

Wednesday of the Eighth Week in OT2

Reading 1: (1 Pet 1:18-25)

Beloved:
Realize that you were ransomed from your futile conduct,
handed on by your ancestors,
not with perishable things like silver or gold
but with the precious Blood of Christ
as of a spotless unblemished Lamb.
He was known before the foundation of the world
but revealed in the final time for you,
who through him believe in God
who raised him from the dead and gave him glory,
so that your faith and hope are in God.

Since you have purified yourselves
by obedience to the truth for sincere brotherly love,
love one another intensely from a pure heart.
You have been born anew,
not from perishable but from imperishable seed,
through the living and abiding word of God, for:

"All flesh is like grass,
and all its glory like the flower of the field;
the grass withers,
and the flower wilts;
but the word of the Lord remains forever."
This is the word that has been proclaimed to you.

Gospel: (Mk 10:32-45)

The disciples were on the way, going up to Jerusalem,
and Jesus went ahead of them.
They were amazed, and those who followed were afraid.
Taking the Twelve aside again, he began to tell them
what was going to happen to him.
"Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man
will be handed over to the chief priests and the scribes,
and they will condemn him to death
and hand him over to the Gentiles who will mock him,
spit upon him, scourge him, and put him to death,
but after three days he will rise."

Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee,
came to Jesus and said to him,
"Teacher, we want you to do for us whatever we ask of you."
He replied, "What do you wish me to do for you?"
They answered him,
"Grant that in your glory
we may sit one at your right and the other at your left."
Jesus said to them, "You do not know what you are asking.
Can you drink the chalice that I drink
or be baptized with the baptism with which I am baptized?"
They said to him, "We can."
Jesus said to them, "The chalice that I drink, you will drink,
and with the baptism with which I am baptized, you will be baptized;
but to sit at my right or at my left is not mine to give
but is for those for whom it has been prepared."
When the ten heard this, they became indignant at James and John.
Jesus summoned them and said to them,
"You know that those who are recognized as rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them,
and their great ones make their authority over them felt.
But it shall not be so among you.
Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you will be your servant;
whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all.
For the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve
and to give his life as a ransom for many."


Written by: Fr. Anthony Dinh Minh Tien, O.P.

 

I. THEME: People shall reveive a result according to the way they live.

            Understanding is very important because whatever people know they shall believe as such. Next, whatever people believe they shall live according to that; however, there is one exception: sometimes they don’t live up to what they believe because of the weakness of their flesh. Lastly, depending on the way which people live, they shall receive the corresponding result. Some people propose a very dangerous argument, they say that they don’t need to know because they shall be sinful if they don’t do according to what they know! These people forgot that even though they might not be sinful, but they still have to endure punishment. For example, if a driver runs a red light and is caught by a police, he must be responsible for the traffic ticket no matter what he knows the law or not. Similarly in the ultimate goal of human life, people shall come to the final destination no matter what they know or not, and be responsible for what they did in their present life. Therefore, everyone needs to study what is their final destination and how to attain that destination.

            Today readings want to guide people on the way of truth so that they know how to live according to it and to attain good results as God predestines them for. In the first reading, the author let people know how God wants to save people from sins and death by the precious blood poured out by His son, Jesus Christ, so people know how to live according to His love in order to attain eternal life. In the Gospel, Jesus must correct his disciples when they paid attention to power. He emphasized on sacrifice and service as the way to share glory with him in the kingdom of God.

             

II. ANALYSIS:

1/ Reading I: You were saved by the precious blood of Christ as of a spotless unblemished lamb.

1.1/ The futile life handed on by your ancestors: The author reminded his faithful of their former life before they conversed and believed in Christ. His intention was to teach them that they must not only believe but also to practice what Christ has taught them. A comparison between the two ways of life shall clarify the author’s intention.

            (1) According to falsity: To most of the Gentiles, death is the end. This belief is false and opposite with God’s will. The Greek is better because they know how to reason: the body shall be dissolved because it is composed by material things; the soul is immortal because it isn’t made by material things. But they can’t explain their relationship with each other.

            (2) Oriented only to the present life: If death is the end; people shall center their life on this present world and find all possible ways to fully enjoy this life. They shall fight to have power, fame and material gains to support their life of pleasure.

            (3) Lead to competition and division: In order to attain what they desire, they shall use all possible ways without thinking of justice, charity or unity.

            The result of this futile life, according to the author, “All flesh is like grass, and all its glory like the flower of the field; the grass withers, and the flower wilts.”  

1.2/ The meaningful life taught and exemplified by Christ:

            (1) According to the truth: The author abbreviated God’s plan of salvation on Christ’s salvific event. He wrote: “You were ransomed from your futile conduct, handed on by your ancestors, not with perishable things like silver or gold but with the precious blood of Christ as of a spotless unblemished lamb. He was known before the foundation of the world but revealed in the final time for you, who through him believe in God who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.” The author emphasized on the continuity of God’s words since His words are the truth and shall remain for ever.

            (2) Oriented to the next life: Since Jesus died and resurrected, death isn’t the end. The believers can hope for eternal life because Christ has brought it for them. To attain it, they must practice what Christ taught them.

            (3) Centered on fraternal love: When people believed in the eternal life, they shouldn’t spend all their time and effort for the material life, but must primarily use them for the next life. The most important virtue that people should develop is charity. The author advised, “Since you have purified yourselves by obedience to the truth for sincere mutual love, love one another intensely from a pure heart. You have been born anew, not from perishable but from imperishable seed, through the living and abiding word of God.”

2/ Gospel: “Whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all.”

            This is the third time Mark reported that Jesus foretold what shall happen to him in Jerusalem: “Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be handed over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death and hand him over to the Gentiles who will mock him, spit upon him, scourge him, and put him to death, but after three days he will rise.” After the first time of Jesus’ prediction, Peter advised him to forfeit his plan to go up to Jerusalem. After the second time of Jesus’ prediction, the apostles argued to see who shall be the most important person among them when Jesus reigns.

2.1/ The worldly way: Like most of human beings, Jesus apostles were influenced by the worldly way which can be outlined as follows:

            (1) Thirst for power and fame: After Jesus’ third time prediction, two of Zebedee’s sons, John and James went up to Jesus and said, "Grant that in your glory we may sit one at your right and the other at your left." They desired power because they wanted to be famous and served. However, they were ready to share in Jesus’ Passion, not only his glory.

            (2) Cause jealousy and competition: When people desire something and don’t get it, they are jealous of those who have it. Mark reported this reaction from the apostles: “When the ten heard this, they became indignant at James and John.” The became indignant because all of them wanted the same thing. If James and John possess the two most important seats, where shall they seat? They also gave up everything to follow Jesus!

            (3) Lead to failure and division: Jesus foresaw what shall happen if his apostles keep fighting for power and position. They shall be divided and not remember to preach the Good News, his mission shall come to an end and salvation shall not be reached to all people.

2.2/ The way of Christ’s disciples: Jesus summoned them and taught them three important lessons:

            (1) Not to follow the worldly way: “You know that those who are recognized as rulers over the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones make their authority over them felt. But it shall not be so among you.”

            (2) Serve others: “Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you will be your servant; whoever wishes to be first among you will be the slave of all.”

            (3) Imitate Christ: “For the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many."

           

III. APPLICATION IN LIFE:                     

            - We need to learn Scripture to know God’s will for human beings. If not, we can easily follow the worldly and the devil’s way.

            - To attain salvation, we must do what God wants. If not, we shall receive the result for those who disobey Him.

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