Monday - Ordinary Time
1) Opening prayer
as you guide creation
to your law of love.
love one another
eternal life prepared for us.
this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
for ever and ever. Amen.
Gospel Reading - Luke 8,16-18
said to his disciples: ‘No one lights a lamp to cover it with a bowl or to put
it under a bed. No, it is put on a lamp-stand so that people may see the light
when they come in. For nothing is hidden but it will be made clear, nothing
secret but it will be made known and brought to light.
care how you listen; anyone who has, will be given more; anyone who has not,
will be deprived even of what he thinks he has.’
Gospel presents three brief phrases pronounced by Jesus. They are phrases
scattered in different places which Luke collected here after the parable of
the seed (Lk 8, 4-8) and of his explanation to the disciples (Lk 8, 9-15). This
literary context, in which Luke places the three phrases, helps us to
understand how he wants people to understand these phrases of Jesus.
• Luke 8,
16: The lamp which gives light. “No one lights a lamp to cover it with a
bowl or to put it under a bed; no, it is put on a lamp-stand so that people may
see the light when they come in. This phrase of Jesus is a brief parable. Jesus
does not explain, because all know what he is speaking about. This belonged to
everyday life. At that time, there was no electric light. Just imagine this!
The family meets at home. The sun begins to set. A person gets up, lights the
lamp, covers it with a vase or places it under the bed. What will the others
say? All will scream out: “But are you crazy... place the lamp on the table!”
In a Biblical meeting somebody made the following comment: The Word of God is a
lamp which is necessary to light in the darkness of the night. If it remains
closed up in the Book of the Bible, it will be like the lamp under a vase. But
when it is placed on the table it gives light to the whole house, when it is
read in community and is connected to life.
• In the
context in which Luke places this phrase, he is referring to the explanation
which Jesus gave about the parable of the seeds (Lk 8, 9-15). It is as if he
would say: the things which you have just heard you should not keep them only
for yourselves, but you should share them with others. A Christian should not
be afraid to give witness and spread the Good News. Humility is important, but
the humility which hides the gifts of God given to edify the community is false
(1Cor 12, 4-26; Rom 12, 3-8).
• Luke 8,
17: That which is hidden will be manifested. “·There is nothing hidden
which will not be manifested, nothing secret which will not be known and
brought to light”. In the context in which Luke places this second phrase of
Jesus, it also refers to the teachings given by Jesus particularly to the
disciples (Lk 8, 9-10). The disciples cannot keep these only for themselves,
but they should diffuse them, because they form part of the Good News which
Jesus has brought.
• Luke 8,
18: Attention to preconceptions. “So take care how you listen, anyone
who has will be given more, anyone who has not, will be deprived even of what
he thinks he has”. At that time, there were many preconceptions on the Messiah
which prevented people from understanding, in a correct way, the Good News of
the Kingdom which Jesus announced. “For this reason, this warning of Jesus concerning
preconceptions is quite actual. Jesus asks the disciples to be aware of the
preconceptions with which they listen to the teaching that he presents. With
this phrase of Jesus, Luke is saying to the communities and to all of us: “Be
attentive to the ideas with which you look at Jesus!” Because if the colour of
the eyes is green, everything will seem to be green. If it were blue,
everything would be blue! If the idea that I have when I look at Jesus is
mistaken, erroneous, everything which I receive and teach about Jesus will be
threatened by error! If I think that the Messiah has to be a glorious King, I
will not want to hear anything which Jesus teaches about the Cross, about
suffering, persecution and about commitment, and to lose even what I thought I
possessed. Joining this third phrase to the first one, I can conclude what
follows: anyone who keeps for himself what he receives and does not distribute
it to others, loses what he has, because it becomes corrupt.
you had any experience of preconceptions which have prevented you from
perceiving and appreciating in their just value, the good things that persons
you perceived the preconceptions which are behind certain stories, accounts and
parables which certain persons tell us?
blessed are those whose way is blameless,
in the Law of Yahweh!
are those who observe his instructions,
him with all their hearts. (Ps 119,1-2)