Sunday, September 26, 2010
Echoes Of Abraham
"If they will not listen to Moses and the prophets,
neither will they be persuaded if someone should rise from the dead."
There is much that can be reflected upon in today's Gospel, but the part of this passage that always seems to speak loudest to me is the very end. Those last two lines seem to sum up not only the entire passage, but also our world today. Abraham's words have echoed down through the ages.
Looking around our world today, many live or at least think that they want to live as the rich man. In doing so many of them see no reason to believe in God, or the ones that say they believe have little to no room for Him in their lives because those lives are too full of the world.
The Lazarus's of this world are quite often scorned, marginalized and cast aside. In today's Gospel passage, Lazarus has nothing in worldly material terms, but he has more than the eye can see and something more valuable than the world can give; He has faith.
It is only at the end of the rich man's life that he sees what his riches have cost him. It seems a case of " a little too little too late." In pleading with Father Abraham to send someone from the dead to warn his brothers, the rich man now knows that living according to the world can have dire consequences.
So many in our own times are on this same road and like the rich man do not see or care about the consequences until perhaps it is too late. One has come back from the dead to tell them and all of us how we should live. Yet despite Jesus' resurrection, many still choose not to believe.
I am not saying that there is anything intrinsically wrong with having much materially, but if it causes a lack of faith, it puts a person on a road to disaster. We don't need to necessarily be physically poor, but we do need to be poor in spirit. We need to know that without God we are and have nothing. Only God can make us rich in the only way that matters.
For some not Moses, the prophets or even Jesus Himself rising from the dead can make them believe.
Let us pray for those who feel that the only happiness comes from this world; that they may open their hearts to God and dedicate their lives to Him. For those of us who do believe and have been given the gift of faith, may our conversions continue and our faith increase and deepen.
Psalm 45: Canticle of Love to the King
My heart overflows with a good theme;
I address my verses to the King;
My tongue is the pen of a ready writer.
You are fairer than the sons of men;
Grace is poured upon Your lips;
Therefore God has blessed You forever.
Gird Your sword on Your thigh, O Mighty One,
In Your splendor and Your majesty!
And in Your majesty ride on victoriously,
For the cause of truth and meekness and righteousness;
Let Your right hand teach You awesome things.
Your arrows are sharp;
The peoples fall under You;
Your arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.
Your throne, O God, is forever and ever;
A scepter of uprightness is the scepter of Your kingdom.
You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of joy above Your fellows.
All Your garments are fragrant with myrrh and aloes and cassia;
Out of ivory palaces stringed instruments have made You glad.
Kings’ daughters are among Your noble ladies;
At Your right hand stands the queen in gold from Ophir.