Our site uses cookies to improve the user experience and we recommend accepting its use to take full advantage of the navigation

Contemplating today's Gospel

Today's Gospel + homily (in 300 words)

Friday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

1st Reading (2Cor 4:7-15): Brothers and sisters: We hold this treasure in earthen vessels, that the surpassing power may be of God and not from us. We are afflicted in every way, but not constrained; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying about in the Body the dying of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our body. For we who live are constantly being given up to death for the sake of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh.

So death is at work in us, but life in you. Since, then, we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, AI believed, therefore I spoke, we too believe and therefore speak, knowing that the one who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and place us with you in his presence. Everything indeed is for you, so that the grace bestowed in abundance on more and more people may cause the thanksgiving to overflow for the glory of God.
Responsorial Psalm: 115
R/. To you, Lord, I will offer a sacrifice of praise.
I believed, even when I said, «I am greatly afflicted»; I said in my alarm, «No man is dependable».

Precious in the eyes of the Lord is the death of his faithful ones. O Lord, I am your servant; I am your servant, the son of your handmaid; you have loosed my bonds.

To you will I offer sacrifice of thanksgiving, and I will call upon the name of the Lord. My vows to the Lord I will pay in the presence of all his people.
Versicle before the Gospel (Phil 2:15.16): Alleluia. Shine like lights in the world, as you hold on to the word of life. Alleluia.
Gospel text (Mt 5,27-32): Jesus said to his disciples: «You have heard that it was said: ‘Do not commit adultery’. But I tell you this: anyone who looks at a woman to lustfully has in fact already committed adultery with her in his heart. So, if your right eye causes you to sin, pull it out and throw it away! It is much better for you to lose a part of your body than to have your whole body thrown into hell. If your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away! It is better for you to lose a part of your body than to have your whole body thrown into hell.

»It was also said: ‘anyone who divorces his wife must give her a written notice of divorce’. But what I tell you is this: If a man divorces his wife except in the case of unlawful union, he causes her to commit adultery. And the man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery».

«Anyone who looks at a woman to lustfully has in fact already committed adultery»

Fr. Pablo CASAS Aljama (Sevilla, Spain)

Today Jesus speaks clearly to us about indissoluble love, the fruit of chaste love (“ecological”, with respect for nature). As Pope Francis stated, "the sanctity and indissolubility of Christian marriage, which often disintegrates under the tremendous pressure of the secular world, must be deepened by clear doctrine and supported by the testimony of committed married couples." Unfortunately, today, it can be a controversial subject, because it seems that living chastity and the virtue of holy purity in the middle of this world remains as something outdated, or could even take away our freedom.

Our "eyes" also speaks about what’s in our hearts. The gaze of the spouses, for example, must be an expression of a chaste and pure love that lasts forever. "Anyone who looks at a woman to lust after her has already committed adultery with her in his heart" (Mt 5:28).

This purity of heart is expressed by treating our body with dignity: Saint Paul says "Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit" (1Cor 6:19). Today's Gospel must lead us to understand the sacredness of marriage. It is not about understanding the Gospel in a literal way, since losing an eye or a hand does not exempt us from sinning and it would also be another bad addition. The meaning of the words of Jesus is about the sacrifice to be faithful to the project of fidelity to God, until living the marriage for what was created and then elevated to a sacrament (for Christians).

Jesus wants to restore the divine law to its strength, and says: "Everyone who divorces his wife (...)makes her commit adultery" (Mt 5:32). With these words he shows us to what extent each one is responsible for the holiness of his husband / wife. We are called to be "one" in the holy marriage. It is true that marriage is often not an easy thing: living with holiness implies the cross ... "Love does not leave us indifferent", Benedict XVI would say.

«Anyone who looks at a woman to lustfully has in fact already committed adultery»

+ Fr. Josep LIÑÁN i Pla SchP (Sabadell, Barcelona, Spain)

Today, Jesus keeps digging deeper on the demands of the Sermon on the Mount. He does not abolish the Law; on the contrary, He brings the Law to its fullness; thus, the observance of the Law is not just supposed to be the simple fulfillment of some minimum conditions to put our house in order. God's Law of Love is given to us for us to reach the summit, but, somehow, we manage to transform it into the law of minimum effort. God is so exacting...! Yes, maybe, but He also has given us the maximum, for He has given Himself to us!

Today, Christ aims high and points out his authority over the sixth and ninth Commandments, those referring to our sexuality and to our purity of thought. Sexuality is our language to express love and alliance; consequently, we cannot trivialize it, nor can we use the other person as an object to selfishly gratify one's pleasure, not even in our thinking! Hence, Jesus' stern assertion: «Anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has in fact already committed adultery with her in his heart» (Mt 5:28). We must, therefore, cut out the root of all evil and avoid those thoughts and occasions that would lead us to do what God does not want us to; this is what these words, that may look so radical and exaggerated to us, actually mean; yet, words, those who listened to Jesus, did understand in its expressivity: pull out, cut off, throw away...

Last, but not least, the dignity of the sacrament of matrimony must always be protected, as it is part of God's project regarding man and woman, who, through love and mutual deliverance, become one flesh; and, at the same time, it is sign and participation of Christ's covenant with the Church. A Christian cannot live the man-woman relationship, nor his conjugal life, dominated by the allurements this world: «Don't believe that because you are married you can keep a mundane life and let yourself go to a life of loafing and laziness; on the contrary, you must work more intently, and watch more carefully over your salvation» (St. Basil).