Mass Readings & Meditation
Who likes to pay taxes,
** especially when you think they might be**
** unreasonable or unjust?**
Jesus and his disciples were confronted by tax collectors on the issue of tax evasion.
][LEFT] When questioned about paying the temple tax,[/LEFT]
][LEFT] Jesus replied to his disciples: We must pay so as not to cause bad example. [/LEFT]
][LEFT]In fact, ***we must go beyond our duty in order that we may show others what they ought to do.[/LEFT]
The scriptural expression to give no offense
doesn’t refer to insult or annoyance;
rather it means*** to put no stumbling block in***
*** the way of another that would cause them to trip or fall***.
Jesus would not allow himself anything which might possibly be a bad example to someone else.
*][LEFT] Do you evade unpleasant responsibilities or obligations? [/LEFT]
*][LEFT]On three different occasions the Gospels record that Jesus predicted he would endure great suffering through betrayal, rejection, and the punishment of a cruel death.[/LEFT]
The Jews resorted to stoning and the Romans to crucifixion –
][LEFT]the most painful and humiliating death they could devise for criminals they wanted to eliminate. [/LEFT]
][LEFT]No wonder the apostles were greatly distressed at such a prediction![/LEFT]
** If Jesus their Master were put to death, then they would likely receive the same treatment by their enemies.
*][LEFT] Jesus called himself the “Son of Man” because this was a common Jewish title for the Messiah.[/LEFT]
*][LEFT] Why must the Messiah be rejected and killed? [/LEFT]
*][LEFT]Did not God promise that his Anointed One would deliver his people from their oppression and establish a kingdom of peace and justice?
[/LIST][LEFT] The prophet Isaiah had foretold that it was God’s will that the “Suffering Servant” make atonement for sins through his suffering and death.
*][LEFT] Jesus paid the price for our redemption with his blood.[/LEFT]
*][LEFT] Slavery to sin is to want the wrong things and to be in bondage to destructive desires.[/LEFT]
*][LEFT] The ransom Jesus paid sets us free from the worst tyranny possible [/LEFT]
*][LEFT]– the tyranny of sin and the fear of death. [/LEFT]
Jesus’ victory did not end with death but triumphed over the tomb.[/LEFT]
*][LEFT] Jesus defeated the powers of death through his resurrection.[/LEFT]
*][LEFT] Do you want the greatest freedom possible, [/LEFT]
*][LEFT]the freedom to live as God truly meant us to live [/LEFT]
*][LEFT]as his sons and daughters? [/LEFT]
[/LIST]“Lord Jesus, your death brought life and freedom.
May I always walk in that freedom
and be guided by your love and truth
that I may be generous towards all
and give each their due.”