Sunday, September 2, 2012 Weekly Readings


Reading 1 Dt 4:1-2, 6-8

Moses said to the people:
“Now, Israel, hear the statutes and decrees
which I am teaching you to observe,
that you may live, and may enter in and take possession of the land
which the LORD, the God of your fathers, is giving you.
In your observance of the commandments of the LORD, your God,
which I enjoin upon you,
you shall not add to what I command you nor subtract from it.
Observe them carefully,
for thus will you give evidence
of your wisdom and intelligence to the nations,
who will hear of all these statutes and say,
‘This great nation is truly a wise and intelligent people.’
For what great nation is there
that has gods so close to it as the LORD, our God, is to us
whenever we call upon him?
Or what great nation has statutes and decrees
that are as just as this whole law
which I am setting before you today?”
(God gave Moses both passwords and operating instructions so that those who would be saved could access Him.  He did this not only for the Twelve Tribes, but also, for the other nations, whose people He hoped would learn and believe from their example.
This is, of course, applicable to us in our lives, who have been given even more powerful passwords and more profound operating instructions so that we can both save our own souls and bring others to salvation, as well.)

Responsorial Psalm Ps 15:2-3, 3-4, 4-5

R. (1a) One who does justice will live in the presence of the Lord.
Whoever walks blamelessly and does justice;
who thinks the truth in his heart
and slanders not with his tongue.
R. One who does justice will live in the presence of the Lord.
Who harms not his fellow man,
nor takes up a reproach against his neighbor;
by whom the reprobate is despised,
while he honors those who fear the LORD.
R. One who does justice will live in the presence of the Lord.
Who lends not his money at usury
and accepts no bribe against the innocent.
Whoever does these things
shall never be disturbed.
R. One who does justice will live in the presence of the Lord.
(God has given us operating instructions that, if followed, will let us be with God, in Heaven forever.  We are to go through life without sinning.  We are to think the truth within us, and not demean our neighbors.  We must not harm our neighbors, nor should we dislike them.  Sinners should despise us and we should honor those who praise God.  We must not lend at interest and must take no bribe to hurt the innocent.  If we do those things, we will never be disturbed because we will be doing justice, and will live in the presence of the Lord.)
Dearest brothers and sisters:
All good giving and every perfect gift is from above,
coming down from the Father of lights,
with whom there is no alteration or shadow caused by change.
He willed to give us birth by the word of truth
that we may be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.

Humbly welcome the word that has been planted in you
and is able to save your souls.

Be doers of the word and not hearers only, deluding yourselves.

Religion that is pure and undefiled before God and the Father is this:
to care for orphans and widows in their affliction
and to keep oneself unstained by the world.

(All that is good and perfect comes from God, not from created beings.  He does not change, for that/Who changes cannot be perfect.  We are the result of His desire to download us, and then to download access to The Program within us.
Be grateful for, rather than proud of, what He has given you that can save your souls.  Obey His commands.  Don’t let yourself think you can get to Heaven just by listening.  Faith that perfectly reflects God and the father is to take care of widows and orphans and to keep yourself free from sin.)

Gospel Mk 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23

When the Pharisees with some scribes who had come from Jerusalem
gathered around Jesus,
they observed that some of his disciples ate their meals
with unclean, that is, unwashed, hands.
–For the Pharisees and, in fact, all Jews,
do not eat without carefully washing their hands,
keeping the tradition of the elders.
And on coming from the marketplace
they do not eat without purifying themselves.
And there are many other things that they have traditionally observed,
the purification of cups and jugs and kettles and beds. —
So the Pharisees and scribes questioned him,
“Why do your disciples not follow the tradition of the elders
but instead eat a meal with unclean hands?”
He responded,
“Well did Isaiah prophesy about you hypocrites, as it is written:
This people honors me with their lips,
but their hearts are far from me;
in vain do they worship me,
teaching as doctrines human precepts.
You disregard God’s commandment but cling to human tradition.”

He summoned the crowd again and said to them,
“Hear me, all of you, and understand.
Nothing that enters one from outside can defile that person;
but the things that come out from within are what defile.

“From within people, from their hearts,
come evil thoughts, unchastity, theft, murder,
adultery, greed, malice, deceit,
licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, folly.
All these evils come from within and they defile.”

(In every age, those who account themselves holy condemn those who do not obey what are less important rules than those that come from God.  Jesus made it clear that, from the time of the prophets, self-righteous people disregarded God’s rules, preferring to follow human laws and practices.

Jesus made it clear that people are not corrupted by things that happen to them, like getting their hands dirty.  “. . things that come out from within are what defile”.  We are to cleanse ourselves (washed in the Blood of the Lamb), from ” . . . evil thoughts, being unchaste, theft, murder, adultery, greed, malice, deceit, licentiousness, envy, blasphemy, arrogance, folly.  All these evils come from within . . .”  These thoughts corrupt the human program, separating it from The Loving Programmer.”  We are destroyed by what we do, not by what is done to us.

Note:  We should watch out for “folly”.)