Psalter: Week 3
Ps 32:1–2, 5, 7, 11
Lord, forgive the wrong I have done.
1st Reading: 2 S 12:7-10, 13
Nathan said to David, “You are this man! It is Yahweh, God of Israel, who speaks: ‘I anointed you king over Israel and saved you from Saul’s hands; I gave you your master’s house and your master’s wives; I also gave you the nation of Israel and Judah. But if this were not enough, I would have given you even more. Why did you despise Yahweh by doing what displeases him? You struck down Uriah the Hittite with the sword and took his wife for yourself. Yes, you killed him with the sword of the Ammonites. Now the sword will never be far from your family because you have despised me and taken the wife of Uriah the Hittite for yourself.’”
David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against Yahweh.” Nathan answered him, “Yahweh has forgiven your sin; you shall not die.”
2nd Reading: Gal 2:16, 19-21
We know that a person is justified not by practicing the law but by faith in Christ Jesus. So we have believed in Christ Jesus that we may receive true righteousness from faith in Christ Jesus, and not from the practices of the Law, because no one will be justified by the works of the law.
As for me, the very Law brought me to die to the Law, that I may live for God. I am crucified with Christ. Do I live? It is no longer me, Christ lives in me. My life in this body is life through faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me. In this way I don’t ignore the gift of God, for, if justification comes through the practice of the Law, Christ would have died for nothing.
Gospel: Lk 7:36—8:3 (or Lk 7:36-50)
One of the Pharisees asked Jesus to share his meal, so he went to the Pharisee’s home and as usual reclined on the sofa to eat. And it happened that a woman of this town, who was known as a sinner, heard that he was in the Pharisee’s house. She brought a precious jar of perfume and stood behind him at his feet, weeping. She wet his feet with tears, she dried them with her hair and kissed his feet and poured the perfume on them.
The Pharisee who had invited Jesus was watching and thought, “If this man were a prophet, he would know what sort of person is touching him; isn’t this woman a sinner?”
Then Jesus spoke to the Pharisee and said, “Simon, I have something to ask you.” He answered, “Speak, master.” And Jesus said, “Two people were in debt to the same creditor. One owed him five hundred silver coins, and the other fifty. As they were unable to pay him back, he graciously canceled the debts of both. Now, which of them will love him more?”
Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, who was forgiven more.” And Jesus said, “You are right.” And turning toward the woman, he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? You gave me no water for my feet when I entered your house, but she has washed my feet with her tears and dried them with her hair. You didn’t welcome me with a kiss, but she has not stopped kissing my feet since she came in. You provided no oil for my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. This is why, I tell you, her sins, her many sins, are forgiven, because of her great love. But the one who is forgiven little, has little love.”
Then Jesus said to the woman, “Your sins are forgiven.” The others sitting with him at the table began to wonder, “Now this man claims to forgive sins!” But Jesus again spoke to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
Jesus walked through towns andcountryside, preaching and giving the good news of the kingdom of God. The Twelve followed him, and also some women who had been healed of evil spirits and diseases: Mary called Magdalene, who had been freed of seven demons; Joanna, wife of Chuza, Herod’s steward; Suzanna and others who provided for them out of their own funds.
Read: Nathan confronts David regarding the latter’s sins of adultery and murder. David repents, and God forgives him. We are forgiven and redeemed not through the power of the Law, but through the Grace of Christ Crucified. This truth is exemplified through the Gospel event where a sinful woman washes the feet of Jesus with her tears and Jesus declares her to be forgiven, much to the consternation of the Law-professing Pharisee and his cohort.
Reflect: The courage that Nathan had to confront David and bring him to awareness of his sinful ways is commendable. He does so at his own risk. Admirable is David’s humility—instead of wielding his kingly power and silencing the prophet, he acknowledges his sins and tearfully repents. Jesus reveals the compassion of God through his receptive love and forgiveness towards the woman.In contrast to them all is the judgmental and divisive attitude of the Pharisee. Which of these four reflect my nature?
Pray: Lord God, give me the humility of David, the courage of Nathan, and the compassion of your Son so that I may repent of my sins, lead others to repentance, and be gentle with my sisters and brothers.
Listen: Jesus had a few teachable moments with the Pharisee. What is he teaching me today?
Act: I will reach out in forgiveness to a person who has hurt me in the past.
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