Thursday – September 13, 2012
23rd Week in Ordinary Time
1st Reading: 1 Cor 8:1–7, 11–13
Regarding meat from the offerings to idols, we know that all of us have knowledge but knowledge puffs up, while love builds. If anyone thinks that he has knowledge, he does not yet know as he should know, but if someone loves (God), he has been known (by God).
Can we, then, eat meat from offerings to the idols? We know that an idol is without existence and that there is no God but one. People speak indeed of other gods in heaven and on earth and, in this sense, there are many gods and lords. Yet for us, there is but one God, the Father, from whom everything comes, and to whom we go. And there is one Lord, Christ Jesus, through whom everything exists and through him we exist.
Not everyone, however, has that knowledge. For some persons, who until recently took the idols seriously, that food remains linked to the idol and eating of it stains their conscience which is unformed.
Then with your knowledge you would have caused your weak brother or sister to perish, the one for whom Christ died. When you disturb the weak conscience of your brother or sister and sin against them, you sin against Christ himself. Therefore, if any food will bring my brother to sin, I shall never eat this food lest my brother or sister fall.
Gospel: Luke 6:27-38
Jesus said to his disciples, “But I say to you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you and pray for those who treat you badly. To the one who strikes you on the cheek, turn the other cheek; from the one who takes your coat, do not keep back your shirt. Give to the one who asks and if anyone has taken something from you, do not demand it back.
“Do to others as you would have others do to you. If you love only those who love you, what kind of graciousness is yours? Even sinners love those who love them. If you do favors to those who are good to you, what kind of graciousness is yours? Even sinners do the same. If you lend only when you expect to receive, what kind of graciousness is yours? For sinners also lend to sinners, expecting to receive something in return.
“But love your enemies and do good to them, and lend when there is nothing to expect in return. Then will your reward be great and you will be sons and daughters of the Most High. For he is kind towards the ungrateful and the wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
“Don’t be a judge of others and you will not be judged; do not condemn and you will not be condemned; forgive and you will be forgiven; give and it will be given to you, and you will receive in your sack good measure, pressed down, full and running over. For the measure you give will be the measure you receive back.”
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