Posted by: livingscripture | October 14, 2011

Twenty Eighth Friday of Ordinary Time

From the Word of the Day 

“A worker’s wage is credited not as a gift, but as something due.  But when one does not work, yet believes in the one who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness.”

                                        Romans 4: 4-5         

 How should we live this Word

 Grasped by Christ on the road to Damascus, Paul well knows through personal experience that the dominant note of salvation is gratuity.  Marked by that encounter, he declares that he does not know nor wants to know anything other than the Cross of Christ, the most eloquent and incisive sign of love and of a consequent salvation that it totally unmerited.  It is with this enlightened gaze that he reads history, even the one Israel gloried in.  It is a history totally under the sign of gift. 

 

It is in this context that the paragon applied to Abraham is situated, referring to one who does not work and therefore has no right to payment compared to the salary of one who does work.  The patriarch could not boast of any title that gave him the right to salvation.  At the moment of his call, he was an uncircumcised pagan, in total ignorance of the Law that God would give his descendants.  Thus it was impossible for him to observe it.  He opened himself to receive the gift of justification only by blindly entrusting himself to God’s Word, believing in the promises, and hoping against all hope.  Thus he became the father of all believers, our father whose path we must follow in the humble awareness that holiness requires only our trustful adherence to Christ.                                                   

Today in my pause for silent contemplation, I will reflect on the gratuity of the salvation God offers me.

 

Lord, I come to You, begging for light, grace, love.  I come to You, the Source of Life, to drink of Your waters and be regenerated by Your Cross. 

The voice of St. Clement, Apostolic Father 

We, who have been called by the divine will to faith in Jesus Christ, cannot render ourselves just through our wisdom or intelligence, with our piety or our works done with pure hearts.  We are justified by faith.


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