Tuesday, February 13, 2018

James 1:12-18, Psalm 94:12-15, 18-19, Mark 8:14-21


Whoever loves me will keep my word, says the Lord;
and my Father will love him
and we will come to him. Jn 14:23

James 1:12-18, Psalm 94:12-15, 18-19, Mark 8:14-21

James 1:12-18

Blessed is he who perseveres in temptation,
for when he has been proven he will receive the crown of life 
that he promised to those who love him.
No one experiencing temptation should say,
"I am being tempted by God";
for God is not subject to temptation to evil,
and he himself tempts no one.
Rather, each person is tempted when lured and enticed by his desire.
Then desire conceives and brings forth sin,
and when sin reaches maturity it gives birth to death.

Do not be deceived, my beloved 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.

Dear Love, Beloved of my soul,

St. James speaks in no nonsense terms. He gives us the truth straight  and without frills and it will be to our good if we receive it, meditate on it, and practice it. No excuse is  acceptable when we sin and we can blame no one for our faults and failures to fight against temptation. We are tempted because of concupiscence, we succumb because our flesh and will are weak making it difficult for us to fight against the lure of sin. But he assures us that each time are successful in resisting temptation we will grow strong. 

He goes on to say that if we fool ourselves into believing that our progress in virtue is due to our own strength we deceive ourselves. On our own we can do nothing except choose evil and fall by the wayside. However, if we do grow in grace and virtue we must humbly, thankfully, and graciously acknowledge that it is the Father who give His children every good and perfect gift because He loves us and desires that we  share in His marvelous goodness. 

Psalm 94:12-15, 18-19

Blessed the man you instruct, O Lord.
Blessed the man whom you instruct, O LORD,
whom by your law you teach,
Giving him rest from evil days. 
R. Blessed the man you instruct, O Lord.
For the LORD will not cast off his people,
nor abandon his inheritance;
But judgment shall again be with justice,
and all the upright of heart shall follow it. 
R. Blessed the man you instruct, O Lord.
When I say, "My foot is slipping,"
your mercy, O LORD, sustains me;
When cares abound within me,
your comfort gladdens my soul. 

R. Blessed the man you instruct, O Lord.

Mark 8:14-21

The disciples had forgotten to bring bread,
and they had only one loaf with them in the boat.
Jesus enjoined them, "Watch out,
guard against the leaven of the Pharisees
and the leaven of Herod." 
They concluded among themselves that
it was because they had no bread.
When he became aware of this he said to them,
"Why do you conclude that it is because you have no bread?
Do you not yet understand or comprehend?
Are your hearts hardened?
Do you have eyes and not see, ears and not hear?
And do you not remember,
when I broke the five loaves for the five thousand,
how many wicker baskets full of fragments you picked up?"
They answered him, "Twelve."
"When I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand,
how many full baskets of fragments did you pick up?"
They answered him, "Seven."

He said to them, "Do you still not understand?"

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