11 November 2012
Extracted from the letter of Saint Paul to the Philippians 2:5-11
In your minds you must be the same as Christ Jesus:
His state was divine, yet he did not cling to his equality with God
but emptied himself to assume the condition of a slave,
and became as men are; and being as all men are,
he was humbler yet, even to accepting death, death on a cross.
But God raised him high and gave him the name which is above all other names
so that all beings in the heavens, on earth and in the underworld,
should bend the knee at the name of Jesus and that every tongue should acclaim
Jesus Christ as Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
The aforesaid passage is a hymn of praise to Christ’s humility. It is not to be used as an excuse or justification for any big bully / wicked person, making slaves of other people (Christians or non-Christians), causing them suffering, damage or harm. Reasonably, any person who wants to behave unconscionably would need to prepare to face the undesirable consequences of his wrongdoing etc... So that there could be peace and justice in the society, don’t you think so?
Extracted from Psalm 22:25-31
You are my praise, O Lord, in the great assembly.
My vows I will pay before those who fear the Lord.
The poor shall eat and shall have their fill.
They shall praise the Lord, those who seek him.
May their hearts live for ever and ever!
All the earth shall remember and return to the Lord,
all families of the nations worship before him;
for the kingdom is the Lord’s, he is ruler of the nations.
They shall worship him, all the mighty of the earth.
And my soul shall live for him, my children serve him.
They shall tell of the Lord to generations yet to come,
declare his faithfulness to peoples yet unborn:
‘These things the Lord has done.’
Extracted from the holy Gospel according to Luke 14:15-24
One of those gathered round the table said to Jesus, ‘Happy the man who will be at the feast in the kingdom of God!’
But Jesus said to him, ‘There was a man who gave a great banquet, and he invited a large number of people. When the time for the banquet came, he sent his servant to say to those who had been invited, “Come along: everything is ready now.”
But all alike started to make excuses.
The first said, “I have bought a piece of land and must go and see it. Please accept my apologies.” Another said, “I have bought five yoke of oxen and am on my way to try them out. Please accept my apologies.” Yet another said, “I have just got married and so am unable to come.”
‘The servant returned and reported this to his master.
Then the householder, in a rage, said to his servant, “Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in here the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.”
“Sir” said the servant “your orders have been carried out and there is still room.”
Then the master said to his servant, “Go to the open roads and the hedgerows and force people to come in to make sure my house is full; because, I tell you, not one of those who were invited shall have a taste of my banquet.”
Holy Mass Readings for 6 November 2012:
1st Reading: Philippians 2:5-11 (see above);
Responsorial: Psalm 22:25-31 (see above);
Gospel Reading: Luke 14:15-24 (see above).
After the aforesaid Readings in Holy Mass, a wise and elderly Priest gave a short sermon, we have summarized to share with you:
In the 1st Reading, Saint Paul taught us that the humble Jesus Christ did not selfishly cling to his exalted position of “being in the form of God”, but emptied himself to die as the “Sin Offering” to save us. Obviously, as God himself, Jesus could have escaped the pain and suffering of this infamous death, but he voluntarily died to expiate for all the crimes and sins committed by the entire human race, before his time, during his time and till all eternity until he comes again. That’s how he showed his love to all of us.
This wise Priest also taught us to learn from the Mother of Christ, the Virgin Mary about Humility. When she was praised by her cousin Elizabeth (see Luke Chapter 1 as extracted in Encouragements-1):
'Of all women you are the most blessed, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.
Why should I be honoured with a visit from the mother of my Lord?
Look, the moment your greeting reached my ears, the child in my womb leapt for joy.
Yes, blessed is she who believed that the promise made her by the Lord would be fulfilled.'
Mary responded by giving Praise to God:
‘My soul glorifies the Lord,
my spirit rejoices in God my Saviour;
He looks on his servant in her lowliness; henceforth all ages will call me blessed…’
This wise Priest highlighted that “PRIDE” is the No. 1 Capital Sin according to the Church’s Accredited Interpretation of Christ’s Teaching.
This wise Priest taught us to be humble is to learn from Mary: not to deny the gifts of God when others praise us, but giving thanks & praise to God for all the gifts that He has bestowed to each of us; these obviously include our competence in doing well in our Professional Work, all the talents that He has given us including painting, photography, music etc… God wants us to praise & thank him for all his gifts and use them to serve others to better our society.
Pride – No. 1 Capital Sin?
What’s the Universal Church’s interpretation base on the Teachings of Jesus Christ & the Holy Spirit?
Extracted from Accredited Church Documents:
Pride is the excessive love of one's own excellence. It is ordinarily accounted one of the seven capital sins.
St. Thomas, however, endorsing the appreciation of St. Gregory, considers it the queen of all vices, and puts vainglory in its place as one of the deadly sins. In giving it this pre-eminence he takes it in a most formal and complete signification. He understands it to be that frame of mind in which a man, through the love of his own worth, aims to withdraw himself from subjection to Almighty God, and sets at naught the commands of superiors. It is a species of contempt of God and of those who bear his commission. Regarded in this way, it is of course mortal sin of a most heinous sort. Indeed St. Thomas rates it in this sense as one of the blackest of sins.
By it the creature refuses to stay within his essential orbit; he turns his back upon God, not through weakness or ignorance, but solely because in his self-exaltation he is minded not to submit. His attitude has something Satanic in it, and is probably not often verified in human beings.
A less atrocious kind of pride is that which impels one to make much of oneself unduly and without sufficient warrant, without however any disposition to cast off the dominion of the Creator. This may happen, according to St. Gregory, either because a man regards himself as the source of such advantages as he may discern in himself, or because, whilst admitted that God has bestowed them, he reputes this to have been in response to his own merits, or because he attributes to himself gifts which he has not; or, finally, because even when these are real he unreasonably looks to be put ahead of others.
Supposing the conviction indicated in the first two instances to be seriously entertained, the sin would be a grievous one and would have the added guilt of heresy. Ordinarily, however, this erroneous persuasion does not exist; it is the demeanour that is reprehensible. The last two cases generally speaking are not held to constitute grave offences. This is not true, however, whenever a man's arrogance is the occasion of great harm to another, as, for instance, his undertaking the duties of a physician without the requisite knowledge. The same judgment is to be rendered when pride has given rise to such temper of soul that in the pursuit of its object one is ready of anything, even mortal sin.
Vainglory, ambition, and presumption are commonly enumerated as the offspring vices of pride, because they are well adapted to serve its inordinate aims. Of themselves they are venial sins unless some extraneous consideration puts them in the ranks of grievous transgressions. It should be noted that presumption does not here stand for the sin against hope. It means the desire to essay what exceeds one's capacity.
Important Note: As you are now aware, the aforesaid teaching is not an invention of the Church. The Church is just giving a credited interpretation on the “Teachings of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit”. Thus if you are in anyway disagree, please proceed to challenge Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit of God, we trust that they would be able to enlighten you and clear all your doubts. 8-)
11 November 2012