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The Everyday Prayer


 
printable version

Icon of the Holy Face
Church of Sant'Egidio, Rome


Reading of the Word of God

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

I am the good shepherd,
my sheep listen to my voice,
and they become
one flock and one fold.
.

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

1 Timothy 6, 3-10

Anyone who teaches anything different and does not keep to the sound teaching which is that of our Lord Jesus Christ, the doctrine which is in accordance with true religion,

is proud and has no understanding, but rather a weakness for questioning everything and arguing about words. All that can come of this is jealousy, contention, abuse and evil mistrust;

and unending disputes by people who are depraved in mind and deprived of truth, and imagine that religion is a way of making a profit.

Religion, of course, does bring large profits, but only to those who are content with what they have.

We brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it;

but as long as we have food and clothing, we shall be content with that.

People who long to be rich are a prey to trial; they get trapped into all sorts of foolish and harmful ambitions which plunge people into ruin and destruction.

'The love of money is the root of all evils' and there are some who, pursuing it, have wandered away from the faith and so given their souls any number of fatal wounds.

 

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

I give you a new commandment,
that you love one another.

Praise to you, o Lord, King of eternal glory

For the third time, the apostle puts Timothy on guard against those who distort the Gospel’s teaching (cf. 1:3-20, 4:1-11). These people separate themselves from the community because they do not follow the "sound words" of the Lord, the only words that are a fountain of salvation, because they free people from sin and death. Those who let their pride prevail will be subjected to them: they will only be able to see themselves. This is the meaning of the blindness about which the apostle is speaking, a blindness that leads to "understanding nothing" and "morbid craving for controversy and for disputes about words." This arrogant and vainglorious behaviour is not harmless. It becomes dangerous for the person who suffers from it and for the community. Pride destroys fraternal love, which should be the community’s greatest value. The bitter fruits of pride are "envy, dissensions, slander, base suspicions, and wrangling." The apostle uses particular force to warn that heretics abuse piety and turn it to their personal advantage. The opposite is true for the disciple: "Godliness is valuable in every way, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come" (4:8). A life guided by evangelical "godliness" is a rich reward for the present age and for eternity. But it always needs to be united to meekness and moderation, keeping itself free from all desire for money and contenting itself with what God has given. In order to underline the right way to deal with worldly possessions, Paul recalls a theme already present in the Scriptures: "For we brought nothing into the world, so that we can take nothing out of it." This is an ancient wise saying that tells us neither to scorn worldly possessions nor to exalt them to the point of becoming their slaves. Whoever amasses riches for him or herself should remember what God tells him or her: "You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?" (Lk 12:20) Paul knows how greed can be poisonous. That is why he does not hesitate to condemn the men and women who are possessed by a greedy desire for wealth and who abandon themselves to it without reservation. This kind of manic desire to amass possessions for oneself is detrimental to those who are its slaves and for others: it leads to the destruction of hearts and lives. Paul is not afraid to say that "the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil." Jesus himself was particularly clear and harsh, "No one can serve two masters" (Mt 6:24). Greed cannot be reconciled with Christian piety or with any kind of life worthy of being called human.


03/22/2012
Memory of the Church


Calendar of the week
DEC
4
Sunday, 4 December
Liturgy of the Sunday
DEC
5
Monday, 5 December
Prayer for the Sick
DEC
6
Tuesday, 6 December
Memory of the Mother of the Lord
DEC
7
Wednesday, 7 December
Memory of the Saints and the Prophets
DEC
8
Thursday, 8 December
Feast of the Immaculate Conception
DEC
9
Friday, 9 December
Memory of Jesus crucified
DEC
10
Saturday, 10 December
Sunday Vigil
DEC
11
Sunday, 11 December
Liturgy of the Sunday

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