Reflection Thursday Week 4 Year C- Fr. Michael U. Udoekpo
Readings: Hebrews 12:18-19,21-24; Ps 48:2-3ab,3cd-4,9,10-11 and Mark 6:7-13
Through Christ we belong to a Spiritual Kingdom
In the readings of today we see the contrast between Mount Sinai and Mount Zion., between the old covenant and the new covenant. We learn that through Christ we belong to a spiritual and eternal kingdom, a kingdom of the new covenant. And this could be challenging in a materialistic and individualistic age that we live in.
Jesus in the Gospel summoning the Twelve sent them out two by two and gave them power over unclean spirit. It makes sense to work as a group, in company with others. He did not send them out one by one, but two by two- unity, community. They were to travel light no sandals, food, sacks, no money, but a walking stick, a symbol of Christ’s authority and his love. You can imagine it would not be quite easy to leave one’s home without sufficient money and other material things.
Similar picture is painted in the community of the writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews. Everything surrounding Judaism: Mount Sinai, Moses and the law, the temple, the furnishing of the sanctuary, the Holy of Holies, the sacrifices, vengeance, retribution, the trumpet, the image of the voice of the Lord and the unapproachability of the divine presence.
These would have to be reassessed. It was not easy for these early Jewish Christian community to abandoned this religion to follow a new way of Christ of grace and pardon, detachment, “turn the other cheek”, peace, love, forgiveness, no matter how many times you are being offended, welcome everyone , men women and children around the same table. These are the qualities of the citizens of the eternal kingdom, the city of the living God.
As children of the Spiritual kingdom, what prevents us today from making it to this kingdom, or keeping our citizenship intact- money, power, material wealth, and clothing, 'second tunics" cars, houses, lack of communal spirit and forgiveness, the longing for vengeance always, or selfishness?