Mass Reading & Meditation for June 12, 2013
Meditation: Matthew 5:17-19
10th Week in Ordinary Time
I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. (Matthew 5:17)
Sometimes we think that Jesus came to earth carrying a big eraser, and that when he redeemed us, he simply wiped out all the commandments of the Old Testament. But just because he spoke harshly to some of the Pharisees, we shouldn’t think he had the same attitude toward the Law that they upheld so rigidly. In fact, Jesus tells us that not only did he come to uphold the Law but that the least transgression against it can make us “least” in his kingdom!
It’s important to know that Jesus didn’t say these words to condemn us but to save us. After all, he came to bring us abundant life, but he knows that in order to experience that life to the full, we need to follow his commandments. Like a parent who is trying to keep us out of trouble, he warns us to be vigilant against sin, because he knows that giving in to temptation will make us anything but happy. He knows that pursuing sin doesn’t really set us free from the Law. It only enslaves us to darkness!
How fortunate we are that Jesus doesn’t just issue warnings from afar! He is with us every day, eager to help us root out sin wherever it shows up. He is with us to prick our consciences so that sin doesn’t gain a foothold. He is there every evening to show us how we might have strayed from his truth and how we can do better tomorrow. And whenever we bring our failings into his light in Reconciliation, he is there to pick us up, wash us clean, and pour out life-changing grace.
No, Jesus didn’t come to abolish the Law. He didn’t come to tell us to just do whatever we think is right. The Ten Commandments still apply to our lives. So too does the command to love God and our neighbor with all our hearts. What is different now is that we have Jesus, the One who has fulfilled the Law, on our side and in our hearts.
May we never forget the treasure that he is—and the power that he offers us!
“Lord Jesus, thank you for fulfilling the Law! Thank you, too, for filling me full of your grace and power. Lord, I want to become like you!”
2 Corinthians 3:4-11; Psalm 99:5-9