Thursday, May 18, 2017

“God gave us free agency, and then gave us the commandments to keep us free.”

Christ said, “I am the Truth”; he did not say “I am the custom.” - St. Toribio: (1900 – 1928: was a Roman Catholic priest and Mexican martyr who died in the Cristero War.)

Gospel Text: (JN 15:9-11)
Jesus said to his disciples:
"As the Father loves me, so I also love you.
Remain in my love.
If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love,
just as I have kept my Father's commandments
and remain in his love.

"I have told you this so that
my joy might be in you and
your joy might be complete."

Jesus’ words—“If you keep my commandments, you will remain in my love”—focus our attention on two of these themes: “my commandments” and “my love”. Sometimes in a culture that encourages us to base our actions on our feelings, and which defines love as nothing more than a feeling, “commandments” and “love” seem directly opposed. Some say, in fact, that the person who truly loves does not need commandments: in this case, we could understand Jesus saying, “If you remain in my love, you will keep my commandments.” But Jesus here says the opposite.

Jesus claims in this verse that if you keep His commandments, you will remain in His love. His commandments are a means to the end of His love. This is not to say that the opposite is not also true. But Jesus’ words today remind us of the importance of His commandments, and that all of His commandments are in fact nothing more than commands to love God fully, and to love one’s neighbor as oneself.

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