A Penitent Blogger

Mindful of my imperfections, seeking to know Truth more deeply and to live Love more fully.

Quid sum miser tunc dicturus? Quem patronum rogaturus? Cum vix iustus sit securus?
Recordare, Iesu pie, Quod sum causa tuae viae: Ne me perdas illa die...

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Don’t dis the Jews

At the very beginning, a line was drawn: those who believed in Jesus as the Messiah and those who did not.

At the very beginning, St. Peter – entrusted with the keys of the kingdom of heaven – spoke of Jesus in these very clear words (Acts 4:12):

There is salvation in no one else,
for there is no other name under heaven given among men
by which we must be saved.

Sadly, at the very beginning, some of those believed in Jesus spoke and acted haughtily toward those who did not believe in Jesus, most especially toward those Jews who failed to recognize him as the Messiah he is.

In today’s first reading (Romans 11:1-2a, 11-12, 25-29), St. Paul speaks strongly in opposition to those who consider themselves wise in their own estimation in comparison to the Jews.

St. Paul makes it clear that this unbelief of Israel is only temporary and that it is wrapped up in God’s great and mysterious plan for the salvation of Jew and Gentile alike.

So do not become haughty,” he says in the full text of this chapter (verse 20c), “but stand in awe.”

This resonates with our Lord’s great saying at the end of today’s Gospel (Luke 14:1, 7-11):

For everyone who exalts himself
will be humbled,
but the one who humbles himself

will be exalted.

Although we believe in Jesus, the only Savior, yet we remain totally dependent on his grace. We of ourselves therefore have no cause to boast and certainly no justification to be disrespectful of the covenant, the gifts, and the call that God gave to the Jews.

The Jews remain God’s beloved, “for the gifts and the call of God are irrevocable”, even if they do not yet recognize the voice of God’s beloved, only begotten Son.

We who have been blessed to accept Jesus
must therefore respect our elder brethren the Jews,
even as we continue to proclaim to all people everywhere
the truth of Jesus as Savior
and pray that they may soon be blessed
as we ourselves have been undeservedly blessed
by the grace of Christ.