"...according to his conduct"
In the first reading (Deuteronomy 4:32-40), Moses tells the people:
You must keep his statutes and commandments
which I enjoin on you today,
that you and your children after you may prosper,
and that you may have long life on the land
which the LORD, your God, is giving you forever.
In the Gospel (Matthew 16:24-28), our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ warns that when he returns in glory, “he will repay each according to his conduct.”
He also says,
Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself,
take up his cross, and follow me.
For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it,
but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
Today’s readings also remind us of the Lord’s awesome power and the care He shows for His people.
Ask now of the days of old, before your time,
ever since God created man upon the earth;
ask from one end of the sky to the other:
Did anything so great ever happen before?
Was it ever heard of?
Did a people ever hear the voice of God
speaking from the midst of fire, as you did,
Or did any god venture to go
a nd take a nation for himself
from the midst of another nation,
by testings, by signs and wonders, by war,
with his strong hand and outstretched arm,
and by great terrors,
all of which the LORD, your God,
did for you in Egypt before your very eyes?
All this you were allowed to see
that you might know the LORD is God
and there is no other.
Our actions indeed have consequences, for good or for ill.
Yet thanks be to God, for He not only holds us accountable, He also extends to us infinite forgiveness, mercy, and grace.
Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, be merciful to me – a sinner.