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Sunday, October 16, 2005

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29th Sunday Ordinary Time

Isaiah 45:1, 4-6
1 Thessalonians 1:1-5
Psalm 96
Matthew 22:15-21

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"wordy wisdom" (1 cor 1:17)

"Our preaching of the gospel proved not a mere matter of words for you but one of power; it was carried on in the Holy Spirit and out of complete conviction." —1 Thessalonians 1:5

We have never heard, written, or read so many words in all history as we do today. This also applies to the preaching of the gospel. Now we have radio and TV, books and tapes (audio and video) in addition to church services, revivals, renewals, conferences, seminars, and retreats. Never before have so many words fallen on deaf ears. We're not judged on how much of the Bible we know but on whether we obey God's word. One verse a day obeyed is better than a chapter a day that is a mere matter of words.

Jesus says: "Anyone who hears My words but does not put them into practice is like the foolish man who built his house on sandy ground" (Mt 7:26). Jesus warns: "None of those who cry out, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of God but only the one who does the will of My Father in heaven" (Mt 7:21).

The Lord promises: "If only My people would hear Me, and ...walk in My ways, quickly would I humble their enemies; against their foes I would turn My hand" (Ps 81:14-15). The Lord wants to say of our "obedient faith" (Rm 1:5): "Your obedience is known to all, and so I am delighted with you" (Rm 16:19). "Then the God of peace will quickly crush Satan under your feet. May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you" (Rm 16:20).

Prayer:  Lord, when today I hear Your voice, may I harden not my heart (Ps 95:7-8).

Promise:  "You court no one's favor and do not act out of human respect." —Mt 22:16

Praise:  Praise Jesus, the Living Word, Who has crushed Satan underfoot.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape on Obeying God on audio AV 62-3 or video V-62.)

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Daniel E. Pilarczyk, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, April 21, 2005

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