Regularity and Pretensions

26 June 2008 Thursday of the 12th Week in Ordinary Time
Matthew 7, 21-29 Regularity

We always wondered why there were many reports of miracles during ancient times than today. Was the Lord more present before than the present age? Ancient peoples regarded every single --- and common --- sickness as the work of demons. When one got sick, a part of the person’s body succumbed to the demon that maligned it. Ancient Egyptians drew several entry points in our bodies where demons entered and left. There was no scientific studies then. Imagine every cure we had of headaches, stomachaches, colds, flu, etc. The frequency of our cures was equal to the frequency of miracles. Therefore, many inauthentic prophet could pose as a miracle worker.

A man named Celsus attributed the miracles of Jesus to the god Apollo. And Origen, one of the early fathers of the Church, defended the authenticity of Jesus’ miracles, though not denying the existence of them. He said that every cure was neither good nor bad but could be done by both the godless and honest people.

How do we know that a person is not pretentious? The test is fidelity. There is always a limit to pretension. After some time, we become exhausted from acting. When a person professes love to you, you can measure the sincerity of that love by the regularity of love expressions. It can be in the constancy of his visits, or the consistency of his words and actions. In the past, suitors are tested by serving the family for a long period of time. If the devotion does not wear out, then the love is authentic and true. Jesus said that not anyone who says, “Lord, Lord” will enter the kingdom of heaven. Some can easily show to other people that they have been converted to great faith by their pious words but if the words are not translated to deeds, then their words are empty.

How do you show your sincerity to God? Do you do things --- such as worship --- persistently and regularly? Do you go to Sunday mass rain or shine? Or do you go only when you feel like it?

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