Today’s passage starts with a “Verse Before the Gospel”: “Blessed are they who have kept the word with a generous heart and yield a harvest through perseverance.” The Gospel then recounts how a crowd who heard these words is gathered, and they disagree on who the speaker really is. Some said He was “truly the prophet” but others disagreed and said that He was “the Christ.” The debate was not settled, but the guards went to the chief priests and Pharisees who then asked them, “Why did you not bring him?” The guards answered, “Never before has anyone spoken like this man.”
I am struck with the fact that the crowd is working so hard to figure out who this man from Galilee is, and even the guards tell the chief priests that “never before has anyone spoken like this man.” Who IS this man who tells the world that those who persevere and have “kept the word with a generous heart” shall be blessed? This is an extraordinary message for the time. Never before has anyone spoken like this. How are they to react? How are we to react?
I am awed by Christ’s message and other faithful Christians in the world with such generous and patient hearts, and I am grateful for the light they have brought into this world.
Lord of all generosity and Lord of all kindliness, help my heart to be more patient and generous every day. Help us to be more unconditional in our love and to more closely follow You wherever You may lead. Amen.
Vince Bolduc, Professor of Sociology
First Reading: Jeremiah 11:18-20
Psalm 7:2-3, 9b-12
Gospel: John 7:40-53Daily Scripture readings can be found online at the USCCB website