September 24, 2014
Two things I ask of you, deny them not to me before I die: Put falsehood and lying far from me, give me neither poverty nor riches; Prv 30:5-9
When we were kids we used to play a game called ‘Telephone.’ Do you remember it? Of course back then, the telephone was the new, high tech. But sometimes, like our own cell phone service today, the signal didn’t always come out clearly. So someone invented this game called The Telephone Game, where a message would be whispered down a long line of people, from person to person, to see if the last person heard anything close to what the first person said. It usually got so garbled by the end, that it had nothing to do with what was originally whispered.
And there were lots of things that could cause that mix up. Some people may not have whispered clearly enough to be understood. Some people may not have heard it right, or at all. Some people may have lied or invented their own thoughts and words to fill in the blanks, or to try to make the message sound more exciting.
And that’s is exactly what God did not want to happen to His Word. So the writer of Proverbs, in his great wisdom, asked two things of God. He asked not to be too Rich, or too Poor. Because he knew that if he was too rich he might forget about God and think that he was a god himself, with the power to lie and to cheat, and to make up his own words. And he also knew that if he was too poor, he might have to resort to stealing and lying just to survive. And again, forget all about his God.
When we think about it, that is exactly why we have our Church and our Bibles. The Bible has God’s Words clearly and concisely written down, so that they cannot be changed. And the Church IS the authority to make sure that those Words are never misinterpreted.
Jesus sent His disciples, the people who He taught directly, to go and to spread the Good News of His Kingdom. You see, it was not a telephone message. It was a one-on-one proclamation, as each disciple went from town to town and from house to house, explaining exactly who Jesus was and why He came.
Today we hear God’s Word in Mass, as it’s heard around the world. And it’s proclaimed by the Bishops, and the Priests, and the Deacons who have been taught the importance of making sure that it is always correct.
This is the Word that can heal our troubled conscience. This is the Word that can lead us to living in God’s Kingdom, even today. And this is the Word that will bring us Hope – for Life with Jesus and our loved ones, for eternity.
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