June 28, 2017
(St. Irenaeus, Bishop and Martyr)
Jesus said to his disciples: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but underneath are ravenous wolves. By their fruits you will know them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Just so, every good tree bears good fruit, and a rotten tree bears bad fruit.” Mt_7:15-20
It’s interesting to note how Jesus said that EVERY tree bore fruit, both the bad and the good trees. When we look at this huge instruction book of life that we call the Bible, we come to find that the entire compilation is filled with “the Good” and “the Bad:” Eve and Satan, Noah and the rest of the world, Isaac and Ishmael, Jacob and Esau, Jesus and the Pharisees.
And yet, those goodnesses and badnesses are not always necessarily different people. Every one of us has a little bit of goodness and a little bit of badness within us. The trick is, and what God is trying to teach us through all of those examples, is that the reward, the fruit for goodness is much greater than that for badness. He’s advising us that we have to discern the difference with every choice we make and with every act we do.
And if we’re not sure which choice to make, all we have to do is think about the outcome or the consequence of that choice. Look at the impact – that same choice has had on others who have made it. And by its fruit we will immediately know whether it should be our choice as well.
Behind it all, God is constantly loving us and prompting our choice for goodness, for life, for love and for salvation with Jesus and the Holy Spirit forever. When we choose the goodness, brothers and sisters, when we become those “good trees,” we just might be amazed at the immensity of good fruit we will bear, like the stars in the heavens and the sands on the seashore!
The Lord God took Abram outside and said: “Look up at the sky and count the stars, if you can. Just so,” he added, “shall your descendants be.” Abram put his faith in the LORD, who credited it to him as an act of righteousness. Gn_15:1-12,17-18
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