One Monk of the Order of Saint Benedict

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The Word of God and the Body of God reveal each other -- the homily worships both.

July 18, 2008

For Friday of the Fifteenth Ordinary Week of the Church Year

Matthew 12:1-8
Isaiah 38:1-6,21-22,7-8

In the first reading we see God move heaven and earth so that sunlight and shadow dance backwards for ten steps of the day.
In the beginning, the Lord God moved heaven and earth to make man on the sixth day of the week that English calls “Friday.”
Seeing “everything that he had made” in six days, the Lord God passed judgment; and his judgment was that “it was very good” [Gn. 1:31].
Then God made the seventh day, and he “blessed the seventh day and hallowed it” [Gn. 2:3] to be shabbát— his day of “rest”— the Sabbath.
For six days God was “useful.”
On his day of rest, we are not to treat him as “useful”— as if his purpose is to do things for us.
Instead we do well to thank and worship him for all that he has already done.
Furthermore, God also wants man to rest on the Sabbath.
So the Sabbath is the day of mindfulness that God has not made us to be useful to him.
It is also the day to be mindful that our fellow men do not exist to be useful to us.
Sabbath is for appreciation and thanksgiving all around, a day of dignity, God’s dignity and man’s.
In the Lord Jesus Christ, God’s dignity moved heaven, earth and the Sabbath for the sake of remaking man’s dignity and joining it to God.
After a Sabbath rest, the united dignity of God and man rose from the dead in the Lord Jesus Christ.
In the risen Flesh and Blood of Christ, creation is no longer merely “very good,” but has risen from the dead and sits at the right hand of the Father.
God now entitles us kings like David, to eat and drink even from his altar where the Sabbath is always real.
We are not useful to God.
Rather, we are dignified in his sight.
Let us live up to it with thanksgiving and virtue, lest we forever trample God’s dignity and our own.

That God Be Glorified in All


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