August 25th, 2019 - 21st Sunday in Ordinary Time
This week the heart of the message is universal acceptance into the Kingdom of God. Both the reading from Isaiah and the Gospel according to Luke draw our attention to this fact and both emphasize "all your brothers and sisters" coming to the Lord from all points of the compass and further emphasizes that no one should be complacent about their inclusion in that kingdom because some people who believe themselves to be "first" will in fact be last and vice versa. The door is open to those who come early, and to those who come late.
In the reading from Isaiah the "brothers and sisters from all nations" refer to the Jews scattered and brought back to Jerusalem. When God proclaims that from these scattered Jews He will make some of the priests and Levites this exemplifies that salvation is meant for ALL. This concept is strengthened by the Gospel when we understand that no one may presume to be guaranteed entrance to the Kingdom, and that some who assume they will, may be disappointed to find themselves on the outside.
The door is open to all, but the path and the gate are narrow. It is easy to fall away from the path that leads to the gate. So, while scripture emphasizes the acceptance of everyone to the kingdom, it also emphasizes that the way is not easy. Jesus is the WAY, the TRUTH and the LIGHT. Remember that no one comes to the Father except through Jesus. If you focus on Jesus and on reaching Him, your feet can remain on the path of righteousness. Without Jesus, you may become lost and stray away from the path. Follow the Light, seek the Truth and you will find the Way to Jesus and the Kingdom of God!
This week's Psalm, #117: Go Out to All the World (and tell the Good News!) gives us our directive from God!
Have a blessed week!