Fr. Ben’s homily for Friday of the 30th week in Ordinary Time Cycle I
Theme: EVANGELIZING THE ‘PHARISEES’!
By: Ben Agbo (Rev Fr)
Homily for Friday October 29 2021
*Rom 9:1-5, Lk 14:1-6.
The Pharisees were a group of people Jesus did not like at all yet he did not write them off completely. He had to cope with them and even had to eat with them as if they were friends. He looked for every golden opportunity to evangelize them. Whether he succeeded or not, I do not know. But I guess, one of the apostles was a pharisee.
In today’s gospel, he was in one of their houses for dinner. They watched him closely. You know why. A need for healing a man came. It was a sabbath day. He knew their penchant for unnecessary legalistic rubrics. So, he threw them a poser: ‘Is it against the law to cure someone on the sabbath or not?’. But they remained silent. It was an ominous silence. He could read their dissension for his logics.
Lawyers were also there – another group of people he didn’t like because they were often biased. He asked them: ‘Which of you here if his son or ass falls into a well on a sabbath day will not do the hard job of pulling him out?’ His argument was clear: Why wouldn’t he have to do the simple but necessary job of healing the sick man inspite of the sabbath? To this they could find no answer!
Sometimes it is useless trying to preach to or argue with some people about certain issues; whether theological or secular matters – just because their minds are already made up. But since Jesus did not give up trying to evangelize the Pharisees and the Lawyers – biased as they were; and Paul (in today’s 1st reading) did not give up praying for the conversion of his own people – the Jews, we should never give up on that ‘pharisee’. It may be your wife, your husband, your brother/sister, your colleague in the office, your neighbour… Just don’t give up on him or her!
May God bless you today!