“It is not right for you to be married to your brother’s wife!” (Mk 6:18)
Today’s Passages: Mk 6:14-29; Heb 13:1-8
Meditation: Today’s meditation verse manifests the prophetic voice of John the Baptist against King Herod. We also have heard or said this sort of statements in our own lives: “It is not right for you…” On hearing this, people might have reacted or responded in a negative manner for they felt it a mere criticism or judgment. Jesus has well said in his sermon on the mount, “Do not judge others, so that God will not judge you, for God will judge you in the same way as you judge others, and he will apply to you the same rules you apply to others.” (Mt 7:1, 2)
What does make, then, a prophecy different from a mere judgment or criticism? From the biblical understanding of prophecy we know that a prophet is chosen by God, purified from all his sins, anointed by God, equipped with the word of God, and sent out to proclaim it. In other words, he is God’s spokesman. He is only to announce others God’s judgment or will, not his personal view or understanding. Put it in other way, there is no room for his personal interests.
When we judge others, the norm often becomes our will and liking. In the first book of Samuel, we find a beautiful picture of this understanding and judging. After the rejection of Saul as the king of Israel, God wanted to give a new king to his people and Samuel was sent to the house of Jesse in view of selecting the future king. When Jesse brought before Samuel his sons, he was really confused for all of them, one after the other, appeared worthy.
Each time his decision was rejected by God for his judgment was not right. The Lord said to Samuel, “Do not judge from his appearance or from his lofty stature, because I have rejected him. Not as man sees does God see, because man sees the appearance but the Lord looks into the heart.” (1 Sam 16:7) Therefore, first let us not judge each other that we may not be judged by God. Secondly, let us surrender ourselves to the will of God, listen to and obey to the prophetic voice of God that is spoken in and through our conscience.
Prayer: Lord God, we thank you and praise you for your daily eternal bread. Lord, help us to listen to this word and live accordingly: “Remember your former leaders, who spoke God’s message to you. Think back on how they lived and died, and imitate their faith.” (Heb 13:7) Give your Spirit and guide each one of us that we may not follow the ways of Herod and Herodias. We ask for this grace through Christ our Lord. Amen!
Greetings: God is with you! Wish you a blissful Friday!