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. Oct 2021 .
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Doctrines & Morals
 
 
Homilies/Reflections

Faith is the Supernatural Gift of God
By REV. FR. SAMUEL FREDERICK

Rom. 3:21-30, Lk. 11:47-54. In today's first reading, Paul describes faith as the gift of God to which is testified to by the Law and Prophets, but is separate from the Law and Prophets. In launching into the theme of "Justification by Faith", Paul became emphatic on the importance of faith. For him, faith is the gift which can lead to eternal life with God. It is not anything we can earn or merit, but a grace bestowed by God to attain eternal life. Although it is distinct from the Law and the Prophets, it is alluded to by the whole of Hebrew Scriptures. The Law was originally meant to be a guideline to demonstrate the gift of faith. Yet, throughout Jewish history, it became the 'be-all and end-all' in Judaism. Paul states quite assertively that no one can obey the totality of the law and that all have sinned. The law has become the vehicle of condemnation, not justification. The only thing that brings justification and righteousness is God's gift of faith which was made possible with the death and resurrection of Jesus. 

No one can boast that they have saved themselves. It is only God who saves and only God who gives the gift of faith. Such faith is what Jesus seeks from the Scribes and from us in today's Gospel. Jesus mentions the blood of martyrs in arguing with Pharisees and lawyers and condemns them for putting monuments over the graves of the Prophets. They have become so pre-occupied with their own interpretations and embellishments of the law that they have missed the point of the law – a sign of the gift of faith with which God has gifted the people. Their absorption in the details and ramifications of the law have prevented them from experiencing the gifts which God has given and therefore they have isolated themselves from the Giver. Today, Jesus challenges us to make ourselves available to experience God’s love and forgiveness and not prevent others from growing in a closer relationship with God.

May the Lord show His care to all who dedicate their lives to the service of others and inspire our actions and sustain them to the end! Amen!! Good morning and have a wonderful day!!!

 
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