13th June 2022

St. Anthony of PaduaSaint of the day Archives - Page 14 of 18 - Radio Angelus - 24 online  Catholic radio station


MONDAY, ELEVENTH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME (St Anthony of Padua)

 

Kgs 21: 1-16;             Ps 5: 2-7;                    Mt 5: 38-42


   

OVERCOME EVIL WITH GOOD

 

“Eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth”, was instructed by God for the judges of Israel as a method of administering fair and equitable criminal justice. Our nature demands justice for the wrong committed against us. Our natural instinct is to get equal; to react in a revengeful way towards the ones who hurt us, so they too may feel our pain. It is easier to forgive when they recognize their fault and ask for forgiveness. It is not easy to let go or forgive when those who offend us have little to no remorse over sins they have committed, reject owning their sin, have no desire to truly change and continue their pattern of abuse with no consideration or contrition for damages caused.

 

Earlier in his preaching, Jesus affirms that he did not come to abolish the Law or the Prophets, but to fulfill them (Mt 5:17). Jesus had no issue with the law, but because he knew man was using it for personal revenge and punishment inflicted as vengeance, he flipped the script and encouraged his followers to choose love and forgiveness as a means of reconciliation. We must always remember that Mercy and Justice go side by side. Choosing to love and forgive does not mean tolerate or justify sin. We cannot turn a blind eye to criminal activity or continue to remain in a physically abusive or adulterous relationship. In those situations, separation is a necessary means to allow intervention, counseling, healing and treatment – not taking personal vengeance to repay the abuser for sins committed.

 

When we are caught in such unfortunate situations, we must try to remember what the scripture tells us, “Repay no one evil for evil…” (Rom 12:17). And when we are tempted and angered for revenge, remember: “Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, … To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; …for by so doing, you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Rom 12:19-21).

 


Response: O Lord, give heed to my sighs.


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