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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 08.07.2023

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Catholic Daily Liturgical Guide 08.07.2023


GENESIS 27: 1 – 5, 15 – 29

When Isaac was old and his eyes were dim so that he could not see, he called Esau his older son, and said to him, “My son.” And he answered, “Here I am.” He said, “Behold, I am old; I do not know the day of my death. Now then, take your weapons, your quiver and your bow, and go out to the field, and hunt game for me, and prepare for me savoury food, such as I love, and bring it to me that I may eat; that I may bless you before I die.” Now Rebekah was listening when Isaac spoke to his son Esau. And Esau went to the field to hunt for game and bring it. Then Rebekah took the best garments of Esau her older son. which were with her in the house, and put them on Jacob her younger son; and the skins of the kids [which Jacob had brought to hell she put upon his hands and upon the smooth part of his neck; and she gave the savoury food and the bread, which she had prepared, into the hand of her son, Jacob. So he went in to his father, and said, “My father.” And he said, “Here I am; who are you, my son?” Jacob said to his father, “I am Esau your first-born. I have done as you told me; now sit up and eat of my game, that you may bless me.” But Isaac said to his son, “How is it that you have found it so quickly, my son?” He answered, “Because the Loan your God granted me success.” Then Isaac said to Jacob, “Come near, that I may feel you, my son, to know whether you are really my son Esau or not.” So Jacob went near to Isaac his father, who felt him and said, “The voice is Jacob’s voice, but the hands are the hands of Esau.” And he did not recognise him, because his hands were hairy like his brother Esau’s hands; so he blessed him. He said, “Are you really my son Esau?” He answered, “I am.” Then he said, “Bring it to me, that I may eat of my son’s game and bless you.” So he brought it to him, and he ate; and he brought him wine, and he drank. Then his father Isaac said to him, “Come near and kiss me, my son.” So he came near and kissed him; and he smelled the smell of his garments, and blessed him, and said, “See, the smell of my son is as the smell of a field which the Loan has blessed! May God give you of the dew of heaven, and of the fatness of the earth, and plenty of grain and wine. Let peoples serve you, and nations bow down to you. Be lord over your brothers, and may your mother’s sons bow down to you. Cursed be every one who curses you, and blessed be every one who blesses you!”

The Word of the Lord.

Psalm 135: 1b – 2, 3 – 4, 5 – 6 (R.) 3a

R/. Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good.

Praise the name of the Lord;
praise him, servants of the Lord,
who stand in the house of the Lord,
in the courts of the house of our God. R/.

Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good.
Sing a psalm to his name, for this is our delight.
For the Lord has chosen Jacob for himself,
and Israel as his treasured possession. R/.

For I know that the Lord is great,
that our Lord is high above all gods.
The Lord does whatever he wills,
in heaven, and on earth,
in the seas, and in all the depths. R/.

John 10: 27

My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; and I know them, and they follow me.

“Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them?”
MATTHEW 9: 14 – 17

At that time: The disciples of John came to Jesus, saying, “Why do we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not fast?” And Jesus said to them, “Can the wedding guests mourn as long as the bridegroom is with them? The days will come, when the bridegroom is taken away from them, and then they will fast. And no one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch tears away from the garment, and a worse tear is made. Neither is new wine put into old wineskins; if it is, the skins burst, and the wine is spilled, and the skins are destroyed; but new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.”

The Gospel of the Lord.
GOSPEL REFLECTION: The Newness of Grace
July 8, 2023

“No one patches an old cloak with a piece of unshrunken cloth, for its fullness pulls away from the cloak and the tear gets worse. People do not put new wine into old wineskins. Otherwise the skins burst, the wine spills out, and the skins are ruined. Rather, they pour new wine into fresh wineskins, and both are preserved.” (Matthew 9:16–17)

The parable above teaches us that even if someone were to faithfully understand and live the authentic Law that was given through Moses and the prophets, Jesus’ new teaching of grace, the New Law, was so different that it was not simply an improvement of the old, it completely replaced it. Furthermore, many of the customs taught by the Pharisees were unfaithful representations of the Law of Moses. They had deviated from the Law’s meaning and replaced it with their own scrupulous and erroneous multiplication of external practices. Thus, Jesus’ New Law needed to break away from these deviations completely.

To use a modern example, if you were to have an old phone that had become obsolete or stopped working, you wouldn’t buy a new phone so as to remove various parts from it to try to add those parts to the old phone to fix it. Instead, you use the new phone as a complete replacement for the old one.

A central quality of the New Law of grace is that it is entirely new and transforming. Therefore, by embracing this New Law, we become entirely new creations in Christ. Grace doesn’t simply patch that which is weak and sinful in us. It transforms us, elevating our human nature to an entirely new existence. This teaching is not only directed at the misguided teachings that the Pharisees had developed over the years, it was directed at human life itself. Not only were the Jewish customs to go through a transformation, humanity itself was to go through a transformation. Everything is made new in Christ.

This teaching applies just as much to us today as it did to the Jewish people of old. Today, we not only receive the new life of grace in Baptism, but we also receive it anew and share in this ongoing transforming renewal every time we allow grace to touch us more deeply and transform us more fully into the people God wants us to be. The “new patch” and the “new wine” are always transforming, and we must look forward to this newness throughout our lives.

Reflect, today, upon the joyful discovery that awaits you every day. Discovering the New Law of grace, accepting it into your life, and allowing it to transform you will set you on a path of discovery that will never get old. It is an ongoing discovery that is far greater than anything this world has to offer. Nothing can ever compare to the gift of God alive in our lives. It will never get old. It will always be transforming. And it will always be new. Ponder this gift God offers you today and say “Yes” to it with all your heart.

My transforming Lord, You continuously offer to renew me, transform me and elevate me to the life of grace. I thank You for this Gift and desire to accept it with all my heart. May I always be ready and willing to say “Yes” to You and the transformation that awaits me as I discover this ever new treasure of Your Grace. Jesus, I trust in You.

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