28th Sunday in Ordinary Time - 14th October, 2018

Liturgical Reflection

 
Wisdom 7:7-11; Heb.4:12-13; Mark 10:17-30

 

Our first reading today sings the praises of wisdom, in words taken from the prayer of Solomon, in which he prizes wisdom above wealth or power.  Wisdom, he says, brings with her ‘all good things’.   Like the rest of us, Solomon was often distracted by these lesser goods from following the wisdom he prayed for.  The letter to the Hebrews introduces us to the Word of God, the source of all true wisdom, described here as more incisive than a two- edged sword.  From this wisdom, we hear, nothing can be hidden, not even our most secret thoughts.

The Gospel introduces a young man, faithful to the law of God but seeking from Jesus to learn what more is needed to ensure his entry into eternal life.  Given the answer to his question, he cannot accept it and withdraws.  Perhaps we can recognise ourselves in either or both of these characters.  Are we sometimes afraid of that two edged sword?

 

 

However, let us not forget one of the most memorable images to be found in the Gospels: the camel trying to pass through the eye of a needle.  Beast of burden that he is, Barbara Reid describes him as ‘heavily laden’.  So, he cannot pass through a narrow gate because of the loads he is carrying.  Elsewhere in the Gospels we are invited to choose the path which leads to a narrow gate giving entry to the Kingdom, shedding along the way all the deceptive lesser goods to which we are tempted to cling.  If we choose this path we need have no fear of the two-edged sword of truth, for the One who is ‘the way, the truth and the life’ will journey with us; and the One to whom we must ‘give an account’ is the God whose mercy knows no limit.

Carmel Leavey OP and Mary Britt OP