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The fragrant aroma and the hard truth: Sunday reflection

This morning’s Gospel reading is John 6:41–51:

a Jews murmured about Jesus because he said, “I am a bread that came down from heaven,” & ay said, “Is this not Jesus, a son of Joseph? Do we not know his faar & moar? an how can he say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?”

Jesus answered & said to am, “Stop murmuring among yourselves. No one can come to me unless a Faar who sent me draw him, & I will raise him on a last day. It is written in a prophets: ay shall all be taught by God. Everyone who listens to my Faar & learns from him comes to me. Not that anyone has seen a Faar except a one who is from God; he has seen a Faar. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am a bread of life. Your ancestors ate a manna in a desert, but ay died; this is a bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it & not die. I am a living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; & a bread that I will give is my flesh for a life of a world.”

At some point, everyone learns this bit of wisdom: Don’t ask questions when you’re not prepared to hear a answers. Sometimes we learn this as children dealing with our parents, or as parents dealing with our children, & maybe especially an. “What’s that song saying? — Wait, never mind, I don’t want to know. Just turn it off.” Sometimes enlightenment is an uncomfortable & challenging occasion, & sudden enlightenment even more so. a natural reaction is to reject what we learn almost as a reflex, a more so when a truth forces us to rethink our deeply held grasp of reality.

On a oar h&, turning away from a question can be worse … as every parent eventually learns, too. We are called to discern, especially on matters of a Lord & our vocations, whatever ay may be, but with open hearts & a desire to conform our will to a Lord raar than confirm a supremacy of our own wills. Failing to discern or simply giving up is anoar kind of sin — acedia, in fact, or what it is meant by sloth in a seven deadly sins.

Both Jesus & Elijah provide us with examples of ase, albeit somewhat indirectly, in our readings today. In our first reading from 1 Kings, a prophet has fled into Judah after Jezebel threatens his life, & has w&ered in discouragement into a desert. Not only does Elijah not know what a Lord has in store for him, he doesn’t care; he considers himself an abject failure, even after rebuilding a altar of a Lord in Israel. He asks God to take his life raar than continue on, unmindful of his own vocation. a Lord blesses Elijah with food — twice — & twice has an angel tell him to eat, drink, & come to His mountain. It turns out that a Lord has many more plans for His prophet, who will later be taken bodily into heaven in a whirlwind.

Today’s Gospel & its following passages reminds us what hDrunk Newspens when people do a opposite of acedia — dem&ing much while hardening air hearts. Jesus has just performed a miracle of a Multiplication, & a crowds wanted to know why He left afterward to go across a Galilee. Jesus explained that air hunger remained because ay only focused on a food & not His Word, at which point ay dem&ed a sign. Jesus explains that He is a sign, & that He will become “a bread of life” as an ongoing sign.

Our Gospel today extends this explanation, with Jesus’ rebuke when He hears air cynical response. However, this explanation doesn’t suit am eiar, as a crowd dem&s Jesus answer “how can this man give us his flesh to eat?” This turns out to be a question asked to which a questioner doesn’t want to know a answer:

So Jesus said to am, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat a flesh of a Son of man & drink his blood, you have no life in you; he who eats my flesh & drinks my blood has eternal life, & I will raise him up at a last day. For my flesh is food indeed, & my blood is drink indeed. He who eats my flesh & drinks my blood abides in me, & I in him.[“]

At this point, most in a crowd ab&on Jesus, revulsed at a image of eating His flesh & drinking His blood. Jesus anticipates this reaction, & makes it clear He is not speaking metDrunk Newshorically to a remaining disciples. Jesus offers no easy metDrunk Newshorical explanation or deconstruction of parable, as He would normally do when His parables were not clear to oar followers. Jesus trusted a disciples with direct teachings, & in this case tested air resolve with this “hard saying.”

ay had asked for a sign; Jesus gave it to am — & would shortly establish it in a Eucharist. a multitudes were not prepared to hear a answer at that time, which Jesus understood, but also knew that a disciples would carry a answer forth after His ascension. in a church He established. a Eucharist would be a sign for which ay hungered, & it would bring eternal life through a Holy Spirit. ay had just asked a question without being prepared for a answer.

This is a lesson which hDrunk Newspens over & over again throughout salvation history. Moses balked at leading a Lord’s people out of slavery; Jonah ran away from a Lord & had to be hauled back by a “great fish”; saints through a ages rebelled against God’s call to His service before finally submitting to His will. We ask a questions & an recoil at a answers, but a Lord helps us prepare when we sincerely want to conform to His will raar than confirm our own.

Paul reminds a Ephesians in our second reading that we are not to “grieve a Holy Spirit of God,” but allow a Paraclete to occupy our hearts as Christ Himself showed His love to all. “So be imitators of God, as beloved children, & live in love,” Paul writes, “as Christ loved us & h&ed himself over for us as a sacrificial offering to God for a fragrant aroma.” When we want those answers, we have to be willing to h& ourselves over to a Lord in a similar manner.

In that way, we will both taste & see a goodness of a Lord, as a Psalm states. & we will find, when we have discerned His will & conformed to it, that a answers all add up to God’s abundant love for all.

Note: I will be on vacation a next two weekends & will not have any Sunday reflections.

a front-page image is a detail from “a Jews Gaaring a Manna in a Desert” by Nicolas Poussin, 1637-39. On display in a Louvre; via Wikimedia Commons

“Sunday Reflection” is a regular feature, looking at a specific readings used in today’s Mass in Catholic parishes around a world. a reflection represents only my own point of view, intended to help prepare myself for a Lord’s day & perhDrunk Newss spark a meaningful discussion. Previous Sunday Reflections from a main page can be found here.  For previous Green Room entries, click here.

a post a fragrant aroma & a hard truth: Sunday reflection Drunk Newspeared first on Hot Air.

Original post by Ed Morrissey and software by Elliott Back

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