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Welcome to our Bible Study 32 nd Sunday in Ordinary Time C November 10, 2013 In preparation for this Sunday’s liturgy As view in focusing our homilies.

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Presentation on theme: "Welcome to our Bible Study 32 nd Sunday in Ordinary Time C November 10, 2013 In preparation for this Sunday’s liturgy As view in focusing our homilies."— Presentation transcript:

1 Welcome to our Bible Study 32 nd Sunday in Ordinary Time C November 10, 2013 In preparation for this Sunday’s liturgy As view in focusing our homilies and sharing Prepared by Fr. Cielo R. Almazan, OFM

2 1 st reading: 2 Maccabees 7, It happened that seven brothers with their mother were arrested and tortured with whips and scourges by the king, to force them to eat pork in violation of God's law. 2 One of the brothers, speaking for the others, said: "What do you expect to achieve by questioning us? We are ready to die rather than transgress the laws of our ancestors." 9 At the point of death he said: "You accursed fiend, you are depriving us of this present life, but the King of the world will raise us up to live again forever. It is for his laws that we are dying." 10 After him the third suffered their cruel sport. He put out his tongue at once when told to do so, and bravely held out his hands, 11 as he spoke these noble words: "It was from Heaven that I received these; for the sake of his laws I disdain them; from him I hope to receive them again." 12 Even the king and his attendants marveled at the young man's courage, because he regarded his sufferings as nothing. 13 After he had died, they tortured and maltreated the fourth brother in the same way. 14 When he was near death, he said, "It is my choice to die at the hands of men with the God-given hope of being restored to life by him; but for you, there will be no resurrection to life." resurrection The focus is on the resurrection of the dead.

3 1 st reading: 2 Maccabees 7, Readiness to die rather than violate the law 1 It happened that seven brothers with their mother were arrested and tortured with whips and scourges by the king, to force them to eat pork in violation of God's law. 2 One of the brothers, speaking for the others, said: "What do you expect to achieve by questioning us? We are ready to die rather than transgress the laws of our ancestors." The belief in the resurrection 9 At the point of death he said: "You accursed fiend, you are depriving us of this present life, but the King of the world will raise us up to live again forever. It is for his laws that we are dying." 10 After him the third suffered their cruel sport. He put out his tongue at once when told to do so, and bravely held out his hands, 11 as he spoke these noble words: "It was from Heaven that I received these; for the sake of his laws I disdain them; from him I hope to receive them again." 12 Even the king and his attendants marveled at the young man's courage, because he regarded his sufferings as nothing. 13 After he had died, they tortured and maltreated the fourth brother in the same way. 14 When he was near death, he said, "It is my choice to die at the hands of men with the God-given hope of being restored to life by him; but for you, there will be no resurrection to life." A simple outline!

4 Textual Context of 2 Macc 7, Part One 2 Macc 1,1—2,18 Two Letters to the Jews in Egypt Part Two 2 Macc 2,19—10,9 Account by Jason up to the Dedication of the Temple by Judas in 164 BC Part Three 2 Macc 10,10—15,39 Remainder of Judas’ life up to victory over Nicanor, Syrian general, in 160 BC

5 1 st reading: 2 Maccabees 7, Readiness to die rather than violate the law 1 It happened that seven brothers with their mother were arrested and tortured with whips and scourges by the king, to force them to eat pork in violation of God's law. 2 One of the brothers, speaking for the others, said: "What do you expect to achieve by questioning us? We are ready to die rather than transgress the laws of our ancestors." Commentary This book is considered deuterocanonical, not in the list of the proto-canonical books of the Hebrew Bible. It is found in the Septuagint (Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible). The Septuagint was the bible of the Greek- speaking Jews. The book responds to the difficult situation of the pious Jews, who were forced to practice paganism imposed by the Hellenists (Greeks). The text is about the preference to die rather than violate the law. V.1 indicates how a family suffers from persecution (arrest / torture); they refuse to eat pork. In v.2, the law is not just the law obtaining at present, but the law of their ancestors. The present generation is connected to the past generation through the practice of the law. (culture)

6 1 st reading: 2 Maccabees 7, The belief in the resurrection 9 At the point of death he said: "You accursed fiend, you are depriving us of this present life, but the King of the world will raise us up to live again forever. It is for his laws that we are dying." 10 After him the third suffered their cruel sport. He put out his tongue at once when told to do so, and bravely held out his hands, 11 as he spoke these noble words: "It was from Heaven that I received these; for the sake of his laws I disdain them; from him I hope to receive them again." 12 Even the king and his attendants marveled at the young man's courage, because he regarded his sufferings as nothing. 13 After he had died, they tortured and maltreated the fourth brother in the same way. 14 When he was near death, he said, "It is my choice to die at the hands of men with the God-given hope of being restored to life by him; but for you, there will be no resurrection to life." V.9, the second son affirms their faith in the resurrection. God (king of the world) will raise them up. V.9 indicates the resurrection as a reason for their willingness to die rather than violate a law. In vv.10-12, the third brother displays his heroism. He considers his sufferings as nothing. This gets attention from the king and his aides. In vv.13-14, the fourth brother suffers the same fate. He is willing to die because he believes in the resurrection (restoration to life). The fourth brother warns that there is no resurrection for the torturers.

7 Reflections on the 1 st reading Seldom do we hear a story of a whole family willing to die for rather than violate a law. Today, we rather violate the law than die. Life is more important than following laws (God-made or man-made). For those who are settled with violating laws in order to survive, we can draw a lesson from the story. The members of the Maccabean family are giving a strong statement to their enemies, to their fellow Jews, and to us at the present time: It is better to die with dignity and honor than to live devoid of principles. (laws, traditions, culture) God will vindicate our observance, by raising us up. The reading encourages people to continue fighting for their faith and principles in the face of death. It pays not to compromise faith with what contradicts it. What legacy can we give to our children?

8 Resp. Ps 17:1, 5-6, 8, 15 R. (15b) Lord, when your glory appears, my joy will be full. 1 Hear, O LORD, a just suit; attend to my outcry; hearken to my prayer from lips without deceit. 5 My steps have been steadfast in your paths, my feet have not faltered. 6 I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me; hear my word. 8 Keep me as the apple of your eye, hide me in the shadow of your wings. 15 But I in justice shall behold your face; on waking I shall be content in your presence.

9 Resp. Ps 17:1, 5-6, 8, 15 R. (15b) Lord, when your glory appears, my joy will be full. 1 Hear, O LORD, a just suit; attend to my outcry; hearken to my prayer from lips without deceit. 5 My steps have been steadfast in your paths, my feet have not faltered. 6 I call upon you, for you will answer me, O God; incline your ear to me; hear my word. 8 Keep me as the apple of your eye, hide me in the shadow of your wings. 15 But I in justice shall behold your face; on waking I shall be content in your presence. Commentary In v.1, the psalmist prays to God in parallel form: Hear, O Lord // attend // hearken to my prayer. V.5 represents the prayer of the Maccabean brothers, steadfast in faith under persecution. (parallelism: my steps... // my feet…) V.6 is parallel to v.1. Again in parallel forms: you will answer // incline your ear // hear my word. V.8 uses a simile: “as the apple of your eye.” In v.15, the psalmist expresses his hope in parallel form: I shall behold your face // I shall be content in your presence.

10 Reflections on the Psalm We, too, can be persecuted because of our faith. Our loved ones can taunt us because we go to church, we read the Bible, we join religious organizations, and we spend more time with the fellow church workers. Others simply persecute us because they don’t appreciate our faith. They destroy our images, they stir arguments to confuse us, they demonize whatever we hold dear in our faith and devotion. We must take the Maccabean brothers as icon of faith. To make a strong statement like them, we must not make any compromise, or, many compromises for convenience’s sake. Every time we live our faith, we are disturbing the unbelievers.

11 2 nd reading: 2 Thessalonians 2,16—3,5 16 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting encouragement and good hope through his grace, 17 encourage your hearts and strengthen them in every good deed and word. 3:1 Finally, brothers, pray for us, so that the word of the Lord may speed forward and be glorified, as it did among you, 2 and that we may be delivered from perverse and wicked people, for not all have faith. 3 But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one. 4 We are confident of you in the Lord that what we instruct you, you (both) are doing and will continue to do. 5 May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the endurance of Christ. The focus is on encouragement.

12 2 nd reading: 2 Thessalonians 2,16—3,5 Wish of Paul to the Thessalonians 16 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting encouragement and good hope through his grace, 17 encourage your hearts and strengthen them in every good deed and word. Desire of Paul to the Thessalonians 3:1 Finally, brothers, pray for us, so that the word of the Lord may speed forward and be glorified, as it did among you, 2 and that we may be delivered from perverse and wicked people, for not all have faith. Concern of Paul to the Thessalonians 3 But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one. 4 We are confident of you in the Lord that what we instruct you, you (both) are doing and will continue to do. 5 May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the endurance of Christ. A simple outline.

13 Textual Context of 2 Thess 2,16—3,5 I Opening Formula 1,1-2 II Test of Persecution Leading to the Lord’s Glory in Judgment 1,3-12 A. Thanksgiving 1,3-10 B. Prayer 1,11-12 III Proper Understanding of the Parousia 2,1-17 A. The Lord’s Triumph over Deception 2,1-15 B. Prayer for Strengthening 2,16-17 IV Two Sets of Closing Exhortations and Prayers 3,1—5,6-16 V Final Greetings 3,17-18

14 2 nd reading: 2 Thessalonians 2,16—3,5 Wish of Paul to the Thessalonians 16 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting encouragement and good hope through his grace, 17 encourage your hearts and strengthen them in every good deed and word. Desire of Paul from the Thessalonians 3:1 Finally, brothers, pray for us, so that the word of the Lord may speed forward and be glorified, as it did among you, 2 and that we may be delivered from perverse and wicked people, for not all have faith. Concern of Paul to the Thessalonians 3 But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one. 4 We are confident of you in the Lord that what we instruct you, you (both) are doing and will continue to do. 5 May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the endurance of Christ. Commentary In the text, the author expresses his prayer and wish that the Thessalonians will continue doing good. Paul is worried about this community because of the problems besetting them, like some people are trying to confuse them regarding the coming of the Lord. So Paul says, may our Lord Jesus Christ and God our Father…. Encourage…. Strengthen…, not I, encourage you… It is God himself who will encourage them. Vv In 3,1-2, Paul also solicits the prayers (intercessions) of the Thessalonians: To speed up work of evangelization To be free from harm caused by evil and faithless people. Paul wants to be supported in his mission. V.3 affirms God’s faithfulness. God will strengthen and guard them. In v.4, Paul expresses his trust and confidence that the Thessalonians will be faithful in doing and communicating the instructions they receive from Paul and not from someone else.

15 Reflections on the 2 nd reading As Christians, we need some encouragement to live our faith. We need God, not only humans, to encourage us (to give us energy and hope). We need support in our weakness, when we are bombarded with strange ideas. The encouragement that we need is to be faithful to the teachings of the Church. We go back to the original experience when we were mentored well by the trusted missionaries (teachers). Vocations, who are in crisis, are also asked to go back to their original feelings (motivation) when they first felt called to enter priestly or religious life.

16 Gospel reading: Luke 20, Some Sadducees, those who deny that there is a resurrection, came forward and put this question to him, 28 saying, "Teacher, Moses wrote for us, 'If someone's brother dies leaving a wife but no child, his brother must take the wife and raise up descendants for his brother.' 29 Now there were seven brothers; the first married a woman but died childless. 30 Then the second 31 and the third married her, and likewise all the seven died childless. 32 Finally the woman also died. 33 Now at the resurrection whose wife will that woman be? For all seven had been married to her." 34 Jesus said to them, "The children of this age marry and remarry; 35 but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. 36 They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. 37 That the dead will rise even Moses made known in the passage about the bush, when he called 'Lord' the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; 38 and he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive." The focus is on the resurrection of the dead.

17 Gospel reading: Luke 20,27-38 Sadducees and their argument 27 Some Sadducees, those who deny that there is a resurrection, came forward and put this question to him, 28 saying, "Teacher, Moses wrote for us, 'If someone's brother dies leaving a wife but no child, his brother must take the wife and raise up descendants for his brother.' 29 Now there were seven brothers; the first married a woman but died childless. 30 Then the second 31 and the third married her, and likewise all the seven died childless. 32 Finally the woman also died. 33 Now at the resurrection whose wife will that woman be? For all seven had been married to her." Jesus and his rebuttal 34 Jesus said to them, "The children of this age marry and remarry; 35 but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. 36 They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. 37 That the dead will rise even Moses made known in the passage about the bush, when he called 'Lord' the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; 38 and he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive." A simple outline!

18 Textual Context of Luke 20,27-38 Travel Narrative (in between Galilee and Judea) 19,1-10 Zaccheus the Tax Collector 19,11-27 The Parable of the Ten Gold Coins Jerusalem Ministry 19,28-40 The Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem 19,41-48 Jesus weeps over Jerusalem 20,1-8 Jesus’ Authority Questioned 20,9-19 Parable of the Wicked Tenants 20,20-26 The Question about Paying Taxes 20,27-40 The Question about the Resurrection 20,41-44 The Question about David’s Son 20,45-47 Denunciation of the Scribes

19 Gospel reading: Luke 20,27-38 Sadducees and their argument 27 Some Sadducees, those who deny that there is a resurrection, came forward and put this question to him, 28 saying, "Teacher, Moses wrote for us, 'If someone's brother dies leaving a wife but no child, his brother must take the wife and raise up descendants for his brother.' 29 Now there were seven brothers; the first married a woman but died childless. 30 Then the second 31 and the third married her, and likewise all the seven died childless. 32 Finally the woman also died. 33 Now at the resurrection whose wife will that woman be? For all seven had been married to her." Commentary The Sadducees belong to the priestly class, which administers the Temple of Jerusalem. They belong to the aristocracy, which also controls the economic and political life of the Israelite nation. In contrast to the Pharisees, they do not believe in the resurrection of the dead, among other things. Their sacred scripture is limited to the Torah. So in vv.27-33, we should not be surprised when they challenge the teaching of Jesus (also of the Pharisees) regarding the resurrection of the dead (which is not found in the Torah). They craftily present an argument culled from the Levirate Marriage law of the Jews against the possibility of resurrection (Dt 25,5-10). The second son is obliged to give a child to the widow, etc.

20 Gospel reading: Luke 20,27-38 Jesus and his rebuttal 34 Jesus said to them, "The children of this age marry and remarry; 35 but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. 36 They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. 37 That the dead will rise even Moses made known in the passage about the bush, when he called 'Lord' the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; 38 and he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive." In vv.34-38, Jesus clarifies life in heaven. The Sadducees don’t believe in heaven. They teach: When you die, you die. That’s the end of your life. So, you must make good of your life here and now. Get rich, be merry, don’t allow yourself to be oppressed. Live your life now. For Jesus, in heaven no one will marry and remarry. V.34 There is no more death in heaven. No need to multiply, unlike life here on earth. Holy people are like angels (Sadducees don’t believe in angels). As a final blow to the argument of the Sadducees, Jesus makes use of the passage in Exodus where it says, “I am the Lord, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. (v.37) Jesus uses this part of Torah to prove there is resurrection.

21 Gospel reading: Luke 20,27-38 Jesus and his rebuttal 34 Jesus said to them, "The children of this age marry and remarry; 35 but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage. 36 They can no longer die, for they are like angels; and they are the children of God because they are the ones who will rise. 37 That the dead will rise even Moses made known in the passage about the bush, when he called 'Lord' the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob; 38 and he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive." In v.38, Jesus interprets those words as referring to the resurrection of the dead. You cannot juxtapose the name of the living God, with the names of the dead. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob must be alive (They have resurrected from the dead without them knowing.)

22 Reflections on the gospel reading For us, Christians, the resurrection of the dead is not an issue. The issue that should come to the fore is the meaning of the resurrection of the dead. What does it mean to us? Meaning has something to do with relevance. We, Christian adherents, should be mentored by Jesus himself (or his true representatives), not by unbelievers (agnostics, etc.). Discipleship is a continuous process, until death. Belief in the resurrection or, life after, must motivate us to live holy lives. In concrete, we bring the good news to the poor. We build a just and peaceful society, that approximates God’s kingdom. True religion is not just about beliefs but a practice that liberates the poor and the oppressed.

23 Tying the 3 readings and the Psalm The first reading talks about the resurrection of the dead. It drives the brothers to die as martyrs to their faith, rather than violate it. The psalm is the prayer of believers who endure persecution. The second reading talks about being faithful to the original teachings (regarding the second coming / resurrection of the dead). The gospel reading talks about the faith in the resurrection.

24 How to develop your sharing / homily We, as Catholics, believe in the resurrection of the dead. It is an article of our faith spelled out in the Apostles’ Creed. We cannot do away with it, or else, we become heretics. But how can we make use of this belief so that we may be more committed to our Christian faith? It is not enough to murmur this article of faith in the mass, or, when we pray the holy rosary, or, when there is an earthquake.

25 The first reading teaches that we can be more committed to God’s commands if we truly believe in the resurrection. We can be willing to die as martyrs for our faith. This should inspire us, Christians, to radically give witness to our faith rather than violate human and Christian principles (justice, peace, fairness, harmony, equality = all values of the kingdom), for the sake of convenience or self-preservation. Alas, many Christians especially in the high places of government prefer to violate the law (graft and corruption, no accountability, wanton destruction of nature, illegal detention, violation of human rights, of animal rights, etc.), to being ostracized or to be removed from office or to resign. They compromise their faith with evil as if there is no other way to live decently.

26 The second reading teaches us to re-root ourselves to the original teachings of the apostles, in times of confusion. Confusion comes in when we allow ourselves to be taught by unauthorized teachers of the Church (not representing the apostolic traditions) on the second coming of Jesus (resurrection of the dead). We must be discerning as to whom to listen to, to draw encouragement from. In this way, we are able to continue the mission of the apostles and Jesus. We cannot just absorb everything, in the name of friendship and dialogue. Ecumenism does not teach us to compromise the basic tenets of our religion and that the others compromise theirs. When we capitulate in our faith, we fail in our mission.

27 In the gospel, Jesus teaches that there is such a thing as the resurrection of the dead. He does it by associating the resurrection with the reality of heaven and by tying it with the name of the God of the living. We get Jesus’ point if we interpret the Torah using his optic. It is God’s way of vindicating his faithful ones like Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. In times of conflict of beliefs, we must always take the cue from Jesus (in the gospels), who is our teacher, not from other teachers. We, Christians, must have a sound and solid catechesis.

28 Many of us live like the Sadducees whose priority in life is to enjoy life here and now, without regard to the future. We have lost our sense of heroism and self-sacrifice. We don’t talk anymore about martyrdom, but pragmatism. We are prone to connive with the evil schemes of misguided politicians and businessmen. We even use religion to get rich and to gain power at the expense of the poor. Warning to those who persecute the just: God will see to it that you will never rise again on the last day. In our liturgy, we have to renew our pledge to be relentlessly committed to our Christian faith, without compromise with mammon.

29 In the eucharist, Jesus promises us life eternal, which is nothing else than the resurrection of the dead. It is a sacrament that celebrates our resurrection. We resurrect now, not just in the future, when we receive the eucharist. Jesus promises life now, when we eat of his body and drink of his blood. The eucharist is a concrete proof that Christ himself is risen from the dead and he is alive in our hearts and is actively leading us to eternal life.

30 Our Context of Sin and Grace Easily discouraged Living without inspiration Always compromising Living without honor, dignity and principles No solid basis for sound judgment Faint hearted Groundless living of faith (no formation) Disconnected with Christ, the great mentor Un-mentored by their authorized teachers Living according to one’s principles, even if it is not convenient Hopes for the resurrection Relevant faith Uncompromising to evil and to other teachings that contradict one’s faith. Wise and discerning Has solid foundation of his faith catechism

31 Suggested Songs Paano Namin Masasabi Pananagutan O Tao I will raise him up


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