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Homilies :: Latin Rite
Monday of the 3rd Week of Advent Download This Homily

December 17, 2018

Monday of the 3rd Week of Advent


Genesis 49:2, 8-10 ;

Psalm 72:1-4, 7-8, 17;

Gospel MT 1:1-17


The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Abraham became the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers. Judah became the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar. Perez became the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, Ram the father of Amminadab. Amminadab became the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab. Boaz became the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth. Obed became the father of Jesse, Jesse the father of David the king. David became the father of Solomon, whose mother had been the wife of Uriah. Solomon became the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asaph. Asaph became the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, Joram the father of Uzziah. Uzziah became the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah. Hezekiah became the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amos, Amos the father of Josiah. Josiah became the father of Jechoniah and his brothers at the time of the Babylonian exile. After the Babylonian exile, Jechoniah became the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, Zerubbabel the father of Abiud. Abiud became the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor, Azor the father of Zadok. Zadok became the father of Achim, Achim the father of Eliud, Eliud the father of Eleazar. Eleazar became the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Of her was born Jesus who is called the Christ. Thus the total number of generations from Abraham to David is fourteen generations; from David to the Babylonian exile, fourteen generations; from the Babylonian exile to the Christ, fourteen generations.

 

With the Sinners


In today’s gospel, the genealogy or family record of Jesus may sound boring to a number of us. The Hebrew names written in the family tree are not only difficult to pronounce but also unappealing to be heard by the human ear. Yet every time we celebrate the liturgy for this day, this gospel text is always proclaimed.


The genealogy shows us that Jesus shared our human condition. Like us Jesus had ancestors. Some of them led extraordinary lives but some led sinful lives. One day Jesus will say of Himself, I did not come to call the righteous but sinners. If we are weighed down by sins, let us not fear to approach him. He has come for us and is with us. The Eucharist becomes our Sacrament of Healing.


Matthew is brutally honest about the family tree of Jesus. Under the leading of the Spirit he included five women of ill repute in the lineage of Jesus. These five women may be seen as a blot on the purity of the Messiah but the LORD is not embarrassed by their reputation. In fact, He was not ashamed to pose with them all for a picture that would be spread out on the first page of the New Testament.


With these five women in His family tree, we see Christ taking on sinful flesh. Or, as the Apostle Paul puts it, (2 Cor. 5:21) God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. In the five women, Christ identifies with us in our sin and misery, our darkness and death so that we can identify with Him in His righteousness and life. In the five women, Christ became one with fallen humanity so we could become one with Him in God.


Look again at the five women: Tamar, a seducer, a pretend prostitute, an Aramean; Rahab, a prostitute, a Canaanite; Ruth, an accursed Moabite; Bathsheba, an adulteress, married to a Hittite; Mary, a single woman, and pregnant.


 In these women, we see God using the unexpected to advance His Kingdom and further His plan of salvation. God triumphed over human obstacles, human sin, and human lust to bring about the birth of the Messiah. God used prostitutes, scheming women, adulterers, and a virgin to bring Jesus into the world. God intervened in human history. This means nothing can stop the Messiah's coming or coming again: not human might, not human sin, not human custom or rules. God does what He has to do so that the Messiah appears.


I read about a grandfather who found his grandson jumping up and down in his playpen, crying at the top of his voice. When Johnnie saw his grandfather, he reached up his chubby little hands and said, "Out, Grandpa, out."


 It was only natural for the grandfather to reach down to lift him out, but as he did the mother of the child stepped up and said, "No, Johnnie, you are being punished so you must stay in." The grandfather was at a loss as to what to do. The child's tears and chubby hands reached deep into his heart. But the mother's firmness in correcting her son must not be taken lightly. Love, however, found a way. The grandfather could not take the grandson out of the playpen, so he climbed in with him. Yes, that is what Christ did for us at Christmas. In taking on sinful flesh He climbed in with us.


Five women in Jesus' family tree show us that Jesus came for sinners. They show us that Jesus came for Jews and Gentiles. They show us the faithful providence of God. The genealogy of Jesus reflects the faithful working out of God's plan of salvation in history.


Fr. Martin Kuzhivelil CMI


The book of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham. Abraham became the father of Isaac, Isaac the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Judah and his brothers. Judah became the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar. Perez became the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, Ram the father of Amminadab. Amminadab became the father of Nahshon, Nahshon the father of Salmon, Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab. Boaz became the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth. Obed became the father of Jesse, Jesse the father of David the king. David became the father of Solomon, whose mother had been the wife of Uriah. Solomon became the father of Rehoboam, Rehoboam the father of Abijah, Abijah the father of Asaph. Asaph became the father of Jehoshaphat, Jehoshaphat the father of Joram, Joram the father of Uzziah. Uzziah became the father of Jotham, Jotham the father of Ahaz, Ahaz the father of Hezekiah. Hezekiah became the father of Manasseh, Manasseh the father of Amos, Amos the father of Josiah. Josiah became the father of Jechoniah and his brothers at the time of the Babylonian exile. After the Babylonian exile, Jechoniah became the father of Shealtiel, Shealtiel the father of Zerubbabel, Zerubbabel the father of Abiud. Abiud became the father of Eliakim, Eliakim the father of Azor, Azor the father of Zadok. Zadok became the father of Achim, Achim the father of Eliud, Eliud the father of Eleazar. Eleazar became the father of Matthan, Matthan the father of Jacob, Jacob the father of Joseph, the husband of Mary. Of her was born Jesus who is called the Christ. Thus the total number of generations from Abraham to David is fourteen generations; from David to the Babylonian exile, fourteen generations; from the Babylonian exile to the Christ, fourteen generations.


Homilies Navchetana Apps, the first of its kind is produced and published by Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India to assist the clergy to preach the World of God and also as a handy spiritual resource for the people of God to reflect on the daily spiritual passages at their convenience. You can download this on your Android phone from Google play and you can see the Gospel reflections of the whole year. The size of this app is just 2.5 MB. We welcome your suggestions and contributions to server you better.

May God Bless you

Fr. James M L CMI

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Homilies Navchetana is an initiative of Navchetana Communications, Bhopal, India. We have been sending the Sunday and daily homilies last four years. We are grateful to you for your cooperation and encouraging comments. Navchetana is committed to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ through modern media and performing arts. Through our Web TV, audio and video productions and stage programmes we take the Gospel message to the ends of the earth. Make a donation and be a part of this noble mission.


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