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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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Homilies :: Latin Rite
Wednesday of the 12th Week in Ordinary Time Download This Homily

JUNE 26, 2019


Wednesday of the12th Week in Ordinary Time


Genesis 15:1-12, 17-18

Psalm 105:1-4, 6-9

Matthew 7:15-20


Jesus said to his disciples, “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?  So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. 18 A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will recognize them by their fruits.


"Fruit-inspectors"


One day the prophet Elisha came to the city of Jericho to meet with and encourage young men to walk in the path of God. Jericho was a lovely place to live and would have been a rich one too, except for one thing: the water was no good. It was full of minerals like lead or mercury, making the land unfruitful and the people faced poverty. Some people who wanted to know if Elisha was real prophet with divine powers. These people were not God-fearing but believed in miracles, and requested the prophet to work miracle to purify the water in their locality.  They thought to themselves if Elisha can do some miracle for them or not. But the prophet proved his mettle as the man of God. The prophet called for a bowl of salt. When it was brought to him, he tossed it into the spring and the water turned pure. Thus says the Lord, ‘I have healed this water; from it there shall be no more death or barrenness’. Some years after the miracle, the writer of II Kings said, ‘So the water remains healed to this day according to the saying of Elisha’. The power of God’s Word is still in effect; the bitter waters of Jericho are sweet to this day.


Here in the Gospel the question is how we can know that we or others are in fact acting under God’s judgement. A false prophet is one who claims to be speaking or acting for God but is not. A genuine prophet is one who is becoming ‘perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect’. A genuine prophet is one whose righteousness ‘exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees’. One important test was whether the life of the prophet and the content of the prophecy were consistent with the moral requirements of a life devoted to the Lord.


It is not necessary to judge the hearts of those who claim to speak for God, but we need only to be "fruit-inspectors". The fruit of their life and teaching will become apparent soon enough from a ‘watch out for wolves’! If we fail to know what to look for in the life of a false prophet or to know what to listen for in his teaching, we will be no different than Israel, of whom God said: "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge..."


Israel had a tradition where the prophets who wore hairy garb are considered as shepherds and thereby spiritual leaders. A sheepskin was therefore an appropriate garment for a prophetic leader. However, simply because someone has the badge of office does not guarantee they will be authentic or real since we can’t believe everything we hear. We need to evaluate the truth or falseness of everything by the fruit of the lives of those who are promoting the message we hear. The scriptures consider people to be like trees and their achievements like fruit. A prophetic leader should be judged by the outcome of their activities and life.


Christ tells us how we are to detect false teachers when disguised in a fleece—by their fruits. The fruits of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance. These heavenly qualities adorn every faithful, though in some they may flourish more than in others. Love reigns in the heart of every true Christian, and shines forth in his actions. He may be known in his kindness to all, his patient behaviour to his enemies, and his unwearied efforts to embrace everyone. None but a good tree can bring forth good fruit. God can make us good trees by his Spirit. Are our lives as preachers of the Word a wilderness where anyone scratches a meagre living amidst their prickles, or are they fertile places in which anyone finds both grapes of joy and figs of forgiveness to satisfy their soul. 


A tree that bears rotten fruit is cut down and burnt. So it must be with us. The fire into which we are cast is the purifying fire of God’s judgment and also the purifying fire of God’s love. If there is something in us that is genuine, it will remain when the fire has done its work, and we will go on to produce the fruits of purified, repentant, love. Have I become a new creation after Christ yielding fruits of love? Are you equipped to identify a wolf in sheep's clothing if you saw one through the discernment by the power of the Spirit?


Dr. Fr. John Ollukaran CMI


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.

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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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