the standard of riGhtness
Jesus’ litanic assertion—“ You have heard the Law says…, but I say…”—in trying to explain the Law that was written way before He came, may lead us to think that He was introducing an entirely new set of Laws that shall render inutile the laws of old. Today’s gospel precludes such kind of thinking, for truly He has not come “to abolish the law or the prophets but to fulfill them” (cf Matthew 5:17).

Jesus’ “new” laws are merely illuminations of what have already been written. He sheds light to help men fulfill them. Hence, what were right before remain right and what were wrong remain wrong.
In G. Curtis Jones’ book 1000 Illustrations is this story from his former classmate, Arthur W. Mielkie: Rev. Kyoshi Tanimoto, a Methodist minister who had miraculously survived the Hiroshima conflagration, came to visit America when Albert Einstein was still very much alive. The pastor asked to meet Einstein, the man whose knowledge had much to do with the construction of the first Atom bomb. Einstein was pleased to welcome the minister from Japan. Imagine the high drama and excitement as the two men met in the professor’s home at Princeton, New Jersey! It was reported that Einstein suggested the bomb should never have been dropped on a city. Graciously Tanimoto countered, the Japanese would have dropped it on America if they had possessed the bomb. With firmness and moral conviction, Einstein answered, “Even if you might have done it to us, this would still have been no excuse for us to drop the bomb.”

Einstein had a keen understanding of what Jesus teaches in today’s gospel. Regardless of the circumstances that surround our actions, the standard of “rightness” o r “ wrongness ” remains the same. The good is never compromised despite the consequences that surround it. Fr. Sandy Enhaynes

Reflection Question:
Is your standard of right or wrong the same as that of Jesus’?

Lord, let Your truth be my basis of rightness. Let me not compromise what You deem to be right to justify the wrong I do.


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