THE THIRD WEEK IN ADVENT – SATURDAY
LESSON: MATTHEW 18:1-9
Blessed is he who takes no offense at me. Matthew 11:6
Be on your guard against all and every offense. Who are those who cause offense here? All those who tell you to concentrate on works instead of faith.
Such teachers turn Christ into a lawgiver and a judge and will not let Him remain a pure helper and comforter. They plague you with the idea of having dealings with God and for God on the basis of works. They say you must make atonement for your sins to obtain God’s grace. Such people, of whom there are always many in this world, direct you to a different Christ from the one to whom you are pointed in this Gospel. If you want to have true faith and really attain to Christ, you must give up all hope in works as a basis for negotiating with God and before God. Works are all so many offences to keep you away from Christ and God.
Before God, no works at all avail except Christ’s own works. These you must plead on your behalf before God, and perform no other work before God but to believe that Christ has performed these works for you and offers them before God on your behalf. Your faith must always remain pure faith, doing nothing and keeping silence, allowing itself to be benefited, accepting Christ’s work and allowing Christ to exercise His love upon you.
You must be blind, lame, dead, leprous, and poor or you will become offended in Christ. The Gospel does not lie. Christ permits Himself to be seen only by those who are really in need and bestows His blessings only upon them.
PRAYER: O Lord, grant us your grace in full measure, that we learn to entrust ourselves to you alone and are never offended at your humility. Amen.