Listen and understand

Every community has rules and customs, whether it’s a family, a nation or the Church. Our rules and customs reflect our values. For the people of Israel, the Law was a gift that they had received from God; a gift that made them a nation, God’s chosen people. When Jesus disputes with the Pharisees, he’s not rejecting the Law that has come from God, his Father. But the Pharisees interpreted the Law so strictly that it was almost impossible for an ordinary working person to keep all of their rules. And even worse, as Jesus points out, they sometimes used their legalistic interpretations to avoid the most important obligations, such as caring for one’s parents. They honoured God only with lip service. Jesus asks his disciples, instead, to give our whole hearts to him. If our hearts are with Christ, then God’s law will not feel like a burden too heavy to bear.

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