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Sixth Week of Ordinary Time

Gen. 6:5-8, 7:1-5, 10 & Mk. 8:14-21

People often use the phrases that the wicked are not punished and they get away with murder. At times it may appear like this but the sayings are not true. In yesterday’s reading we saw how God punished Cain for murdering his brother Abel; in today's, again God’s sense of justice called Him to remove sinful people from the Earth by means of the great flood, for the sake of the good people who were represented by Noah. There is a lesson for us to be learnt from the evil of Cain and the wickedness of Noah's contemporaries: God in His own time punishes evil.

The problem in the minds of many people is this: if there is a just God in Heaven, how can He tolerate the evil that we know exists in today's world. It seems unfair to the innocent people who suffer the consequences. But the narrative about the flood shows that God does care and that in His own good time He will destroy wickedness, while preserving the Earth for the sake of the people who are faithful to Him.

In the Gospel reading we are told that Jesus did not want His disciples to be contaminated by wickedness of their times, and so He warned them to be on their guard against Herod and the Pharisees. And just as Jesus warned His disciples, His Church today tries to warn us and protect us against the evil of our modern world. There are many people in positions of power who will subtly undermine the laws of God, for example, by making divorce or abortion easier to obtain. Gradually these evils become accepted by society. This is the yeast of which Jesus speaks: we must be alert to the dangers and be ready to resist them.

There is good and evil in each one of us. With God's grace, especially through the Mass and the Sacraments, we will have all the help we need to overcome the evil, whether it is within or around us. Noah found favour with God and was rewarded. We, too, will find favour with Him, and be rewarded if we endeavour to live by His commandments.

Lord Jesus, let us with Your help, be determined to struggle against evil, whenever it confronts us in our daily lives.

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