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Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time

1 Macc. 2:15-29 & Lk. 19:41-44

Mattathias was so on fire with zeal for the worship of the one true God and His law that even while he fought against God's enemies he enjoyed an inner peace. His world was destroyed, he and his family lost all their possessions and had to flee into the hills, but he had the priceless treasure of a clear conscience and the knowledge that he had stood up for what was right.

Do we have that inner peace? Many of Mattathias's fellow Jews had compromised with the foreign powers: life would be so much easier if they just went along with the majority and did what was asked of them. But if they had searched their consciences would they not have found an uneasy feeling there? Do we not sometimes compromise and take the easy way out?

Every time we sin, in fact, we do this. Let's take one example … our prayer life. We know we could give more time to God in prayer and pray more fervently, but we allow our work and our pleasure to encroach on our time with Him. The result is that we don't have that inner peace enjoyed by God's real friends, precisely because we are living lives of compromise.

In the Gospel we witness Jesus weeping over Jerusalem, the city chosen by God to be the principal centre of Christianity, from which the Christian message would go out to the world. But its leaders rejected Him. Eventually in the year 70 it would be utterly destroyed by the Roman army, all because they would not listen to Him. Jesus foresaw all this and so He wept over the city and its inhabitants whom He loved.

What about us? Jesus loves us and has died for us. He wants us to accept Him and He does not want to weep over us. But if we ever reject Him a worse fate than the destruction of Jerusalem awaits us.

Lord Jesus, like Mattathias, may we burn with zeal and love for You and may we never give You cause to weep over us.

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