Daily Bible Reading - July 9, 2024

Daily Bible Reading - July 9, 2024
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Claretian Communications Foundation, Inc.

14TH WEEK IN ORDINARY TIME

Psalter: Week 2 / (Green/Red)

St. Augustine Zhao Rong, priest, & Companions, martyrs

Responsorial Psalm: Ps 115: 3-4, 5-6, 7ab-8, 9-10: The house of Israel trust in the Lord.

1st Reading: Hosea 8: 4-7, 11-13

Without my approval they set up kings and without my blessing appointed leaders. With their silver and gold they fashioned idols to their own ruin.

To me, Samaria, your calf is loathsome; and my anger blazes against you. How long will you remain defiled? The calf is yours, Israel, a craftsman has made it; it is not God and will be broken into pieces. As they sow the wind, they will reap the whirlwind. Stalk without flower, it will never yield flower, or if they do, foreigners will devour it.

Ephraim built many altars; but his altars made him more guilty. I wrote out for him the numerous precepts of my law; but they look on them as coming from foreigners.

They offer sacrifices to me because they are those who eat the meat; but Yahweh does not accept their sacrifices, for he is mindful of their sin and remembers their wickedness. They will return to Egypt.

Gospel: Matthew 9: 32-38

As they were going away, some people brought to Jesus a man who was dumb because he was possessed by a demon. When the demon was driven out, the dumb man began to speak. The crowds were astonished and said, “Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel.”

But the Pharisees said, “He drives away demons with the help of the prince of demons.” Jesus went around all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues and proclaiming the good news of the Kingdom, and he cured every sickness and disease.

When he saw the crowds he was moved with pity, for they were harassed and helpless like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is abundant but the workers are only few. Ask the master of the harvest to send workers to gather his harvest.”

REFLECTION:

“Spiritual numbness.”

A sincere act of faith is only made possible through a heart that can still feel and empathize.

Many people nowadays have become spiritually numb. We, believers, may at times also fall into the trap of spiritual numbness.

This happens, when we become too concerned about ourselves and our hearts are cauterized by our adherence to empty rituals.

Today’s first reading from Hosea cautions not to turn our religious empty practices as excuses to our lack of empathy to those in need.

In today’s Gospel, the Pharisees exhibited such spiritual numbness. Jesus drove out the demon that was making a man dumb.

Jesus liberated the man from such suffering and yet the Pharisees saw nothing good about it but rather accused Jesus to be exorcising demons with the help of the prince of demons.

Jesus had shown the very opposite of this spiritual numbness.

He saw the people, harassed, and his heart was moved with pity.

Moreover, he exhorted his disciples to pray to the Lord of the harvest that he would send more workers to gather his harvest. What could this imply?

Jesus involves us all, his followers, to move from apathy to having hearts that can truly empathize.

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