Put on the new self during the Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

This is what I say and witness in Kyrie. No longer live as ethnics do, in the purposelessness of their minds. They are darkened in the way they think. They are separated from the life of God through their not knowing, because of the petrifaction of their heart. They became separate from any sense of sorrow/remorse, and handed themselves over to brutality for the practice of every kind of impurity to excess…

Be renewed in the breath of your minds. Put on the new man, founded as a city, according to God, in charity and in the dedication of truth.

Saint Paul has tells us in the second reading for the Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, at our Cathedral in Reno Nevada. What does he mean? We must first understand St. Paul as a first century Jew. Deuteronomy 5:1-7 is central to Torah and Gospel:

Moses summoned all those who struggle with God, “Hear, you who struggle with God, the customs, and correct judicial precedents, I proclaim in your ear, this day, for you to learn them and guard to do them. The Personal name, our Almighty Judge, cut a Brit with us at Mt. Sword. Not with our father did the Personal Name cut this Brit, but with us, each of us, alive, here, this day… I am the Personal Name, your Almighty Judge, who brought you out of the land of Oppression, the house of menial labor.

Before then, the Jewish people were oppressed, menial labor under Pharaoh, a government employer, who ran sweatshops in the land of oppression. After this time, the Jewish people were a free people, on their way to the Promised Land. They were on their way to a new life. With this in mind, we note Pharaoh’s hard heart. We see St. Paul chastising the ethnics for petrifaction, hardening of their hearts. We are the opposite, having soft hearts, caring for others. They are not others. They are a part of us.

When your son asks in time to come, “What do the witnesses, and the customs, and the correct judicial precedents, mean which the Personal Name our Almighty Judge commanded you? You will tell your son: ‘We were Pharaoh’s bondmen in Oppression; and the Personal Name brought us out of Oppression with a mighty hand…” He brought us, each of us, personally out of oppression. We are each members of that rescued community.

“It is not to your fathers that I give this Mitzvah, but to us, each of us, alive, here, this day…I am the Personal Name, your Almighty Judge, who brought you out of the land of Oppression.” The Jewish community has the concept of the Physical Presence. For the Jewish community the Physical Presence is the Physical Presence of the escape from oppression. Each generation relives the event for the first time, each time, they relive Passover.

Keep in mind how the Last Supper, the first Eucharist, was commemorated at the feast of Passover, Friday, 3 April 33 A.D. Our transformational event is Sunday 5 August 2012, as we relive the saving event for the first time through participation in Eucharist.

On his journey, as Saul approached Damascus, a light from the sky flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a φωνή/phone/sound/tone, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” Saul replied, “Who are you, Kyrie?” The reply came, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.” The men who were traveling with him stood speechless. They heard the φωνή/phone/sound/tone but could see no one.”

St. Paul had a near death experience. He literally died that day and met Jesus. He also underwent a transformational experience as at Sinai. That is why those with Saul only heard a sound, and saw nobody. After this event, things could not be the same, ever. This transformational event is what St. Paul talks about in the second reading for the Eighteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time. The Jewish community relives this event at Passover. We relive the event in the Eucharist.

We see the same transformation in the Gospel reading. “They asked him, “Kyrie, give us this bread always.” Jesus replied, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, whoever believes in me will never thirst.” This brings us to this new life. St. Paul tells us:

Put away falsehood, speak the truth. We are members one of another. Be angry but do not fail… The thief must no longer steal, but rather labor, doing honest work with his hands, to have something to share with the needy.”

Notice the reason the thief labors to do honest work. We are all members one with another. We are one Nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. We work with our hands to share with the needy, and we do so, as a nation.

Only noble language should come from your mouths. Noble language builds up the needy, and imparts kindness to those who hear your words. Do not grieve the Dedicated Spirit of God. The Dedicated Spirit sealed you for Redemption Day. Remove all bitterness, fury, anger, shouting, reviling, and ignobility. Be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving one another as the Mighty Judge forgives you in Christ. This is how Eucharist transforms our lives. This is putting on the new person.


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