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JUSTICE AND RIGHTEOUSNESS

Read­ing Time: 2 minutes

Introduction   

The chief priests and the eld­ers of the people were the worst oppon­ents of Jesus, and there­fore, of truth and justice. This was because Jesus refused to par­take in their cor­rup­tion and selfish­ness. Without min­cing words, Jesus told them their sins and offences. The Gos­pel read­ing of this Sunday is dir­ectly addressed to them (cf. Matt 21:23) and it is a fur­ther example of Jesus’ zero tol­er­ance to evil. Jesus is now found in Jer­u­s­alem, the final des­tin­a­tion of his mis­sion. After his tri­umphant entry into the city, his first move was to enter the Temple, the sup­posed holy place of God. What he saw baffled him that he had to drive out those mer­chants out of the Temple. Unfor­tu­nately, the same prob­lem con­tin­ues today in vari­ous Churches and Chris­ti­an com­munit­ies. People doing their busi­ness under the dis­guise of wor­ship, ador­a­tion, break­through, mir­acle and heal­ing. Who knows what Jesus is think­ing of this ugly and ungodly situ­ation? Back to our top­ic. Jesus’ action in the Temple cre­ated a ser­i­ous con­front­a­tion between him and the Temple author­ity – the chief priests and the eld­ers of the people (cf. Matt 21:11–27). It was after such intense dis­cus­sion that Jesus con­tin­ued to address them with the mes­sage found in Mat­thew 21:28–32.

The way of righteousness

Jesus said that John the Baptist came to show the way of right­eous­ness (Greek: dikaiosunē). Now, when the tax col­lect­ors and pros­ti­tutes heard such mes­sage of right­eous­ness, they real­ised their mis­takes and repen­ted. But when the priests and eld­ers heard the same mes­sage, they nev­er cared and con­sequently, did not see the need of repent­ing. They even opposed both the mes­sage and the bear­er of the mes­sage. John only preached the way of right­eous­ness. He did not preach suc­cess, break­through, gos­pel of pro­gress, favour, total heal­ing, wealth without effort, spir­itu­al battle with the dev­il, and fight­ing ima­gined enemies. In Mat­thew 6:33, Jesus advised his dis­ciples to seek the king­dom and right­eous­ness of God first, so that those things they worry about in Matt 6:25–32 will be giv­en to them. Right­eous­ness  refers to that which God has approved. Whatever God has examined and deemed right is right­eous and this is what should be prac­tised. Priests and eld­ers of the Church, then and now, tend to sub­sti­tute God’s right­eous­ness with their own a‑righteousness. Every spir­it must be thor­oughly examined to see if it is God’s spir­it or simply human spir­it, because there are too many false proph­ets in the world (cf. 1John 4:1), who pre­tend to be God’s mes­sen­gers, when actu­ally, they are work­ing for their own per­son­al and selfish grat­i­fic­a­tion and enrichment.

FOR DETAILS, GET YOUR OWN COPY OF THE BOOKTHE WORD OF LIFE: SUNDAY REFLECTIONS” (vol. I)!! The reflec­tion for the 26th Sunday is found on pages 464–469. Happy reading!

For details on how to get it, con­tact the author on this link: https://m.me/uchennabiblia?fbclid=IwAR2yeg4a6sDGBp9QGkIvKj6FSADumMokN6lshdE0zuo-JHs6qOmlhA7jyHo or email me at: postmaster@uchennabiblia.com or simply send an SMS on 08116100926, and I will get back to you.

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