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March 27: Wednesday of the Third Week of Lent

Reading Deuteronomy 4:1,5-9
Gospel Matthew 5:17-19

“I have come not to abolish but to fulfill.”

Within today’s scriptures there is a tension between divine revelation and the human will. In the First Reading, Moses declares, on the one hand, that divine revelation is given to us by God and must be accepted as is. On the other hand, Moses advises the people to take care not to forget what they have seen with their own eyes and heard with their own ears. Neither the Revelation of God which comes from Him nor our human experience of God is unimportant.

But for us who aspire to serve faithfully as His disciples, Jesus, as a faith-filled Jew, declares in today’s Gospel passage that everything we need to know has already been revealed. At times if we feel bored, it is because we are tired and have stopped to rest, while the world has moved on. If we feel that every day we are staring into the same old face of existence—that the world has ground to a halt—then it is surely we who have stopped moving.

When we follow God’s commands, we are not only like little children who are obeying their Father’s Word. The commandments and other forms of God’s divine revelation are also a source of wisdom for us, offering insight into the mysteries of human life. Whether we understand God’s ways completely or not, when we follow God’s commands, we become more like Him who gave them to us, because what God is describing in giving us His commandments is a description of Himself. He is always faithful to those with whom He has made a covenant. He is always merciful to those who call upon His Holy Name.