2023
九月

15

512

【英汉主日分享】| FORGIVENESS: THE FEAST OF GOD AND PEOPLE(24th Sunday in Ordinary Time)

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24th Sunday in Ordinary Time —Year A

Fr. Jijo Kandamkulathy CMF

 甘天霖神父

Gospel: Matthew 18:21-35

A Reading from the Holy Gospel according to Matthew,

Glory to you, O Lord!

Then Peter approaching asked him, "Lord, if my brother sins against me, how often must I forgive him? As many as seven times?" Jesus answered, "I say to you, not seven times but seventy-seven times. That is why the kingdom of heaven may be likened to a king who decided to settle accounts with his servants. When he began the accounting, a debtor was brought before him who owed him a huge amount. Since he had no way of paying it back, his master ordered him to be sold, along with his wife, his children, and all his property, in payment of the debt. At that, the servant fell down, did him homage, and said, 'Be patient with me, and I will pay you back in full.' Moved with compassion the master of that servant let him go and forgave him the loan. When that servant had left, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a much smaller amount. He seized him and started to choke him, demanding, 'Pay back what you owe.' Falling to his knees, his fellow servant begged him, 'Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.' But he refused. Instead, he had him put in prison until he paid back the debt. Now when his fellow servants saw what had happened, they were deeply disturbed, and went to their master and reported the whole affair. His master summoned him and said to him, 'You wicked servant! I forgave you your entire debt because you begged me to. Should you not have had pity on your fellow servant, as I had pity on you?'

Then in anger his master handed him over to the torturers until he should pay back the whole debt. So will my heavenly Father do to you, unless each of you forgives his brother from his heart."

The Gospel of the Lord.

Praise to You, Lord Jesus Christ.

Homily: FORGIVENESS: THE FEAST OF GOD AND PEOPLE

The question that opens today’s gospel, “How many times must I forgive the offenses of my brother or sister? Seven times?" reveals that Peter already knows that Jesus intends to go beyond the limits set by the scribes. He certainly remembers what has been said in the Sermon on the Mount, “If you are about to offer your gift at the altar, and you remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift in front of the altar, go at once and make peace with your brother and then come back and offer your gift to God” (Mt 5:23-24), and “If you forgive others their wrongdoings, our Father in heaven will also forgive yours. If you do not forgive others…" (Mt 6:14-15). He also presents another unequivocal statement of the Master, "If your brother offends you seven times in one day, but seven times he says to you, ‘I’m sorry,’ forgive him” (Lk 17:3-4). 

The answer of Jesus goes beyond what already scares Peter, "No, not seven times (that is always) but seventy times seven (even more than always).” To clarify his thoughts, he tells a parable.

A debtor who owed ten thousand talents was presented to the king. The talent is about thirty-six kilograms of gold; its value multiplied by ten thousand—the most elevated figure in the Greek language—amounts to a huge sum that corresponds to the salary of 200,000 years of work—2,400,000 payrolls. It’s unthinkable that someone could repay such an amount.

Showing a generosity without limits, the master of the parable, who represents God, touched by the plight of his servant, condones all the debt. There’s no sin that God cannot forgive; there is no fault superior to his immense love. 

In the second part of the story another servant who owes the first a hundred denarii enters. It is a considerable sum, equivalent to 100 working days, but paltry compared with that condoned by the king.

The second debtor uses the same prayer to his colleague, hoping to get the same compassion. The merciless servant, however, grabs him by the neck and begins to choke him, saying: “Give me what you owe!”

The central message of the parable is to be sought, obviously, in the huge disproportion between the two debts, and in the stark contrast between the behavior of God who always forgives and that of the man who refuses to forgive. The image of suffocation gives a good idea of the psychological subjection in which the one who did wrong is reduced.

With the parable, Jesus is interested in highlighting the enormous distance that exists between God's heart and the human heart, between his love and ours.

We ask the Father to "forgive our debt" in prayer. What does God expect from us? His very own "compassion”: he wants that we do not keep the brother/sister a slave of their past. He claims that we do not take their breath away while they desperately try to rise up from the chasm. God asks us to help them seventy times seven, renouncing any recourse against them. They understood that "love does not delight in wrong, excuses everything, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things” (1 Cor 13:5-7). Whoever has accepted this new logic is willing to lose, to forget all their own rights just to see again their brother/sister happy, peaceful and free from their sin.

证道:效仿天主的怜悯,善待欠债的兄弟姐妹!

今日福音开启的问题揭示了伯多禄已知的“我必须要宽恕冒犯我的兄弟或姐妹多少次呢?七次够吗?“,而耶稣打算超越经书上设定的限制。他当然记得山中圣训曾说过的:“你若在祭坛前,要献你的礼物时,在那里想起你的弟兄有什么怨你的事,就把你的礼物留在那里,留在祭坛前,先去与你的弟兄和好,然后再来献你的礼物”(玛5:23-24);“你们若宽免别人的过犯,你们的天父也必宽免你们的;但你们若不宽免别人的,你们的父也必不宽免你们的过犯”(玛6:14-15)。他也表达了另一个主的明确声明:“如果你的兄弟犯了罪,你就得规劝他;他如果后悔了,你就得宽恕他。如果他一天七次得罪了你,而又七次转向你说:我后悔了,你也得宽恕他”(路17:3-4)。

 耶稣的回答超越了伯多禄已有的恐慌:“不够,不仅是长久以来的七次,而是七十个七次,远比长久以来做的更多。”为了澄清祂的思想,耶稣讲了个比喻。

一个拥有一万个塔冷通的债主被带到了君王前。塔冷通大约是36公斤黄金,其价值乘以一万,就是希腊语中最尊贵的身份,总和是一笔巨款,是20万年的工资,240万人的薪水。有人能够偿还如此数量的巨款,真是无法想象的事。

这显示了比喻中主人的无限慷慨,代表的是天主被祂仆人的窘境所触动,宽免了他的所有债务。没有天主不能宽免的罪,没有任何错误能大过祂无限的爱。

 故事的第二部分,是另一个欠第一个仆人一百德纳的人进来了。这是一笔可观的数目,相当于100天的工资,与君王的宽恕相比却微不足道。

第二个债主对同伴用了同样的祈求,希望得到同样的怜悯。然而,这位无慈悲心的仆人抓住他,扼住他的喉咙说:“还你欠的债!”

简而言之,这比喻的核心讯息显然是在于两个债主之间的巨大不相称,以及天主一直宽恕的行动与拒绝宽恕的那人之间形成鲜明的对比。令人窒息的形象很好地说明了在做错事的人心理上被贬低的绝对服从。

借着这个比喻,耶稣意在强调在天主的心与人的心之间,也就是祂的爱与我们的爱之间存在的巨大差距。

在祈祷中,我们请求天父“宽免我们的债”。那么,天主对我们有什么期待呢?祂拥有十足的“怜悯”:祂希望我们不让兄弟姐妹成为过往的奴隶。祂声明:当他们绝望地试图从深渊中爬起来时,我们不要夺取他们的所有。天主要求我们帮助他们七十个七次,放弃对他们的所有追索权。他们明白:“爱不以不义为乐,凡事宽恕,凡事相信,凡事盼望,凡事忍耐”(格前13:5-7)。谁接纳这新的逻辑就是乐意失去,忘记他们自己所有的权利,只是想再次看到兄弟姐妹的快乐,宁静安详,并从他们的罪恶中获得自由释放。

文本来源:雅
:Fr.James Ga

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