Daily Gospel Reflection – Friday of the First Week of Lent
Bishop Robert Barron
March 3, 2023
Friday of the First Week of Lent
Gospel: Mt 5:20-26
Jesus said to his disciples:
“I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter into the Kingdom of heaven.
“You have heard that it was said to your ancestors, You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment. But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment, and whoever says to his brother, Raqa, will be answerable to the Sanhedrin, and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ will be liable to fiery Gehenna. Therefore, if you bring your gift to the altar, and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift there at the altar, go first and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Settle with your opponent quickly while on the way to court. Otherwise your opponent will hand you over to the judge, and the judge will hand you over to the guard, and you will be thrown into prison. Amen, I say to you, you will not be released until you have paid the last penny.”
*United States Conference of Catholic
Bishop Robert Barron
Friends, in today’s Gospel, Jesus commands us to be reconciled with one another. I want to say something about the role of forgiveness in repairing our broken relationships.
When you are at worship and realize that you need to forgive someone (or be forgiven by someone), go and do it. Go get reconciled, then come back. It’s like a rule of physics. There is something hidden in the deep mystery of God, and I can’t fully explicate it. Somehow, if there is a lack of forgiveness in you, it blocks the movement of God in you. Perhaps it’s simply because God is love, and so whatever is opposed to love in us blocks the flow of God’s power and God’s life.
One reason we do not forgive is that we feel that some injustice has been done to us, and we resent it. A good cure for this feeling is to kneel before the cross of Jesus. What do you see there? The innocent Son of God nailed to the cross—the ultimate injustice. What does he do? He forgives his persecutors. Meditate on that, and your sense of being treated unjustly will fade away.