TWENTY FOURTH SUNDAY IN THE ORDINARY TIME, YEAR B.
16th September, 2018.
Isaiah 50:5-9; James 2:14-18; Mark 8:27-35.
Today the gospel spells out the manner in which Jesus Christ will save the world. It the reality of self-sacrifice: The Son of Man was destined to suffer. Suffering is a reality of life. It is the necessary struggle towards purification from the unnecessary attachments in life. Jesus Christ sets the example by tolling the path of suffering through self-donation. Self-sacrifice as donation implies that we be ready to make the substitution necessary to have peace and justice. Endless phases of resentment will be reduced drastically is we adopt the example of Christ, namely, self-sacrifice.
Life is not devoid of sacrifice. We must be ready to substitute comfort for peace. ‘For anyone who wants to save his life will lose it; but anyone who loses his life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it.’ Sacrifice is what we do in order to get what we deserve. In our contemporary world, people go through self-organized program of weight loss in order to get the best look. Replicating the same to get peace and happiness is what no one want to heed to.
Jesus Christ must suffer in order to end victimization that erupted due to human greed and insatiability. Acceptability is not possible without respect, and respect is motivated by sacrifice. It begins by being able to give up something for a greater good. The scope of self-sacrifice is wider than we can ever imagine. One self-sacrifice of Jesus Christ benefited the whole world. Self-sacrifice benefits both one and other around. That the son of man is destined to suffer, implies that there is no other way than the path of sacrifice. Substitution is the underlying principle. A greater good is the target.
Anthony Ekpunobi, CM.