One Minute Reflection – 27 April – The least in the Kingdom of Heaven – Matthew 5:19

One Minute Reflection – 27 April – The Memorial of St Peter Canisius SJ (1521-1397) Confessor, Doctor of the Church and St Peter Armengol OdeM (c 1238-1304) – 2 Timothy 4:1-8, Matthew 5:13-19

“Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so, will be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments, will be called greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven.” – Matthew 5:19

REFLECTION – “For what reason then does He call some of these commandments “least,” although they are so magnificent and lofty? Jesus spoke this way because He was about to introduce His own teaching, as a new law . As He humbles Himself and speaks of Himself with great modesty, so He refers to His own teaching in the same manner. In this way, Jesus teaches us to practice humility in everything. And besides, since some suspected His teaching to be a new departure, He temporarily taught it in a more reserved way.

But when you hear “least in the Kingdom of Heaven,” you are to think of nothing but hell and punishment. For it was His practice to speak, not only of the joy the Kingdom brings but also, of the time of the resurrection and the fearful event of the Second Coming.

Think of one who calls a brother a fool. That one, transgresses only one commandment, maybe even the slightest one and falls into hell. Compare that one with another, who breaks all the commandments and instigates others to break them too. Do both have the same relationship to the Kingdom? This is not the argument Jesus is making. Rather, He means, that one who transgresses only one of the commands will, on the final day, be the least—that is, cast out—and last and will fall into hell!” – St John Chrysostom (347-407) Archbishop of Constantinople, Father and Doctor of the Church (The Gospel of Saint Matthew, Homily 16).

PRAYER – God, Who didst give strength and learning to blessed Peter Thy Confessor for the defence of the Catholic faith, mercifully grant, that by his example and teaching, the erring may be saved and the faithful remain constant in the confession of truth. Through Jesus Christ, Thy Son our Lord, Who lives and reigns with Thee, in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen (Collect).

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES on HEAVEN, St JOHN the BAPTIST, The KINGDOM of GOD, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 16 December – “Yet the least in the kingdom of God is greater than he” – Luke 7:28

One Minute Reflection – 16 December – “Month of the Immaculate Conception” – Thursday of the Third week of Advent, Readings: Isaiah 54: 1-10; Psalm30: 2 and 4-6,11-12a and 13b; Luke 7: 24-30

Yet the least in the kingdom of God is greater than he” – Luke 7:28

REFLECTION Of all that are born of women, none is greater than John.”
Were all the saints – righteous, upright and wise – joined together and dwelling within a single man, they would not be able to equal John the Baptist… of whom it has been said that he surpasses, by far, all other men and belongs to the class of angels
(Mk 1,2 Gk; Mal 3,1 Heb.).

But the least in the Kingdom of heaven is greater than he”… By what He has said, concerning John’s greatness, our Lord wanted to make known God’s immense generosity to us and His generosity towards His chosen ones. However great and famous John might be, it is less than the least in the kingdom, as the Apostle Paul said: “Our knowledge is in part… but when what is perfect has come, what is in part, will pass away” (1Cor 13,9-10). Yes, John is great – he who had the presentiment to say – “Behold, the Lamb of God ”(Jn 1,29) – but this greatness is no more than a tiny foretaste, compared to the glory to be revealed to those who are found worthy. To put it another way – all great and wonderful things here below, appear in all their smallness and insignificance, compared to the blessedness above…

John was found worthy of the great gifts of this life – prophecy, priesthood (cf. Lk 1,5) and righteousness… John is greater than Moses and the prophets, yet the old Law has need of the New Covenant, since he who is greater than the prophets, said to the Lord – “I need to be baptised by you” (Mt 3,14). John is great, too because his conception was announced by an Angel, his birth was surrounded with miracles, he announced the One Who bestows life, he baptised for the remission of sins… Moses led the people as far as the Jordan and the Law led humankind to the baptism of John. Yet, if “of all that are born of women none is greater than John,” the Lord’s Forerunner, how much greater must they be, whose feet the Lord washed and into whom He breathed His Spirit? (Jn 13,4; 20,22).” – St Ephrem (c.306-373) Deacon in Syria, Father and Doctor of the Church (Commentary on the Diatessaron, 9, 7-13 ; SC 121).

PRAYER – At Your bidding Lord, we are preparing the way for Christ Your Son. May we not grow faint on our journey, as we wait for His healing presence. May His Immaculate Mother and our Mother Mary, grant us her loving protection on this dangerous road. We make our prayer through Christ, Our Lord with the Holy Spirit, one God for all eternity, amen.