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They Know Not What They Do

 
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Prayer-Soldier
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 15, 2019 8:24 pm    Post subject: They Know Not What They Do Reply with quote

They Know Not What They Do

Scripture:


And having said these things, he went before, going up to Jerusalem. And it came to pass, when he was come nigh to Bethphage and Bethania, unto the mount called Olivet, he sent two of his disciples, saying: Go into the town which is over against you, at your entering into which you shall find the colt of an ass tied, on which no man ever has sit: loose him and bring him hither. And if any man shall ask you: Why do you loose him? You shall say thus unto him: Because the Lord has need of his service.

And they that were sent went their way and found the colt standing, as he said unto them. And as they were loosing the colt, the owners thereof said to them: Why loose you the colt? But they said: Because the Lord has need of him. And they brought him to Jesus. And casting their garments on the colt, they set Jesus thereon. And as he went, they spread their clothes underneath in the way. And when he was now coming near the descent of Mount Olivet, the whole multitude of his disciples began with joy to praise God with a loud voice, for all the mighty works they had seen, saying: Blessed be the king who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory on high! And some of the Pharisees, from among the multitude, said to him: Master, rebuke your disciples. To whom he said: I say to you that if these shall hold their peace, the stones will cry out.

(Luke 19:28-40)

The Lord has given me a learned tongue, that I should know how to uphold by word him that is weary: he wakens in the morning, in the morning he wakens my ear, that I may hear him as a master. The Lord God has opened my ear, and I do not resist: I have not gone back. I have given my body to the strikers, and my cheeks to them that plucked them: I have not turned away my face from them that rebuked me, and spit upon me. The Lord God is my helper, therefore am I not confounded: therefore have I set my face as a most hard rock, and I know that I shall not be confounded.
(Isaiah 50:4-7)

Who being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men, and in habit found as a man. He humbled himself, becoming obedient unto death, even to the death of the cross. For which cause, God also has exalted him and has given him a name which is above all names: That in the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those that are in heaven, on earth, and under the earth and that every tongue should confess that the Lord Jesus Christ is in the glory of God the Father.
(Philippians 2:6-11)

And the whole multitude of them, rising up, led him to Pilate. And they began to accuse him, saying: We have found this man perverting our nation and forbidding to give tribute to Caesar and saying that he is Christ the king. And Pilate asked him, saying: Are you the king of the Jews? But he answering, said: You say it. And Pilate said to the chief priests and to the multitudes: I find no cause in this man. But they were more earnest, saying: He stirs up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee to this place. But Pilate hearing Galilee, asked if the man were of Galilee? And when he understood that he was of Herod?s jurisdiction, he sent him away to Herod, who was also himself at Jerusalem in those days.

And Herod seeing Jesus, was very glad: for he was desirous of a long time to see him, because he had heard many things of him; and he hoped to see some sign wrought by him. And he questioned him in many words. But he answered him nothing. And the chief priests and the scribes stood by, earnestly accusing him. And Herod with his army set him at naught and mocked him, putting on him a white garment: and sent him back to Pilate.

And Herod and Pilate were made friends, that same day: for before they were enemies one to another. And Pilate, calling together the chief priests and the magistrates and the people, said to them: You have presented unto me this man as one that perverts the people. And behold I, having examined him before you, find no cause in this man, in those things wherein you accuse him. No, nor Herod neither. For, I sent you to him: and behold, nothing worthy of death is done to him. I will chastise him therefore and release him.

Now of necessity he was to release unto them one upon the feast day. But the whole multitude together cried out, saying: Away with this man, and release unto us Barabbas: Who, for a certain sedition made in the city and for a murder, was cast into prison. And Pilate again spoke to them, desiring to release Jesus. But they cried again, saying: Crucify him, Crucify him. And he said to them the third time: Why, what evil has this man done? I find no cause of death in him. I will chastise him therefore and let him go.

But they were instant with loud voices, requiring that he might be crucified. And their voices prevailed. And Pilate gave sentence that it should be as they required. And he released unto them him who for murder and sedition had been cast into prison, whom they had desired. But Jesus he delivered up to their will. And as they led him away, they laid hold of one Simon of Cyrene, coming from the country; and they laid the cross on him to carry after Jesus. And there followed him a great multitude of people and of women, who bewailed and lamented him. But Jesus turning to them, said: Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not over me; but weep for yourselves and for your children. For behold, the days shall come, wherein they will say: Blessed are the barren and the wombs that have not borne and the paps that have not given suck. Then shall they begin to say to the mountains: Fall upon us. And to the hills: Cover us. For if in the green wood they do these things, what shall be done in the dry?

And there were also two other malefactors led with him to be put to death. And when they were come to the place which is called Calvary, they crucified him there: and the robbers, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. And Jesus said: Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do. But they, dividing his garments, cast lots. And the people stood beholding. And the rulers with them derided him, saying: He saved others: let him save himself, if he be Christ, the elect of God. And the soldiers also mocked him, coming to him and offering him vinegar, and saying: If you be the king of the Jews, save yourself.

And there was also a superscription written over him in letters of Greek and Latin and Hebrew THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS. And one of those robbers who were hanged blasphemed him, saying: If you be Christ, save yourself and us. But the other answering, rebuked him, saying: Neither do you fear God, seeing; you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly: for we receive the due reward of our deeds. But this man has done no evil. And he said to Jesus: Lord, remember me when you shall come into your kingdom. And Jesus said to him: Amen I say to you: This day you shall be with me in paradise.

And it was almost the sixth hour: and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour. And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst. And Jesus crying with a loud voice, said: Father, into your hands I commend my spirit. And saying this, he gave up the ghost. Now, the centurion, seeing what was done, glorified God, saying: Indeed this was a just man. And all the multitude of them that were come together to that sight and saw the things that were done returned, striking their breasts. And all his acquaintance and the women that had followed him from Galilee stood afar off, beholding these things.

(Luke 23:1-49)

Reflection:

?Because the Lord has need of him,? they said; so no one stopped them who brought back that for which the Lord had need to use. We may reflect on this in varied ways, but what if we ask ourselves the question, if the Lord pointed to us and said He had need for us, how would we answer Him? Would we resist those He sent to find us and bring us to Him? Would we deny Him?

We may be tempted to answer, ?Of course not. We would allow them to take us to the Lord so we may do what He asks to fulfill His purpose for us; the purpose of the will of God.? Indeed, there are those who hope and pray for such an opportunity, to do that for which the Lord says He has need. Blessed are we when we say, ?Yes,? to the Lord when He calls us, but we must also reflect on the many times we said, ?No.?

Jesus knew what was in the hearts of all who surrounded Him, all who spoke of Him, all who cried for Him, all who tested Him, all who jeered Him, all who abandoned Him, all who plotted to kill Him, and all who love Him. We might be tempted to judge those who mocked Him and conspired against Him, but we do not see as God sees. Indeed, Jesus knew their hearts well. For this reason He said, ?Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.? (Luke 23:34)

This is our dilemma. With all the campaigns of deception infecting the world, we are left with the challenge of the discernment of truth. If we do not know what is true and what is deception, our decisions become flawed. Our choices lead us to dark paths. We become lemmings to those who incite and enrage us. We become pawns to those who deceive us. If we are to have hope, we must open our hearts so the Holy Spirit may lead us and open our ears to His call. (cf. John 14:15-17, 26)

We must not be na?ve. The evil one waits for every opportunity to distract us from truth, to enrage and incite us against what is right and just. Through his deceptions, we are seduced away from what is possible to share if we allow ourselves to follow the commandments of the Lord.

Even if we see through the falsehoods and deception, we may still be tempted to say, ?But Lord, what can I do? What purpose can I serve? I do not have the experience. I lack the wisdom. My courage is weak. I do not have the strength, so I shall be overwhelmed. Who will listen to me? Is this not what the prophets said?

And Moses said to God: Who am I that I should go to Pharao, and should bring forth the children of Israel out of Egypt? And he said to him: I will be with you: and this you shall have for a sign, that I have sent you: When you shall have brought my people out of Egypt, you shall offer sacrifice to God upon this mountain. ( Exodus 3:11 )

And I said: Woe is me, because I have held my peace; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people that has unclean lips, and I have seen with my eyes the King the Lord of hosts. And one of the seraphims flew to me, and in his hand was a live coal, which he had taken with the tongs off the altar. And he touched my mouth, and said: Behold this has touched your lips, and your iniquities shall be taken away, and your sin shall be cleansed. And I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: Whom shall I send? and who shall go for us? And I said: Lo, here am I, send me. ( Isaiah 6:5-8 )

Before I formed you in the womb of your mother, I knew you: and before you came forth out of the womb, I sanctified you, and made you a prophet unto the nations. And I said: Ah, ah, ah, Lord God: behold, I cannot speak, for I am a child. And the Lord said to me: Say not: I am a child: for you shall go to all that I shall send you: and whatsoever I shall command you, you shall speak. Be not afraid at their presence: for I am with you to deliver you, says the Lord. ( Jeremiah 1:5-8 )

When the moment comes where the Master says He has need of us, let us pray the ears of our heart are open so we may hear His call. Let us remember that for whatever purpose He created us, He will enable us if we trust in Him and take His hand.

Perhaps the purpose to which we are called is to offer truth in answer to a question. Perhaps that purpose is a listening ear. Perhaps that purpose is an act of kindness. Perhaps that purpose is an act of teaching. Perhaps that purpose is a helping hand. Perhaps that purpose is a simple prayer. Perhaps that purpose is simply to offer love. Of course, love is not simple, but it leads us to share great blessings. Let us remember, that as we turn away from selfishness, we open the eyes and ears of our heart to whole new vistas of life and the blessings of God's love.

Let us, then, not allow ourselves to be deceived by the ways of the world or seduced by the temptations of the evil one. Let us ask the Holy Spirit to lead us in truth so our decisions are right and just. Let us ask Him to prepare us for the day of His call so we may say, ?Yes, send me.? Let us ask Him to grant us the wisdom, courage, and strength by which we may turn from evil ways and perform the work He has for us. Let us take the hands He sends to help us. Let us be responsible stewards of what He allows us to use. Let us approach one another with humility, civility, dignity, and respect so that as we work together, it will not be our will, but the will of God which shall be done.

Questions for further reflection:

In what ways do we hear and discern the call of the Lord?

In what ways do we allow Him to open the eyes and ears of our heart to what is right and just?

In what ways do we say, ?Yes,? to what He asks of us?

May the peace and blessings of the Lord be with you always,
Prayer Soldier
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