Col 2:6-15; Ps 145:1-11; Lk 6:12-19
If we do not walk in Him, in Christ Our God, He will lead us away in the triumph of his cross. Opposition is useless. The Lord Our God is King and ultimately he will triumph. There is no power, no opinion poll, and no worldly authority that will triumph over the Lord Our God. What do we know about the Almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit? We know that he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and rich in mercy. The Lord Our God is good to all and compassionate to all his works. What more do we need to know? This is the truly good news of the great adventure of the Sacred Scripture. For this revelation we can never cease to give thanks and bless the Name of The Lord. For all generations we discourse of the glory of His Kingdom and we dare to speak of his might. Saint Paul reminds all of us who read his letters that we have been buried with Christ in our baptism and we rise with Christ through faith in the power of God. We are an entirely new creation, made in the image and likeness of Christ the New Adam. Saint Luke enables us to be a part of the large number of people gathered from all over the world to hear and be healed by the Lord Christ as he begins the great discourse on a stretch of level ground. At every Liturgy we come to offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving for the new life we have in the power and beauty of the Christ who is the way, the truth and the life.
We will walk in the triumph of the cross of Christ either willingly or unwillingly. Such is the prediction of the Apostle Paul. In his own history and in his own flesh Saint Paul knew the power of the cross. We who have received Christ Jesus willingly walk in him. We walk in the triumph of his cross because we are rooted in him and built upon him. Because of the gospel we have heard and believed we are established in faith and abounding in thanksgiving. Saint Paul warns his brothers and sisters in among the Colossians and warns us not to be captivated by any empty and seductive philosophy. Indeed, there are no human traditions or elemental powers of the world that have more value, authority, or influence than Christ Our God. In Christ alone dwells the whole fullness of the deity bodily and in this fullness we share. Such is the dignity of our life as a follower of the Lord Jesus. We are not forced to walk in his triumphant train. Rather, we freely join him in his parade of glory. In this world we will be ridiculed for holding up the cross during our heaven ward procession, but we will not be made a public spectacle when the Lord returns in glory. Any witness to the power of the cross of Christ is repugnant and abhorrent in our world. To those who have no faith or have rejected the gift of faith, our witness is just a lot of noise and a useless distraction from what really matters in life. Yet, we cannot ignore the attraction of the good, the true, and the beautiful. In Christ we have come to know the power of God to change us from self-centered, self-righteous, and hard-hearted individualists into people of faith, hope, and love. We are people who walk in Christ all the way home to the Father by the power of the Holy Spirit.
In the Gospel of Saint Matthew the great teaching of the Lord Jesus takes place on the Mount of the Beatitudes, however, in the Gospel of Saint Luke the great teaching of the Lord Jesus takes place on a stretch of level ground. This topographical detail is not the only difference worth noting between these two Gospels that have the Great Discourse of the Divine Teacher. In Saint Matthew the Lord Jesus selects the Apostles after the Sermon on the Mount. In Saint Luke the Lord Jesus comes down from the mountain after a whole night in prayer and calls his disciples to himself, and from among these who already follow him the Twelve are chosen. Perhaps Saint Luke wants us to understand that those who follow Christ are also sent with the full power of his teaching. Indeed, we are called to be disciples and sent with apostolic zeal to speak the truth in a world so full of empty traditions and seductive philosophies. Into this world we dare witness to the power of the cross which is the power of love to forgive even as Christ has forgiven us.