Paul reminds the Galatians that faith is a priority of a Christian. We know we cannot save ourselves from sin and death. Our only hope is Someone can do this for us, and we can avail the grace offered to us through faith. God does not sell us salvation nor can we earn it through our efforts. It is made available to us only through faith in Jesus Christ.
1 Brothers and sisters: For freedom Christ set us free; so stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery. 2 It is I, Paul, who am telling you that if you have yourselves circumcised, Christ will be of no benefit to you. 3 Once again I declare to every man who has himself circumcised that he is bound to observe the entire law. 4 You are separated from Christ, you who are trying to be justified by law; you have fallen from grace. 5 For through the Spirit, by faith, we await the hope of righteousness. 6 For in Christ Jesus, neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love.
Psalm 119:41, 43, 44, 45, 47, 48
R: Let your mercy come to me, O Lord.
41 Let your mercy come to me, O Lord, your salvation according to your promise. (R) 43 Take not the word of truth from my mouth, for in your ordinances is my hope. (R) 44 And I will keep your law continually, forever and ever. (R) 45 And I will walk at liberty, because I seek your precepts. (R) 47 And I will delight in your commands, which I love. (R) 48 And I will lift up my hands to your commands and meditate on your statutes. (R)
The message of today’s Gospel focuses on what is right so all will be well. It is easy to look at external realities and be fooled into believing something is false. Tradition can also influence people to focus on the wrong things. Let us understand why we do things so we will stay the course and not be swayed by a false understanding of our traditional religious practices.
The word of God is living and effective, able to discern reflections and thoughts of the heart.
37 After Jesus had spoken, a Pharisee invited him to dine at his home. He entered and reclined at table to eat. 38 The Pharisee was amazed to see that he did not observe the prescribed washing before the meal. 39 The Lord said to him, “Oh you Pharisees! Although you cleanse the outside of the cup and the dish, inside you are filled with plunder and evil. 40 You fools! Did not the maker of the outside also make the inside? 41 But as to what is within, give alms, and behold, everything will be clean for you.”