Voices ever ancient, ever new. Saturday-Week 17-2013

In commenting on Matthew 14:4 from today’s Mass Readings, Peter Chrysologus writes:

“John aroused Herod by his moral admonitions, not by any formal accusation. He wanted to correct, not to suppress. Herod, however, preferred to suppress rather than be reconciled. To those who are held captive, the freedom of the one innocent of wrongdoing becomes hateful. Virtue is undesirable to those who are immoral; holiness is abhorrent to those who are impious; chastity is an enemy to those who are impure; integrity is a hardship for those who are corrupt; frugality runs counter to those who are self-indulgent; mercy is intolerable to those who are cruel, as is loving-kindness to those who are pitiless and justice to those who are unjust. The Evangelist indicates this when he says, “John said to him, ‘It is not lawful for you to have the wife of your brother Philip.’” This is where John runs into trouble. He who admonishes those who are evil gives offense. He who repudiates wrongdoers runs into trouble. John was saying what was proper of the law, what was proper of justice, what was proper of salvation and what was proper certainly not of hatred but of love. And look at the reward he received from the ungodly for his loving concern (Sermons, 127).”

1 comment:

  1. Reading this I can't help but think of Pope Francis who is "saying what is proper of the law, proper of justice, proper of salvation and proper certainly not of hatred but of love". As with John, what he will receive from God (eye has not seen...) as reward for his loving concern far outweighs what he will receive from the ungodly and so he is unafraid.