Jul 12 (Mt 11:20-24)

(Statutory Warning: The dangerous Jesus is on the prowl…..Beware as you read….)
Many of us have heard of the tagline of a company which announces: 

“We are better than the best…” 
Lovely phrase, right?
The Gospel of the Day, however presents shocking and saddening words from the Mouth of the Most Prolific and Influential Prophet ever….Jesus…

….  with an even stronger tagline: “They are worse than worst!”

“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you Bethsaida!” (Mt 11:21)

The Context of this Deadly utterance by the Lord is when he reproaches the towns of Chorazin, Bethsaida and Capernaum, where mighty deeds and miracles had been done, but they had still not repented. 
These three towns of Chorazin, Bethsaida and Capernaum were called as the “Orthodox Triangle” 

>> Close to the Galilee Lake, these towns were filled with devout Jews, who took the Law of Moses very seriously. 
Adding to this traditional Jewish Faith, these towns also had the great privilege of being witnesses to many miracles, events, preaching and deeds of the Lord Jesus. 
The Gospel says, ” If the MIRACLES performed in you…..”

Note the word, “miracles”… Plural !! 

>> Not just a single miracle…..but many miracles.
>> Perhaps not just a single word…

… but many words and sermons and preaching! 

>> Perhaps not just a single healing…

… but many healings and cures and restorations! 
>> Perhaps not just a single warning…

… but many warnings and exhortations and appeals to repentance! 
And Yet… yet, they DID NOT REPENT! 

And Jesus condemns these towns…. “They are worse than the Worst!”
Lets consider the state of these “Worst” Towns…to which the Lord compares this “Orthodox Triangle”? 

>> Tyre and Sidon….Sodom
1. Tyre and Sidon

These were condemned cities (Cf. Ezek 26 – 28) and were embodiments of the Pagan Canaanite Culture, Pride and an Evil Arrogance 

2. Sodom: This was a damned city (Cf. Gen 18:16-33) and was an epitome of gross immorality, sexual perversion, widespread corruption and a complete rejection of God.
But Jesus says.. the Orthodox Triangle – Chorazin, Bethsaida and Capernaum….”are worse than these worst”!
These people had plenty of knowledge… 

>> They went to the synagogue faithfully… 

>> They knew the Torah of God…
But when Jesus came to them, they wouldn’t repent. 

>> When Jesus worked miracles, they wouldn’t believe him.
Miracles only amazed them…startled them…shocked them…..but they did not lead them to God!
Hold on!!
Is there any resemblance between My Life and these cities of the Orthodox Triangle?

>> Do I boast of my knowledge of God? 

>> Do I be satisfied with a mere Church-going Spirituality? 

>> Do I remain an ineffective witness to the many miracles worked and the blessings showered in my life?


Lets stop taking blessings for granted! 

>> Lets stop thinking mere external rituals are a guarantee for salvation!
>> It’s Better not to have a miracle…

… than to have a miracle and not repent. 
>> It’s Better to be sick and not cured… 

… than to be cured and not give the glory to God. 
>> It’s Better not to experience God… 

… than to experience God and stay the same as you were.
Let’s stop fooling ourselves, saying: “Things are fine and All is well”!
Our conscience needs a real-time check… 

>> Our hearts deserve an honest examination…

>> Our lives warrant a thorough review!
There is sure Hope…in the Lord. 

>> But only if we are repentant 
There is sure mercy…in the Lord. 

>> But only if we are willing to change 
There is sure Blessing…in the Lord. 

>> But only if we are penitent

The Orthodox Triangle is a stark reminder to us: Never to bypass opportunities & graces that come our way!
Let the cry of the Lord, “You are worse than the Worst”….never ever be addressed to us…
We Pray

>> We make Efforts. 

>> We seek for Grace!

God Bless! Live Jesus!
– Fr Jijo Manjackal MSFS

  Bengaluru, India

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